The Missoula Property Manager Blog

Missoula Property Management – Your Investment, Our Expertise

Rent Smart Property Management - Friday, June 14, 2019

We started our journey in Missoula property management back in 1996 when we purchased our first investment property. It was a quirky, one bedroom alley house in the Franklin to Fort neighborhood. Using the lease that came with the tenant, we placed a classified ad in the Missoulian in search for our first new tenant. I remember retyping the 7 page lease on my IBM Selectronic II Typewriter. Yes, that long ago…

Even back then, we had the foresight to allow pets in our Missoula rental. This, back in a time where it was unheard of and ESAs were not a thing. We got flooded with rental applications and inquiries. I remember driving downtown to the collection agency, rental applications in hand, to have them run credit checks. This is where my background in high risk lending and 3rd party debt collection came in handy. I had a great eye for detail and creating check systems to verify the applicants’ information.

Being a brand-new, DIY landlord, I never considered that my rent rate was far too low, hence the gazillion applications I had to process. Let that sink in a moment…. It was a single-family home, that allowed pets, and our rent rate was too low but I didn’t even know it. I had no experience in the rental market or being a landlord. I just rented it out for the same rent as the previous owner did. And kept it at that rate for years to come! No wonder we rarely had vacancy and the first renter stayed over 4 years. Live and learn, or maybe I should have hired a professional to do all the heavy lifting and I could have made a lot more money. But I “thought” I knew what I was doing… 

We come across DIY landlords from time to time with similar stories. They boast, like I used to before I knew better, how many applications they would receive, how high in demand their rental property is, how low their vacancy rate was, like it was a badge of honor. Really, they were just under renting and didn’t have a clue that they were leaving money on the table month after month, year after year like I did.

Well, since the days of the late 90’s and typewriters and driving across town to run credit checks, we have gained a wealth of industry knowledge, flown to all parts of the country to attend property management conferences, have spent hundreds if not thousands of hours in continuing education and industry related networking groups, and have successfully serviced thousands of applicants, residents, leases and turn overs.  We have been through the trenches and have developed an arsenal of systems and technologies to address almost every issue that comes our way. We are experienced. We have the right answers. And we want to share that knowledge with you so your Missoula rental property is a success. Are you confident in your current rent rate? Not sure? Give us a call, we would be happy to take a look and discuss your current challenges. 

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