Archive for the ‘Property Management’ Category

A Long Term Successful Alberta Landlord Gives Advice

Saturday, August 1st, 2020

A Landlord Who Has Owned Rentals Since the 1980’s Speaks Out

Thank you ALA for agreeing to post my message “edit free” so I can talk “real talk” about my experiences as a long term landlord/investor who is now a millionaire thanks to owning residential rentals.

Time Are Super Tough Now…But They Were Even Worse Before

Just about all of us are dealing with non-payers or vacancies and it looks like being a small private landlord is a hopeless investment.

It’s not. You can succeed and make a lot of money.

As some who bought his first rental property in 1981 I’ve seen it all.

Our province is the golden land and the problem is the federal government often makes some poor polices which hurt our economy.

And we rely on oil prices and access to sell our product.

Bad Times Can Change To Good Times Fast

Keep confident because it’s always a cycle.

We get low oil prices and a bad government and it hurts us…but then we get a pro-Alberta government and high oil prices and it’s like 2014 when landlords could charge applicants $50 just to see our rentals!

Hold On And Good Times Always Come, You Lose If You Don’t Hold On.

Like I said, our economy is cyclical. We are up and down due to who is running the country and oil prices.

Things could be improving soon and then your rental industry will boom!

Remember it wasn’t so long ago Calgary Mayor Nenshi was blaming us for high rents when there was a huge migration of people to come to work in our province.

Become An Expert Landlord To Hold On During Bad Times, And Thrive During The Good Times.

The up cycle is on the way. Landlords will see our property prices appreciate and a huge influx of people into our province for jobs.

Stay Positive

It’s always like this. We have an up and down economy and things are soon going to get better.

How To Succeed?

(1) Market Your Properties The Right Way

Remember, when good tenants have lots of choices you can stand out with the prettiest property and  consider a lower rent for the first years.

(2) Always Run Credit and Criminal Checks

The ALA offers huge discounts so you can make sure you know you are renting from a good tenant…and not a pro who has ripped people off before.

(3) Get Help From Successful Alberta Landlords To Fix Problems

Join our forum to get help and advice. Don’t listen to the media, don’t listen to the government…learn from people like me who have been in this industry for decades.

I’ve been through it all, all the ups and downs. The most successful landlords know we have a cyclical economy and when times are tough you just ‘get through it’ and carefully screen tenants.

When times are good you raise rents to build a nest egg (and you might even sell some of your rentals at the top of the market!)

Discuss this at the Alberta Landlords Forum

Alberta Landlords – Get Leases, Applications and More in our Rental Kit!

Saturday, November 17th, 2012

November 16th, 2012



Now Alberta Landlords Can Get All the Leases, Applications and Other Documents You need in our Rental Kit!

Whether you are a first time landlord planning to self-manage your first investment property or a seasoned pro who wants to protect yourself.

Whether you are a based in busy downtown Calgary, in Edmonton, Lethbridge or your property is far away from any urban centre.

Being a landlord in Alberta is getting more complicated by the year and you need proper tools to succeed.

We spoke a couple of weeks ago about how members of the Alberta Landlords Association can get premium credit checks with Equifax for only $10/check.

Now we will introduce you to the Alberta Landlords Association Rental Kit.

As we grow and more people come to Alberta for work and a better quality of life, it’s great for landlords because it means more renters. However, with the influx of lots of great people, there are also some tenants who will cause you grief. These tenants will break leases, leave you with a big clean up bill or worse.

It’s important you use proper documents and services to protect yourself in case things go wrong.  Landlords who use professional documents will make sure ‘Tenants from Hell’ know they are dealing with an experienced and professional landlord.

Become and ALA member and get access to online documents you can download 24/7! 

Documents include:

1. Leases

2. Applications

3. Pet Rules

4. Condition Reports

5. Notice of Entry

…and much more.  Everything is designed in compliance with the Alberta Residential Tenancies Act.


Be a landlord aiming for success yet prepared for anything. Use proper leases, applications and more and find great tenants and make your rental business a huge success! Become a member of of the Alberta Landlords Association for only a one time fee and all the documents you will ever need.


Alberta Landlords – Are You Renting to a Hoarder?

Sunday, October 7th, 2012

October 6th, 2012


Alberta Landlords – Is Your Tenant A Hoarder?

Global news in Edmonton has recently run a very informative series on “hoarders” that every landlord should know about.

What is “Compulsive Hoarding?”

Compulsive hoarding, which is also known as pathological hoarding,  is defined as the acquisition of possessions and the failure to discard them, even if the items are worthless or no longer useful.

How Does Impact the Person’s Life?

Hoarded items fill the person’s home, and can negatively impact day-to-day activities and relationships, and can even pose fire and safety risks.

How Can I Distinguish Hoarding From Simply Being Messing and Unorganized?

Dr. Randy Frost who is an expert says hoarding involves three distinct behaviours,  The three are:

1. The acquisition of, and the failure to, discard a large number of possessions that appear to be useless or of limited value

2. Living in spaces are so cluttered regular activities meant for those spaces is impossible

3. Significant distress and  impairment in functioning caused by the hoarding.

As a landlord, you already have enough stress!

How Many Canadians Can be Called Hoarders Under this Definition?

Crazy as it sounds, it’s estimated more than 1 million Canadians could be diagnosed as “hoarders”, and, since the prevalence of hoarding increases with age, that number is likely continuing to rise.

Hoarding is classified as an anxiety and panic disorder by the Canadian Mental Health Association, but will be named an official mental disorder in the newest edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.

What Are Some Red Flags for Landlords to Know if Their Tenant is a Hoarder?

There are so many things Alberta landlords must be careful of.

Here are the red flags:

Red Flag #1: Clutter

While collectors and hoarders alike may accumulate clutter, the clutter that results from a hoarder will prevent the normal use of living spaces. (For instance, a bed is filled with so much clutter it cannot be used for sleeping.)

Red Flag #2: Distress

Hoarding can often be stressful. While a collector will typically show pride in their collection, a hoarder will often view their piles of items with distress. Be especially wary if this distress causes impaired functioning in daily life or in key relationships.

Red Flag #3 An Urge to Save

A hoarder will have an urge to save even the most absurd things. Hoarders will often place sentimental value on random material belongings.

Red Flag #4: No Guests

A person routinely avoids having anyone inside their home, and always wants to meet somewhere else.

Red Flag # 5: Animals

You observe a number of animals in and around their place of work or residence.

Red Flag # 6: Compulsive shopping: the urge to accumulate possessions

If you have a trlsyibr who you believe may be hoarding, experts with the Hoarding Centre of the International OCD say it’s best to tell them you’re worried about them and ask if you can be helpful in some way.

If My Tenant is A Hoarder, Where Can I Direct Them To Find Help?

In Calgary the contact number is:

Hoarders Help Canada, Calgary, 403-395-2403


Alberta landlords, whether you are in Calgary, Edmonton or another city, tenant screening is the key to avoid renting to hoarders!  Do credit checks with Equifax, for only $10 a check for ALA members and find great tenants!

Alberta Landlords – It’s the 1st, Time to Collect Rent…and Also Check the Smoke Alarms

Monday, October 1st, 2012

October 1st, 2012


Whether you are in Calgary, Edmonton, Lethbridge or anywhere else in Alberta its the 1st of the month and time to collect rent.

Why not take this time to speak with your tenants and make sure all the smoke detectors and smoke alarms are set up and working?

As the weather gets colder, furnaces and space heaters get turned on.  These are potential fire hazards.

Take the time to inspect your rental property and get your tenants to sign off if everything is okay.

You can get sign off forms in the Alberta Landlord Rental Kit.

Make sure you do your due diligence and don’t end up like this Ontario landlord who was fined and charged!

Alberta landlords make sure you are protected by checking your rental units have smoke alarms and your tenants sign off they are there and working.

Landlords face pitfalls when they go the DIY route

Wednesday, May 23rd, 2012

March 24th, 2012


DIY and Property Management

The Globe and Mail newspaper recently had a great article about landlords doing their own repairs.  In the industry this is called DIY (Do it Yourself).  It’s a great read for new and experienced landlords alike.

Where Can I find the Article?

The Globe and Mail story is called “Landlords face pitfalls when they go the DIY route” and can be found here.

Ask any landlord, contractor, builder or small real estate investor the one tool they have in their DIY renovation arsenal, and the answer is invariably the spreadsheet. Most property owners with some years of experience behind them have crafted a list of must-do projects as they inspect their latest investments. The spreadsheet, making up years of gained knowledge on a variety of projects, is the key to that successful renovation.

Peel back the spreadsheet onion and investors reveal the projects that are essential in making the most amount of profit for, what they hope is, the least amount of cost. Especially in a volatile economic climate with the fear of a double-dip recession, property investors and landlords are taking it upon themselves and “DIYing” their projects to ensure they are attracting the best tenants and/or buyers for their properties.

DIYing and the economy

Owners and landlords are enhancing the value of their properties on their own more than ever before. Cost is always the number one factor and certainly the economy has heightened the need to cut expenses as much as possible.

Even though uncertainty in the economy can create buying opportunities for investors, would-be investors need to be aware of the pitfalls those investments might bring.

Our Friends at the Ontario Landlords Association are Interviewed

Two members of the Ontario Landlords Association were asked to provide comments.

The economy has not been strong since 2008, so more and more landlords who would have normally paid a contractor are now forced to do their own repairs and renovations,” one OLA members says. “Doing your own repairs and renovations is really a key point of landlords these days; the days of slumlords are over if you want to get good, qualified tenants.”

When you are renovating a rental, your goal is to maximize return on investment and to attract quality tenants. Your personal tastes are not as important; the goals are different,” another OLA members stresses. He adds that most new landlords’ biggest mistake is overrenovating. “Granite and stainless steel in a poor-quality neighbourhood is not going to attract top-quality tenants.”

Scott McGillivray of ‘Income Property” on HGTV Also Provided Advice

Scott’s show on HGTV can be a little controversial with veteran landlords.  The main criticisms are that things seem to always end up a little ‘too perfect’ for Scott’s clients.  Despite that, Scott provides some good advice for landlords.

The kitchen is of No. 1 importance,” said  McGillivray. “I have a sublist of how much work needs to be done in the kitchen.

The bathrooms are the next on the list and, again, a checklist is created. Then I look at all the hardware in the house, which I know is really easy. And then I look at how significant the flooring is in terms of needed work.”

The Key Points for DIY Improvements

Nothing in the DIY world should be taken for granted and even though costs can be saved and value can be added to projects, novice investors may find themselves trapped by some of the pitfalls of renovation.  Remember:

1. Be realistic about timelines 

2. Walk before you run

3. Understand local rules, regulations and legislation 

4. Play safe

5. Know when to ask for help

To discuss this welcome to the Landlord Advice Forums here.