Thurston County Rental Housing Inventory Decreases & Investment Opportunities Increase

olympia property management


olympia property management“We’re renting everything we have in stock. Our inventory of available homes has sunk to a level that we haven’t seen in the last several years,” said Andrew Barkis of Hometown Property Management.

The local real estate market is stabilizing. Hometown Property Management is reporting that 2012 was a very busy year for single-family home rentals. “This is a great sign for the local economy. We are in recovery mode, so I am pleased to say we are cautiously optimistic,” said Barkis.

A thriving rental market is great because businesses like Hometown are staying busy, but it creates a problem for the consumer. “I want my prospective renter to have a lot of choices of homes to rent. Ideally there should be a variety of homes at every price level. When they don’t have a lot of options we see prices start to go up, and we have trouble accommodating need,” said Barkis.

Hometown continues to add homes to their inventory, but not at the rate that they have seen over the past five years. Homes that they are adding are renting as quickly as they are ready for move-in. “We manage close to 1,000 homes. Currently we have 31 homes that are vacant, but only 15 are move-in-ready, the rest won’t be ready for move-in for 30 days or so. That is a 2% vacancy rate,” said Barkis.

Now is a great time to turn a home into a rental property.

If you’ve been thinking about turning a home into a rental property or are considering purchasing a home for investment income, it is a great time to make your move according to Barkis.

In the past few years some Hometown clients moved out of the area and were unable to sell their homes. Many had to make tough choices about what to do with their home.  Some faced the prospect of Short-selling or even foreclosure. Ultimately, they discovered Hometown Property Management and decided to rent their home out using Hometown to manage the property. A few years later they realized they made a great choice. Even though they may have had to pay a few hundred dollars a month out of pocket to cover their mortgage, it turned out to be a fantastic investment and a low risk one at that.

“Going to property management saved them from the possibility of short-selling or foreclosure. Circumstances put them out of this area, but putting their home into property management saved their credit, saved the house, and gave them a long-term investment,” noted Barkis.

When people look closely at their budget this is often a viable option. “Look at it as a forced savings plan. Once the value of the home is where they want it to be they can consider selling it, but many people choose to continue renting it out for a long-term investment with great returns,” said Barkis.

Rental homes are a viable option for many people, but it is very important to minimize risks involved. Professional property management is one way to reduce that risk.

Professional Property Management: Significantly Reduces Risks of the Property Owner

olympia property management“When considering turning a home into a rental property the first step to take is to get a market analysis on your home,” said Barkis. Many people may try and skip this step and go the do-it-yourself route to avoid management fees, but Barkis warns against it. “Owners may try and manage the rental themselves, but this can be a liability,” he said.

As professional property managers, Hometown can end up saving the homeowner thousands of dollars over the long-run. Right now Barkis is working for a client who tried to manage their own rental home. “It was a disaster. They accepted a tenant who slowly got behind with her rent. Every month she gave them another story of why she was late. By the time the client came to Hometown, they had lost thousands of dollars and still could not get the tenant out of the house. Within a matter of days we were able to use all of our expertise and resources to convince the tenant that it was in her best interest to leave. Now we are getting the property back on line. Eventually the homeowner will be able to see a positive return on their investment. If they had come to us in the first place, they would be ahead already,” said Barkis.

Proper legal representation, carefully screened tenants, and discounted rates of service contractors, all provided by Hometown’s professional property management, adds value that often outweighs fees. “Professional property management mitigates or significantly reduces risk for the client. Plus, peace of mind is priceless,” said Barkis.

Hometown Property Management

1600 – 4th Ave E

Olympia, WA 98506


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