October 10, 2017--Oakland, CA--Demand for rental housing has been on the rise for the past decade, with no signs of slowing down. A recent analysis says there will most likely be enough demand to fill whatever new units come online in the near future, at least over the next decade.
October 10, 2017--Oakland, CA-- For at least the past year, the San Leandro City Council has been weighing whether or not landlords should be required to pay tenant relocation costs. When presented with a draft ordinance in July, the City Council backed off, sending the proposal back to the drawing board for further revision.
September 27, 2017--Oakland, CA-- The rise of home-sharing sites like Airbnb, HomeAway, VRBO and others has created a compelling proposition for real estate investors: buy rental properties for use as high-earning, short-term rentals.
August 30, 2017--Oakland, CA-- Mynd, the tech-powered property management company with the industry’s first real-time data management and mobile app, announced today that it has acquired San Diego-based Pacific Shore Management’s 595 unit portfolio. The deal makes Mynd one of the fastest growing mid-cap property management companies in the US and will more than double their unit count to nearly 1,100 in just 10 months of operations. The expansion into Southern California, one of the nation’s largest rental markets, further demonstrates the company’s commitment to overhaul the rental management industry.
One of the most appealing aspects of investing in real estate is the tax benefits it offers. Most people know that they can write off depreciation, operating costs and a portion of capital expenditures each year. Most also know that they can defer paying capital gains tax by investing in another like-kind piece of property through a 1031 exchange. These are all very attractive income-preserving tools.
When it came to integration of new technology, real estate always seemed to be a dinosaur. From real estate sales to property management, it was typically business as usual. But what a difference a few years can make. The real estate tech industry has exploded, and now, companies are vying to integrate technology as quickly as possible in order to keep up with their competitors.
Earlier this year, the State of California passed first-of-its-kind legislation in an attempt to increase housing supply. The law requires cities and towns to allow homeowners to build in-law apartments as of right, without having to go through a cumbersome permitting process.
Whether you’re a longtime Bay Area property manager or first-time landlord, you’ve probably come to realize how critical communication is to running a smooth operation. Clear, concise and timely communication helps to manage both risk and relationships.
The Bay Area economy is booming. From 2012 through mid-2015, employers in Santa Clara, San Mateo and San Francisco counties were collectively adding 100,000 new jobs each year. The economy has slowed a bit, with employers adding just 40,000 new jobs year over year since then. Economists suggest that the slowdown could be due to unemployment rates hovering around record lows (just 2.6% in San Francisco and 3.0% in the San Jose metro area).
If not openly, it’s something people have been talking about behind closed doors: is the Bay Area’s economy on the verge of a downturn?
Here’s a question for you: What is the best way to invest money you wouldn’t need for 10 years or more?
Google is on the move again. Just a few weeks ago the tech titan announced its plans to build upwards of 8 million square feet of office and R&D space in downtown San Jose, a move that real estate experts call a “game changer” for the city.
At Mynd, we want you to think of us as more than just an Oakland property management company. We want you to view us as your investment partner.
You’ve heard us say it before, but we’ll say it again: Mynd is so much more than a San Jose property management company. We’re your investment partner.
San Jose property managers and investors were in a frenzy when Google announced its ambitious plans to build a 6 to 8 million square foot office and R&D complex near Diridon Station. The scale of development far surpasses anything San Jose has seen before.
Local landlords and San Jose property managers already know that San Jose is one of the hottest rental markets in the country. This has prospective investors knocking at the door, trying to get in on the action. But what does it take to get into the local market? Most people understand that the real estate market is expensive, but how far will your dollar take you?
Homeownership used to be a rite of passage for young people entering adulthood, but that seems to no longer be the case – at least in the San Jose area. A new study finds Millennial homeownership in San Jose is among the lowest in the nation.
Rents in San Jose are on the rise, as a result, is seems like disputes between residents and their San Jose property management companies seem to be on the rise as well.
San Jose has been the heart of Silicon Valley’s tech scene for some time now. So it comes as no surprise that Cushman & Wakefield just named San Jose the #1 “tech city” in the country. But what’s interesting about their “TechCities 1.0” report, the first of what will become an annual publication, is the methodology used to make this determination. Here’s what landlords, San Jose property managers and prospective investors need to know about the report.
Everyone knows that housing in the Bay Area is expensive – but could there be some relief in sight? It looks that way, at least in San Jose. Here’s what landlords, San Jose property managers and investors need to know about the latest market update.
If it seems like we’ve been talking about San Jose a lot lately, it’s because we have. There’s so much development happening throughout the city that it can be hard for San Jose property managers, investors and building owners to stay up to speed!
Seasoned landlords, investors and San Jose property managers know that the federal government prohibits discriminating against tenants on the basis of race, religion, national original, family status, disability or age. But what about income? This is where things start to get a little murky.
San Jose was already buzzing with news that Google is in talks with the City to build a 6 million square foot “mega-campus” near Diridon Station. Landlords and San Jose property management companies instantly speculated on the impact this would have on the local real estate market.
Tonight – Tuesday, June 20th – the City of Milpitas, CA is going to vote on whether or not to adopt an emergency ordinance that would require all local landlords and Milpitas property managers to have “just cause” before evicting a tenant. Residents, landlords and Milpitas property management companies are being asked to voice their opinions about this ordinance. The deadline to submit comments and feedback is tomorrow night at 7pm.
Google is notoriously tight-lipped about its expansion plans, which is why it came as such a surprise this Thursday when the tech company confirmed it has been eyeing San Jose’s Diridon Station district as a possible location for new corporate offices.
Ideally, landlords and the residents would always see eye to eye. Unfortunately we don’t live in an “ideal” world. Sometimes disputes are inevitable. Thankfully, the City of San Jose has a mechanism for resolving disputes between San Jose property managers (or landlords who self-manage) and residents. It’s known as the “Rental Dispute Mediation and Arbitration Ordinance.”
Real estate investors often express trepidation when it comes to buying rental property in San Jose, CA. One of their biggest fears is around the city’s expansive rent control ordinance, known as the Apartment Rent Ordinance (ARO), San Jose Municipal Code Chapter 17.23. Investors often worry that the ARO will prevent them from realizing a fair return on their investment.
Sure, Mynd is a San Jose property management company. We’ll make sure your San Jose apartments for rent are filled quickly, units are maintained properly, and tenant issues resolved swiftly. But we’re much more than just a property management company. We also provide a wealth of resources and educational opportunities for the San Jose rental property owners with whom we work. We believe ongoing education is key to maximizing our investors’ ROI.
There has been a lot of activity in San Jose, California around its rent control regulations. A number of proposals have gone before the City Council for consideration—some successful, others not. This flurry of activity can make it hard for San Jose property management companies, landlords and real estate investors to keep track of what’s what.
We’ve posted a number of articles lately that discuss how technology will disrupt the real estate industry. We looked at how autonomous vehicles will impact real estate, how people will make decisions about where to live and work now that technology has made it easier to work remotely, and how advances in healthcare will impact real estate in the future. For those willing and able to adapt to technology, there’s never been a more exciting time to be part of the industry.
By and large, there are few tenant protections in place in Santa Clara, CA – which is one of the reasons why the city has been attractive to real estate investors. The landlord-tenant laws are straightforward (and aligned with statewide policy); prospective buyers, owners and Santa Clara property management companies don’t have to worry about navigating the complexities of additional rent control policies implemented at the local level. The City of Santa Clara has traditionally allowed the market to self-regulate prices.
In late April, the San Jose City Council passed the “Tenant Protection Ordinance,” a broad range of tenant protections that includes requiring landlords to have “good cause” before evicting someone and requires San Jose landlords to pay relocation assistance if evicting tenants for no fault of their own. The new law took effect immediately.
While we certainly cannot predict the future, our experience in the real estate industry provides some insight as to how the tax reform plan President Trump released last week will impact rental property investors.
The City of Oakland’s Rent Adjustment Program (RAP) has been around since 1980. The regulations outlined in the Rent Adjustment Ordinance are intended to promote affordable, fair housing for Oakland’s diverse population. “We believe community begins with where you live, and we’re committed to fostering healthy relationships between property owners and renters,” the Rent Adjustment Program website states.
Even the most well-intentioned Oakland landlords and property managers sometimes find themselves squaring off with residents before the RAP Board, the authority that oversees the City of Oakland’s Rent Adjustment Program. There is no need to panic. The RAP Board is intended to mitigate landlord-tenant disputes fairly, efficiently and in accordance with the RAP guidelines. In fact, landlords and Oakland property management companies who carefully follow RAP regulations will find the process relatively straightforward.
Real estate industry experts have expressed mixed emotions about President Trump’s proposed changes to the tax code. The changes will certainly affect homeowners differently than they affect real estate investors.
He made a promise on the campaign trail to cut taxes for individuals and businesses alike—and last week, the Trump administration unveiled a tax reform plan that would do just that. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnunchin and National Economic Director Gary Cohn briefed reporters on the plan at the White House earlier this week. Although details about the plan remain sparse, real estate investors should be cautiously optimistic about what's known about the plan so far.
Head just northwest of Berkeley and you’ll stumble upon the small, charming city of Albany, California. The coastal community is home to fewer than 20,000 people but boasts all of the amenities you’d expect to find in a major metropolitan area. Albany’s Solano Avenue is becoming a destination unto itself. The quaint, pedestrian friendly main street is lined with dozens of ethnic bars, restaurants and shops that are a reflection of the diverse group of people who call Albany home.
Most Oakland landlords and property managers assume that they can only increase the rent at rent-controlled units by a specific percentage each month. Typically, that’s true. For a unit covered under the Oakland Rent Control ordinance where the original occupant still lives in the unit, a landlord may only increase the rent by the annual percent change in the Bay Area Consumer Price Index (CPI).
For more than a year, San Jose property managers, landlords and homeowners have been embroiled in a debate with housing advocates about whether to expand renter protection laws in one of the nation’s hottest rental markets. At the heart of the matter was whether rental property owners should be allowed to evict tenants without cause, otherwise known as “no fault” evictions.
For years, the Pacifica City Council had been opposed to rent control measures. The balance of power shifted last year when new members were elected to the Council, including City Councilwoman Deirdre Martin who campaigned on a platform that included tenant protection measures. The new council majority has stated that passing rent control is its top priority this coming year.
People are living longer. A lot longer, thanks to advances in medicine and technology. This is going to have a major impact on real estate. Two industries often considered far apart – healthcare and real estate – are indeed more intertwined than most people realize.
A ruling by the Santa Clara County Superior Court last week means that the city of Mountain View, California’s rent control policy is moving forward – effective immediately.
California is one of the few states to adopt widespread rent control policies. The mere notion of rent control is a foreign concept to many. Some investors shy away from investing in Bay Area real estate as a result. Their fears over rent control, even if real, can lead to missed opportunities.
We’re becoming a more globally connected society right before our eyes. In 2010, only 1.8 billion people had access to high-speed internet. By 2016, this had increased to 3 billion. And according to experts, it is possible that all of the world’s 8 billion people will have high-speed internet access as early as 2022.
California rental property owners are taking a big sigh of relief today as news spreads that the State Legislature has hit pause on efforts to expand rent control. In February, a proposal from Assemblyman Richard Bloom (D-Santa Monica) garnered national attention. If passed, the proposal, Assembly Bill 1506, would have repealed the Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act of 1995 that regulates rent control policy statewide.
There are so many ways Mynd differentiates itself from other property management companies: through the integration of technology, the use of real-time analytics, building a rock star team of property managers with decades of experience – just to name a few. But we don’t stop there.
It’s only April but all eyes have been on the NFL lately. There was another major shakeup in the league last week as the NFL gave its approval for the Oakland Raiders to move to Las Vegas. The move had been rumored for years, and comes on the heels of the St. Louis Rams and San Diego Chargers announcing their relocation to a shared stadium in Los Angeles.
San Francisco wants to crack down on illegal evictions that plague residents in rent-controlled units. Yesterday, two pieces of legislation were filed with the Board of Supervisors. Each took aim at how “owner move-in” evictions are handled.
Once a peninsula that jutted out from Oakland, the City of Alameda is now its own little man-made island. Beautiful beaches and spectacular views have lured people for decades, and now there are more than 80,000 people living in across just 10.6 square miles that make up Alameda’s land area.
For a long time the idea of self-driving cars was fantastical, something we’d expect to see in an episode of The Jetsons but certainly not here on our own streets. But alas, it’s 2017 and the rapid progression of technology has made self-driving cars a reality. Google and Tesla have each put self-driving cars on the roads in California, nuTonomy is testing its technology on the streets of Boston, and Michigan recently passed new legislation to make the state a haven for companies looking to pilot other self-driving technologies.
The Mynd Resident App is here, and it’s built to deliver a superior rental experience. The app provides a user-friendly, convenient and secure way for residents to access a variety of services all in one place. Connecting residents to their new abodes is only the first step. We want to make sure that once they’re moved in, their new house or apartment feels like a home. The Resident App and online portal offers residents an unmatched level of hospitality, care and control.
It is best known for its world-renowned university, but Berkeley has so much more to offer than a top-notch education. The picturesque city is one of California’s bayside gems. Historic architecture, arts and culture, boutique shops, gourmet restaurants and spacious parks are just a few reasons why people continue to be drawn to Berkeley.
When it comes to leasing an apartment, the process usually isn’t fun for anyone. Not for the property owner. Not for the listing agent. Not for prospective residents. Too much time goes into coordinating schedules, lining up property tours, and then traveling to and from the actual showings. It might take two or three hours to manage the logistics of a showing that only lasts 15 minutes!
Owning rental property isn’t always easy, but there are some serious tax advantages that come along with being a landlord. Yet surprisingly, most landlords don’t take full advantage of these tax benefits. Most write off standard tax deductions like mortgage interest, insurance and ordinary maintenance and repairs – and understandably, as these are the heavy hitters.
Class A. Class B. Single family. Multifamily. Turnkey properties. Value-add opportunities. Primary market. Secondary market. Tertiary market? Gut rehabs. Mixed-use. Student housing. Housing for young professionals. Rent controlled. Non-rent controlled.
Why can’t we be friends, why can’t we be friends?
We’ve got so many exciting things brewing here at Mynd, we can hardly contain ourselves. From growing our team to 40 individuals in 10 short months to launching our first live educational event, there’s a lot to be fired up about. The best part? We’re just getting started.
On election day, November 8, a bunch of Bay Area cities considered ballot initiatives that all related to rent and eviction controls. Important new rules passed in four of those municipalities: Oakland, Alameda, Richmond and Mountain View. In this third of o8r mini-series, we’ll take a closer look at the impact of those new laws on each city. Now up: Mountain View.
At one time or another, it’s the one call that every property manager in the East Bay receives - and makes. Sometimes with a little, or a lot of, dread.
If you have read Property Management History Part I, you know we have been taking a brief look at the history of property management.
For property owners, it always seems to be something.
Hayward is a mid-sized city of 150,000 about halfway down the East Bay. Because of the distance from San Francisco, it has been slower to experience the demand in rental housing that’s sent prices soaring in other communities. The result is that Hayward is still more affordable, more family-oriented, with higher demand for larger units than other area cities.
Hayward started as a farming community, grew steadily in the 1800s, then was nearly leveled by a great earthquake in 1868. The Hayward Fault still runs through town but has been silent for the past 150 years. (Phew!) The canneries that sprung up around the fields and orchards are now gone. But Hayward’s location and easy access to the state’s highways has made it a prime location for industry, particularly in the food and beverage sector.
California has some of the highest housing prices in the country. There’s no silver bullet approach that will make housing suddenly more affordable. State legislators seem to have recognized this, which is why more than 100 bills aimed at addressing affordability and homelessness have already been introduced this legislative session.
Property investors and small business owners are alike in the sense that they believe they can manage everything on their own. Sure, it’s possible, but is it the best use of time? What are the pros and cons of self-managing? What other projects or priorities can you be focusing on instead? If you’re wondering whether you should manage your own rental properties or seek professional help, here are some key questions to consider.
Have you checked out the Landlord Journal? It’s a gold mine for rental property owners –packed with insights, tips and how-to’s you won’t find anywhere else. Whether you own property in Oakland, Berkeley, Hayward, Alameda, or elsewhere in the East Bay, the Landlord Journal has got you covered on best practices, compliance updates, and valuable recommendations around property management. Find exclusive op-ed pieces from our leadership team and other industry experts, and get the inside scoop on the latest studies, research, and trends. You’ll also be able to stay on top of important East Bay rent control regulations and understand how it affects your overall return.
Date: March 10, 2017
Whether you’re a technophile or prefer the analog way of life, it’s undeniable that technology has transformed the way we operate day-to-day. As a property owner in the East Bay, it’s tough competing with the big guns – owners of larger, more modern units, or those with a portfolio of over 100 units – when it comes to attracting quality residents. But, there are simple ways to elevate your property especially through the adoption of home technologies like smart locks. Here are four reasons why switching to smart locks is a smart move for your rental property, and for residents, too!
Date: March 10, 2017
What’s a lifehack in the context of East Bay property management? It’s about using tools or seizing opportunities to do things better, faster, smarter – and as a result, make more money. Owners of rental properties know that although rental income may be classified as “passive,” it can feel far from it, especially if you’re self-managing. What’s the better alternative?
A huge part of what we do at Mynd is connect people to their new homes. It’s gratifying work to help residents start a brand new chapter in their lives, and it’s something we care deeply about. But, it can be a difficult time during the holidays for many who don’t have a place they can call home – especially young children. This year, we teamed up with Project Night Night, a gracious organization that donates over 25,000 Night Night packages to homeless children each year, to support local East Bay youth as they move through challenging times. Each Night Night package includes a new security blanket, children’s book, and a stuffed animal friend. Project Night Night’s goal is to offer items that provide a sense of comfort and security as well as emotional and educational support to children 12 and under, and we were fortunate enough to help with the mission.
Location, location, location! This is probably the real estate industry’s most overused adage, and as much as we hate to repeat it time and again, we can’t ignore a longtime truth: where investors buy matters as much as — if not more than —what they buy.
Earth’s first tenants—Adam and Eve—were tragically evicted from the Garden of Eden, unleashing no shortage of pain and suffering for mankind. But think about it: Perhaps if God had a good property manager he would have found better tenants and avoided this original tragedy. That’s a bit silly, of course. But our point is that there’s a lot that property managers can learn from history that has everyday implications.
As many of you know, or should know, six Bay Area cities considered ballot initiatives related to rent and eviction controls last November. The measures passed in four of them: Oakland, Alameda, Richmond and Mountain View. Here, in our ongoing series, we’re going to take a closer look at the impact of those new laws city-by-city and what it means to you.
Bay Area cities, on November 8, considered ballot initiatives related to rent and eviction controls. Significant measures passed in four of them—Oakland, Alameda, Richmond and Mountain View. In this installment of our mini-series breaking down the ballot initiatives, we’ll examine the impact of those new laws on property owners in Richmond.
Security Deposits: Dos, Don’ts... and Maybes
Property management companies rarely operate on a one-size-fits-all model. So, the cost of property management fees in East Bay depends on the scope of work that’s agreed upon. As the property owner, you have the ability to structure the arrangement you want to work with. Do you need help evaluating the property and determining an appropriate rental rate? Perhaps you need help marketing the property and screening potential residents. Or, maybe you want property managers to help you with problem residents, evictions, and legal services. Some East Bay property management firms provide comprehensive services while others may only offer assistance in a few areas.
I have a confession. I am addicted to real estate. I started investing in real estate while I was playing football and began working in the industry on a fulltime basis when I retired from the NFL in 2005. I invest in real estate because I believe it is the best way to build wealth and tax-efficient income. Over the coming years my primary investment strategy will be to continue to accumulate investment properties.
Most of the measures proposed new caps on annual rent increases, tying them to the Consumer Price Index (CPI), as measured by the Labor Department. With inflation quite tame in recent years, that index is about 1 percent a year. And several of the laws would ban so-called “no cause” evictions – and force landlords to pay relocation expenses when terminating certain tenant situations.
As an investor, property management should be seen as a business. And like any business, knowing exactly what key performance indicators, or KPIs, to measure is the foundation of success. Once you measure something, you understand how it works. Then, you have to constantly ask yourself, “How can I be doing better?” It’s necessary to understand baseline metrics as well as market conditions, so you can formulate a plan on how to improve. On the flip side, if you have too many metrics, you can lose sight of what’s important. Real estate, like most industries, is heading towards technology platform strategies. With this shift, you’ll be able to make more informed decisions by having access to better data. Your data is going to be incredibly valuable – not just for decision-making, but in keeping audit trails and important records as well. Use your data to establish KPIs for growth, and continue fine-tuning as you develop your investment portfolio.
Property management is a full-time job – and a tough one at that. Without good management, even the best properties can end up dropping in value. When you consider everything that goes into managing your own properties, assess how much time needs to be allocated to finding and screening tenants, maintaining and repairing units regularly, getting familiar with East Bay compliance laws, and resolving tenant issues. And once you start thinking about scale, be careful about spreading yourself too thin. If you compromise the level of attention you pay to acquiring the right kinds of properties and getting them in top shape for renters (and for longevity), what you’re really compromising is the potential to maximize profits.