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Property Management Blog

Earned Run Property Management: New name, same commitment to service

Tracy Jensen - Monday, June 4, 2018

If you’re a long-time client of ours, you may have noticed our gradual rebranding over the past year from Greenwood Property Management to Earned Run Property Management.

Rest assured, our team hasn’t changed - well, except for the fact that we’re growing! So why the new name?

Earned Run Property Management is actually one of several sister companies. Previously, all of the businesses had separate names. Now to ensure our clients know all of the resources they have readily available to them with one call, all three of our companies fall under the same name:

Earned Run Property Management
Earned Run Real Estate Group
Earned Run Investments

Our property management firm began as Greenwood Apartments 45 years ago. Still family owned and operated, our owners and team members will always be committed to providing the highest level of service to both our clients and tenants.

Have a property that needs to be managed? Contact us at (877) 230 – 7338 for a customized proposal.

What’s more expensive? Properly maintaining a rental property, or failing to maintain a rental pro...

System - Thursday, March 3, 2016

Yes, the upfront costs of ongoing maintenance, inspection, vigilance and TLC can be expensive. But, it’s far worse to put it off until it’s too late.

To keep your property livable and rentable, and maximize the eventual income and resale value of the property over time, you (and/or a professional) should be addressing the following items regularly (annually, seasonally, or whenever there’s turnover in a unit).

Please note: landlords cannot conduct maintenance any time they want. Check local access laws, and give a few days’ notice to tenants before entering the unit (unless it’s an emergency).

Seasonal checklist


  • Batteries in smoke, carbon monoxide and water leak alarms
  • Furnace units and HVACs (see below for HVAC problems to look out for)
  • Gas appliance (ovens, washer/dryer)
  • Plumbing (leaks or clogs in sinks, drains, and toilets)
  • Caulking
  • Roof/ceiling (see below for signs and causes of common roof problems)
  • Basement (water accumulation)
  • All window and door locks, including deadbolts (see common door and window problems below)
  • Exterior paint/stains/waterproofing
  • Metal screens over possible rodent entry points
  • Fences for damage or wear
  • Have fire extinguishers checked and certified by qualified contractors


  • Trim vegetation/weeds (these can be a fire hazard or hide pests)
  • Clean rain gutters
  • Change air filters
  • Schedule an preemptive exterminator visit (it’s easier and cheaper to prevent pests than to get rid of them)
  • Clean and winterize pools; inspect and install pool covers; clean and replace filters
  • Sanitize hot tubs
  • Service sump pumps
  • Set rodent traps

Roof and attic checklist

  • After rain, wind, or snowstorms, check for missing/damaged shingles or flashing; look for icicle accumulation at roofline
  • Check for water accumulation on pitch and gravel roofing
  • Seasonally, check for moss/lichens, buildup of leaves
  • Inspect and clean gutters, make sure they are securely fastened
  • Check attic for moisture and pests
  • Inspect attic vents
  • Have chimneys and fireplaces inspected for cracked or missing mortar; clean ashes from fireplace; hire a professional to clean and service chimneys

Windows and doors checklist

  • Check locks, doorjambs, thresholds and insulation for damage and wear
  • Apply sealants
  • Inventory storm doors and shutters; inspect for wear and damage
  • Clean window wells, check drainage
  • Inspect and repair door and window flashing
  • Lubricate hinges
  • Open and close windows to see if they get stuck open or closed
  • Check to see if door and window frames are crooked, this could be a sign of foundational problems or sinkhole activity.

Pre-Winter HVAC checklist

  • Have furnace or central air serviced
  • Clean vents and ducts
  • Remove window AC units
  • Clean debris away from roof and exterior AC units
  • Check heating oil supply

Basements and crawl space checklist

  • Check for cracked mortar or concrete, and gaps between bricks
  • Inspect for wet surfaces or water accumulations
  • Check for pests
  • Install and/or check moisture alarms

Plumbing checklist

  • Flush out water systems.
  • Prevent illnesses for new tenants by run hot water at max temperature through plumbing prior to every new move-in
  • Drain and flush water heaters and inspect for leaks
  • Check pressure relief valve on water heaters
  • Inspect insulation near pipes
  • Inspect walls for cracks. Caulk or spackle cracks in exterior walls that would otherwise allow freezing air to reach pipes
  • Check for signs of corrosion at/around pipe joints
  • Check for sweating or leaks around the water main and meter
  • Clean out/pump septic tank
  • Check water softener, and add salt if necessary

Interior rooms checklist:


  • Check for mold under sinks and near showers/tubs
  • Install splash guards to prevent water damage and mold
  • Look for cracks/damage to shower caulking
  • Check toilet/shutoff valve
  • Check tile grout


  • Clean refrigerator coils
  • Check under sinks and behind appliances for signs of pests
  • Clean out kitchen range hood screens
  • Clean and tune ranges and ovens
  • Check dishwasher hoses for leaks, decay or poor connection
  • Inspect refrigerator seal (it should seal over a dollar bill or similar size paper, if it does not, it’s time for repair)
  • Clean out garbage disposal. (Tip: Run vinegar and lemon juice ice cubes through the garbage disposal. This breaks up odors and sharpens the blades at the same time.)

Electrical checklist

  • Schedule regular electrical inspections
  • Test outlets for proper grounding
  • Look for signs of damage or wear:
    • Decaying wiring or insulation
    • Make sure that outlets or switches are not hot or warm to the touch
    • Check outlets for signs of arcing or scorching
    • See if ceiling lights dim when you turn on appliances, vacuum cleaners, microwaves,
    • etc. This could be a sign that your circuits are overloaded.

And last, but certainly not least: remember that your tenants are your most valuable asset. It’s okay to hand them a copy of this checklist, remind them you’ll be performing seasonal or annual maintenance, and ask them to alert you if anything is out-of-the-ordinary.

Our property managers will perform a biannual inspection or every unit you own along with the common areas and exterior of the properties. We will provide pictures and recommended corrections in writing.

A leaky toilet can waste up to 6,000 gallons of water per month. In many Chicago Suburbs this would add roughly $400 to your water bill in just one month. in a toilet can waste up to 6,000 gallons of water per month that would add roughly $400 a month to your water bill in many Chicago suburbs.

10 reasons to hire a professional property manager

System - Wednesday, November 11, 2015
1) Rent Collection: A professional residential property management company ("PM's") have systems and strategies to improve rent collection and on-time rent payments. This allows you to ensure swift and consistent rent collection. Quick and consistent rent collection is absolutely critical in this real estate market where good cash flow can mean the difference between success and failure as a real estate investor.

2) Local Knowledge of Rental Rates: Property Manager's have extensive local knowledge of rents and the ability to determine the highest rental rate possible for your property. With the internet and the ability to do large scale searches for rental properties, potential tenants know if your property is overpriced, even by $25. Overpriced properties sit empty while other properties get rented. Knowledge of rental rates is a key factor to fast rentals and quick cash flow.

3) Tenant Screening: A Property Manager requires a detailed written application from each adult with photo identification. Additionally, PM's will run criminal, social security and public notice (bankruptcy or judgments) searches to determine if the application is accurate. PM's will also call past and present employers, landlords and other references. PM's have set requirements and standards for accepting or declining an applicant and thereby ensuring you comply with fair housing rules and other local and state regulations.

4) Marketing Expertise: Propety Manger's have years of experience in how to best market your properties so they are rented in the quickest time possible. PM's use both offline and online marketing to maximize your properties' exposure and find qualified tenants quicker. Most PM's utilizes 10, 20 or even 30 different techniques to rent a property quickly which reduces your carrying cost of a vacant property.

5) Property Law and Regulations: Property Manger's have extensive and up-to-date knowledge of property laws and regulations and will assist you in making sure you are in compliance with your local, state and federal rules and regulations. These rules and regulations include complying with fair housing regulations, the Americans with Disabilities Act and other applicable local, state and federal laws. Avoiding one law suit will more than pay for any PM's fees many times over.

6) Tested and Reliable Professionals: residential property management company's will already have vetted numerous vendors, suppliers and contractors to make sure they provided good quality work at reasonable prices. Failure to properly vet these professionals can be a costly mistake. Many Owners overlook this function because they do not know how to do it or because it is a time consuming and laborious process.

7) Inspection Reports: Property Manger's perform property inspections before, during and after a tenancy. Additionally, most PM's will perform routine property inspections at least every 180 days. Your PM should be responsible for preparing frequent written inspection reports for each of your properties. Faults in your property that are found quickly can be resolved before they become expensive items of disrepair.

8) Financial Records and Security Deposit Escrows: Property Manger's will provide detailed income and expenses reports as well as cash statements every month saving you the bookkeeping headache. Additionally, PM's will also manage your security deposit escrow funds and make sure you are in compliance with local and state regulations. PM's will provide end-of-year tax reports for your accountant or financial advisor.

9) Emergency Calls and Shield You From Tenants: A residential property management company will shield you from emergency maintenance calls and tenant headaches. Imagine never having to deal with late night "my toilet is overflowing" call.

10) Low Costs: A PM should only be charging around 6% to 10% of the monthly rent collected. Assuming a monthly rental rate of $1200 per month that is a fee of $72 to $120 per month. This is less than $4 per day! Can you possible do all these things for less than $4 per day?

Landscape maintenance and rental properties

System - Tuesday, November 10, 2015
With many single family homes, owners require the tenants to be responsible for lawn maintenance and upkeep while others would like to include this in their rental price. Multifamily complexes and buildings will require landscape maintenance. Most condo and townhome associations handle the exterior landscape maintenance. Rest assured we can custom tailor this portion of care for your property to your achieve your desired result and budget as well. 

Contact Us


Illinois Physical Address:
850 N DuPage Ave
Suite 3
Lombard, IL 60148
(877) 230-7338

Illinois Mailing Address:
PO Box 1509
Lombard IL 60148

Michigan Office:
701 N Redbud Trail
Buchanan, MI 49107
(269) 695-7543

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