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Learn How to Cap Your Maintenance Costs at Only $400 Per Year

Learn How to Cap Your Maintenance Costs at Only $400 Per Year

One of the things small owners may want to consider and is really a pretty good idea is what they call these home warranty programs. These programs are basically insurance that cost $400 to $500 per year and you essentially insure your entire house.

There is a deductible and if something breaks and the warranty people have to come out and inspect or repair it, you’re only charged $50 or $60 typically. That’s your exposure. If it costs them more to fix it, then they have to pay it. You’ve bought insurance above that. They work fairly well. Some of them work better than others, but for the most part they work fairly well.

They are not always fast. They don’t work great, if it’s like a heater in the middle of winter. They have to use their particular workman and sometimes it takes a while for them to call back. Things like that at times are a little bit problematic.

Typically if it’s done right these things work and you just have to work within them. They’re really not a bad plan at all. They really limit your maintenance exposure. Once the tenant’s in there you’re only exposed to $50 or $60 if something breaks. It’s really something you want to consider.

Rehab Versus Normal Ongoing Maintenance

The other thing you have to remember is make sure you think about whether you’re doing a fairly major rehab versus normal ongoing maintenance. Normal ongoing maintenance is something that would be covered under your home warranty program if you were to buy that. That’s something to consider.

If you’re doing a fairly substantial rehab at the beginning, you obviously would budget and plan for that. Get the rehab done and then purchase the home warranty program.

One of the things I wrestle a little bit with owners is the fact that as a landlord you have a duty to provide good quality safe housing. That means if something breaks you have to fix it. If a window, heater, or hot water heater breaks, you as the owner would have to fix it. That’s part of the obligation of being a landlord.

I understand you collect rents and do all that, but in the end you also have an obligation to that tenant to provide them with good quality, safe housing. It doesn’t have to be extraordinary housing or anything of that nature, but it has to be good quality safe housing.

If something breaks you really have got to fix it in a fairly timely manner. I guarantee you the number one complaint that we get from tenants is not responding to maintenance items fast enough.

We get a lot of tenants that say, “The landlord will not return my call. Whenever I call them blah-blah-blah.” That is one of the ways, and I think we spoke about that the first call. You upset the tenants, they get tired of that, and that’s when they leave and you lose a good tenant. If you perform the maintenance quickly and professionally on time, the tenants will be much happier to stay.…

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Real Estate Investing – Buying in a Bad Neighborhood

Real Estate Investing – Buying in a Bad Neighborhood

Most people are always looking to buy property in a “nice” area or neighborhood. Of course if makes sense to want a nice house in an enjoyable and safe area. There are however a few benefits of buying real estate in the bad part of town or in the slumps of a city. I have listed some of the benefit below:

oYou don’t have to worry about the area going bad because it is already a “bad” part of town. What goes up must come down and that which has hit rock bottom can only be improved. What is important to remember is that the price of a property resembles the condition of that property. Buying in a bad part of town may be a good idea.

oA big difference between a property in a good area and a bad area are the tenants. Tenants in a bad area seem to be more long term. There also seem to be more demand for rentals in a bad neighborhood. People who are renting in a good neighborhood are usually there while looking for a place to buy.

oYou can easily be a “brilliant” landlord. Landlords in bad areas are usually not very good with things like maintenance on their property. You can therefore easily provide better service and charge more for it.

oIn a bad area you can always propose that your property will improve the area and may therefore be able to get different zoning. This is very difficult in a good area.

oIt is possible to increase your purchases. The lower cost definitely makes it possible to buy multiple properties where you would otherwise only buy one.

oReal estate in tough neighborhoods is more resistant when the market falls, like during a recession.

It is not to say that you shouldn’t buy in good neighborhoods. But it’s always good to know what your options are. Good opportunities present themselves in good and bad neighborhoods. Plus it’s always a good idea to look for opportunities where most people aren’t.…

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Home Stagers – It’s Not All About Price

Home Stagers – It’s Not All About Price

I’ve always been one of the most expensive home stagers in my city, from the time I started my business, and I’ve never made any apologies about it. The way I saw it, and still do, was that it’s fine if everyone else wants to give their time away for basically nothing. It doesn’t mean I have to do the same thing.

Instead of trying to compete on price, which is a big mistake for almost any entrepreneur, I put my energy into marketing myself to be perceived as the expert home stager in my market. I wanted people to come to me when they were looking for the best. That led to me getting clients who knew they were going to have to pay more for my services and it was a much more effective marketing strategy than promoting myself as the cheapest stager out there.

If you promote your services as being cheap, you’ll attract penny-pinching clients who don’t value what you have to offer.

People who only care about price will argue every step of the way about any recommendation you might make that might cost extra. You’ll get the people who haven’t spent money maintaining their homes over the years and will balk at repainting over their 1965 decor. You’ll get people who say, “why should I replace that rusted out mailbox or the cracked front window, the new owners can worry about it.”

If you’ve gone into the home staging business because you’re a creative person, I can tell you that sort of client will completely stifle your creativity and suck all the joy out of giving advice and envisioning the potential of a property. You’ll also have to worry more about bounced checks and chasing your money.

Marketing is more than telling people what you charge for your services. You have to position yourself, properly explain the benefits of your services in a way that is meaningful to the potential customer, learn how to convey the right image and relate to people in a way that makes them want to work with you. You really should have a prospect sold on you long before you start talking price. They should want you bad enough that your rate is not an issue. Of course price enters into a buying decision, but the point is you want it to be far down the list after other considerations, not your client’s number one concern.…

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How to Plan For a Smooth Moving Day

How to Plan For a Smooth Moving Day

Life is becoming a rush nowadays as the responsibilities and workload is increasing day by day. The long awaited day is generally a Sunday or a day off from the work and that is the only time when you get some time to work on your move out. The neighborhood is giving you problems or you want a change for yourself organize the best and most smooth moving day.

While you are shifting your location, countless issues crowd up your mind. First make a pocket file. Store in it all the required information and things that are necessary to wind up. As soon as something important pops up in your mind, note it down. This will not only help you organize your work but will also save the hassle of mishaps.

Before shifting, it is very important that you keep in mind certain cost estimates, like the moving company and the truck you hire. Contact at least two companies in advance to make sure you get the most economical one to work for you in the end. You should be well aware of the terms and conditions it offers. Moreover, confirm all the details and the accommodation where you are shifting.

Make out a floor plan of your new house where you plan to shift. As soon as you start shifting your stuff, organise all the things according to that plan. This will help you speed up the settling process. When you are shifting your stuff, make sure that you use up the space of the truck in the best possible fashion so that the truck has to make less trips and the moving process proves economical from you.

There are certain very important things to take an account of, while the shifting process is going on. If you are shifting to a far off place and going back and forth is a great hassle for you make sure you obtain all your medical records from your doctors. To refrain from future hassle is it wise to collect the leaving school certificates from the school.

Obtain and fill out your new addresses at the post office and cards so that the future mail reaches you at your new accommodation. Notify all the people concerned and make plans to shift into your new society. Take into account the details of the setup in the new locality and meet up with the people so that you get over with the settling down phase as soon as possible.

Make sure you contact all your insurance companies on time and let them know that you are shifting your location so that it is easy to make legal adjustments, if any.

In the end carrying out the following activities, you can smoothly move in to your new house and thus avoid any stress full series of mishaps or accidents.…

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Awe-inspiring Ideas For Your Home Improvement Project

If you think you can’t conquer home improvement projects in your home, think again. All it takes is a yearning for more information and the ability to find it and use it right. If you want to get a great start in learning new home improvement skills, you can definitely use these tips.

Add shutters to the outside windows on your home for a dramatic change in architecture. If your exterior looks a bit drab or flat, you can use this simple tip to give it much more depth and interest. Paint them a coordinating color to your house, often the color of the front door.

Get someone knowledgeable to give your existing flooring the once over before you pay out for brand new hardwood flooring. Sometimes, people find that they Home Improvement Contractors have hardwood under their linoleum or carpet that just needs to be refinished. If that’s the case, you can save money and have better flooring this way.

Home Improvement Project

If you are interested in changing the look of your bathroom, this space could be the perfect choice for your next home improvement project. Give your bathroom an extra special touch by installing radiant floor heat and a light-tube, which gives the space the appearance of having natural light. Both features come with instructions that are easy to follow.

Before you begin your next home improvement project, make sure to secure any permits that you might need. Anything dealing with electricity, plumbing or structural work will require a permit. If you aren’t sure how to get the proper paperwork, it may be helpful to hire a general contractor to assist you.

Home improvement projects can be fun and even uplifting. After all, you are giving something great to your home, putting in what you want to enjoy for some time to come. If you are ready to get down to business and learn some great skills, these home improvement tips can provide great advice.…

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Common Problems That Require a Real Estate Attorney

Common Problems That Require a Real Estate Attorney

When it comes to purchasing and advertising a property for sale, you would encounter common problems that require a real estate attorney. These types of transaction involve titling, legal reports, insurance and disclosures. To top it off, real estate agents would convince you that they could help you avoid all of these if you agree with their recommendations and just leave everything to them. You should be reminded that these agents are not after your interests but they just wish to close the deal immediately to receive their kind of lawyer will be the one to fight for your interest and ensure things are done legally and rightfully.

One of the problems when buying or selling a property is disagreements on the contract between both the buyer and the seller. A qualified attorney could immediately discern if there something in the contract would be unfair on your part. He would analyze the terms and evaluate the risks in the transaction.

Another problem that is encountered in real estate transactions are the negotiations to follow. There are times that both the buyer and the seller could not make a compromise when it comes to the price, terms of payment, exclusions, closing date and future plans of the buyer regarding the property. A real estate lawyer would be able to negotiate a deal that would benefit his client and to which the seller would be amenable to.

Titling is one of the common problems that require a real estate lawyer. The property may have been owned by someone else before the seller thus there may be unresolved matters that hinder the placement of your name on the title. Such unresolved matters may be a current lien on the property. A specialized lawyer in this field would be able to know what to do with such a situation because of his knowledge on the legality of such matters.

During closing or even after, there may be times that someone, other than the buyer, declares that he or she owns the property. A real estate attorney shall be needed by the buyer during such a situation. He would be able to assess and get a title insurance policy which assures no other person can claim the property to be his or hers except for the buyer.

The concluding part of this type of deal is the closing. This is the time when the deal is finalized and all costs are paid. To protect the client’s interests, especially if the buyer wants to go against the deal or if he has a sudden change of plans, a real estate attorney should be present. These common problems require an attorney who specializes in this field.…

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Desktop Property Finders – The Pros and Cons of Buying One Today

Desktop Property Finders – The Pros and Cons of Buying One Today

If you are looking for a new home, a place to rent (even a storage shed), if you are looking for tenants for your rentals, or if you are a realtor looking to help or increase your client base, a desktop property finder can be of great assistance to you. As you can gather from the name, it is an application that you install on your computer. Its main purpose is to help you find properties that are listed for sale or for rent online. But what about that desktop format? What are the pros and cons of these types of applications?

The Pros

Fewer Searches: You need to perform a search with a desktop application that lets you search for properties. However, these applications enable you to search across the internet; one search has you searching thousands of MLS sites, realtor sites, rental sites, foreclosure sites, classified sites, and more. With a desktop application, one search does it all. If you weren’t to use a property finder installed on your computer, you would need to visit each site one at a time and perform the same search over and over and over again!

Great Features: Before we focus on features, it is important to note that you will find a number of applications that qualify as property finders. What this means is that you might find a variance on the features offered. With that said, it is common to find extra search filters to deliver targeted results, editable and sortable search results lists, in-program or email alerts of new properties, easy email replies, customizable notes, and more. If you are someone looking for a place to live or a location to rent, these extra features can save you time and money. If you are looking for clients for your rental business or real estate business, these extra features can save you time and increase your earnings.

The Costs: Wait a minute! The cost is a plus side? Yes, it is in most cases. Despite the fact that most desktop program do cost money, you’ll find the cost to be very affordable. Moreover, it is important to focus on the time saved and the results produced. You get the same results you would if you search all the hundreds of property sites individually; you just get those results in minutes instead of hours or days! So lets say you are interested in buying your dream home, the ability to quickly search and setup email alerts, might mean you get an offer in before someone else! This makes the cost, well worth it.

The Cons

Which One: Honestly, the main downside to opting for desktop property finders is that you have a number of programs to choose from. You might sit there for a few minutes wondering “which one is best?” This will be the hardest decision you need to make, the rest is easy from here on out. Luckily, all good desktop property finders come with a free trial. This enables you to try before you buy.…