Feel like its gotten a lot harder to be a landlord over the past few years thanks to increasing regulation, oversight, and ? Yeah me too. Let’s take a look at where we are, where the political landscape is going and what you can do about it.
IN THIS EPISODE, WE’LL CHAT ABOUT:
- What investors can do to have a seat at the table
- How much should laws affect your market shopping?
- How to keep your investing biz compliant in an rapidly changing legal landscape
If you’d like a shoutout (and a chance to win a $20 Home Depot gift card), just leave a review on Apple Podcasts and send a screenshot of it to me on Instagram via DMs!
What investors can do to have a seat at the table?
Whenever things like legislation, new laws, new regulations, come across a city council’s desk or at the state legislature. There’s a lot of opportunity for us to kind of get involved and be a part of the discussions from the front end.
What can I do? What can you do? It could be from something like an HOA, or a condo association, changing rules to city council, or something at the state or federal level. Being able to not just express the value that real estate investors in general can bring to the table in terms of the local economy or jobs, or the fact that these buildings were just vacant, that investors are truly doing that is beyond just a straight money making plan.
The need to be politically engaged. Figuring out what is political willpower, and what is the market sorting itself out in a very new industry. Getting involved if you live locally to where you invest, maybe run for something, even if it’s like running for the condo board. All of those things allow you to get your voice and the voice of other investors at the table. All of those things allow you to get your voice and the voice of other investors at the table.
How much should laws affect your market shopping?
As a real estate investor, it’s important to stay abreast of industry changes, be a part of the conversation, and be prepared to adjust. This may mean updating leases, checking in with lawyers or CPAs, and paying attention to new regulations. While it’s true that laws can vary greatly depending on the location, I think it’s wise to research and understand the laws in the areas where you plan to invest. Despite increased regulation, the payoff is worth the effort, and real estate investors should not throw in the towel.
It’s important not to be too deterred by laws and regulations. Instead, view them as factors to consider and work around. For example, if a certain area has strict zoning laws that restrict the type of property you can invest in, you may need to look for alternative locations or find creative ways to work within those restrictions. Learning how to pivot and find different types of opportunities, can be mid-term rentals, something that gives you a lot of flexibility.
It’s important to be adaptable and stay informed about the laws and regulations in your market. By doing so, you can make more informed decisions and minimize potential risks in your investments.
How to keep your investing business compliant in an rapidly changing legal landscape?
We as real estate investors, we’re also entrepreneurs. We need to be prepared and nimble enough to be in the loop of everything that is happening.
- Stay informed: Keep up-to-date with the latest changes in laws and regulations that affect your investing business. I always tell my clients that they should be talking with an attorney at least every three years.
- Be proactive: Take the initiative to identify potential issues before they become a problem. This can involve conducting regular internal audits and ensuring that your business practices are in line with current regulations.
It’s important to stay vigilant and proactive at all times.
Resources mentioned in this episode:
📲 Click here sign up for my live scaling workshop
Episode 1: You’re Not An Investor
Episode 25: Grant Cardone, I Beg to Differ
- Sign up for my free scaling workshop
- Read Bonnie’s Blog for the latest legal tips, podcast episodes, & behind the scenes of building her 7-figure portfolio
- Listen to the Good Bones Podcast
LISTEN TO GOOD BONES ON YOUR FAVORITE PODCAST PLAYER
Listen to the show on your favorite podcast platform and be sure to follow, and leave a review to help introduce the show to more real estate investors like you!
- Join my Free Scaling Workshop
- Follow Bonnie on Instagram for legal tips, property management advice, and daily behinds the scenes of her biz and portfolio
- Learn & laugh over bad legal advice with Bonnie on Tiktok
- Subscribe and follow Good Bones and activate notifications for new episodes on any of the following podcast players:
Bonnie Galam 0:00
Hey there, and welcome back to the good bones real estate investing podcast, I am your host, Bonnie Galam. And thank you for tuning in. As y’all know, if you’ve been around here for a while, that I have structured our real estate investing business in a way that we have a very cyclical turnover period, meaning basically 100% of our turnover is either happen August 1, or September 1, assuming we can control that. And the reason I kind of just put that little asterix there is that we also tried to avoid evictions at all cost. And so if someone’s like, Hey, I lost my job, or I need to relocate or whatever the case may be, is, sometimes we end up with like a middle of the lease turnover. But that’s few and far between. If that happens maybe once a year, across our portfolio, that’s it. And so, by and large, everything’s going down July 1 and August 1. And so we are coming up on turnover season, we are, you know, currently reaching out to our tenants to see like, who’s staying who’s not staying some of the stuff we’ve already kind of known in advance. The more notice I get on turnovers, the easier our life is. And usually like tenants, especially like college students, who we have a lot of and young professionals, like when they’re in a place where they’re going from a rental to maybe purchasing their first home, they know this stuff in advance, this is not like a last minute, 30 day type of situation where they don’t know what their housing is going to be. And so, quick tip right off the bat, if you don’t give yourself a long runway for turnover notices, go ahead and give yourself that grace, put that in your lease, stretch it out, make everybody’s life a lot, lot easier. But the reason I bring up turnover period, is that when we’re not in turnover period, it’s really, really easy for us to kind of fall off the organizational life bandwidth in the winter, because we can, you know, do you know, the routine stuff like the bookkeeping and the bill paying, and we’ve got that kind of all organized. But when it comes to turnover time, it is like all hands on deck to make sure that not just like the real estate business gets the attention that it really needs during this period. But also that like everything else in life doesn’t fall through the cracks when you know things get busy when you’ve got you know, a rehab going on. Or if you’ve got turnovers going on, you know how much more time that that can take from you than when you’re just kind of in that purgatory is perhaps not the right word, or that sounds a little bit too negative. But the that like intermediate zone where it’s like, alright, we’re just kind of coasting here collecting rent, and you know, if something pops up in terms of a CapEx issue or repair issue, then you you know, you tackle it as it comes. And so it’s really got me looking back at what productivity, tools, strategies, rules that we’ve learned to kind of implement, to not just save time, but also save our sanity and keep things going during what is often the busiest, craziest time of the year, which is our summers. And for those of you who don’t know, I’m actually expecting a baby in the beginning of June and so this summer is going to be extra crazy in our household juggling, you know, two kids in summer camp, and the new baby and all of the turnovers that will inevitably happen at the end of summer, thankfully, I don’t know you know, other parents might can chime in on this shoot me a DM or hop over to the good bones Facebook group and let me know but like, we do not do any sort of extracurriculars during the summer. Nada it is like summer camp and then come home and we barbecue and chill by the pool and just want to take it easy go to the beach, sometimes on the weekends. I don’t know how much that’s gonna happen with a newborn. I’ve always had winter fall babies. My kids were born in October and December. And so we’ll see how summer goes i In theory, I’m looking forward to it. The like hibernation that happens during a winter maternity leave, if you will, is kind of boring and I’m you know, I’m really looking forward to like long stroller walks and things like that. So I wanted to share with you guys the three like do not pass go life saving techniques that I use pretty regularly throughout the year, but are going to have to like throw fuel on the fire and really kind of live regimental ly by this over the summer because there is no maternity leave for landlords as you will know that and even for this business look, I’m getting ahead on content. And you know, I’ve got guests all lined up for the summer for scale school. And, you know, I’m a workaholic. And so I’m never going to be completely hands off. But you know, if I have to put in, you know, two or three hours of work a week, then that’s totally functional. For me, it gives me something to do a little bit of purpose in every day, hopefully, there’s no judgement for me, you guys come in. For that, I’ll definitely probably take the entirety of June off, I’ve, you know, been prepping my staff prepping, my VA is prepping everything to kind of step in. So I can step out a bit during this summer. And so, without further ado, here’s the three things that like I can’t function without, as a mom, as a business owner as a real estate investor. And the first one is this concept I came across called Touch ones. And what that basically means is, if something can be done in 10 minutes or less, we deal with it and we touch it once. I don’t know about you guys, especially with emails, I get, you know, really kind of tied up sometimes in emails, the amount of emails I get in a particular day, is, frankly offensive. But when I kind of know, like, I’m touching this now, or I’m dealing with this later, it allows me to kind of triage a lot of things. But then also, if there’s things that I can just clear and be done within 10 minutes or less, I’m doing it now. And I don’t mean like immediately, because I also have set times in the day where I’m in my inbox that way, I’m not constantly looking for distractions, because that’s how my inbox really is. And so I usually check my inbox around 10am. And again, around 2:30pm. And once I’m doing that triage, I see, okay, can these emails be responded to dealt with in 10 minutes or less, if it’s going to be something where I’m like, hey, I need to carve out some time to go through all these documents that have gone through, then I will calendar and set aside time to do that. And so touching something once and not picking it up over and over and over again, has really saved my sanity, and saved a lot of like repeat work that just never ever gets done. Number two, which goes alongside this touch one’s mentality is batching my days. And so I have not only basically filled up the entirety of my day of how I’m going to spend it, which gives me a lot of clarity and control over my day, which is something that as an attorney back when I was, you know, filling my day more with firm stuff was really kind of easy to get taken over by things that felt urgent, but necessarily were not. And so I needed to make sure that I was always staying on top of like, not just like the reactive parts of my business. And same thing as like a landlord, you don’t want to always be in this reactive whack amole part, if you’re not calendaring moments for you to tackle the business to be proactive to get ahead of the game, then it’s frankly never going to happen. And so that’s how I created things like I do marketing Mondays, Tuesdays are a call day, Wednesdays are by content creation and recording days. Thursdays are kind of a flex day, I like to kind of keep that open, a lot of times I get closings on Thursdays. But then I also like to leave Thursdays as just like flex and available for what I need it to be often just access desk day. And then Fridays are what I call finance Fridays. And so that’s where I review my bookkeeping and go through all different metrics. And by being able to calendar that when something doesn’t fall within that touch once 10 minute or less bucket, it goes into its batch day. And so if it’s a call that I need to schedule with the client, then that gets scheduled for Tuesdays or Thursdays, if it’s something where I need to go out to a property, that’s usually Tuesdays or Thursdays, if it’s something where hey, I need to look at this bill or I need to revisit, you know, something that my CPA sent me that’s going on finance Fridays, and so that makes sure that I’ve got space in my calendar to handle everything that needs to happen to not just like, be in this relaxed reactive mode of being a entrepreneur, which is as you know, what we as real estate investors are, but that way we can actually handle the business stuff as it as well. And so if you’re not batching, your dates, I highly, highly recommend you do it. It’s something I teach about inside of landlord scale school, because it has been so instrumental in me actually moving like in tackling the big rocks that are on my to do list. Like it’s so easy to just fall into this space where you’re just kind of letting the days happen to you, as opposed to saying, Hey, I’ve got time every single week where I can tackle these like big pillars in my investing business. And so what I would suggest doing is figure out like what are the things you need to work on all the time, I realized something like marketing may not be something you actively need to do. But if you think about it from the lens of like, hey marketing is the day where I’m allowed to do like Zillow zooms, Doom scrolling. Or maybe I tried to go out and see properties where if that’s the day where I’m going to work on creating a direct mail campaign, like those are all marketing activities that we do as real estate investors. The other thing that helps me control these batch days is using my proactive management software. I personally use Asana, I know a lot of investors use different types of programs like Monday or podia, or click up Arab table like they all run the gamut. The good news is that they’re almost free or have a really robust free option. Inside of scale school, I offer my members literally a copy and paste version of my productivity management software. But this has really been a game changer for me, because let me just rewind a bit and share with you our technological journey as real estate investors, which was we were the opposite of tech savvy for a very, very long time, like, wait too long. When my husband started investing, he was learning how to, you know, do Property Management from his grandfather, who was also an investor in Philadelphia. And he literally had like printed clipart versions of like Excel sheets, I don’t know how to call it, I swear it was in like Comic Sans. And he would just have like a checklist he would go through to like see who paid rent and who was late. And it was, you know, he hand wrote it in, it’s like, he had a little workbook and he filled it out. And that is no joke how we did things for years, like I’m talking about until we had probably close to 50 doors, we were marking things off. Now, granted, 10 ish years ago, there wasn’t a lot of consumer level property management type of software, these software’s that are out there now like avail and apartments.com, and building them and AppFolio, which is not what we use. They just weren’t available. Or they were kind of limited to AppFolio levels of door requirements, they require over 100 doors. And so if you were looking for some sort of technological property management software, it was really relegated to the commercial real estate investing space, or you were doing like a hodgepodge of type of things like maybe you had Docusign. Or maybe you had QuickBooks, but you didn’t really have something that was like an all in one communication portal, a way to list your rentals through these programs, like it was all very, very, very, very manual. And if anyone’s been investing for, I’d say, 10 years or more, you’ve probably seen this shift of being able to either pay an arm and a leg for really robust property management that was maybe overkill to something where it’s like, oh, for like 30 bucks. Again, you know, do everything that you really need to do as a real estate investor from a property management standpoint, which is just huge, huge opportunity for like leverage in terms of your time. But the limitation of property management software is that it’s really just externally facing meaning that property management software doesn’t do anything to kind of help you run your business. Aside from maybe deal with some bookkeeping, I know that some software’s out there do have that feature. But it’s designed to collect rent, it’s designed to collect tenant applications to deal with repair requests, all of those types of things are what property management software’s there, none of real property management software is designed to help you get new properties to help you scale to help you organize your SOPs to help you organize your goals and like break down actionable steps to make sure you as a business owner, are reaching your you know, steps in the moving those big rocks that you need to do in order to actually be able to scale your real estate portfolio. And so what often happens is that this stuff just doesn’t happen. You’re never in this place where you’re like, Oh, this is the date where I’m going to review my lease to make sure it’s up to date. Or this is the date where I’m gonna go through all of my subscriptions. And make sure that I’m not overpaying for anything, or this is the date where I’m going to look at my bookkeeping. Because just waiting until, you know, April, mid April, as I’m recording this, to look at it, when you send everything to your CPA come tax time, it’s like not the right time to do it. Like we want to be able to use all of this data that we’re collecting from our bookkeeping to be able to make financial decisions on behalf of our businesses. And so all of these types of business activities. I mean, they say all the time, as you know, real estate investors, we got to treat it like a business. Well, what the heck does that even mean? Well, some of that means creating a system that allows you to organize your business tasks and property management software doesn’t just do that. And so that’s why I’ve created my proactive management system. It’s Out of Asana, like I said, you can do it wherever, like you’re comfortable. And you know, familiar with technology, it can be, you know, as simple as a to do list. I don’t love doing that, because I love, you know Asana because I can invite other people who we interact with, you know, me and my husband are both in there. We can also add contractors and share plans and share resources, like it’s just a little bit more of a robust dashboard for being, frankly, a free software. And so that helps me tie in with the other two productivity rules, right? And so on batch days, I know that when I’m making these tasks that, you know, we’ve talked about in terms of, you know, reviewing the bookkeeping, or doing the bookkeeping, like that stuff goes on Fridays, and when I’m looking at Tech, that’s, you know, on maybe the Flex Day, and Monday is the marketing day. And so you also see these holes, right, like when you’re looking at a calendar full of tasks, and you’re like, I’ve never done anything for marketing. Well, that’s probably a reason why you don’t have a deal pipeline, right. And so, marketing tasks, you know, if I was to give you one right now, off the bat, I would say, tell someone to do box, review your deal box, make sure it’s truly up to date aligned with your Northstar property, that’s going to get you to a scalable portfolio. And then from there, tell people about it calendar every single Monday, I’m going to tell three people, my deal box and ask them if they know anything available in it, you will be surprised what happens in 3060 90 days, when you start telling three people every single marketing one day, what you are looking for, be prepared lineup your private money lenders, your hard money lenders, your commercial lender, because deals are gonna start coming your way I can guarantee that. And so these three things the touch one’s batch day is proactive management software are three productivity rules that I can’t live without. And I need to remind myself to rely upon as we are going into probably what will be the busiest season of our lives. And for anyone else out there, I know that there’s a few of you because we’re friends on Instagram are also kind of entering this stage of being a first time parent or adding another kid to their life on top of, you know, adding properties. And so if you’re in that stage of life, I am walking alongside you,
Bonnie Galam 9:22
But before we kind of get into that piece of the opportunity part of it, one of the things that I was teaching inside of skill school is like, how can you track the laws that are pending? If you go to like your state legislature website, there is no like filter by, you know, laws that are going to affect me as a landlord or affect me as a short term rental host. And so how do we kind of track that and I shared a resource and I’ll link it in the blog post, like the full show notes of this episode, where you can track legislation through this particular website. That’s an advocacy group for real estate owners to see and the best thing you can do if you see something that you like or dislike, because we all got opinions on just about every law. And some of them are just like, Oh, that’s not already, though, it probably shouldn’t be, like, one of the things that came up was just like how unregulated the background check industry is, and requiring it basically to abide by the existing federal laws and kind of figuring out how to connect those two dots. That, you know, there’s all these like credit reporting type of acts that are out there. And unbeknownst to me, and I think unbeknownst to a lot of people that some of the preliminary research that came out, showed that these, you know, tenant background check companies are extraordinarily unreliable, they’re sometimes going off of just a name match and not going off of like a date of birth match. And it’s just, it’s allowing people to fall into this position where they’re getting denied for housing for things that like, actually aren’t even them. And so getting that industry cleaned up, like, I think that’s in everyone’s best interest, right? Like, we want to actually know that the background checks that we’re doing are for the people that we’re checking, not just like some random Joe Schmo, with a similar name, that may also help us you know, in terms of reducing vacancy if we have like more reliable reports. And so sometimes, like I said, Everything doesn’t have to be as directly negative, I think, to us as landlords is sometimes the lingo of just like regulation and bureaucracy can often feel like I did want to, you know, touch on the, you know, the trend that I feel like it’s been happening for several years at this point, in terms of increased regulation, increased bureaucracy, for us real estate investors. And just like everything else, that I feel like happened with the pandemic, the pandemic just like sped up trends exponentially, that were kind of already happening. Like, there was already this anti real estate investor, pro tenant type of movement already happening. And the pandemic kind of allowed for this massive expansion of regulation over landlord tenant laws, some of which have been rolled back now that the public health emergency has been ended, and some of which are still in place, I feel like a lot of them are still in place in some, you know, places here, like in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, where I’m licensed to practice law, we’re still kind of playing catch up on a lot of things, we’re still playing catch up and eviction court and adjustments. And they, you know, there’s a lot of new loopholes and steps that you have to go through in order to get through the court process that were different, you know, three plus years ago at this point. But it’s not just like landlord tenant laws. I mean, we’ve seen, you know, rapid changes in the commercial real estate space, that, you know, these trends away from office work are already happening, but the pandemic three will fuel on the fire. There was also, you know, geographic changes that were happening in this country, again, the pandemic threw fuel on that fire with work from home situations, you know, the housing crisis, in terms of affordability, all that kind of stuff, like these were all trends like this is nothing new, from the landlord tenant laws to you know, every discussion we’re hearing right now, about the housing situation in this country is not new, most of these problems stemmed back 30 or 40, plus years, and there hasn’t been the political interest, frankly, in tackling them. But the pandemic put them on the forefront. And it allowed, and I don’t say it gave an excuse. But it opened up the door for a lot a lot of regulation, and a lot of bureaucracy, particularly in the housing space, because that was you know, question number one is like what happens to all these people now that essentially the economy shut down for you know, what was supposed to be two weeks and ended up obviously being much, much, much longer than that. And so it’s, it’s changed things drastically. But if you’ve been kind of following the economics of housing and real estate, this is none of the conversations that are happening now are new, they’re just louder. I mean, everything is louder in the age of like social media and all of that nonsense. But everything is much louder and much more polarizing. I think, for that reason, it’s so so much more important that we have our voice, we have our seat at the table. And sometimes that means we’re just there to listen. And sometimes it’s there to say, hey, you know, this is how things actually work out in real life, because politicians, by and large, are not doing what we’re doing, right. They’re kind of like, I remember my dad would say something about like college professors, where it’s like, they are often, you know, so removed from the actual industry that they’re teaching about that it like it doesn’t correlate it doesn’t, you know, respondents, so they’re just hearing from, you know, advocacy groups. You know, politicians are hearing from lobbyists who are also not really in the industry. They’re also just kind of hearing from people. And so when you have Have someone who is actually involved in the industry in a day to day type of way be like, Hey, I see your intention here. But this is how it’s actually going to shake out, and it’s not going to give you the benefit that you actually think of, then, you know, there’s a worthwhile political discussion to happen. And where I am at, you know, in Philadelphia, where, you know, they’re changing, you know, rent control laws, they’re changing, affordable housing, subsidy requirements, they were in the midst of a very big, major electoral race. And so the market that I was an investor in, in Philadelphia three years ago, or five years ago, even is drastically different. It is not the same city that I started invested in. And and if you’ve kind of felt that way about where you’re investing, were just like, holy moly, if you, you know, start investing, basically, before the pandemic started, it may feel like a totally different landscape. And that’s kind of how it feels for us. And I know one of the things we’ve kind of thought about, and to be honest, haven’t pursued that heavily. But I hear this discussion happening all the time, is like, how much should these laws affect? Like, what market you’re shopping in? And that’s, you know, I think it always has to be part of the discussion, and I have a previous episode on me disagreeing with Grant Cardone, he’s very, very, very vocal in saying you should only invest in tenant, well, I guess we’ll be landlord friendly states doesn’t say tenant unfriendly, but it’s like a double negative, you get what I’m saying. He that’s part of his criteria, you should only look in landlord friendly states. And I disagree with that, because I don’t think that that removes the level of risk. And like I said, you can go back and listen to that whole other episode, I’ll have that linked in the show notes. But the
Bonnie Galam 16:55
there is a question of that being a factor. And I won’t disagree that it can be a factor, especially if the rest of that market is not checking the boxes. Like if you don’t know how to evaluate deals, the market is fluctuating. If it’s far away from you, you’re gonna have to outsource everything. And on top of all of that, you’ve got like this rapidly shifting regulatory area, then like, yeah, that probably doesn’t sound like the easiest place to be. But like for someone, like us, or someone, maybe you’re already heavily invested somewhere, like you’ve got this business up and running, and you maybe just need to kind of tweak with it, like, no one throws in the towel because of a law that makes their life a little bit more difficult. This is not, you know, laws that are coming out that are eliminating the, you know, the entirety possibility of being a real estate investor, even if something like short term rentals are being banned in your market, then, okay, can you make it a mid term rental? Can you make it a long term rental, I have found that mid term rentals are usually permitted in most of these markets, obviously, look at the state laws and the local laws in your area. But usually, like 90 Plus day stays, or 30 day plus days fall outside of like the purview of these short term rental bands. And so that gives you a lot of flexibility. And so just learning how to pivot and find these types of opportunities. And that kind of brings me back to the executive plans that President Biden came out with the Affordable Housing one, and then the Bill of Rights, the tenants Bill of Rights, which on its face, sounds like Oh, my God, it’s here comes the end of the world, the tenants Bill of Rights, as if they don’t have enough rights, right. Like, I feel like that’s like everyone’s first thought. And I try to be as rosy as Pro tenant as possible. But like, I don’t see them as the enemy. I don’t see. Landlord versus tenant I see as landlord and tenant the way that I think any business should look at their customers, their clients, the people who they’re basically getting paid by, right. But when you have like the president coming out with something called a Bill of Rights, you’re like, holy moly, but it’s like a short, it’s like a 15 page PDF, I highly, highly recommend that you read it, because it’s not First off, it’s not as bad as it sounds. It’s not even really a Bill of Rights. Like when you think of the Bill of Rights, I think of least me and my like laundered self think of the Constitution. And I think of, you know, the 10 commandments, you know, things like that, where it’s like you have the right to do this, or the government has the right to do that, or the government does not have the right to do X, Y or Z. But that’s not really what the tenants Bill of Rights is. It’s really more of like, here’s these priorities. We want to look into them. Here’s these baseline standards that we would like to have happen, or here’s these issues that we’re seeing. I’ll give you an example, where they’re saying that there’s rampant issues with the quality of leases. And part of that problem is coming from tenants not reading their leases. Well, I’m like, well, what’s the government going to do about that? Right, like, at some point, there has to be some sort of individual response. answerability. But they’re also saying that there’s rampant issues with leases, not outlining the basic kind of facts of a lease, or they’re misleading, where people are thinking they’re gonna have appliances. And they’re, they show up, and there’s no appliances in the unit, or they think that certain types of utilities recovered, and then they aren’t. And so, I mean, you may be rolling your eyes at this, but I was like, and I kind of was like, Wait, this is an actual problem. But I mean, I’ve, I’ve seen that I’ve seen some really bad leases. And so I couldn’t believe it, I just didn’t realize how you know, rampid it is, or maybe it’s just perceived as rampant because those people are, you know, yelling from the rooftops. And when someone you know, especially in a more affordable housing type of situation, I don’t mean that in like a section eight subsidized way, but you know, someone who probably doesn’t have an extra $1,500 to go and buy a whole appliance set it, it makes a big difference. When you sign a lease, and you show up and there’s no fridge sitting there, or there’s no washer and dryer, there’s only hookups and the fact that these things are just not clear, is doesn’t make our industry look good. And I know I have a previous episode all about lease grafting and best practices around that as well. And so I will make sure that I link that episode in the show notes as well, if you want to go back and listen to that, because it can’t be like a competition to be the shortest. But one of the things that I thought was really, really interesting in both of President Biden’s plans is that he actually kind of shares like, where he wants the federal government to be putting money towards in terms of investing in new types of projects, or new types of developments. And from that perspective, as a real estate investor, I was like, if this is where the government wants to be putting money, I should probably be wanting to put money there too, right. And so, sometimes with bureaucracy comes these additional or side opportunities, and sometimes it may just be like what they need to do to give the other side of bone to get them on board. And so if they have, you know, 10 things that they’re and it wasn’t 10 things, but if there was, you know, six things, I think it was in the Bill of Rights that they’re trying to do, how do you get be Apartment Association or the housing provider Association? Or even like NAR, right, the National Association of Realtors, that is like a powerhouse lobby group? How do we get them on board with this kind of stuff? Well, we got to keep the real estate market moving, we’ve got to keep it open to an extent. And so some of that means like, Hey, we’re gonna invest in certain types of neighborhoods, or certain neighborhoods, I don’t necessarily mean like demographic areas as much as like areas close to public transit, walkable neighborhoods, that seems to be a big focus, regenerating like downtown areas, creating new affordable housing, what sorts of like subsidies and loan products, can the government back insecure to create more types of these products, right, and more types of housing, because, frankly, the government hasn’t encouraged housing from the federal state to local level, essentially, nationwide, in a sustainable way that its meaning the the level of demand, and we’re seeing this across the country, this is not surprising to anyone. And some of that has to do with like restrictive zoning laws. And so seeing the government, basically incentivizing towns to throw out these restrictive zoning laws to allow for things like ad use, or allowing for multiple unit dwellings and what were otherwise single family homes, I believe it’s Arlington, Virginia, where it basically was just like, any house now can be like a single duplex or triplex without having to go to the zoning board. And it’s like, Okay, now we’ve got three more housing units in this building or two more housing units in that building. And that allows for increased density, but knowing that the government is pushing for that, and paying attention, seeing if your towns are implementing or applying for these types of brands, if they’re interested in doing that, and if they’re not asking you to counsel people, or your zoning board officials, or whatever they’re called for you locally, like why not? And perhaps, that maybe they don’t even know, right? Perhaps it’s just not at the top of their list or just, you know, see whatever’s being pushed in front of them at any given time, without really looking to do that extra work to apply for these types of grants, or to apply and change the laws and the regulations, particularly at the very, very local level, to be able to kind of play partner with the federal government and the money that they’re looking to hand out. And so, all of this to say that we as real estate investors, you know, I always think we’re entrepreneurs. We’re not investors, we’re entrepreneurs. We’ve got to keep abreast of our industry changes and not just after they happen, but before they happen, and being a part of the conversation, but then also being prepared and nimble enough to adjust knowing and perhaps that means checking with your CPA or checking in with your lawyer
Bonnie Galam 24:57
or just talking with other investors and be like, hey, How’s it shaking out for you, that way we can stay on top of things. And sometimes it means you’ve got to update your lease, I always tell my clients that they should be talking with an attorney at least every three years. But there should also be, you know, this period of, like, in between that time where you as the business owner, you, as the property owner, are like paying attention to this stuff. And so if you hear like, hey, this change got put into place, or there’s this new law in your town, check in with your lawyer, check in and say, like, Hey, I just saw this law came out, or there’s this new regulation, what am I supposed to do, don’t just guys, get ahead of it, pivot, and then you know, keep going, keep going. And none of this stuff should be things that force you to throw in the towel or force you or even just make you feel like, it’s, you know, it’s not worth the effort. Because we we know, it’s worth worth the effort. If you’ve got one property two properties, you can already start to see the writing on the wall of like, how this stuff is going to be, you know, continue to pay off. Even if we’ve got to do you know, an extra inspection? I mean, God help us with like, all these, like new lead inspections, and there’s just, it’s a ton of regulation. And if it’s not just you, I’ll put it that way. And if it’s not you yet, then I don’t want to be like it’s coming for you. I’m not like a doom and gloom type of person like that. But like, pay attention just because it’s not there. Now, doesn’t mean it’s not especially when it comes to like this, like local regulation around like, Airbnb ease, and zoning laws like that knows no, you know, partisan side. I mean, I don’t think it comes with any grand surprise that, you know, when it comes to like landlord tenant laws, that the Democrats tend to fall on the more pro tenant side, but positioning yourself as you know, a small business owner, and you know, what my thing is? Like, what’s the alternative? Like, do you want Bank of America to be you know, the biggest landlord in Philadelphia? I mean, that’s kind of like my, my whole thought is, a lot of politicians just don’t know how good they have it. And that’s not to say that there aren’t slumlord. There absolutely slumlords out there. There’s people who just aren’t there to kind of squeeze every dime out of it without ever really treating the business, like a business, they let their properties run to the ground, they don’t really care about what’s going on with their tenants. You know, they’ll just file an eviction, if anything, like there’s bad actors in our industry, but I don’t think that they are the anything close to the majority. But they are definitely who gets the majority of the attention and the bad news. And so I love sharing, you know, the good stuff that real estate investors are up to the really creative things that our investors are up to. Because, I mean, if you think about like the news, where people are like, Oh, someone a band, you know, change this abandoned warehouse was, you know, old school into housing, like there’s not appeal. A lot of people complain about that, right? There’s usually not a lot of people who are like, those greedy investors. I mean, usually, the worst thing you’ll have people say is like, oh, all the parking, where are these people going to park? Well, it’s just like, Oh, my God, the nimbyism, I don’t think you’ll ever completely eliminate where it’s like everyone was housing, but just not near them. Right. And so I hope this, you know, was an interesting perspective on the the way the market has been kind of shifting and a different way to kind of look at it because I just, I can’t handle all the complainant like look at and I realized that there, there’s going to be like an initial knee jerk reaction to all of this stuff coming out. But we’ve got to have our seat at the table. And we’ve also got to just learn how to deal with it. And that usually means getting engaged in the political process, whether it is through voting in your local elections, local elections, that horrific turnout, right, they have really, really bad turnout, or getting involved in a local Ria, who has some sort of lobbying effort, especially if you’re not local to where your properties are, like you can’t vote in the town where your properties are located. Then seeing if there’s like an organization who is lobbying on your behalf, and even if you can’t vote, then you can probably show up to meetings and see what’s going on. At these types of events, especially like, you know, masterplan type of meetings where you can figure out like, Where Where does the town see itself going? If there’s like an open, like, townhall for people running for mayor, go to it or watch it on TV. Because these types of things you can always still donate to campaigns and things like that, to try to get the political environment that you would like to have, no matter where you are in the country. And so that’s it for this week’s discussion. I would love love, love to hear your thoughts on this. And to kind of hear about the environment that you’ve been investing in and you know, how much has that changed over the past 235 years? Come on over to the good bones Facebook group. I would love to hear with you and continue the conversation over there. And next week, we’re going to talk about another thing that drives me nuts in real estate investing right and That is the term passive income. I don’t think you should be chasing passive income. And it’s I think it’s a yucky, disgusting, passive misleading term that people use that is totally not representative of anything that we as real estate investors do. And so stick around. It’ll be another fun episode next week and I can’t wait to bring that to you. Until then, bye for now.
DISCLAIMER: Although Bonnie is an attorney she doesn’t give legal advice without a written and dually signed engagement agreement. All episodes of the Good Bones Podcast are educational and informational only. The information discussed here isn’t legal advice and isn’t intended to be. The information you listen to here isn’t a substitute for seeking legal advice from your own attorney
© 2021-2023 Bonnie Galam LLC | All rights reserved | Any use of this intellectual property owned by Bonnie Galam LLC may not be used in connection with the sale or distribution of any content (free of paid, written or verbal), produce, and/or service by you without prior written consent from Bonnie Galam LLC
AFFILIATE LINKS: Some of the links we share here may be affiliate links, which means we may make a small financial reward for referring you, without any cost difference to you. You’re not obligated to use