Team Atlanta

If you’re going to build team atlantaa building, you must have a solid foundation to build upon.

 Likewise, if you’re going to build a company, it is imperative to have your core people in place for sustainable growth.

 Candidly, our growth came about so fast that we imploded with more work and not enough bodies to go around to get everything done in our self-imposed time frames.

In our effort to serve you better, we’ve made significant changes to improve efficiencies for lease ups, collections and distributions. The implementation of our new methodology will impact every investor in the long run. Change is never easy but it is always necessary to stay relevant in any business.

 Sometimes you have to take one step backward to leap 3 steps forward and we are in the process of leaping forward right now.

 In Tampa, we now have 3 full time bookkeepers and 1 personal assistant for all sorts of important details. Kim is the senior bookkeeper, Elsa is the investor liaison, Melissa assists both Kim and Elsa and Beth supports the entire team with clerical type work, like typing this newsletter.

 The biggest and most far reaching change we’ve undertaken is the addition of 5 portfolio property managers. These portfolio managers have the responsibility and accountability for a specific portfolio of properties. All 5 of them have worked for us in different capacities or are known to us and all share a positive attitude and the love for this business. Most of them have prior investor experience and they realize how important the service they deliver will impact the bottom line for you, our investor. Their role is to take phone calls, process applications, handle lease ups, collections, evictions and they are responsible for specific territories.

The picture above has most of the team plus a few International Promoters that sell our properties.

 The picture below is of Eric a Portfolio Manager, Jim Case, who personally oversees all rehabs and turnovers and yours truly, Anthony Salmeri.

anthony,jim,eric

 

team atlanta 1team atlanta 2

 

 

 

    

                                  

 

                                 

                               

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          

                                 

 

 

                    

 

 

 

 

 

Survey Results

survey-says

The purpose of the survey was primarily to find out where you thought our short comings were so we could address those areas of concern.

This first part of this article will post the answers to the multiple choice questions.

There we will post the most common responses to the positive criticism of our operation.

91 investors responded to the survey and most investors have multiple properties with us under management. Each investor was allowed 1 vote regardless of how many homes you owned.

These are the exact results

Q2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Q3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Q4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Q5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Q6

The answers can be summarized as follow

  1. 100% agree that cash flow properties are a good investment.
  2. 96.67% agree Atlanta is a safe profitable market to own rental properties today.
  3. 93.26% are happy with the value of their Atlanta houses.
  4. 92.22% would recommend NES for property management.
  5. 69.66% want to buy more properties.

 

Most property managers would be thrilled with the approval rating above. While we are thrilled that the high majority are satisfied, there is room for improvement.

There were some wonderful glowing remarks about all the positives about NES that would seem to contradict the few negative comments we received.

Nevertheless, our focus is always on improvement so we will only concentrate on what we can do better.

Here were some of your constructive criticism remarks and believe me, we appreciate them.

  1. I don’t understand monthly and quarterly statements.
  2. Prefer monthly distributions over quarterly distributions.
  3. Takes too long to get paid after the quarter ends.
  4. Didn’t receive all the reports on all my houses.
  5. Would like itemized receipts for any repairs.
  6. Better communication.
  7. Would like an estimate before repairs are made.
  8. Would like a video before repairs are made.
  9. Would like ongoing notification of late rents
  10. Would like online real time information when things go wrong.

These were the most common suggestions that we received and we are grateful to those that took the time to give us the feedback. You will receive a $20 credit for participating in the survey in your final distribution for 2013.

This feedback allows us to focus on what is important to you and make changes where applicable.

The investors that were unhappy with our communication were primarily houses that had turnovers, repairs or foreign investors that were not in compliance to receive funds from us. We have addressed every issue above the article on Going Forward in this newsletter.

 

 

 

The Year 2013 in Review

2013This was a growth year for NES as we’ve added 283 new houses to manage. Our staff has increased to accommodate the increase of rental properties and we welcome the arrival of Ryan, Jennifer and Christy.

We are constantly striving to increase our effectiveness and efficiency thus we sent every investor a survey to help us see the service we provide through your eyes, the investor.

There is much room for improvement on our side and we won’t be satisfied until we deliver the results that are not only acceptable to you, but also to us.

This is an imperfect business because we are dealing with tenants and when their lives get interrupted, so do ours and so do yours.

We can select the most qualified tenants on their income and our background checks but nothing can prepare us for when they die, lose their jobs or get sick.

This year, 5 of our tenants died. Perhaps this is the only good excuse for not paying their rent but the reality is; these were good people and it’s impossible for us to be prepared in these situations.

Other statistics you might find informative are: 254 rented houses, 143 evictions filed, 26 actual evictions and overall turnovers 48. In order to attract  good applicants we paid for and put out 2,700 bandits signs this year,we paid $21,000 for radio advertisement, $18,000 for free TV’s for tenant incentive move in and $24000 for google ads and paid $11,950 to realtors for tenant referrals. This is only a portion of what we do to market for tenants and this may come out of our own pockets.

We act on your behalf in the same manner we would as if we owned the home. Our biggest concern for you, the investor, is to always maximize your return and keep your property rented by tenants that will take care of it.

Turnover is costly in terms of lost rent and repairs that are needed 99% of the time.

In order to attract the best applicants, we need properties that show well and they must have curb appeal.

Please take the time to review each article as we have addressed every issue we can think of and want you to be informed every step along the way.

Thank you for the opportunity to serve you.

 

Anthony Salmeri

Landlord Protection Plan (LLPP)

protection-plan-headerThe LLPP had an overwhelming positive reception by every investor except one that thought the price of $399 should be covered by the 10% of rent collected. Folks, that investor just didn’t understand the real value of the plan and the safety and certainty it gives our investors.

A review of the plan for 2013 which costs $399 for the year is as follows:

  1. Investors keep homeowners insurance with the master policy that provided of the houses. This is the best homeowners insurance available and on average, you save $75 on your insurance with the coverage we have arranged for you. That coverage includes loss of rents up to $5000 and $1 million of liability protection with no co-insurance.
  2. No eviction fees for the year. As you’ll remember from the first article, we filed 143 evictions this year and actually evicted 26 tenants. When tenants don’t respond to paying the rent we must pay to file an eviction no matter if we complete the eviction or not. We must keep the pressure on them even if they agree to a payment plan, otherwise, we could lose weeks, even months trying to get them out. The average eviction cost us $100 to file not to mention the time it takes to go to court and sit and wait would cost $150 if we invoiced owners for it. We don’t, it’s covered in the plan.
  3. Pest Control – The inspectors that go to the house are looking for ants, termites and cockroaches. The LLPP covers you for ants and they find them on 19 out of 20 houses on all 3 inspections during the year. If left unchecked, they will do damage and these inspectors are treating your house 3 times a year. This doesn’t include termite protection, but we still check for them. 99% of our owners have acquired their properties through BuyCashFlowProperties.com and they always pay an exterminator on every house they acquire to check and treat for termites if necessary. Cockroaches would indicate that the tenant is dirty and we will treat the house and change the tenant. But, if these tri annual inspections weren’t done, we wouldn’t know it. Typically, it cost $69 per time to treat for ants, thus you are getting a real value of $207.
  4. Change air conditioning filters, batteries in smoke detectors, inspect under all sinks for leaks, check all plumbing for leaks. Folks, this program is about safety and peace of mind for you. Until you pay to change an AC condenser you won’t know what I mean. Tenants forget to do this and they will let their smoke detectors buzz and not change the batteries in most cases. We use premium AC filters and the inspectors make absolutely sure that if anything isn’t working right, they will let us know the same day.
  5. Interior and exterior dated Pictures with report. This report has dated pictures with remarks about the tenant i. This should give the “out of state” investor peace of mind as they see current property conditions from their laptops. Getting the pictures of the house is important and the report card on the tenant advises if we need to take action with the tenant. This is also very important when it comes to renew their lease as we have all these reports that we can use for or against them.
  6. Real Estate Tax Appeal. When you play poker, you have to know when to hold them and when to fold them. It’s kind of the same way with tax appeals. We have under contract a tax appeals expert that is familiar with every county assessor. He knows when to fight and when to leave it alone due to market conditions. The verdict is not out on every house but you can see by the attachment to this list just how much some of our investors have benefited from our decision to hire him. The reports are still coming in.

This is for your benefit as much as ours as we get the inside scoop on tenant behavior and property condition inside and out.

Look at the inspection reports attached as well as the tax assessment reductions.  You will notice some very significant property assessment reductions as well as some values that are locked in. These are not all the assessments, just a sample. If you would like to know what happened with your houses, email me.       

We feel so strongly about the LLPP that it is mandatory for 2014 for every investor that we manage for. We will have a $399 fee deducted from their account on January 15th to be a part of the LLPP.

This plan is proprietary, no one else is doing it and the reason why we do it is to safeguard you and afford you peace of mind about your investments.

National ERA Tax Appeal

210-McGiboney-Rd-Covington-GA-2-SAMPLE-POOR-CONDITION

130-BRADLEY-ST-Covington-GA-2-SAMPLE-EXCELLENTCONDITION

105-Ardella-Drive-Covington-GA-SAMPLE-GOOD-CONDITION

    

Going Forward 2014

moving forward

2014 is upon us and we have many changes going forward. Some of these changes are the result of the survey, others are things we have planned on doing.

The website: National ERA Servicing.com has been overhauled to provide you succinct information written and videos. There are video explanations on how to understand the monthly and quarterly reports and information for foreign investors to be in compliance with the IRS.

As much as we would like to distribute investor’s funds on a monthly basis, it is impossible and it would cause an accounting nightmare. Unlike other property management companies, we don’t hold any of your funds in reserve except what is in your account as rents get collected until distribution.

We must pay your property taxes, insurance, HOA’S and any maintenance fees that might come up. But there’s more; sometimes a tenant checks bounces or they need a short payment plan.

The biggest change we are making is to personalize your experience and we will communicate more effectively to keep you in the loop.

We don’t sweep problems under the rug, we meet them head on and want to solve them.

Most of our investors want us to make every decision for them and we understand, some of you are a lot more hands on.

We are not going to contact you every time a rent is late as there is no reason to start this dialogue which is going to absorb our time while we could be more productive screening perspective applicants. As your property manager and your main point of contact, you can email me and I typically get back to people within 24 hours. If you have an emergency you can always call me at (813)335-3980.

Whenever there are maintenance expenses on your property, we are invoiced by the contractors and we pay them immediately. If we don’t pay them fast, we lose them when we need them most, and that would be on emergencies and turnovers. We never mark up a contractors invoice and this is a big difference between us and other property managers. You pay exactly what we pay and there are no discounts to us or kick backs of any sort. Everything we do is about maximizing your profit and we treat your investment as if it was our own. We cannot upload receipts to the Appfolio website but you can have them if you want them by emailing Elsa, who handles all the investor reports.

There were some issues in 2013 with some investors not getting all their house reports at the end of the quarter. We have this resolved but if it ever happens, email Elsa.

It is our desire to wire as soon as the quarter closes. Sometimes it takes a little bit longer and it has been up to 3 weeks for some investors to have their distributions. Our goal is 7 days and I already know that January will take a while as Elsa is visiting her family abroad. Know this: We are anxious to get your funds to you as soon as possible and we are doing all we can to be more efficient.

Repairs are a necessary aspect of real estate investment and our policy is as follows:

  1. Emergencies – We can’t wait as we could lose the tenant. A hail storm with a leaky roof is a good example. Or, a furnace that goes out in the middle of winter or AC in the summer. We will notify you but we won’t wait to hear from you about an approval.
  2. Repairs under $500 – We are just going to do it if it really needs to be done. This is why you hired us to act in your place.
  3. Repairs over $500 – We will email you or call you. If we don’t hear from you within 3 days and we are about to lose a tenant, we will act in your best intent and do it.
  4. Turnover – When a tenant moves out, there is always something. We are not trying to make your property perfect. We just want it to look good and fix what is wrong as economically as possible. This is a situation where we have an agreement with BuyCashFlowProperties.com to pull the right crew from other rehabs so we can minimize your time under repair. Going forward, we will send you a video so you can see what we plan to do. We don’t wait for bids from contractors as we are going to get you the best price we can.  These are contractors that we have an established relationship with. The longer we wait to get the work don’t, the longer your house stays empty. BuyCashFlowProperties.com has 9 crews out there working full time and we know who to use for anything the house requires.

Investors, we appreciate the opportunity to serve you and want your experience to be more than you hoped for. We have made the LLPP mandatory for all investors as it saves you money and gives you the information on a regular basis about your property.

Call or email me at any time as I take the faith you’ve placed in my company to heart and want every investor to have a favorable experience.

 

Happy New Year, let’s make it profitable – together

 

Anthony Salmeri,

National ERA Servicing LLC

Managing Member

 

 

 

 

 

Letter From The President

anthony pics 001Property Management is the cornerstone of your rental house portfolio. To truly be a passive real estate investor, you have to select a property management team. This is not easy as different companies provide different services and have an array of fees, some seen and many hidden. Most companies use one year leases and charge a half month renewal fee every year if the tenant stays. They also charge a fee on top of every repair or when a property has to be rehabbed. The hidden fees come in the way of discounts they obtain from the various contractors and service providers they use. Another big difference lies in the way they obtain tenants and the due diligence that is done on them prior to tenant placement.

  There are no short cuts to property management. Pity the “penny wise pound foolish” investor that makes his selection based on the fees. These decisions should be based on results only as they impact your rate of return and more importantly, your safety.

Clearly at the end of the day, the only thing that counts is how well the communication is between owner and manager with the emphasis on realized expectations.

Currently, National ERA Servicing manages over 400 properties with 95% of them located in the Atlanta Metropolitan area. We’ve been adding a  minimum  of 10 houses per month in 2013 and have added several key individuals to facilitate improved reporting, tenant management, lease ups, video for investing and inspection reports.

Our property management system is unlike every other property managers out there and candidly, we select whom we will manage for and whom we will not.

Our investors come from 6 continents and have become very accustomed to our tried and true results. Are we satisfied? Never!

We constantly modify and change procedures to deliver the results you, the owner expect.

Our collection rate has improved to over 95% this year as a result of all the changes we’ve made.

Different seasons of the year require a much more aggressive approach to property management. For example, we rented of 30 houses in July this year and in December of 2012, we rented 9. That’s’ why we have our lease expiration end at the end of May or August as these are the easiest months to rent houses.

By managing exclusively for BCFP, we are able to access their 9 full time crews at their cost. Not only does this keep your cost of any repairs to a bare minimum, it allows us to complete turnovers in 1-10 days.

With hedge funds putting so many houses under rent, we must act differently in a competitive market. We are still getting similar rents as we were in 2012 because we only manage for owners who are committed to keeping their properties in great condition. Candidly, our houses are beautiful.

You can easily view the type of properties we are managing for you and others by going to our “tenant friendly” website at www.GotOurHome.com. Click on the rent to own properties and see for yourself the latest properties we have for rent.

I encourage you to take a few minutes of your time and read the other articles in the newsletter as they will explain your contact person within our newly aligned structure and provide you important information about the success of our recently launched Landlord Protection Plan (LLPP).

 

Thank you for the opportunity to serve you and your family.

Anthony Salmeri

President

National ERA Servicing Inc.

Your Specific Contact Person

phone1NES continuously focuses on scalable growth with cost efficiencies to better serve our owners. Thus, we have added staff and have modified the way for you communicate with us.

The following personal should resolve any situation that occurs and for redundancy purposes, we prefer you to only contact the person that is best qualified to answer your question.

The preferred way to communicate is by email and these are typically responded to twice per day, early morning or in the evening.

It is impossible for any person on the team to drop what they are doing to answer a question at any given moment. Phone calls should be reserved for emergencies only. As the staff must remain focused on their task at hand.

Elsa Mastascusa – Elsa is involved with the reporting of all money and expenses for owners. If your question is about a report, quarterly distribution, property taxes, Home Owner Association fees (HOA), then contact her at Elsa@buycashflowproperties.com. For emergencies only (813) – 435-1551 extension 1002.

Jill Fox – Jill is the closing coordinator for the Buy Cash Flow Properties (BCFP). All questions related to your upcoming closing and Home Owners Insurance should be directed to Jill@buycashflowproperties.com. For emergencies only (813) – 435- 1551 extension 1023.

Anthony Salmeri – Inquires about the status of your property, repair expenses and new properties to purchase should be directed to asalmeri@nationalservicing.com. For emergencies only (877)–803–2078.

Anthony’s phone number should be used in Extreme Emergencies only as his oversight overall other managers on the team is why you are so successful.

The NES Difference

nesIn this article I am going to cover the most important aspects of our management system that separates us from all other property managers.

The areas of interest for you are as follows:

1)   3 year lease

2)   Option to buy

3)   Due diligence on tenants

4)   Master Lease with owner

5)   Landlord Protection Plan (LLPP)

6)   Tenant Protection Plan (TPP)

7)   Common Sense and long term relationships

3 Year Lease

  The biggest expense of property management is turnover. The more often tenants move out, the more it cost the owner by way of lost rents, rehab cost, new fees to the property manager and time. We take a psychological approach to management and increase your cash flow by keeping tenants longer without the need for fix up on an annual basis. Most property managers want a 1 year lease and most get half of the first month’s rent for renewal or a full month rent for a new tenant.

Option to Buy

  With every 3 year lease, we give the tenant an option to buy their home for the same reasons we use a 3 year lease. It’s psychological. Some will buy and most will not. We look for a tenant that wants to be in your house for as long as possible to reduce turnovers. If they decide to buy, it will be at a price significantly higher than you paid. Don’t worry about income taxes or finding a replacement house. If you bought with retirement account funds (IRA or Solo 401k) there are no taxes. If you bought with personal funds or a corporation or an LLC, we can assist you with a 1031 exchange and no income taxes will apply to your sale.

Due Diligence on Tenants

  This is a big one and can be the beginning of the end for many investors. We have a full time person that only works on tenant applications. Every potential application is then reviewed by me, Anthony prior to their approval. We do all the usual due diligence on the applicants most recent landlords, personal references, verification of employment and income and credit background check.

We also visit their current residence and see how they are living. We inspect it for bugs, pets, junk automobiles and talk with the neighbors if appropriate. Large management companies don’t do this as it takes a lot of time. We want to make sure that they can vacuum the carpets, cut the lawn, maintain the shrub beds and keep the property in the same condition the property is in at the time of rental. If they don’t have vacuums, lawn mowers and hedge trimmers, they must hire out these services and whenever possible we want them to use our crews. At minimum, we want to know who is doing it and have their contact information.

    For the same reasons, we always have at least one of the neighbor’s phone numbers so in the case of late rent or if your tenant is not maintaining the property or acting right, we can call them or they will call us.

  And yes, we will still get fooled from time to time as tenants could lose their jobs, get transferred or die. It’s the part of the business that we refer to as human element that is outside of our and your control.

Master Lease with Owner

Most property managers use a long drawn out property management agreement that requires an attorney to review. Our master lease is simple and easy to understand. You get 90% of the rent collected, pay one full month’s rent upon rental and a 6% commission on the sale which includes a reality agent.

If a tenant renews their lease in three years, you pay a half months’ rent.

Landlord Protection Plan (LLPP)

We created the LLPP to increase the safety of your investment. In addition to providing safety, there are cost cutting measures by potentially reducing property taxes and lower homeowner insurance cost. It provides you with three inspections per year that could not otherwise be done with an interior and exterior check up on the property. As a freebie, we also guarantee zero eviction cost for that year, should you ever need to evict a tenant.

Tenant Protection Plan (TPP)

The only way to make the LLPP be financially feasible is to offset the cost with the tenant. All new tenants must pay $200 a year for the TTP while each investor pay $399.

Besides the extra income from the TPP that allows us to afford the provided services, it is psychological.

The tenant knows that inspectors are coming and they know we are not their average property management company.

They realize we expect the property to be maintained in excellent condition and more important, we are checking on the house and on them.

This is part of the NES difference that separates us from other property management companies.

It’s also why we won’t manage houses for investors that don’t appreciate how important the psychology is with the tenant and the safety this program along with the LLPP provides them.

Most investors that are cheap and want to negotiate everything to the lowest price usually screw themselves up.

Tenants have to be trained and the TTP is critical to that training.

Common Sense Approach and Long Term Relationships

  Did you ever hire a cheap contractor? If you did, you realize that it’s less expensive to make repairs properly the first time.

It’s like the repairman that fixes the ceiling leak without checking out the roof. He didn’t solve anything.

Property management is my life. I love what I do and am excited to wake up each day and be productive.

Every procedural change we make is so we can offer our owners exceptional service that they can’t get anywhere else.

In essence, we use common sense in our decision making with the ultimate goal of delivering the best service possible to the owners and the tenants.

It’s a difficult business at times and we understand the financial intent you have in the US. We will always make the best decisions possible for you to mitigate losses and increase revenue.

Last month we got $5000 option money upfront for an owner. Why? Because we asked for it.

We had one owner’s property taxes reduced over 40% as a result of our real estate tax appeal program with the LLPP.

We had a hail storm a few months back. Due to the fact that we allow owners to be on our master insurance policy: one owner pocketed over $8000 on an insurance claim.

The fact that we don’t ever markup repair fees for any of the contractors provided to us by BCFP will save you of dollars over the time you own your cash flow houses. And eventually, your house will need some type of repair if you hold it a long time.

You know why? Eventually tenants move out and the property needs repair. Since you bought your house from www.buycashflowproperties.com, that allows us to use all of the repairmen and rehab crews and they don’t make any money off of this. Why? Because they appreciate your faith in them and they understand the value of a long term relationship. We have to systematic everything we do for cost efficiency for you.

By using 3 year leases, you have less t and turnovers. By utilizing the LLPP and our due diligence on tenants you will make more money over time.

As we continue to grow, we want you to grow with us.

If you have a friend or coworker that wants to buy cash flow houses, BCFP has offered to pay you the property management fees for 1 year for every house your referral buys.

 

Thank you for the opportunity to serve you

The NES Team

Landlord Protection Plan (LLPP)

inspectionOffered Exclusively by National ERA Servicing, LLC. This plan grew out of our desire to increase the safeguards for all investor’s properties. It allows us to afford you with three inspections per year which allows us to gain access to your house to do a detailed inspection of the property and the occupants.

Really it gives you an inside look at how your tenant behaves which allows us to take a proactive modified approach with specific tenants. It will help us determine in the future whose rent gets raised, and by how much, and allows us to re-set boundaries if tenants are failing in their responsibilities.

Let’s face it, tenants are people and people are not immune to problems. We just don’t want their problems to become yours. We’ve also added some very intelligent benefits for you in hopes of providing you additional peace of mind with your investments. This plan consists of three inspections per year, approximately every 4 months, and you will be provided a report, which includes pictures of the exterior and interior of your house, along with the inclusive list of services below.

  1. Air Conditioning filters changed every 4 month
  2. Pest review and exterior treatment included
  3. Smoke detectors inspected and batteries replaced
  4. Four pictures of all exterior angles of the house and 1 or more interior pictures
  5. Eviction Guarantee – you never pay a dime for evictions
  6. Annual real estate tax review and appeal (see attachment below)
  7. Allow you to have homeowners insurance on our master policy which allows you the greatest discounts and excellent coverage.

This is the first year we have implemented the LLPP and it prevented much large problems from occurring. In one of our investor’s houses we were notified by the inspector that the place was not clean. We inspected it and the owner agreed with us to evict the tenant. This could have gotten much worse if we didn’t have the report and in the end, it saved the investor money.

The tax appeals themselves have more than made up for the cost of the LLPP for many investors.

Once we file an appeal, the taxes can’t be raised for 2 years. So even if we don’t win, we lock on the current assessment for 2 more years.

Look at the attachment below which have some of the early results in and you see the benefit our investors are getting.

In the year 2013, we made the LLPP optional and about 60% of our houses are under the safety of this plan. In 2014, it may become mandatory. We want to keep the cost below $400 for everyone and cost efficiencies comes with volume.

The link below demonstrates real reports obtained this year by our investors.

No kidding folks, the safety of your investment is important to us.

As we continue to deliver the services you expect, we also endeavor to change, modify and tighten up internal procedures to always do what is best for you.

If there is ever something you are unhappy about, contact me direct at: asalmeri@nationaleraservicing.com.