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Residential Property Management/Questions Answered by Expert John Souerbry

SubjectDate Asked
HOA12/1/2016
  Q: I am having a hard time finding information about how to/if we can start a home owners association. ...
  A: A Homeowners Association is a non-profit corporation, therefore I recommend you speak with an ...
Is gas, heat, water, electricity, trash removal, cable7/30/2016
  Q: Is gas, heat, water, electricity, trash removal, cable connection for TV, and high speed internet, ...
  A: I'm in California, therefore I am not able to give you a specific answer regarding landlord ...
going from renting to selling...9/2/2014
  Q: Souerbry, First of all, thank you very much for volunteering on this site! Brief background: We ...
  A: Pablo, Without reading your property management contract, I can't know what your obligations are to ...
Rent to Own Properties8/7/2014
  Q: We live in Andover MN 55304. We cannot find any apartment or townhouse to rent. But we saw some ...
  A: There are a lot of misconceptions about rent-to-own deals and there are lots of ways to do them. It ...
Query.7/12/2014
  Q: Good day With reference to a rental lease for which I am renewing for the same tenant as prior year, ...
  A: Ask the tenant if transferring the deposit is OK with them. I've transferred deposits to a new lease ...
Sell or Rent Out Condo?5/16/2014
  Q: I am currently in process of buying a new home (in escrow). My family and have been living in a 2 ...
  A: I don't like condos as investments unless they're in an area where they are in extremely high ...
repairs5/7/2014
  Q: How long does the facility have to fix and replace broken issues in your unit?
  A: Unless your lease has a specific response time, it's usually determined by the the maintenance item. ...
Rental Property Owner Statement7/1/2013
  Q: I am using quickbooks to create property owner statements as part of property management company. I ...
  A: Antonio - The "Statement of Cash Flows" in Quickbooks provides a beginning and ending cash balance ...
Key west condo3/11/2013
  Q: We recently inherited a condo in key west,Fla. We live in Ohio. We have a feeling the property ...
  A: Unfortunately, you situation is common among out-of-town owners. Here are solutions I have ...
Segments of Tenants and Landlords10/10/2012
  Q: I have a marketing project to determine if there are new business opportunities associated with ...
  A: You might get better information from an insurance agent, but I'll tell you how I see insurance ...
property management10/7/2012
  Q: i have ran into an issue and need some help on how to go about this. we rented a home through a ...
  A: Sorry to hear about your situation. In all things relating to real estate, you need to get every ...
tenant I'm evicting has changed lock9/4/2012
  Q: because I have asked for help last month too! I have a home that's been in foreclosure for about 5 ...
  A: Lisa, You've got a bundle of issues! I'll give you my perspective as a professional property ...
broken window after office hours8/2/2012
  Q: around 2:10 am someone threw a brick through my window. I called the police, gave a report and then ...
  A: I agree that the landlord usually has responsibilty for securing the premises. Is there a manager's ...
Property Management7/21/2012
  Q: 1.Define Management report on residential property. 2.Explain how Management report can be prepare ...
  A: A property management report can have two parts: 1) Financial. This is typically called an ...
Incorporation as rental management6/21/2012
  Q: However am looking to buy some live in rental property (duplex or triplex). I was wondering if there ...
  A: I can only answer this question for you partially. The owner pays the tax on the net income, never ...
hoarding5/12/2012
  Q: My landlord received a letter from the condo assoc. requesting an inspection of her unit, which she ...
  A: There are many different possible outcomes from the the situation you describe. I'm in California ...
4 property rule4/16/2012
  Q: I found a great rate at a local bank. I checked out all the fees and other details, and the rate is ...
  A: I'd talk to a loan officer familiar with the details of Freddie Mac lending, which I'm not. When I ...
Rental Property Management2/7/2012
  Q: I own a home that is 100 miles away from where I live now. I have had two renters but have had ...
  A: I found several South Carolina property managers online by adding "single family home" to my search ...
Primary Residence to Rental Property1/25/2012
  Q: John, My husband and I are looking to turn our primary residence into a rental property. With the ...
  A: I've had several clients do what you're doing and here are the considerations: - In qualifying for a ...
Cease and desist1/23/2012
  Q: Both parents have passed disputing over the residential property, can or will it help to write a c&d ...
  A: Kerrie - as a beneficiary of the estate, you should be able to have your attorney request that you ...
Cease and Desist Order1/20/2012
  Q: I currently have a property management company handling my rental that has a tenant in it right now. ...
  A: In California, an order that comes from the Department of Real Estate could mean several things, ...
How to protect myself legally in a home bought for me but name is not on deed?1/5/2012
  Q: My parents bought me a home 2 years ago in NC. The understanding was that it was mine and I was to ...
  A: Sorry about the situation you're in. The best thing you can do is consult with a local attorney to ...
North Carolina Property Mngmnt requirements11/4/2011
  Q: I moved to North Carolina from TX and registered my business name as "_________________ Properties, ...
  A: I'm not licensed in North Carolina, so I'm not sure about the specific requirements there. The ...
Property Management / Tenant Question11/2/2011
  Q: The background is that I hired a property manager to manage our house. While we asked, we never got ...
  A: I've been in this situation several times, helping clients transition to new managers for one reason ...
adding rental propery to a newly formed LLC7/27/2011
  Q: I am forming a solo LLC whose assets will be several rental properties and a LLC bank account. Do I ...
  A: Greg, I recommend you run this by an attorney. Unless you formally change title to give ownership ...
Manager - Owner Agreement7/20/2011
  Q: A friend of mine who owns some rental properties is having problems with her property manager. He ...
  A: If the manager works for a company, you can always try getting in touch with the owner or manager of ...
California tenant questions6/20/2011
  Q: Does a landlord have an automatic lien on tenant assets if rent isn't paid. If so, how does landlord ...
  A: In a standard California lease, the landlord has no right to take tenant's property to collect back ...
Lease6/12/2011
  Q: I have tenant who has signed a year lease and has been leasing from me for the past 1 year and ...
  A: Here are the decisions I consider when a lease is expiring: - if I want a tenant locked in for at ...
LLC vs S-Corp for real estate5/10/2011
  Q: I read your response on starting an LLC to move fully-paid properties into corporation. Is there a ...
  A: LLCs and S-corps are very similar in structure. It seems the main difference is that corporations ...
Renting house in trust4/27/2011
  Q: My husband's father recently had to go into a nursing home, and his house went into an irrevocable ...
  A: Jenna, First, I suggest you get a lawyer to help you with this. Issues relating to trusts and ...
How to complete a 1065 for a Property Management Company3/20/2011
  Q: John, we own a small residential property management company (12 houses). We file our federal taxes ...
  A: Al, I recommend you hire a tax professional to prepare the 1065 filing. Although the profit or loss ...
children occupancy2/28/2011
  Q: I am a single mom of boy-girl twins now 2 and a half. I have been denied housing based on occupancy ...
  A: Occupancy laws are different from state-to-state, so I can only tell you what I know about the rules ...
Online Accredited Property Management Course2/9/2011
  Q: I am looking for an Online Accredited Property Management school/course. What do you recommend? ...
  A: My first choice is Certified Property Manager through the Institute of Real Estate Management ...
On-site property management in the Dallas metroplex area1/13/2011
  Q: I am in the process of expanding my multi-family investment portfolio into the Dallas metroplex area ...
  A: I can't verify the law in Texas, as I'm in California, but I can tell you that here an on-site ...
Real Estate11/20/2010
  Q: It seems like a very American thing to want to own ones own house someday. Why is that? Isn't it ...
  A: Interesting question. One way to look at it is that when you rent, YOU are paying the owner's taxes, ...
Buying Rental Property10/3/2010
  Q: Is is better to buy rental property with my business name (a limited liability company) or to with ...
  A: Most times it is better to buy in your business name to protect you from potential liability if you ...
Property Manager Contract8/21/2010
  Q: If a property manager collects the rent on the 8th of the month and waits until up to 30 days to ...
  A: Every property manager has their own time frame for processing rents. The industry standard is to ...
Taxes, Rental Property4/27/2010
  Q: My husband and I currently own one house that we haven't been able to sell, but have someone ...
  A: There are four dimensions to owning rental property: 1. Personal: whether you personally like the ...
Managing rental properties4/25/2010
  Q: How many rental properties can you manage without a real estate license in Ga?
  A: I'm a property manager in California, so I can't give you a reliable answer for Georgia. However, ...
Buying land4/13/2010
  Q: Hope you may have some input on this. I bought some land near me. It is roughly 13 acres, has two ...
  A: Scott, No, a seller can't go onto the land and take things UNLESS those things are listed on the ...
Unwanted items4/9/2010
  Q: My sister had lost her job and then her house October 2009. So I said it was ok to move in with me ...
  A: I'll answer this from the perspective of a California landlord, as that is my background. If you ...
Caretaker Lien3/28/2010
  Q: My mother is in a nursing home and I've been providing care for my dad for the past five years. ...
  A: I went to high school in Clay County, Kentucky. Go Wildcats! You need to hire an attorney to help ...
property under forclosure3/26/2010
  Q: I am currently leasing a home through a property management company. We just recently found out ...
  A: Tenants used to get 60 days notice to vacate in foreclosure situations under state law, however, in ...
caretaker contract3/21/2010
  Q: My husband and I recently purchased property that we would like maintained by a live in caretaker. ...
  A: I highly recommend you hire an attorney to draft the agreement. I do have recommendations for ...
property management3/12/2010
  Q: I am thinking of opening my own small property management company. I will not be selling or leasing ...
  A: Bette, My opinion is that if you are performing any property management functions you need a broker ...
Property Manangement Fraud3/3/2010
  Q: I have a rental property in San Leandro CA which is under a property management company. They have ...
  A: Recovering charges will be difficult, as you probably don't have proof that the work was done either ...
Trust2/21/2010
  Q: In your answer to Susan about forming an LLC and trust, is this what is called a living trust and ...
  A: Dennis, There are many types of trusts, so I recommend you speak to an estate attorney to find the ...
Property Management Contract2/1/2010
  Q: I have a home that is rented and we are using a property management company. We have had a lot of ...
  A: Nancy, If you cancelled the contract with your management company before they signed the lease with ...
rental properties1/29/2010
  Q: I am 60 years old and my wife is 50. Currently we live on passive income only. We live in Texas and ...
  A: Your question has a couple considerations - how to create income for the long term and how to keep ...
Investment property and mgt company1/21/2010
  Q: I have investment property managed by a company. At the end of the year, do I have to prepare a ...
  A: As an owner paying any vendor, you don't prepare a 1099 if the company is incorporated. Typically ...
Road maintenance agreement1/5/2010
  Q: My fiance %26 i are in the process of buying a house, but due to the fact that the house is on an no ...
  A: Heather, you probably need the services of an attorney to sort this out properly. One of the first ...
Need advice ASAP12/14/2009
  Q: 4 months ago when I first signed my lease. I specifically asked the manager if either I or my ...
  A: Alyssa, I'll try to break down your question to a few different issues. I hope hope hope you kept a ...
Property location scandal12/4/2009
  Q: my name is Anatoly and I am from Ukraine. I did not find a proper category for my inquiry, neither I ...
  A: Sorry to hear about your problem. I understand your situation, as I lived in Berlin in the 1970's ...
property management11/25/2009
  Q: I have recently been considering starting my own property management company do you need to have a ...
  A: Aimee, If you haven't done so already, I recommend you work for a property management company for at ...
Housing Management11/12/2009
  Q: Describe your administrative experience in rental property management and section 8 housing ...
  A: I have no experience with Section 8 housing management, as my clients have never wanted to take the ...
constructive eviction11/5/2009
  Q: I moved in about 4 months ago. The leasing lady told me I would love it here. It has been a ...
  A: In short, yes. If the unit is really as bad as you say, you should be able to break your lease and ...
security deposit11/1/2009
  Q: in louisiana, if a managment company collects rent, makes repairs, etc., and unreasonably withholds ...
  A: I'm not sure what the rules are in LA. In California, it's common for a tenant to go after whoever ...
renting an apartment10/30/2009
  Q: The last 4 years I lived abroad with my husband. When my husband died, I returned to the US. I want ...
  A: Landlords usually rely on credit reports as evidence that you pay your bills on time because there ...
Apartment unit numbers10/22/2009
  Q: Do you know a free website where I can find out how many apartment units are in a city, county, or ...
  A: I don't know of any web site that tracks that information. I would start with the city planning ...
rental agreement10/16/2009
  Q: I am a landlord of a townhouse and will be soon renting to a new tenant. After signing the rental ...
  A: As a landlord I wouldn't allow a fridge on the carpet, as it is surely going to damage it somehow, ...
Tenant rights and laws10/6/2009
  Q: My wife and I signed a rental lease but never moved in to the property or did we do a walk through ...
  A: Sorry, but you need an attorney to help you with this one. As a property manager, I wouldn't charge ...
condo use restrictions10/3/2009
  Q: In the state of Georgia I have a friend who owns a condo with an attached garage. She has gotten in ...
  A: Sorry, but you need an attorney to answer your question correctly. Management companies sometimes ...
LLC9/28/2009
  Q: I live in California and own 3 rental properties, all in different states. Does it make sense for ...
  A: From a liability perspective, it's always best to form separate entities for each property. From a ...
CAM9/26/2009
  Q: I was wondering what is the difference between Accredited Property Manager (APM) and Certified ...
  A: Opinions vary, but here is mine. The APM is a residential specialist, typically an on-site manager ...
Referral Fee for Property Management9/24/2009
  Q: Are there any legal limitations on paying referral fees to licensed or non-licensed people/entities ...
  A: Since I'm not a laywer, I'm not going to offer a legal opinion. However, if you share a commission ...
HOA/PM9/24/2009
  Q: I live in a condominium which has homeowners association. From my understanding, the patio is ...
  A: Please start by checking your HOA documents to confirm that the patio is, indeed, common area. I ...
Property Manager didn't followup on lease renewal9/21/2009
  Q: We began using a Property Management Company (PMC) a few years ago. They found tenants for us and ...
  A: Sorry to hear about your problem. Does the PMC answer the phone? If not, send them a termination ...
Short-term Rentals9/9/2009
  Q: It is my understanding that one does not need a real estate license and/or broker affiliation if ...
  A: I don't manage vacation rentals myself, so I asked a number of companies who offer vacation rental ...
Tenant Question9/2/2009
  Q: first off. My disabled mother, myself, and my new husband are sharing a cozy circa 1961, 1400sqft ...
  A: To summarize what I think you wrote, the landlord isn't keeping the property and it's appliances in ...
notice to landlord9/2/2009
  Q: I have a month-to-month tenancy with an oral lease, no written lease. So, this is actually a ...
  A: I can't advise you on the housing regulations in New York. I do know that where I live (California) ...
The need for Real Estate License for Property Management Assistants8/27/2009
  Q: I work for a Property Management company in Adelanto, CA. The owner manages approximately 170 ...
  A: The short answer is that property management companies in California are required to have a licensed ...
Selling mobile home8/23/2009
  Q: I reside in a small mobile home neighborhood in Thomasville, NC. Our youngest couple here is in ...
  A: The landlord can't take race into consideration when making a sale or locating a mobile home. If ...
Property Management & Leasing Requirements in CA8/23/2009
  Q: Reference: ...
  A: The answer to your question is surprisingly simple. You can manage without a license if you are a ...
NY - Real estate investment financing structure and effects8/19/2009
  Q: I recently formed an LLC, along with one other partner, with the aim of purchasing investment ...
  A: In any state, an LLC is supposed to be a great way to shield your personal assets from loss in the ...
Employment Rights for those who are employed as apartment managers8/5/2009
  Q: My Mother has been employed as an apartment manager for the same owner for over 15 years. At the is ...
  A: My short answer is that unless your mother has a signed employment agreement, there is no agreement. ...
Incorporating Rental Property and Protection From Malpractice Litigation8/3/2009
  Q: I am a non-physician anesthesia provider that is going to incorporate as a professional corporation ...
  A: You've asked a couple questions, so here are a couple answers. First, you should consult with a ...
Resintial Rental8/2/2009
  Q: The tenant vacated without notice. Numerous unsuccessful attempts at contacting tenant have been ...
  A: If you don't have a good mailing address or location where you can hand deliver a written notice to ...
Rent Control - Rent Due Date8/1/2009
  Q: I've just purchased a new property in a rent control area and one of the current tenants has elected ...
  A: You need to check the precise requirements of the rent control regulations where the property is ...
Family member as property manager7/23/2009
  Q: I intend to buy a house in Texas to rent out. I would like to pay my sister, who lives there, to ...
  A: Owners can always manage a property they own, as can employees of the owner. A license is required ...
No running water at our rental7/23/2009
  Q: we are in our third month renting a home, in which we signed a year lease for, with a property ...
  A: It seems your management company did the right thing in figuring out how to solve the problem, ...
who will pay for the repairing7/7/2009
  Q: I have a question about how to deal with the issue with property management company. I've signed an ...
  A: If the property manager didn't find it at the walk through with the tenants, the tenants won't pay ...
Property management in CA6/25/2009
  Q: John, I represent a partnership. We want to buy large multi family in CA. Can we legally mange our ...
  A: Yes, an owner can always manage their own property, regardless if the owners are individuals, a ...
Property Management Agreement6/22/2009
  Q: We own rental property and are considering hiring a particular Property Management Company. They ...
  A: Hal, You may want to get a legal opinion if the language in the contract is difficult to understand, ...
Quit Deed6/18/2009
  Q: My mother passed away 10 years ago and left her home in a trust. I along with 3 other siblings are ...
  A: There are a couple issues to address - Whose name is on the mortgage? If you're not on it, you're ...
Residential Rental Rates6/12/2009
  Q: Where can I find the rental rates that are now being charged in the area in which I live? I own a ...
  A: We do "market rent surveys" all over the country by collecting data from sources that you should ...
need to break lease - 9 months into one year lease6/12/2009
  Q: My husband and I are buying a house. We are 9 months into a one year lease. The property is managed ...
  A: As a property manager myself, I always try to get above-average rents if the property is in good ...
Current Renters wish to buy on contract6/3/2009
  Q: I have a home in IN that is currently rented. The renters would like to purchase the home on ...
  A: A contract sale can be whatever you and the buyer want it to be, but normally it means that the ...
income from house rental-estate5/28/2009
  Q: My mom left her house when she passed away to 5 children. I am the executor of the estate. ...
  A: Ann, If you are still in probate, the rent belongs to the estate and can't be distributed to the ...
MORTGAGE/FORECLOSURE5/22/2009
  Q: My girlfriend bought a house two years ago during the bubble and paid way too much for it and it ...
  A: Usually a mortgage lender can't attach pay to collect on a mortgage, it's secured by the property ...
house ownership and reassignment5/13/2009
  Q: I own a house in new jersey and due to the market may not be able to sell before I leave due to ...
  A: I'm not sure what you mean by reassignment. Are you in the military? If you are, I recommend you ...
Guesthouse rental5/10/2009
  Q: I'm renting the guesthouse attached to my main house for $650/month. I furnish all utilities ...
  A: Tax professionals love this question, because it has to do with how much of your personal living ...
property management system4/3/2009
  Q: hey i am new in the real estate industry, a gradaute in real estate studies actually but i need help ...
  A: If you are new to property management, I recommend you work for an established company for a few ...
Name of broker of sold co-op3/29/2009
  Q: I live in a West Side (Manhattan, New York) co-op. We believe that every apartment sold in the past ...
  A: Where I live, I am able to search the multiple listing service (MLS) for properties sold and see who ...
Trust purchase of home3/26/2009
  Q: If the trust is revocable and the interest on the assets at an investment bank would pay for the ...
  A: Although it's possible for a trust to hold title to property that has been placed in the trust, I've ...
income from RE3/14/2009
  Q: People have asked about getting all profits from an investment property and not really having to pay ...
  A: Eric, There is only one tax deduction that you can take on a rental property that doesn't cost you ...
estate home rental3/14/2009
  Q: My father passed away May of 2006. We have not sold his home due to the market, but have rented it ...
  A: Ken, Is the house still in your father's name, therefore in his estate? Did he own it in a trust? ...
Locks3/7/2009
  Q: I have a large utility shed at the rear of the back yard of a rental property. I store materials ...
  A: You have two issues, here are my comments: - Your tenant cannot change locks or add locks without ...
Real Estate Taxes on Life Estate Property2/17/2009
  Q: My mom (92) has life estate for her cabin and home. I am the sole beneficiary. She is in a nursing ...
  A: Jan, You need to check the specific terms of the life estate. Some say that the life estate grants ...
rental property while living abroad2/17/2009
  Q: Right now im in the process of owning rental property in a different state in America but im ...
  A: If the property can be rented for a profit, it's probably good to hold onto it for now. Your rental ...
inherited 2 flat2/8/2009
  Q: My brother and I inherited a 2 flat in 2006. My brother is going through a divorce and is living in ...
  A: Gail, From a strictly business point of view, the only way it can be fair is for rents on both units ...
Defaulting on a Rental Property2/4/2009
  Q: I may have to default on one rental property in pennsylvania. I recently got a HE loan to make ...
  A: Roger, Most residential property loans are "non-recourse", which means they can only take the ...
Why should you have your trust own your LLC that in turn owns your rental properties?2/3/2009
  Q: In late 2008 you answered a question about putting properties into an LLC to avoid the "4 investment ...
  A: There are two concepts in play, one is liability protection and the other is estate planning. ...
genral things to be aware of when putting rental property into a trust1/24/2009
  Q: Mr. Souerbry. I am a law student and have a generalWhat happens when you put rental property into a ...
  A: Dax, There are many different types of trusts, too many to go over here. In general, rental ...
Rental property in Living Trust1/23/2009
  Q: My mother died this past summer. Her vacation home and residence are both in a living trust. My ...
  A: Kelly, Sorry to hear about the loss of your mother. As long as the lease says the lease is between ...
LLC for Rentals1/23/2009
  Q: I recently rented out my primary residence in California and relocated to Oregon - where I am now a ...
  A: James, Here's one way to look at it - if you form the company in Oregon, California will still ...
Land1/12/2009
  Q: My grandfather died and left his portion of his land to his 4 children,my mother is his oldest ...
  A: How the land is divided up is determined by the will. If the will says that it goes "equally to all ...
Mangement referral fee1/2/2009
  Q: I am wondering what the going rate is to licensed professionals for a referring a owner to me for ...
  A: The going rate for property managers is 10% of gross rents. What is included in that 10% is ...
Income Property in living trust - Ppty taxes?12/30/2008
  Q: I have an apartment building in a living trust in Los Angeles County, California. My wife and ...
  A: Jim, As a practical matter, the tax collector won't know if you have passed away or not. When I ...
Negligent property management12/10/2008
  Q: Is my property management firm guilty of negligence? The professional management company I hired to ...
  A: A lot of your question pertains to legal claims, for which you should consult an attorney. Regarding ...
home with mortgage inhereted through a trust12/1/2008
  Q: My mother died 11/18/2008. She had a living trust. She willed her home, with a mortgage, to myself ...
  A: Kerry, If you and your other sibling don't agree to sell, your brother can't force a sale. If you ...
incorporating protection11/22/2008
  Q: Will incorporating protect my rental properties, if I have to give back my primary residence? I do ...
  A: Two things to know first: - "Recourse" loans allow the lender to take not only the property they ...
clarify audit by-law requirement11/18/2008
  Q: Our board of directors cannot seem to agree on exactly what kind of audit satisfies the by-law ...
  A: Here is what I tell my HOA board clients: Check with your department of real estate or department of ...
property management11/17/2008
  Q: if you are a Lic. real estate agent can you be a property manager without involvement of a broker. ...
  A: It may depend upon the state in which you are doing business. However, it's been my experience that ...
Withholding rent11/15/2008
  Q: We own a house and have a property manager. He recently got tenants and made a bunch of repairs ...
  A: I'm getting a lot of questions and complaints about property managers on AllExperts this past week. ...
Rental: To Incorporate Or Not11/13/2008
  Q: About a year ago, I purchased a property with my brother who is deployed. It was a fixer upper in a ...
  A: Sandra - Whether or not to incorporate is a matter of liability protection and sometimes a tax ...
Owner vs. Tenant rights11/12/2008
  Q: I hired a property manager to rent out my home. We have had several issues, including him lowering ...
  A: Sandee - It all comes down to: what does your contract say? What reason does the manager give for ...
Real Estate Broker Responsibilities11/11/2008
  Q: Souerbry. I had to ask another question because I used up all the follow-ups. Here goes: The total ...
  A: If your broker didn't return the refund in the time frame required, you are probably out the money. ...
Paying taxes on rental property in a trust11/11/2008
  Q: My father passed away July of 2007, leaving a Living Trust with two properties, to his six children. ...
  A: Scheryl- I hope that your family is holding up after the loss of your father, and that the six ...
property management11/8/2008
  Q: I need your help, I want to start my own proprety management company what are the req. for ...
  A: I get this question often. Here is my standard list of things you need: 1. A real estate broker ...
Real Estate Broker Mgt. Duties to Owner11/8/2008
  Q: Good day Mr. Souerbry, In 2006 I hired a Real Estate Broker from a large Realty Estate in ...
  A: There was a problem with the way the deposit return was handled. You have to include receipts and ...
tenants late on rents11/2/2008
  Q: my tenants have been 2months late on their rents, my property manager set them up on automatic ...
  A: Jennifer, First, fire your property manager as soon as possible (read your contract to make sure you ...
House11/2/2008
  Q: I made a mistake and rented a house to a tenant with out a background check, they have been there ...
  A: Larry, It's time to hire an attorney. An attorney will begin the eviction process and get a judge ...
Tax issues re: providing a home for my mother11/1/2008
  Q: I had purchased a home for my parents in 2000, and had been reporting it on taxes as a rental, even ...
  A: Without knowing the remainder of your tax picture (other income, expenses, etc.), it's hard to pick ...
transfer of property to allow medicaid benefits10/31/2008
  Q: My parents are elderly and have become quite feeble and needy in the past few years. They have ...
  A: Connie, It appears that the only thing they could do would be to hold on to the property and not ...
Renting a house10/31/2008
  Q: My family and live in Harvey, La. just outside of New Orleans, and we are considering putting our ...
  A: All of your questions depend upon the situation in your local area. Real estate use and value are ...
deed for joint tenant, right of surviver10/26/2008
  Q: My brother and I were deeded my mothers home in 2000 as joint tenants right of survivor. I live in ...
  A: Steve, The easy solution is to have the home appraised and buy out your brother's part of the ...
residential investment mortgages put into an LLC10/24/2008
  Q: Fannie mae last month changed their guidelines on investment properties by which an investor can now ...
  A: I can't find anything in Fannie Mae guidelines that allows more properties if they are owned by an ...
tenant vacate property without notice.10/23/2008
  Q: I had a residential rental contract with a tenant: beginning 03/25/2008 with an ending date of ...
  A: Romeo, In short, probably the best you can do is keep their deposit and apply it towards unpaid ...
Complained received from Property Manager10/22/2008
  Q: I live in a condo with my wife, 8 year old daughter and 6 years loud son. I have received a letter ...
  A: You may want to ask the property manager for specifics regarding when your neighbors say you are ...
Turn primary residence into rental property, buy new primary residence10/10/2008
  Q: I currently own and occupy a condo in VA for 2+ years (Property A). Right now I enjoy the tax break ...
  A: Congratulations on your ability to buy more property! This is certainly the time to do it. Here is ...
Condo Association Charging Unauthorized Fines10/9/2008
  Q: My Condo Association charged me fines which were not in our Bylaws. State Law stated these fines ...
  A: Sorry to hear about your problem. I have 2 recommendatios for you: - Any time you are dealing with ...
Rental Income Property in a Living Trust10/9/2008
  Q: I inherited two separate, owned rental Condo Units from my mom's Living Trust. I did not receive the ...
  A: Sam, Sorry to hear about your loss. Normally, the trustee shares information with heirs on a regular ...
going in cap rate vs terminal cap rate9/28/2008
  Q: I have qn after this.... If i not mistaken the following is one of your replies ************** In ...
  A: Mathematically the cap rate would be lower if income is the same but the price goes up. Stablized ...
starting a Cal Property Mgmt business9/24/2008
  Q: I live in California, and am interested in starting a property management business. What are the ...
  A: What kind of property management are you going to do? Residential, commercial, association? Each ...
property manager9/17/2008
  Q: I'm looking for a property manager in the Los Angeles area (Specifically in the Agoura Hills area) ...
  A: Since you didn't say what type of property you need managed, I can't provide a specific answer about ...
Residential property mgmt. and taxes9/12/2008
  Q: We live in CO and are thinking about using a property mgmt. company to help with some of the ...
  A: Shannon, Other than the having to pay for the manager, hiring a manager could cause your investor ...
security deposit9/11/2008
  Q: I hope you can help... I entered into a lease for an apartment in Athens, Ohio two years ago and ...
  A: it's supposed to work like this: - the owner or manager of the apartments is supposed to keep a ...
Common area costs9/10/2008
  Q: Renting in medical office building for many years, new landlord is passing on to tenants a ...
  A: Your logic is understandable, but it isn't how owners view the situation. Owners know that good ...
Starting a Property Management Firm9/9/2008
  Q: Do you know or can you point me to a web site to find out how to start up my own property management ...
  A: The best place to start is making sure you are compliant with state licensing and housing laws. ...
Access to Commercial Buildings9/5/2008
  Q: I am in the process of developing a business that serves employees in large (skyscraper) buildings ...
  A: Anne - I recommend you speak with the building owner or manager for sites that you are considering ...
Property Manager Issues8/28/2008
  Q: I had been with a property management firm for 6 years. When we decided to terminate our business ...
  A: One of the handiest tools a property owner can carry when on their property is a video camera or a ...
Property Management softwares8/26/2008
  Q: My name is Natalie and I would like to know how many softwares are there? I know Yardi and WIZ, and ...
  A: There are tons of property management software programs out there. Before you can choose the right ...
Prop Mngt Co Hires husband for large paint job8/22/2008
  Q: Some tenants and owners (CA San Diego) have complained to the baord and Prop Mngt Co about the ...
  A: The board should be giving the management company specific guidelines for hiring service providers ...
Property Management Agency8/21/2008
  Q: Is there a law regulating how much rent can be charged to an on-site resident manager by the ...
  A: I don't know of any laws that cap rents, unless the property you refer to is located in a rent ...
Recourse Against Non-Responsive Property Management8/19/2008
  Q: I was wondering what other avenues I can explore with regard to my property management company not ...
  A: Mark, Unfortunately, I'm getting questions like yours often. I believe that most management ...
Post Office Boxes on Site Of Apartments8/15/2008
  Q: Cape House Apt. Complex Building 4 which has @ 30 apartments. The mail receipt boxes are damaged. ...
  A: You will need to hire a lawyer to explore your legal rights. From a practical point of view, if the ...
Forms and Contracts8/13/2008
  Q: John, I starting a residential property management division of our real estate brokerage firm. ...
  A: Your forms package will depend upon where you live and the type of property you are going to manage. ...
property manager8/12/2008
  Q: i have a prop in Colorado,the agreement with rental agent renews every nov. automatically. how do i ...
  A: Check your rental agent contract, there should be a termination clause that says either party may ...
interested in starting a property management firm8/12/2008
  Q: Mr. Souerbry, My name is Seth Infante and I currently have a degree in biochemistry as well as a ...
  A: Since I don't know what state you are in, I can't advise you on the requirements of opening a ...
Sue management company8/6/2008
  Q: Can I sue a management company for leaving me homeless b/c the apartment is not ready like they said ...
  A: Gabriel - Your question is best put to an attorney, but I've seen this happen a few times and will ...
money order8/4/2008
  Q: I dropped off two money orders in the night slot at my apartment office for rent equalling $536.18 ...
  A: Rachel - If the manager has checked again to make sure your payment hasn't been stuck in the slot or ...
prop. management8/4/2008
  Q: please help me. i have this mang. company for my rental prop. Something wrent wrong with a house. He ...
  A: Dee, I recommend you take pictures of all the damage you find and consult your business attorney. ...
joint ownership8/2/2008
  Q: divorced for 9 years...divorce did not contain any property settlement...property in both ...
  A: Larry - I assume your ex-wife wants her money now? Or does she want it when you pass away, assuming ...
Rental management company let go8/1/2008
  Q: I have a rental property I own which was rented by a management company. My contract with the ...
  A: John, Unless language in the lease says otherwise, the current lease became invalid the minute you ...
property management8/1/2008
  Q: We have a 48-unit condo community. Our PM has been with us for 8 years.I have recently been elected ...
  A: You have two primary responsibilities as a board member: to obey the bylaws and to act in the best ...
ligitimacy of requesting a professional management for our condo7/31/2008
  Q: Due to problems associated with various condo repairs and frequent fee hike (over 50 units), I w'd ...
  A: If you live in a larger metropolitan area, you should be able to find several management companies ...
Property Management Fees7/29/2008
  Q: What are the customary fees for property management firms who manage small apt buildings and retail ...
  A: Customary is a percentage of rents, usually 7% to 10%. The rate tends to be lower if you give the ...
What to do with tenant who is 3 months behind in rent7/29/2008
  Q: My mother has a tenant in a property who is 3 months behind on his rent. He occassionally sends in ...
  A: Charles, Military people are often a "protected class," but more so when they are deployed, less so ...
Registered Sex Offender7/29/2008
  Q: It just came to my attention that an occupant (not a lease holder) is a registered sex offender. The ...
  A: Elena, Laws vary from state to state, so I recommend you consult with an attorney in your area ...
Locating a Prop. Management Company7/29/2008
  Q: I own a two bedroom condo in a TIC building, I recently got a position across the country and am ...
  A: Karin, Property managers are like any other business, they want to close the sale as soon as ...
management chaged hands7/28/2008
  Q: I rented a home home from a management company. The owner of the property has "fired" this company, ...
  A: Kristen - It depends on the language of the lease. If it says that the management company is acting ...
Management of Rental Apartments7/26/2008
  Q: In NORTH CAROLINA, is it mandatory that a Property Manager have a real estate or broker's license to ...
  A: If you are not an employee of the owners, yes, you need a real estate broker license. Take a look at ...
Residential Occupancy7/24/2008
  Q: Isn't there a law that requires separate sleeping quarters for children of different sexes? Example: ...
  A: Verneda - This question comes up a lot, but I've been unable to find such a law here in California. ...
Water bill7/23/2008
  Q: I'm not sure you're the right person to ask my question, but I hope you are. We are tenants and pay ...
  A: Your landlord is following a common practice. The only way around having to pay for the water for ...
Property Management Responsibilities7/22/2008
  Q: I have a piece of property that a property management company has been managing. I went to visit the ...
  A: Where is the property located? How long between when you last saw the property in good condition ...
Unresponsive CondOA7/22/2008
  Q: Now, it's been several weeks since I discovered-after a rainy day- a water leak originating from the ...
  A: If the management company won't fix your window, you have four potential courses of action. First, ...
built prior to 19787/21/2008
  Q: Are there special requirements for a residential rental that was built prior to 1978?
  A: There are a few things you will want to check. The most important relate to lead paint that might ...
Vacation Rentals7/18/2008
  Q: I have done property management in the past, but not sure how this situation would work. There is a ...
  A: In general, a broker license is required if you are hired to manage someone else's properties as an ...
Recourse for Condo building foreclosures etc7/14/2008
  Q: I have a question about the recourse one would have for a issue with your condo building "going ...
  A: Dan - Condo buildings can't go into foreclosure because they don't have a mortgage. Only the ...
Terminal Capitalization rates7/10/2008
  Q: Sir I have seen my school text book compare Cap rates and terminal Cap rates. I am not sure how that ...
  A: As a math nut myself, I realize there is no clear computation path between either the going-in or ...
property management fees7/10/2008
  Q: We own a condo in a large condo building in Rockville, Md. It was purchased for the use of our son, ...
  A: It's not clear to me who is charging you a management fee and what they are actually doing. If you ...
LLC7/10/2008
  Q: I own and manage less than a dozen residential rental properties in Oklahoma. Should I place them ...
  A: I recommend you see your attorney and tax pro to fully review how the LLC will impact your risk ...
Property Manager Requirements7/8/2008
  Q: I live in California. My brother's company- which is based out of Atlanta- owns a chain of daycare ...
  A: Your question has two answers: 1. If you are managing the property as an employee of your brother's ...
placing property into an llc7/1/2008
  Q: We have a vacation rental property which has a mortgage and is owned in both my husbands and my ...
  A: There are two reasons to place your property into an LLC. One: you have a lot of personal assets and ...
Terminal Cap Rate6/30/2008
  Q: I'm struggling with a question for my real estate class and I don't think I get it. When may a ...
  A: In short, terminal cap rate is higher than going in cap rate if income is stabilized and value goes ...
appraisal of rental property6/21/2008
  Q: Twelve years ago my husband and I purchased a home about 8 houses from ours for the convenience of ...
  A: Sue, Since I frequently work with estates, I see your situation often. Does the rest of the family ...
tax advantage second home6/20/2008
  Q: You answered a questioned previously stating that you need to charge the going market rate in order ...
  A: Your question is more tax-related than real estate-related, so I recommend that you see a tax ...
Apt lease moveout troubles; please help !6/12/2008
  Q: We moved out of the apt complex after 17 months of stay. The apt management said that there were a ...
  A: In California, landlords have only a couple weeks to return a tenant's security deposit and they ...
Trust Purchase of Property6/1/2008
  Q: I have a trust with considerable funds and really nothing in my own name. I would like to purchase ...
  A: An important consideration is whether or not your trust is a Revocable or Irrevocable trust. If it ...
business license/prop management5/21/2008
  Q: I live in the state of Washington, where I own one rental and my primary (hopefully more in the ...
  A: You don't need a real estate license to rent out your own property in the State of Washington. Read ...
taxes for property management company5/20/2008
  Q: I am new to property management this year and we (LLC) will be managing multiple properties for ...
  A: Kari - Don't worry, this will be easy for you. Each month, you provide the owner with an Operating ...
moving real estate into an LLC5/16/2008
  Q: My husband & I started an LLC for rental properties. We have 2 different lots that are paid in full. ...
  A: Congratulations on using the LLC to help with tax and liability issues! You're using the strategy ...
Unlawful (frudulant) billing and Harrament from Condo Assoication5/6/2008
  Q: I live in a condominium. I have received numerous claims for different items from my Condo ...
  A: Your problem is extremely common. There are usually two root causes for your problem. One is that ...
Tax advantage for second home5/3/2008
  Q: We're considering buying a house right next to our current residence for my elderly parents. What ...
  A: If you don't charge your parents rent, the only tax deductions you will have on the new home are ...
Property Management charging unfairly4/30/2008
  Q: Need your advice. I live in a subdivision where the home-owners association has ...
  A: You have two issues, one is legal and the other is property management. Legally, you need to pay the ...
Have a complaint about a property manager4/22/2008
  Q: I own 2 condos.My property manager has completely disregarded all my questions regarding repairs, ...
  A: First, let me say I am very sorry that you have had bad luck with a property manager. You have the ...
Verbal Agreement4/18/2008
  Q: My elderly parents have been renting a home for 30+ years. There has never been a signed lease of ...
  A: You've posed a couple questions, I'll try to answer each. - The IRS cannot force a landlord to ...
llc transfer and stepped up basis4/10/2008
  Q: I have been part of a general partnership that owns a piece of rental property. I have recently ...
  A: Yours is a question best answered by a tax specialist who can advise you based upon your specific ...
RENTING OUT ROOMS4/9/2008
  Q: I want to start a business where as I can rent out the rooms in my house. It will be fully ...
  A: Before I begin, let me recommend that you create a written business plan for your new business, ...
Smoking in non-smoking apartment4/5/2008
  Q: I rented a studio in a building in Honolulu in March 2008, the online ad, my lease terms and the ...
  A: Eyad, You have a problem that can be either a simple dispute or a legal issue. If you want to stay, ...

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John Souerbry

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Expertise

Property buy/sell decisions; market rent analysis; cost control/profit improvement; property management procedures; real estate portfolio management; selling real estate held by estates in probate or trust.

Experience

Over seven years specializing in services to investors and estates.

Organizations
National Association of REALTORS(R), California Association of REALTORS(R), Silicon Valley Association of REALTORS(R), Bay East Association of REALTORS(R)

Publications
My web site blog includes current market information and my "Real Estate Jargon" series that explains sometimes-confusing real estate terminology.

Education/Credentials
BS in Business Administration; MBA in Global Management

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