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Property Management For Dummies (For Dummies (Lifestyles Paperback)) Paperback – April 15, 2001

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Product Details

  • Series: For Dummies (Lifestyles Paperback)
  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley Publishing, Inc.; 1 edition (April 15, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0764553305
  • ISBN-13: 978-0764553301
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 0.8 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #419,589 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"First-time landlords, this is the only book you'll ever need - a real pro simplifies every step of the process" -- Dick Barnes, Editor, Inman News Features and former Real Estate Editor for the Los Angeles Times, April 2001

"Griswold is the guru of smart property management. You won't find a better written, more practical book on the subject." -- Ken Harney, nationally syndicated real estate columnist, The Washington Post Writers Group, April 2001

"Not just theory — great advice in plain English for all rental property owners and managers." -- Dr. Arthur B. Laffer, father of Supply-side economics and the Laffer curve, Laffer Associates, San Diego, April 2001

"This is an outstanding reference guide authored by an experienced and outstanding property management professional". -- Dr. Rocky Tarantello, USC Real Estate Professor Emeritus and President of Tarantello & Associates of Newport Beach, CA, April 2001

This all-inclusive book should be required reading. On my one to 10 scale, this outstanding book rates a solid 10. -- Bob Bruss, nationally syndicated real estate and book reviewer, June 2, 2001

From the Publisher

(John Wiley & Sons) A easy-to-read, friendly guide to property management, for those with no experience whatsoever. Shows how to takeover rental properties, prepare the rental property for prospective tenants, advertise the property, thoroughly and legally screen tenants, moving in and moving out tenants, collecting and increasing the rent, tenant relations and retention, proper maintenance procedures including outside vendors, safety and security issues, fair housing issues, legal issues, accurate record keeping, taxes, and insurance, and other practical matters. Includes sample leases, rental agreements and many other excellent forms and letters for day-to-day use. Also, lots of great cartoons by Rich Tennant. Softcover.

Customer Reviews

Very easy to read and understand.
Anna L. Taylor
Good for anyone; experienced or begginer property managers and for people who have rental units.
D Caban
Great addition to your library and you may find yourself referencing it as a situation arises.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

158 of 167 people found the following review helpful By Guy M. Blasi on December 13, 2001
Format: Paperback
I met the author at a meeting of the Institute of Real Estate Management in Chicago several years ago. I hold the same "Certified Property Manager (CPM)" designation. So, I did a double take recently when I saw this book on the shelf of a book store. And I did a triple take when I saw that Robert had written it! Robert Griswold is an educator, and it shows in the book. I've been in property management for over 20 years and I bought the book and took it home for several evenings of enjoyable reading. (By the way, my wife thinks I'm nuts! I can't leave my work at the office.) Robert Griswold writes at the easiest common denominator. The book is entertaining and answers the wide variety of questions. Most property managers are "generalists", meaning you have to know a lot of things about a lot of topics: collecting rents, fixing up space, evicting tenants, dealing with difficult people, roof specialist, bookkeeper/accountant, landscape specialist, plumbing specialist, HVAC specialist, etc., etc. One thing that any property manager will know, it is a very detailed career. If you are a person with an interest in property management, a novice or a long-time veteran, this is a must-read book.
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81 of 84 people found the following review helpful By David E. Levine on March 25, 2005
Format: Paperback
This is an excellent guide for the property owner who wishes to manage his/her own property. Importantly, this volume includes a chapter on the issue of whether to manage the property yourself or retain a professional property manager to do it. The pros and cons are weighed. Key issues for the owner are evaluated with the most important (with the possible exception of safety and security) being tenant relations. You can't derive income if you have tenants who fail to pay the rent, so tenant screening is important, including background checks. Additionally, good relations means tenant retention. High turnover means expenses and loss of income during periods between tenants. Additionally, tenancies sometimes have to be terminated and the owner should consider alternatives to the expense and uncertainties of eviction actions. Such an alternative is negotiating with the tenant his/her vacating the premises.

An important chapter covers the issues of employee relations (if you own a multifamily building you will most likely have employees), maintenance and security/safety. Security and safety issues cannot be minimized and the property owner should do the utmost to keep the property safe for both employees and tenants. Indeed, safety may be the most important single duty of a property manager. In the area of commercial property management, particularly since 9/11, tenants pay huge pass alongs in rent to assure tight security. So too, in residential property, security is a crucial issue. There should be a good system to be buzzed in with exterior doors that lock and cannot be opened by intruders. Lead paint, asbestos and other potential hazards must be addressed, not only as a matter of good management but as a matter of law.
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73 of 76 people found the following review helpful By John R. Van Duyne, Esq. on August 17, 2001
Format: Paperback
Robert Griswold's Property Management For Dummies is a wonderfully practical digest on property management covering every applicable subject both for those considering becoming a landlord and for long time landlords. Easy to read, and easy to jump right to the subject on which one needs the most help, Mr. Griswold's years of experience and wisdom are made accessable to the reader. Having been a property manager for over three years now, I was surprised by how much I learned from this book. For anyone considering property management or being a landlord, this book lets one know in advance all the factors to weigh before making that leap. I'll state it again -- you must have this book if you are in any way going to be involved in property management.
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38 of 39 people found the following review helpful By thomsarg on June 13, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Whether you live on the east coast or the west coast, looking to own a condo or a multi unit investment, this book will help answer a majority of the most puzzling questions a landlord might have in managing a property. It gives simplified step by step instructions on each process throughout the to read and very clearly written.
If you are about to enter the world of being a landlord, this book will tell you the rules. Every person needs this book for his or her financial self-defense and peace of mind. Read this book and preclude the problem before it happens.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By John Umekubo on March 9, 2007
Format: Paperback
As a newbie in the world of real estate investment and property management, I found this book tremendously helpful. It is easy to read, contains a number of sample documents (just wish they were available on CD or online), and takes you through the process from beginning to end. Although the entire book is informative, I found the chapters on preparing your rental property, generating interest, and handling prospects/showing the rental, to be particularly useful for me as I get started. As a person new to this field, I find myself sometimes not even knowing the right questions to ask, or the right things to consider. Mr. Griswold covers it all in detail, and this helped me to visualize what the experience will be like. Case in point, the telephone interview check sheet, guides you through what questions to ask of the potential tenant, so that you can determine if this person may or may not be a good candidate, before taking things further. Why waste their time, or yours? This is just one example of the many tips and guidelines available in this book.
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More About the Author

Robert Griswold runs Griswold Real Estate Management with offices in San Diego, Los Angeles and Las Vegas, teaches for the Institute for Real Estate Management, hosted a San Diego real estate radio call-in show for 15 years, and regularly appears on NBC-TV as their Real Estate Expert.