Have you been renting and you are thinking about taking the big leap on purchasing your first home? Most people start thinking about the basics of owning a home like being able to make modifications without getting permission from someone. When you are in the hype of the moment you do not think about little thing you will be responsible for, like fixing a broken AC or a leaking fridge. For many people, buying a home is still the marker of adulthood; it has been part of the American dream for a long time. It’s important to know your own personal financial situation and your own goals before making the leap from renting to owning a home. Buying a home in the Las Vegas area typically requires some money down and paying for closing cost, there is ways around this, but you will end up getting a high interest rate and no one wants that right? With the market right now it is hard to keep your eye on a home you love, while trying to save for it. Houses are going on and off the market in less than 72 hours; so lenders are recommending people save money for a down payment before they even start looking because how fast properties are turning. Once you have gotten all your up-front costs out of the way, you will need to start thinking about your budget on how much you can realistically afford; most people just think about the mortgage they have to pay, but do not think about home owners insurance, property taxes, and other little expensive that come with owning your own home. Speaking of that home-loan term, one factor in deciding whether or not to buy a home is how sure you are that you want to stay in one place. Is your job secure? Do you like the town or city? Can you see yourself staying for the long term? You don’t necessarily have to live in the home for your entire mortgage term: You could rent out your home at some point or sell it. But what if you aren’t able to when you want to? Will you be OK staying where you are? It’s a good idea to at least think about how long you need to stay in that home to recoup those upfront costs you made. When you are purchasing a home, it is smart to also think about yourself; is this house going to push you further from your other goals like buying that boat you’ve always wanted, or stop you from putting extra money in your 401(k) for later in life; will buying this house use up all you emergency savings fund leaving you with nothing and having to start over? These are the types of questions you should be asking yourself when you are looking into buying your first home. If you are sure one hundred percent that you are ready to buy your first home, do it. Nothing feels better than having something of your own that no one can take from you, or can claim for themselves.
If you just bought your first home, or have been a home owner for a short period time you will notice that you run into some unexpected expenses; things that could easily be prepared for but no one told you about. When you are just a renter in a home you are note used to paying yearly taxes on your home, but becoming a home owner that is something that will come up so being prepared for them will really keep you on track with budgeting your bills. If you have a mortgage, your lender will more than likely let you know an estimated amount of how much your taxes for you home will be each year. Your taxes typically stay the same but if for any reason your home value goes up a lot, your property taxes will also increase. Be prepared for your utilities to change as well, in some rentals you might be paying only a certain amount of utilities but when you own a home, every bill will have to be in your name. In some cases, you may have the option of shopping around for the most affordable service. A large area might have multiple internet providers or trash services. Get estimates for these bills when planning your home buying budget so you’re prepared for the future costs of maintaining a comfortable home. When you own a home you will be responsible to maintain every aspect of it, that includes roof repairs, HVAC repairs, and any upgrades to your home, including a garden in the backyard if you like those kind of DIY projects. You may be able to do some of these tasks yourself or you might prefer to hire a professional. From power washing the siding to regularly treating the deck, you’ll need to budget for the supplies to handle it as a DIY job or the service fees to call in a pro. If you live in a neighborhood with an HOA do not forget about those fees on top of your mortgage; most Home Owner Associations range anywhere from 50$ a month to $500 a month. Looking into how much the HOA dues are in the community before you purchase your home can make a huge difference on home much you can afford in your monthly mortgage. When you become a home owner you will need to purchase Home Owners Insurance; this is a very good thing because if your home ever floods or catches on fire your insurance will come in handy. Seems like a pain at first but having this really saves your back in the long run; and yes I look at it like “would if my home never floods, that is wasted money every week” and my lender replied “but would if it does and you do not have insurance, you will have to come out of pocket for the repair costs” if you think of it that way you will run out and get insurance. Purchasing a Home Warranty on your property can also save you a lot of money; if you have one and your air conditioning unit goes out in the middle of summer, you can call them and pay a service fee which is typically under $100 and they will fix your unit and if it is unfixable they will replace it. A new HVAC unit cost anywhere up-to 5,000; when you are in the moment and purchasing your first home think about these unexpected expensive you will run into, and have them budgeted into your debt to income ratio so you can plan for your future budgeting.
Have you ever sat down and actually thought about what your tenants want from your Las Vegas Property Management Company? Most people are thinking, how do you even bring that conversation up? You simply have to ask. It might be a little awkward at first, but I promise you will not regret it. Most tenants think their voices will not be heard, so they just don’t end up saying anything at all. Getting to know your tenants on a more personal level is one of the best ways to know what they actually want from your Real Estate Company! Not only can you talk to them in email, phone or in person, you could also do quarterly surveys for your tenants, so they feel more anonymous about letting you know how they actually feel. Most Property Managers think “why is resident retention so important?” Is it big parts of running a smooth business because the better tenants you have in your properties, the more leases you will get renewed, and the more consistent money your company benefits from! Not only will your company benefit from that, you owners will be very happy also! Your main focus in property management should be your owners, because the more you make your owners happy the more business you will receive. We all want a successful business with property management and being on a more personal level with all of your owners will make them want to stay, and will also make them want to bring you more business with referrals. Losing owners will reduce the amount of homes you manage and the amount overall income you are bringing into your business. The best way to keep your properties filled with tenants is to make sure all of your residents are happy. Keeping them happy will keep them in house which will also keep both your owner and yourself happy! Now I am not saying do things that are unrealistic, or things you would not do for all the other tenants you are managing. Everything you are doing must be fair and legal, or you as a property manager could get into a lot of trouble. To avoid any risks, you as a property manager should be documenting everything and making sure that all tenants are receiving the same benefits. Even though as the Property Management Company you will not be able to approve all requests, and will have to speak to the owner, making sure both of your tenants and owners are happy with your company, is what is going to keep your business and could potentially bring more business to you or the company you are working for in the Las Vegas area. So as a property manager, or management company, Lets’ get out there and interact with both our owners and tenants on a more personal level and make sure they are having all their needs met. With that being said, I have attached an article that goes into more detail about this topic, so let’s read, learn, and interact together!
Thanks to summers long days and fair weather, home improvement projects are in full swing this year; hammers are banging, power tools are screaming and wood is being chopped. All over the Las Vegas area people spend their off days working on improving their home; and boy is that something we should all take advantage of. Home projects not only make your home look nicer/better it also give your family a chance to spend some quality time together; even having the children (not too young) learn how to build things will help them gain a sense of accomplishment. Even though it is a million degrees in Las Vegas area during summer- the best time for home improvements is now; especially outdoor ones. I am going to give you a couple easy-ish home improvements you can do that will get you off that couch and get you outside. Start somewhere simple, if you have not done a lot of your own renovating I do not recommend you go knocking walls done without a professional; start at square one and build a garden with your family. Kids who are old enough to dig a little would love not only plant their own veggies/flowers but also they will want to watch them grow too. Every day remind them they have to go outside and water them and give them plant food if necessary. If you already have a garden, make your outdoor areas more useful. If you haven’t already handled improvements to your existing patio, deck or pool, do these as soon as possible so you can enjoy them throughout the summer. At the very least, pay attention to how your family uses your outdoor areas this summer so you can make improvements by next summer. Little things like adding chairs and an outside table on your patio could make it so your family wants to hang outside and watch the kids play instead of watching from a window. Get out there and clean your garage; and yes I know this does not sound like the most summer fun thing you can do, but once you have started you will not want to stop. It is so easy to junk up a garage and as you are cleaning you would be surprised the amount of thing you have found that you forgot you even had; not only that but when you are done, you will feel so much better every time you see your garage you will want to keep it clean. If you have a front yard or back yard, lay a sod lawn down; having grass in your back yard is an essential for little kids in my opinion; sitting on the patio watching the kids do cart-wheels and summer salts will make you thankful you have it. Also, you can put a slip-n-slide on grass and who doesn’t love to play on a slip-in-slide right? If you have the room, install an above ground pool. With the heat in Las Vegas, having your kids play in pool all day will not only keep them occupied but will also give you a chance to get out in the sun, get a tan and spend some time with your kids. There are many more ways you can improve your Las Vegas home, and make it what I call “Vegas-Friendly.” Now get out there, get a tan, and spend some time with your kids. Happy Reading.