7 Strategies to Increase ROI on Keeper Properties by Reducing Vacancy

7 more gems from my email interview with Robyn Thompson (this time about having the best rental portfolio):

Do Your Homework Before You Buy

Location, Location, Location. Search out the areas that have low vacancy rates.  Talk to local realtors, property managers, and seasoned investors who have been renting units for over a decade before you take the plunge and buy a property.

For example, I want to own property were supply of rental properties is low and the demand is high.  I own properties in a town where the schools are in the Top 50 Schools in America.  Demand for rental property is high and my average days on market to rent are usually less than 2 weeks.

Price Your Property Correctly

It is important to have the competitive edge in rent for tenants.  Look at the other rentals in the MLS and on various rental sites (www.rentals.com, www.rent.com, and www.forrent.com).  If you offer a good price compared to the competing properties, it will rent faster than the other properties.

Make Sure Your Property is in Drop Dead Gorgeous Condition

All tenants want to live in a really nice home and when they are happy there, they don’t move.  I had a tenant in Connecticut that loved their kitchen and bath in my rental property and lived there for 12.5 years!  The house was in such great condition when I rented it to her that I never stepped foot into the house during the entire time that she rented from me.

Go After Long Term Leases with Tenants

This is why I usually don’t raise the rents on my tenants at the end of the first year when the lease expires.  I usually offer a 2 years’ lease with no rental increase as long as the tenants pay on time every month.  The longer the tenant stays in the house, the deeper their roots go into the neighborhood and community.  The worry of costly vacancy will be avoided for more than 24 months.

Respond Quickly to Tenant Requests

When a tenant calls about a clogged toilet, an air conditioning that is not cooling, or any other malfunction, then the landlord or property manager should respond quickly.  Remember that unhappy tenants move.  Move outs are extremely costly for property owners. I have some properties that are over $2,000 per month.  Those vacancies hurt your profit margins greatly!  I like to have the maintenance person on site less than 24 hours for all minor issues.

Don’t Wait Until the Last Minute Before the Tenant Moves Out

Start advertising before the tenant vacates so you have multiple new prospective renters ready and excited to look at the upcoming property.  I want to do a walk-through 2-3 weeks the tenants move out so I can have all the handymen and contractors lined up to do the necessary repairs the minute that the tenant moves out of the property!  Every day that the property is vacant, you are losing money!

Lease with the Option to Buy

This option will attract a high caliber Rent to Own tenants who are looking to test drive a property prior to committing to home ownership.  In the Rent to Own situation, the tenant gets time to get accustomed to the neighborhood, schools, and surrounding areas without being rushed to buy a property.  They will be more likely to pay their rent in a timely manner to avoid losing their right to buy.  This strategy can also save the 6% in realtor commissions.  If the property is in an area that is appreciating rapidly, be careful not to set the option price too low because you want to get all the appreciation as the prices in the neighborhood climb upward.

We’re hosting Robyn live and in-person this weekend for a terrific set of training events.

* You’ll learn all about rehabbing houses for a profit,
* You’ll learn how to replicate her buying machine for both rehabs and “keeper” rentals,
* You’ll learn her magic buying formula to ensure huge profits,
* You’ll learn about what it takes to succeed in business,
* You’ll learn her selling process to get top dollar,
* And the list goes on…

RSVP for “Renovating Houses for Massive Profits” on Thursday July 26th at Traction REIA’s Main Meeting:


Day 1 of our 2-Day Doubleheader Training Intensive (attend either day or both)
TOPIC: “Turning Houses Needing Rehab Into Pots of Gold” with Robyn Thompson
Saturday July 28th at the Sheraton Tysons Corner.

Day 2 of our 2-Day Doubleheader Training Intensive (attend either day or both)
TOPIC: “How to Build a Massive Passive Real Estate Wealth Portfolio” with Robyn Thompson
Sunday July 29th at the Sheraton Tysons Corner.

See you there!

Tom Zeeb

Traction REIA:
10+ Year Recipient of the National REIA “Honors of Merit”
and the “Award of Excellence”
For Best Real Estate Investor Association!

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“Tom Zeeb has the formula for success.  You just need to follow what he says.”
– David McGrady

“The best help from Tom was the negotiation techniques & tactics. His Bootcamp got me on track.”
– Ryne Lambert

“I used your marketing. I used your contract. I got the deal and got it done.”
– Danisha Byrd

“I’m so happy today, I am about to do my first rehab property all thanks to you.”
– Eric Nkemtaji

“I implemented what was shown. I just started doing it & BAM! my first deal came in.”
– Godfrey De La Rosa

“I started implementing exactly what you said, used your contract, & signed the deal up!”
– Dominic Mason

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