Real Property Management DC Metro Blog – Real Property Management DC Metro
Our mission is to minimize expense and leg work for busy home and property owners. By seeing to the tasks of vacancy filling, tenant screening, rent payment, business licensing, repairs and evictions, we take a large portion of rental property management onto ourselves.
Creating on-the-spot attraction in a rental home is the answer to long-term success in the real estate investment game. It’s essential, as a property owner in Logan Circle, to select design elements that are considered attractive to desirable renters for years upon years. Even though emulating the latest design trends is a fashionable choice right now, you expose yourself to danger by making potential tenants unhappy with your decisions. Industry experts propose abiding by simple but tasteful designs so that one may appeal to most renters.
Other alternatives don’t have the beautiful, natural colors and longevity that you can find in brick, tile, and wood. When overhauling cabinets, take into consideration the use of alder or maple wood as the beauty of these two types of wood can be amplified with a light or medium stain for a long-lasting natural look. Improving the look of brick fireplaces can also add a cozy charm to a living room. Furthermore, natural-looking tile is a favored alternative, with a lot of durable and budget-friendly options that are available for floors, bathrooms, and more.
The secret to timeless design is keeping it simple with clean lines and neutral colors. Walls, carpeting, and flooring should be both plain and in shades of cream or taupe. This will help create a “blank slate” that renters can decorate according to their design tastes. Never forget this principle and opt for classic choices when choosing appliances.
One way to significantly increase both function and appeal throughout the home is by installing shelving on bare walls or in unused nooks or crannies. Tenants love built-in storage and will be grateful for the extra space to keep their personal items, especially in the kitchen and living room areas. It doesn’t matter what interior design trends are in demand at the moment, storage space never goes out of style.
Take into consideration that the finest rental home designs are warm and inviting. When prospective tenants come to a showing, they will be drawn to a home designed with quality, simplicity, and natural beauty in mind. Your rental homes can bring in good tenants and you’ll be able to retain them for many years to come by just applying some simple upgrades.
At Real Property Management DC Metro, we can help you to make your rental property dreams a reality. In order to create an inviting rental property that will never sit vacant for long, we can provide you with the industry connections and market experience you need. Click here to view our available rentals in Logan Circle and the surrounding areas.
Clean windows are a vital part of a rental home’s curb appeal. You may be looking for a new tenant or already have a long-term lease secured, either way, cleaning the windows at least once every year plays a big part in keeping your renters happy and your rental home’s value high. Depending on the window type and the terms of your lease, you may ask yourself, “Who, exactly, should be in charge of this?”
A fair expectation that Logan Circle property owners may have is for tenants, especially those who live in single-story homes, to do basic window cleaning. This chore expects them to clean interior windows and maybe include ground-level exterior windows as well. However, if your tenants don’t fully appreciate what “completely clean” means, they may cut corners. This would give you more work in the end.
See to it that you never ask your renters to clean windows that are so high that they’d need a stool or ladder to reach them. According to the World Health Organization, more than 164,000 people go to the emergency room due to injuries involving ladder use at home each year, while falls from ladders cause an average of 300 deaths per year. It’s a bad idea to ask or allow tenants to perform maintenance tasks where they have to use ladders; safety must be the priority.
For most exterior windows and windows that can only be reached by using ladders or other special equipment, you should have them done by professional window cleaners. This is very important especially if your rental homes have tinted windows, stained glass, or leaded windows. These specialty windows need to be cared for differently. If you clean them using the wrong cleaning solution, they could be permanently damaged. And repairing or replacing specialty windows is expensive.
In a similar train of thought, using the wrong tools to clean windows can leave them streaked, spotted, or worse. Unless your tenant has the skill and experience of properly using a high-grade squeegee and they also happen to own one, you will most likely regret letting them do this task. The proper way to clean window tracks and weep holes must also be used since improper care would likely damage the window and the home.
It’s important to select a quality service provider when you have your windows cleaned. But when you’re trying to get professional window cleaning in Logan Circle at a fair price, who do you look to? Sometimes you can see advertisements for window cleaning services that, after a closer look, are posted by people who lack the necessary knowledge and experience to do the job properly.
There is no reason to worry. At Real Property Management DC Metro, we have connections with highly skilled professionals in the industry. We will make sure that the windows of your rental homes are handled properly. With a trusted list of vendors, you can trust us with the window cleaning and other property maintenance matters. Feel free to call us at 202-269-0303 or contact us online today.
Spring is the season of revival. And for landlords, there is no better time to do all those important cleaning and maintenance tasks than spring. While Shaw rental homes need maintenance year-round, spring presents a unique opportunity to check your properties for a few specific things. Although spring cleaning and maintenance can be a large undertaking, they can’t just be neglected or postponed.
Season-specific cleaning and maintenance items can involve either the interior or exterior of your rental homes – or both. But spring is the ideal time to get all these little tasks done. There are some tasks that are too difficult to do in winter temperatures and tasks that are about checking the damage caused by winter storms and freezing temperatures. For example, it’s important to examine concrete areas each year, including foundation, driveway, walkways, patios, and more, for new cracks or gaps. Windows and doors, too, need to be checked for cracks and gaps (including weather-stripping) and repaired or replaced. Window and door screens accumulate a lot of dirt and debris in the winter, making spring the most excellent time to clean them. The roof should be checked for loose, missing, or damaged materials, and any leaves or debris cleared out of the gutters and downspouts.
Aside from the big items, you need to check on smaller features as well. Exterior door hardware should be checked, and squeaky hinges or broken locks repaired or replaced. Exterior trim might profit from a few touch-ups, and exterior wood elements should be examined to find out if they need to be refinished or sealed. And remember to look at the outdoor light fixtures – they may have bulbs that no longer work.
When going through spring cleaning, remember to include the yard in the to-do list. Sprinkler systems and outdoor faucets should be tested and turned on if winterized. Dead leaves and branches may have fallen during the winter, so once spring comes around, you may need to do a general clean-up. Spring is also a great time to fertilize lawns, trees, and other vegetation.
Going a little bit further, spring is a great time to examine the perimeter fences and freestanding mailboxes. Broken fence slats will need to be replaced, and wobbly or failing posts repaired. Gate hardware should be examined for rust or other issues and repaired as needed. Finally, spring is a great time to check on the home’s garbage cans and see what state they are in. If the lids can’t close properly or holes have started appearing, it’s probably time to get new ones.
This is no more than a starting point for a complete and thorough spring cleaning & maintenance list. With such a huge number of things that need to be accomplished, it’s only reasonable to bring in a team of professionals who can handle the process for you. When you hire Real Property Management DC Metro, you won’t need to be anxious about spring maintenance. We will make sure to complete seasonal tasks thoroughly and promptly. If you are interested in working with Real Property Management DC Metro or still have questions, don’t hesitate to contact us online or give us a ring at 202-269-0303.
There are a number of changes happening in the single-family rental home market, a lot of which is being driven by long-term renters. Like many people, from millennials to seniors, find themselves not able to or not willing to purchase a home nationwide, large numbers are turning to long-term rentals instead. As a consequence, there are specific expectations that the renters today have, and one of these expectations is the kinds of smart technology they want to see in single-family residences.
Many tenants may require that particular smart devices be installed by their landlord, from high-speed internet to smart thermostats to security systems. But is it really worth it? Will the trouble of upgrading your Adams Morgan rental homes be worth the renters that are attracted by it? The question can only be answered when a few factors are determined, from where your rental property is located to how much return you expect on the upfront costs.
Smart devices have the potential to make a rental home more efficient, more secure, and more convenient. Rental homes that are smart technology-ready would draw a certain group of potential renters. For instance, a smart thermostat can make managing heating and cooling costs much easier, reducing wear and tear on air conditioning units and furnaces as well as lowering utility bills.
Adding sensors and cameras to doors and windows are especially good for particular places, especially where a perception of crime is a problem. Installing these smart devices may be what convinces people to rent the home because it bolsters a sense of security. Smart locks can make it easier for you to get into your rental homes when you need to. It also increases the security of new tenants during the transition period. No more changing the locks or emergency calls to a locksmith; you can simply change an access code to control who has access and who doesn’t.
If your rental home is situated in a place where there is a large number of renters working or going to school, it might be wise to upgrade. Smart devices usually hold more interest for people in these areas, and you can increase your rent just enough to make up for the upfront costs.
Like many other things, there are cons that go with the pros. The benefits of smart devices for property owners and tenants cannot be denied but some potential drawbacks also exist. Perhaps the biggest downside that property owners encounter when thinking about a smart device upgrade is the cost. Most of the smart home technology devices aren’t unreasonably expensive, but the additional cost of buying the equipment for your rental home is enough to make it necessary for you to really study your options. Many devices work as a coordinated system, meaning you might not be able to do the job one upgrade at a time. On top of that, not all areas will be able to handle the rent increase needed to gain back your costs, so knowing your specific market for each rental home is important.
A second concern is the speed and reliability of the Wi-Fi in your area, and administrative access, which they will need to oversee. Many smart devices rely on wireless internet to function, and so if the signal is weak or drops, it may seriously interfere with the functioning of any smart device. There are areas where connectivity is an issue because of things like geography or distance. For homes in these areas, smart devices may not work as advertised and end up being pretty useless.
While a group of renters would want to have smart home technologies, other groups may dislike it because of security concerns. Many are suspicious of automation; we’ve all heard about people’s privacy being compromised because someone hacked their way into their digital devices. While these incidents are notably rare, there are potential renters who are unable to overcome their concern that they would prefer to look elsewhere.
Ultimately, the Adams Morgan property owner must determine whether upgrading their rental homes to include smart devices is worth the cost. These types of decisions need to involve good market data and detailed knowledge of a rental home’s area, both of which we at Real Property Management DC Metro can provide. With our experience and data tools, we can help you study the information to figure out which, if any, smart devices would be a smart buy for your rental homes. Please contact us online or call us at 202-269-0303 if you still have questions or want to learn more about Real Property Management DC Metro.
When looking to attract high-quality renters and improve security, one thing you shouldn’t overlook is the exterior lighting of your Georgetown rental home. From basic safety to curb appeal, there are many reasons you should add exterior lighting to your rental home. If none of your rental properties have exterior lighting systems installed yet, below are some of the advantages you can get from adding one.
The first benefit of exterior lighting is, well, light. Tenants need sufficient exterior lighting to appreciate the home and feel comfortable. They want to be able to enjoy their outdoor spaces even after dark. They may want to sit alone outside at night or have company over– some friends or family. This can’t be done without proper exterior lighting, which makes it a really big draw.
Everyone will also benefit from the improved safety and security exterior lighting offers. Doors, walkways, driveways, and pools are all areas that must be lit well to prevent tenant injuries on your properties. Slips and falls are a major cause of tenant lawsuits and proper lighting can be extremely helping in avoiding these incidents.
Property values and curb appeal also gets a huge boost. A carefully designed exterior lighting system can enhance certain aspects of your property, create visual appeal, and showcase landscaping or architectural features. Not only does the property value of a well-lit house increase but it would make it more attractive to renters as well, helping you get quality renters and retain them.
Finally, exterior lighting offers a significant value when it comes to home security. Criminals or vandals choose easy targets and a house with a properly lit exterior is a sign that it may not be an easy target, so they usually move on. There are some areas that would benefit from a “light-fueled mischief deterrent” but don’t need it switched on for the whole night; for these areas, you can install motion detecting lights. This added security also affects the tenants, making them want to stay longer.
For these reasons alone, you should consider exterior lighting as an important investment for your rental property in Georgetown. By placing exterior light fixtures in a few strategic locations, you can craft a safe and attractive rental property that will benefit you for many years. If you want to know more about Real Property Management DC Metro or have questions regarding how our property management services can help you, don’t hesitate to contact us online or call us at 202-269-0303.
On the issue of property maintenance, major appliances must be part of your property management plan. Quality appliances in your Southwest Waterfront rental properties appeal to renters while also presenting as a notable future expense. When appliances are not properly maintained, they may fail faster and require replacement more frequently.
There are some helpful hints landlords and tenants can take to stretch the life of the appliances in your rental homes. By exercising some simple precautions, you can guarantee that each appliance lives up to its full potential. To keep an appliance running, the first thing you should do is read the appliance’s manual; it may sound obviously simple but the truth is that it is often neglected. A good landlord will provide a copy of all appliance manuals and encourage their tenants to read them.
Basic maintenance does a lot to improve the longevity of individual appliances. For instance, refrigerators need their gaskets and coils cleaned on a regular basis. The gaskets are the plastic strip that forms the seal around the refrigerator door. Wipe down the gaskets a few times a year to prevent gapping. It’s also very easy to clean the coils; simply take off the cover and vacuum or use a soft bristle brush. If the refrigerator you have comes with filters, you can ensure that the filters get replaced properly and regularly for your renters by setting up a schedule for it.
Dishwashers also need to be taken care of every so often and cleaning the gasket with soap and water is really easy; doing so goes a long way to keep the appliance stay watertight. Check the filter regularly and remove any debris. You should also make sure your dishwasher is level with the floor. An unbalanced dishwasher can cause vibrations that will eventually damage both the machine and the dishes. On top of maintaining the mechanical aspects, you can also lengthen your dishwasher’s lifespan by running a hot water cycle with vinegar or a dishwasher cleaner every few months.
For washers and dryers, proper use does a lot to keep them running smoothly. Overloading the machines is one of the usual mistakes people make and this causes machine failure and sub-standard performance. Loads that exceed its capacity puts too much stress on the motor, belts, and transmission, leading to rapid wear and tear. Urge your tenants to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations about load size. On top of that, dryer vents should be inspected and cleaned routinely to avoid buildup. When the external vent builds up lint and debris, it can lead to motor or thermostat failure, and even be a serious fire hazard. We recommend double checking the vents each time you replace the filters.
Although these maintenance tasks are really easy and simple to do, they still require both time and effort. Asking renters for their help is an essential first step, but making sure that they actually perform the tasks can be tough. Why not spare yourself from the costs and wasted time, and turn to the experts at Real Property Management DC Metro? One of the things we offer is regular property evaluations and maintenance services; this includes large appliance care. By extending the lifespan of all the major appliances you end up saving a lot of money. Don’t hesitate to contact us online or give us a ring at 202-269-0303 to know more.
New Year’s Eve is a huge holiday in the United States where people gather and have fun. People from all over the country gather with family and friends in their homes, go to private parties, or join large public celebrations. They enjoy these festivities as a way to welcome the new year and say goodbye to the old. Your Columbia Heights tenants, too, will possibly celebrate New Year’s Eve with a fun social event. For this reason, on the topic of your renters throwing parties, it’s necessary to know what you can do to keep your rental home safe and make sure the parties don’t become excessive. You can take a proactive approach: from the language in your lease documents to proper enforcement of its terms.
Keeping your tenants’ New Year’s Eve celebrations from turning into rowdy events that increase the risk of damage and liability can be tough. As a case in point, if there is a party on your property, how many people are allowed to attend and how many would be considered too many? What about alcohol consumption– would it be a good idea to restrict it, and can you even legally do that to your tenants? What if your tenants what to celebrate by setting off fireworks or noisemakers at midnight?
These issues (and more) can all attended to in your lease documents. The wording in your lease should explicitly limit the number of heads that are allowed on the property at any moment; if there is a need to have more people above the limit, special permission must be sought. The specific number can vary, but “no more than 10 for fewer than four hours” is a popular option.
While you can’t legally ban the drinking of alcoholic beverages by your renters, you can add specific language in your lease that addresses illegal activities, and put down in writing the specific consequences of approving such act on your rental property in Columbia Heights. You may also consider prohibiting large crowds, excessively loud noise, or a huge number of cars. Fireworks should not be allowed at all of your rental homes, and you might have to place a specific statement for holiday-related activities (such as loud music or noisemakers) that would produce a public nuisance for the whole neighborhood.
Another option is to see to it that your tenants purchase their own renter’s insurance that includes renters legal liability. Because, in the case that they do throw a large party on the property, the likelihood of damage and injury increases considerably. If there actually is damage or injury, you could be held liable unless your tenants have their own insurance coverage.
Finally, protecting your rental homes requires that you are diligent in enforcing the terms of the lease agreement. If a party gets disorderly and loud, destructive, or illegal activity is taking place, it’s imperative that you act right away and be firm in holding your renters accountable.
The good news is that you don’t have to tackle all these things all on your own. At Real Property Management DC Metro, we will ensure that your lease documents include specific and binding language while monitoring activity, watching for those things that may not comply. Please contact us online or call us at 202-269-0303 to learn more about how we can serve you.
Natural disasters can occur anytime and anywhere. Whether a tornado, flood, earthquake, or fire, natural disasters cause extensive property damage and displace thousands of people every year. When a rental property is damaged by a natural disaster, landlords need to address more than just the damage to the rental home. They have specific responsibilities to their renters. The essence of these responsibilities depends on whether your Adams Morgan property is still habitable or not.
As an owner, you acknowledge that all rental homes must be suited for human habitation. The location of the property should not be taken into account; but all rentals must provide a tenant with water, heat, electricity, and a sanitary and structurally safe building. While the exact regulations may change from location to location, some regulations state, that if these standards aren’t reached, a tenant is under no obligation to pay rent and may even cancel the lease. They may also be entitled to have their security deposit returned to them immediately and in full.
Therefore, when a rental home is struck by a natural disaster in Adams Morgan, the degree of damage must be assessed as soon as possible. In the event any questions may arise, the damage should be thoroughly documented. If the damage is minimal and the tenant will be displaced for a couple of days or weeks, your job as an owner is to repair the destruction immediately. Your tenant may still be compelled to fulfill the terms of the lease, as well as pay to mend or substitute or restore any harm to their personal property.
However, if the damage is extensive, or the repairs will take several months or more, it is the responsibility of the owner to determine how to handle the lease. If the home proves to be uninhabitable, you may need to release your renter from the lease and return the security deposit in full. A tenants’ security deposit cannot be used to pay for damages caused by a natural disaster. Likewise, if the natural disaster strikes close to the beginning of the month or immediately after a month’s rent has been paid, the landlord may have a responsibility to return that month’s rent to the renter.
Knowing what actions to take after a natural disaster and what to do concerning the lease, rental payments, and security deposits is something the experts at Real Property Management DC Metro have many years of experience with. With our group on your side, you can be untroubled and assured in the knowledge that even when disaster hits, your Adams Morgan rental buildings are in excellent hands. For more information, contact us online or call us at 202-269-0303.
Adorning the house for the Christmas holiday is a time-honored tradition for renters and homeowners alike. Many tenants want to adorn their eaves and windows with strings of lights, adding a cheerful twinkle to long winter nights. But attaching Christmas lights on a house is not practically as relaxed – or as free from danger – as putting up other holiday decorations. You can also never be sure what the conclusion will be, as everyone has contrasting notions of what creates a tasteful holiday display. For many reasons, Capitol Hill property owners and landlords should evaluate twice before permitting their renters to hang Christmas lights by themselves.
Consider the Risks
As per the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, there are over 1,000 serious injuries triggered by hanging Christmas decorations each year. Falls, electrical shocks, cuts, and abrasions, grim enough to refer people to the emergency room are just a few of the likely risks of hanging lights.
Another liability risk consists of adornments that breach the guidelines of Common Interest Communities (commonly known as Homeowner Associations) and other local governances. A CIC, for example, may have strict procedures about how many and what sort of Christmas decorations are allowed, as well as when and how long they may be presented. If your tenant violates CIC regulations, you may find yourself on the hook for fines, disciplinary action, or other unwanted consequences.
Getting your property in compliance may reveal that you should consider banning renters from hanging their own Christmas lights. While no one wants to be a holiday grinch, the liability that comes with tenants doing his or her own Christmas decorating is not to some degree property owners can afford to leave to chance. Thus the noteworthiness of talking through and projecting good reasoning holiday decorating guidelines with your tenants.
No matter the season, it’s necessary to supervise your properties scrupulously, an assistance that is an essential part of the Real Property Management DC Metro concept to property management. Our expert property managers comprehend the significance of carrying out regular property evaluations and getting your tenants safe and in accordance with their lease. To hear more, please contact us online or call us at 202-269-0303 today.
As a rental property owner in Brookland, getting the right property management company could mean the difference between real estate investing success and a life filled with hard work, stress, and frustration. Property management is a 24/7 job, and the more rental homes you have, the more time and effort you have to spend to successfully manage each one. It makes sense to get a property manager to aid you with the workload and keep your rental homes occupied and profitable. Still, the wrong property manager can actually make things worse by making costly mistakes.
Other property management companies fail to spend the time needed to evaluate the rental market and set the best monthly rate, having you guess or figure it out by yourself instead. The wrong monthly rate is a massive problem for two reasons: if the rent’s too high, you might experience difficulties renting your property, but if it’s too low, you would be losing rental income every month or even run the risk of potential residents believing there are issues with the property.
When the property managers at Real Property Management DC Metro initially sign on with an owner, they immediately begin a detailed property evaluation to ensure the rental home is prepared to attract high-quality renters. The condition of the home is evaluated, along with the current rental market, to certify that your rental homes are competitively priced.
Another costly mistake other property management companies often make is in the manner with which they attract and screen potential tenants. Some property managers don’t go past putting a sign in the yard and simply running the applicant’s credit history, neither of which is sufficient for finding quality tenants.
Each rental applicant Real Property Management DC Metro considers is meticulously screened with full background checks that include credit, criminal, past rental, and income history. We want to fill vacancies with quality tenants who are going to care for your rental property during their stay and adhere to the terms of your lease.
Once new renters have signed a lease, other companies will often ignore every request for maintenance and repair, forcing their tenants to live with problems that start small but may turn into expensive repairs later on. These companies typically have a high turnover for this reason, since frustrated renters rarely remain in a home when their property manager ignores or refuses reasonable requests.
We take a proactive management approach to all repairs and maintenance at Real Property Management DC Metro. We give all our owners a password-protected account through which they can view maintenance and repair information regarding their properties at any time. Monthly financial statements and clear, up-front fees give you control over your investment.
When a renter signs a lease with Real Property Management DC Metro, they sign their name to specific, legally binding documents designed to list the terms and define the consequences of breaching those terms. They know from the first day that their property manager will be checking the property on a regular basis, which also helps them stay vigilant.
Unlike these other business models, Real Property Management DC Metro is known for delivering quality, inclusive service – and for good reason. For over thirty years, we prioritize providing a unique approach to property management that puts the best practices and top tools of the industry at your fingertips.
As a Brookland rental property owner, a property manager who will work to protect your investment while not affecting your life is necessary. By deciding on Real Property Management DC Metro, you are choosing real peace of mind. Do you want more information? Please contact us online or call us at 202-269-0303 today.