Vacancy and Leasing
Owners and residents can review our Move Out Procedures document. This document provides guidelines to residents as they prepare to move out of their current unit. Included in the document is information on how security deposits are processed and how we determine deductions.
After a resident moves out of a unit and prior to unit showings, our team does a thorough property inspection. A report is generated during these inspections and includes pictures and comments on what our team recommends to get the unit in rent ready condition. Owners are provided with these reports and recommendations before work is completed.
Our team follows a strict leasing schedule. All leases are reviewed on a weekly basis. We begin our lease renewal process 100 days out from lease expirations. After the 100-day mark, our team is in constant communication with the residents until a new lease is signed or the resident decides to move out of the unit. If a resident decides to move out, True Home will list the unit 60 days prior to vacancy.
Yes, after a resident moves out of a unit our team will replace the locks/rekey. Future residents will have a new set of keys as will our True Home Ohio team. Previous residents will no longer be able to access the unit.
Yes, owners will be notified as soon as a resident has decided to not renew a lease. Our team will do an analysis to determine a new listing price and then will inform the owner prior to listing the unit. If the owner is in agreement, the leasing team will move forward with listing the unit. Once a qualified renter has applied, met the qualifications and signed a leased, the owner will be notified of the new resident.
If a unit turnover will cost $500 or more, property owners will be notified with our team’s recommendations and a quote for the work. Once approved, if a property reserve is not in place, a payment request will be made to the owner prior to beginning the turnover work.
No, residents are not permitted to use his/her security deposit towards rent. Residents are made aware of this information in the lease agreement they sign and in the Move Out Procedures document.
Residents are contacted 100 days out from lease expiration. If a new lease is not signed or if the resident does not inform us of his/her decision 60 days prior to the lease expiration, we assume the resident intends to move out and we begin finding a new resident.
Please review our Application Process document.
Please review our Application Process document.
Yes, residents agree to obtain renter’s insurance upon signing a lease agreement.
This depends on the property and unit. When an owner begins working with our team, they are asked to provide details of how utilities will be handled. Most single-family properties require a resident to put all utilities (gas/electric/water/sewage) in their name. However, some units only require gas/electric.
Yes. All applications are treated the same and are processed in the order we receive them. True Home uses an Applicant Scorecard on every application received and processed. If an applicant receives enough points on the scorecard, we will approve him/her. Owners are not asked for the final approval due to Fair housing laws. Every application must be screened and processed the same.
No. Due to Fair Housing laws we are not permitted to share this private information.
For legal purposes, property owners are not permitted to view leases prior to activating a lease agreement. However, once a lease agreement is signed, owners are able to view every lease from his/her online account. All leases can be found from the Documents tab.
True Home Ohio holds all security deposits until a resident’s lease terminates.
We utilize a software known as Tenant Turner to advertise. This allows us to create a single listing with pictures, rental amount, terms, descriptions, etc. Then this listing is syndicated out to 30+ of the most popular FOR RENT websites and apps. We find that the majority of our tenants discover our listings through the “Zillow Group Affiliates”.
Yes. We have partnered with a professional Matterport 3D photographer who uses a special camera to create a 3D tour. Still images are also taken during this time and the photographer will professionally edit each photo for us to use in our listings.
100%. This is a common mistake we see investors make who are self-managing (and even some professional property management companies too). Think about the amount of time, energy, and money it took to 1.) Find a good deal on a rental 2.) Make an offer and get under contract 3.) Go through due-diligence to close on the rental 4.) Figure out and lock in financing 5.) Do everything to finally get to closing and close on the rental. This is something that costs 10’s of thousands of dollars. At this point in the rental property investing journey, it is easy to get excited about posting your FOR RENT listing and think “I’m going to save some money by just going to my rental and taking pictures with my smart phone. It’s only a rental property and my amateur picture taking skills will be fine without doing any editing”. Think about this for a second. There was just a transaction of typically $50,000+ to acquire this asset. The opportunity to spend less than $100 for professional 3D photography with professional editing should be a no-brainer. This will showcase your rental in the best possible way online, attract higher quality residents, and decrease vacancy times. We always recommend utilizing a professional photographer no matter if you are self-managing or you put the keys in our hands.
Absolutely. The software we pay for will tell us how many people have clicked on our listing, what website it came from, and provides a full owner report. This “owner report” has data analytics that tell us how many people were pre-screened, how many people scheduled a showing, completed a showing, and finally feedback after a showing. The software will auto-text prospective tenants who viewed the property and ask for them to rank the property between 1 and 5. In addition to the score (with 5 being the highest) it requires them to provide feedback on what they thought about the place. If they liked it, we email & text them links to apply. It is extremely streamlined and is why we can fill vacancies in under 7 days.
If we price the property appropriately and aren’t asking way above market rates, we can fill vacancies within 7-10 days. This is where the software we pay for and implemented throughout our company provides our clients with extreme value.
No. Our company covers this cost for all of our clients. This is a great example on how our goals and priorities are aligned with our clients. The longer your rental stays vacant, the more money we have to pay to keep advertising.
Yes, go to our Homes for Rent page and click on one of our FOR RENT listings to see the process. Click on any listing and fill out the “Contact – Details – Schedule” form, but do not actually submit it. You will see once you get to the “Details” portion of the form, we state the following:
“Great! Thanks, (prospective tenant name). So you know, this property is not available for tenants with recent felonies against people or property, an income less than 3.0x rent, pets (pet requirements are up to the client/investor and will be reflected here), a move in date too far out, or any unmet property requirements. It is available for immediate move in.”
Furthermore, on this same page for the “Details” we ask the following:
When are you looking to move in?
How many animals will you bring with you?
What is the source of your rent payments?
At least one occupant has been evicted. Yes or No?
At least one occupant has filed for bankruptcy. Yes or No?
At least one occupant has been convicted of a felony against people or property. Yes of No?
At least one occupant had a judgment filed. Yes of No?
When a prospective tenant finds our listing (regardless of what website they found the listing such as Zillow, Hotpads, Trulia, etc), they are required to fill out this information before getting in contact with us. This is the first line of defense to ensure we are finding and placing the highest quality renter possible. If certain criteria is not met based on their answers through this form, an auto generated email is sent to them to notify they do not qualify and will not be a candidate to rent from us.
We have a very detailed and thorough process to screen our prospective tenants utilizing our “Resident Scorecard”. First, head over to our Rental Application page to get a feel for the initial items we require all of our applying tenants who will be potentially living in your property to answer. Not only do we do a thorough background and credit check, but we also score the applicants on a number of other important criteria. Each person 18 years or older is required to apply. Some other important criteria we screen against includes Prior Landlord Reference, Rental History, Current Rent vs Proposed Rent, Job Stability, Income, etc.
We require the applicant make 3x the monthly rent and there is no history of rental debt on their credit. In some instances, we require an additional deposit to lease the property if the applicant has a marginal Resident Score (a combination of the above details). We collect a hold fee once approved and this takes the home off the market.
- Current Landlord Letter of Recommendation
We have found this is a critical piece of information to receive from all of our applying residents. As seen on our Rental Application page, we state the following for all applying applicants:
“In order to fully process this application, we require a touchpoint with your current landlord. This application will not be complete until we have a conversation or receive a letter of recommendation directly from your current landlord.
To save time, please complete our Consent to Background and Reference Check form. This form gives us permission to contact your references.”
In the rare event we need to pursue an eviction, we have a team of lawyers who assist us in the process. As our client and owner of the rental property, you will not need to be involved in this process. We will take care of all the work required to handle the eviction (post physical notices, documentation, and appear in court) for you. We do not up-charge you for the eviction work. We pass the attorney fee straight through to our clients. The attorney fees for a typical eviction is ~$250.
Historically speaking, we do not have to do evictions on tenants we place due to our strong screening process.
Yes. We will collaborate with you before finalizing our “asking price” for rent on the property. Remember, the only variable we have control over is the “asking price” and not the “market price”. This is the same concept with a FOR SALE home. We can ask for a very high rent, but if it is above what the market is able to sustain, our analytics will show us that we priced the asking price too high. If we set the asking price too high, we will extend our vacancy times and force the listing to become stale after it’s been on the market for a while. This is why we will reach out to you after 7 days if the property has not been rented yet and provide analytics feedback.
Rent and Residents
Owners have the final say whether or not they will allow pets. If pets are allowed, True Home requires a Pet Agreement to be signed and a monthly pet fee per pet that goes towards the owner’s income. True Home Ohio does not accept aggressive breeds and, typically, does not accept dogs bigger than 50lbs.
Yes, owners are able to make this decision at any point.
Every owner is set up with his/her individual online account. When a resident makes a rent payment, the system will update showing a payment was made. Owners are also provided with a monthly statement that will show total income and expenses within a billing period.
Distributions and Accounting
This must take place either over the phone or by sending our team a voided check with your banking information.
Owner income (Owner Draws) are processed around the 14th of every month. A monthly statement is also sent at the same time showing a breakdown of income and expenses. If an owner’s expenses exceed the income collected, there will be a balance due.
You can log into your owner account and make what is called an “owner contribution”. Please remember to make a note when sending the funds so that our team knows what to put the funds towards.
Other Common Questions
Each month, all owners are sent a statement showing income and expenses. To review invoices for the expenses, you can log into your online owner account and search for the specific line item. Any invoices associated with an expense will be found by clicking the paper clip icon next to the lien item. You can find out more information about using your online account by reviewing the Owner Portal Guide.
Owners are contacted only if a maintenance repair will be over $500. However, some owners request to be notified by our maintenance software every time a resident files a request. This arrangement is done only when requested by the owner.
We are a ‘tech-heavy’, high communication, and streamlined property management company. We have replaced all of the old-school ways of doing property management with leading and cutting edge technology. This not only benefits and satisfies our clients, but also all of our tenants. We are not a giant corporate nationwide property management company that treat our clients as simply another number. You will be put in touch with a Client Relations Specialist within our company who will be your main point of contact. The way we run our business optimizes the efficiency of your rental property. This keeps all of our tenants very happy and maximizes the cash flow/ROI on your investments.
Yes, we have an outstanding team of professional book keepers and accountants who help us make sure all of the money flowing through your rental is taken care of. This is reflected in your monthly statements you will get along with logging into your online Owner’s profile.
Yes. In fact, most of our clients have never stepped foot in their rental property since they are out of state investors (some even live out of the country in Europe and Asia for example). This is where our high communication and extreme presence of technology really benefits our clients.
When True Home Ohio successfully renews a lease (see above for the lengthy and detailed process for renewing a lease with your tenants), we charge a small flat fee for this.
Renewing leases saves our clients thousands of dollars because we avoid going through the turnover process. The turnover process typically includes repairs/rehab items needing addressed, vacancy (loss of potentially thousands of dollars in rental income), etc. For this service we only charge a $250 flat service fee.
A routine inspection is what True Home Ohio defines as the time when our inspection team will enter your property while there is an active lease.
The goal of this is to perform a “routine inspection” of the property to ensure the residents are taking proper care of the unit, there are no unreported maintenance items needing addressed (think about things such as a minor leak in a pipe that a resident will not report), and allow for our clients to get some pictures of the unit to prepare for turnover if there is a need to update/rehab the unit.
There is a small $69 service fee per unit to perform a routine inspection. Our clients have the option to perform zero, one, or two of these per year.