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  • Writer's pictureJivko Stefanov

5 Tips for Managing Student Rental Properties: Rutgers University Edition

Updated: Jan 16

While we service all types of tenants, the bulk of our business at Tverdov Housing is the property management of off campus student rental apartments near Rutgers University. Make no mistake, because of the age, maturity level, and the number of decision-makers (parents and their children), student housing is one of the hardest niches in buy and hold investing. Below are some key points in managing student rentals that can help your investment succeed in the Rutgers off campus housing market.

1. Proper Timing

The Rutgers student rental market is all about timing. Leases run 12 months, from June to May. To rent a property in June, Rutgers students start looking as early as October of the previous year! We rent properties every month of the year in Central New Jersey because of the size of our operation, but the peak demand times for college housing are October, November, January, February, and August. This also varies based on the size of your rental. If you have a place for three people, you can rent that any time of year. If you have a 12-person house, timing is very important.

2. Turnover Rate

Housing turnover is one of the biggest turn-offs to investors. The cash flow might be higher, but Rutgers student rental properties turn over each year. You will be lucky if a group stays in their student rental for two years, and if they stay for three years it’s like spotting a unicorn. We expedite these turnovers by using the same materials for most of the properties and doing inspections to monitor the condition of the apartments. If you’re looking for long term tenants, college rentals and off campus student rental apartments are not for you.

3. Collecting Rent

We have all of our Rutgers student groups pay rent in one payment. Whether the student rental has 2 people living in it, or 12 people living in it. This will make your life much easier and puts the responsibility on the student group to make sure rent is submitted timely and together. Peer pressure from roommates to pay rent on time works better than anything else.

4. High-Maintenance Tenants and Managing Properties

You are renting to 18- to 22-year old students who have minimal experience in homeownership. Prepare for calls about light bulbs, smoke detectors, heat not working because the thermostat wasn’t turned on, lights not working because they can’t locate the proper light switch, etc. They will likely text you at odd hours, like midnight, or 3 o’clock in the morning. You will need patience to deal with these requests about their student rental. At Tverdov Housing, our property management professionals in Central New Jersey like to teach the tenants how to take care of their house, as well as help them grow up.

It’s also important to understand that the property is likely to become damaged more often than a regular rental property, and tenants are less likely to admit having been the cause of the damage. We hear statements like, “I don’t know what happened” or “It was that way when I moved in” regarding damages to property.

5. Reviewing Your Lease

Rutgers students may have never lived on their own before. Our professional rental management and property management professionals always review our Lease with each group to ensure they understand the key points that are in the Lease. Doing so helps to minimize issues that will pop up due to a lack of understanding of Lease obligations.

While Rutgers off campus housing and student rentals can be profitable, they are management intensive and time-consuming. If you are interested in buying or selling a property or need help with the property management side of your student rentals in Union, Middlesex, or Somerset County, there is simply no one better in New Jersey to handle your investment than Tverdov Housing! Contact us today to free up your time and get rid of your student rental headaches once and for all.

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