5 Best Tips for Planning Your Property Management Budget

Monday, May 03, 2021·6 min read

Are you a landlord or property manager who wishes budgeting would just be easier? While it’s a demanding task, budgeting is extremely important toward properly allocating your resources, supporting your desired activities, exceeding your tenants’ expectations, and increasing your property value overtime.

It can be quite the hassle, but if you follow these basic steps, you’re sure to stay on your A game as a property manager and master your budget management process.

Tip #1: Get all your research done

Before you start handling numbers, get a clear understanding of where you should allocate your budget by researching your market, property, and competition. This includes understanding your market incentives, new properties in your area, your price per square foot compared to the market, etc. It’s best to conduct a SWOT analysis to determine the best course of action, and especially to strategize for future opportunities.

Tip #2: Plan long term

If you really want to exceed the expectations of your community, you have to have beyond a 1-year plan. When preparing your budget, take into account future projects that current reserves are unable to fund. It’s a good chance to take a closer look at yearly expenses and set goals and limits for those expenses in order to make room for future projects. The way you manage your budget for the long term will certainly affect what you’re able to accomplish for your tenants over many years.

Tip #3: Track your expenses mindfully

It was just mentioned, but it should definitely be reiterated. Track your expenses mindfully, or your goals will be less realistic over time. As you’re preparing your annual budget, go through your expenses one by one and don’t just annualize each one from the previous year. To meet all your project goals year by year, look for ways to cut expenses by reviewing your vendor contracts and making your property more energy-efficient.

Tip #4: Use a portfolio management software

One of the best ways to make the budget planning process a whole lot easier is to use a trusted property management software solution that will collate all your data and projects for optimized organization and planning. This will help you unlock more insights, get a better handle on tough planning, save you much more money, and help you easily adjust projections where and when you need to.

Rentto is a free software-as-a-service that allows landlords, owners, and managers to organize their portfolios in a safe and affordable way. By using Rentto, you have access to all your properties and leases, payments, documents, and so much more all in one place. There’s no limit to how you want to manage your investments with Rentto, and you can get started 100% free. Software like this is crucial to exceeding all your goals and expectations over the long term.

Tip #5: Your community comes first

Last, but never least, your rapport with your tenants are integral to your planning. As mentioned, you always want to plan beyond the yearly mark, and really look to exceed needs as you work to include impactful projects in your planning.

Rentto helps you create easy pathways for enhancing property values while also maintaining positive relationships and meeting needs consistently. With Rentoo, you even have an online portal that will allow for your tenants to make payments and make maintenance requests.

These are all just some of the key steps, but the most important factor would be having a trusted, affordable platform to manage all of your planning for you. We’d love to be a part of your journey of growth; learn more about getting started for free at https://renttohq.com/.

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Contrary to popular belief, Lorem Ipsum is not simply random text. It has roots in a piece of classical Latin literature from 45 BC, making it over 2000 years old. Richard McClintock, a Latin professor at Hampden-Sydney College in Virginia, looked up one of the more obscure Latin words, consectetur, from a Lorem Ipsum passage, and going through the cites of the word in classical literature, discovered the undoubtable source. Lorem Ipsum comes from sections 1.10.32 and 1.10.33 of "de Finibus Bonorum et Malorum" (The Extremes of Good and Evil) by Cicero, written in 45 BC. This book is a treatise on the theory of ethics, very popular during the Renaissance. The first line of Lorem Ipsum, "Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet..", comes from a line in section 1.10.32.

The standard chunk of Lorem Ipsum used since the 1500s is reproduced below for those interested. Sections 1.10.32 and 1.10.33 from "de Finibus Bonorum et Malorum" by Cicero are also reproduced in their exact original form, accompanied by English versions from the 1914 translation by H. Rackham.

What to expect from here on out

What follows from here is just a bunch of absolute nonsense I've written to dogfood the plugin itself. It includes every sensible typographic element I could think of, like bold text, unordered lists, ordered lists, code blocks, block quotes, and even italics.

It's important to cover all of these use cases for a few reasons:

  1. We want everything to look good out of the box.
  2. Really just the first reason, that's the whole point of the plugin.
  3. Here's a third pretend reason though a list with three items looks more realistic than a list with two items.

Now we're going to try out another header style.

Typography should be easy

So that's a header for you — with any luck if we've done our job correctly that will look pretty reasonable.

Something a wise person once told me about typography is:

Typography is pretty important if you don't want your stuff to look like trash. Make it good then it won't be bad.

It's probably important that images look okay here by default as well:

Contrary to popular belief, Lorem Ipsum is not simply random text. It has roots in a piece of classical Latin literature from 45 BC, making it over 2000 years old.

Now I'm going to show you an example of an unordered list to make sure that looks good, too:

  • So here is the first item in this list.
  • In this example we're keeping the items short.
  • Later, we'll use longer, more complex list items.

And that's the end of this section.

What if we stack headings?

We should make sure that looks good, too.

Sometimes you have headings directly underneath each other. In those cases you often have to undo the top margin on the second heading because it usually looks better for the headings to be closer together than a paragraph followed by a heading should be.

When a heading comes after a paragraph …

When a heading comes after a paragraph, we need a bit more space, like I already mentioned above. Now let's see what a more complex list would look like.

  • I often do this thing where list items have headings.

    For some reason I think this looks cool which is unfortunate because it's pretty annoying to get the styles right.

    I often have two or three paragraphs in these list items, too, so the hard part is getting the spacing between the paragraphs, list item heading, and separate list items to all make sense. Pretty tough honestly, you could make a strong argument that you just shouldn't write this way.

  • Since this is a list, I need at least two items.

    I explained what I'm doing already in the previous list item, but a list wouldn't be a list if it only had one item, and we really want this to look realistic. That's why I've added this second list item so I actually have something to look at when writing the styles.

  • It's not a bad idea to add a third item either.

    I think it probably would've been fine to just use two items but three is definitely not worse, and since I seem to be having no trouble making up arbitrary things to type, I might as well include it.

After this sort of list I usually have a closing statement or paragraph, because it kinda looks weird jumping right to a heading.

Code should look okay by default.

I think most people are going to use highlight.js or Prism or something if they want to style their code blocks but it wouldn't hurt to make them look okay out of the box, even with no syntax highlighting.

Here's what a default tailwind.config.js file looks like at the time of writing:

module.exports = {
  purge: [],
  theme: {
    extend: {},
  },
  variants: {},
  plugins: [],
}

Hopefully that looks good enough to you.

What about nested lists?

Nested lists basically always look bad which is why editors like Medium don't even let you do it, but I guess since some of you goofballs are going to do it we have to carry the burden of at least making it work.

  1. Nested lists are rarely a good idea.
    • You might feel like you are being really "organized" or something but you are just creating a gross shape on the screen that is hard to read.
    • Nested navigation in UIs is a bad idea too, keep things as flat as possible.
    • Nesting tons of folders in your source code is also not helpful.
  2. Since we need to have more items, here's another one.
    • I'm not sure if we'll bother styling more than two levels deep.
    • Two is already too much, three is guaranteed to be a bad idea.
    • If you nest four levels deep you belong in prison.
  3. Two items isn't really a list, three is good though.
    • Again please don't nest lists if you want people to actually read your content.
    • Nobody wants to look at this.
    • I'm upset that we even have to bother styling this.

The most annoying thing about lists in Markdown is that <li> elements aren't given a child <p> tag unless there are multiple paragraphs in the list item. That means I have to worry about styling that annoying situation too.

  • For example, here's another nested list.

    But this time with a second paragraph.

    • These list items won't have <p> tags
    • Because they are only one line each
  • But in this second top-level list item, they will.

    This is especially annoying because of the spacing on this paragraph.

    • As you can see here, because I've added a second line, this list item now has a <p> tag.

      This is the second line I'm talking about by the way.

    • Finally here's another list item so it's more like a list.

  • A closing list item, but with no nested list, because why not?

And finally a sentence to close off this section.

There are other elements we need to style

I almost forgot to mention links, like this link to the Tailwind CSS website. We almost made them blue but that's so yesterday, so we went with dark gray, feels edgier.

We even included table styles, check it out:

Wrestler Origin Finisher
Bret "The Hitman" Hart Calgary, AB Sharpshooter
Stone Cold Steve Austin Austin, TX Stone Cold Stunner
Randy Savage Sarasota, FL Elbow Drop
Vader Boulder, CO Vader Bomb
Razor Ramon Chuluota, FL Razor's Edge

We also need to make sure inline code looks good, like if I wanted to talk about <span> elements or tell you the good news about @tailwindcss/typography.

Sometimes I even use code in headings

Even though it's probably a bad idea, and historically I've had a hard time making it look good. This "wrap the code blocks in backticks" trick works pretty well though really.

Another thing I've done in the past is put a code tag inside of a link, like if I wanted to tell you about the tailwindcss/docs repository. I don't love that there is an underline below the backticks but it is absolutely not worth the madness it would require to avoid it.

We haven't used an h4 yet

But now we have. Please don't use h5 or h6 in your content, Medium only supports two heading levels for a reason, you animals. I honestly considered using a before pseudo-element to scream at you if you use an h5 or h6.

We don't style them at all out of the box because h4 elements are already so small that they are the same size as the body copy. What are we supposed to do with an h5, make it smaller than the body copy? No thanks.

We still need to think about stacked headings though.

Let's make sure we don't screw that up with h4 elements, either.

Phew, with any luck we have styled the headings above this text and they look pretty good.

Let's add a closing paragraph here so things end with a decently sized block of text. I can't explain why I want things to end that way but I have to assume it's because I think things will look weird or unbalanced if there is a heading too close to the end of the document.

What I've written here is probably long enough, but adding this final sentence can't hurt.

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