Ruskin

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It’s Not You, It’s Not Your Home, It’s Your Real Estate Agent

pile of cash

See this pile of cash? It doesn’t belong to you and you know why? Your realtor is being unrealistic and greedy about your property.

We have a client who is interested in a townhome in a particular area. We have one in this neighborhood and know without a doubt the competition is over-priced. Rentals sit 6-months, 8-months, 1-year or longer vacant. Why? Your rental is over-priced. Period.

I called a realtor to ask about a rental that has been listed and vacant for 6 months to see if the owner was flexible in the price. I told her that I had a great client interested in the home, but wanted to pay a more reasonable rent for the unit. With disgust, I was told that the building covered all utilities which was included in the rent. I told her I knew that was not true because we have the exact same property in the neighborhood. Well not the same. Our is updated and upgraded. She then back-peddled and said well the owner wants to rent it furnished only. On the MLS listing, it states “furnished, but will consider unfurnished.” So the ad was misleading or the realtor was a liar.

I asked again about the price. I stated about the home being listed for 6 months and sitting vacant. Is the owner flexible? Again, I was given the run-around. Never once did she say she would present an offer to the owner.

Can this realtor read minds? I can’t. As property managers, we present all offers to owners. Ultimately the decision lies with you, the owner. You should decide whether to reject or accept an offer. Not a realtor.

I believe putting the owner in the driver-seat is what gives us so many happy clients and great reviews.

I never asked what the commission would be on the property. I never wanted a commission. I wanted to find a home that met my client’s needs.

Did this realtor ever stop and think, “my client has been losing thousands of dollars because his home is sitting vacant?” No. She heard reduced price, saw her commission drop and never consulted the owner. Would the owner accept a lower offer? We will never know because he will never be asked.

My client never saw the property or put an offer in. Why? A realtor discouraged an amazing tenant from a property that needed a renter.

So, this pile of cash continues to sit untouched.

For honest, reliable property management in Pasco, Hillsborough, Manatee and Sarasota counties, Florida, We Manage Your Investment.

Hidden Fees
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Tenant Beware: Hidden Fees and Costs

Hidden FeesIn recent years, the rental market has been booming. Data from the most up to date U.S. census shows that, over a 10 year period, the number of renters has grown at its fastest rate since 1965. An increase of around 8.5 million renters in the last decade has seen the competition increase and the pressure grow on both renters and landlords. Tenants face fierce competition to find a suitable and reasonably priced home, while landlords try to get the right rental price for their property in an ever increasingly competitive rental market.

Every landlord is running a business, and like every business they try to maximize profits. Sometimes a property’s monthly rental cost seems reasonable, but the utilities and other hidden fees can add up to a sizable extra cost for the tenant. Listed below are some of the hidden costs and add-ons you should look out for before signing a tenancy agreement.

Utilities

Utility bills are often overlooked by new tenants that are excited to move into a property. To understand the overall rental cost of a property, tenants should take the cost of all the utility bills into consideration. State laws differ when it comes to how tenants are billed for utilities, and what happens in the event of missed payments and utility shutoffs.

Utilities can be part of a total, all-inclusive, rental cost and be billed to the landlord. Other rental properties may require the tenant to have the utility bills in their name. In apartments and flats, master meters are often used by landlords to serve the entire apartment block or building and the tenants are billed individually. This is known as third-party billing and is popular with landlords, as they can advertise a base rental cost, but then charge for the utilities as an extra add-on cost.

Third-part billing regulations

Some cities view third-party billing as deceptive, and introduced legislation to oversee third-party billing. Seattle introduced third-party billing ordinance to cover all residential buildings that contain over three units, in an attempt to combat deceptive landlords from fraudulently overcharging tenants for utilities.

In 1977, the non-profit Tenants Union of Washington State was formed to offer help, information and advice to tenants, in regards to tenancy issues, third-party billing and other issues connected to utility costs.

The advice the organisation offers is not restricted to Washington State. It is advisable that all tenants, regardless of location, follow their advice in regards to utility bills.

– Make sure to ask questions and have a clear understanding of utility services before signing a tenancy agreement

– Act quickly to set up utility accounts

– Always pay utility bills on time and retain all payment documentation

– Take precautions to protect yourself with the landlord

– Try to resolve any utility disputes quickly

Other hidden fees and charges

Some landlords may charge additional fees, other than utilities. Sometimes these fees are optional services and other times they are required by all tenants, depending on the tenant’s specific agreement and situation. These fees can even be related to supply and demand, depending on the competitiveness of the rental market.

Landlords can charge separate fees for parking, and additional costs for any pets at the residence. Landlords may also charge an application fee that must be paid regardless whether a tenant is approved or not.

Condos and apartments that are subject to homeowner’s associations (HOAs), can charge for tenant- occupied units and separate moving in fees. Amenities that are not considered utilities, such as internet access and cable TV, under most state ordinances, may be billed to the tenant as an additional fee from the landlord or HOA.

These additional fees are on top of the security deposit and advanced payment of rent that is required by most landlords, usually the first and last month of rent that is to be paid before a tenant can move into the property.

Need advice?

There are many non-profit advocacy organizations around the country that are able to offer help and advice to tenants. Most states also provide information for landlords and tenants on their official websites. If you are still confused, or cannot find the information you require, it may be worth consulting with an expert that knows the state law and can offer advice and services to help resolve tenancy issues and problems quickly and at an affordable cost.

Home Inspector
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Hidden Issues your Home Inspector Must Find

Home InspectorEnvision you invest weekend after weekend searching for that immaculate home. At long last, you locate the one, the house that fits every one of your needs! Presently, it’s an ideal opportunity to compose an offer, get it acknowledged and call it home, isn’t that so? One moment! Your fantasy home can transform into a cash pit if the vender conceals it or does not reveal things appropriately on the revelation structure. On the off chance that you don’t recognize what the real issues are that venders attempt to conceal, then you might be in for a major astonishment. It is greatly improved to know these things in advance to highlight the issues with your assessor so he can be more mindful at review time. After you are doing scanning for your fantasy home in Tampa and some of our beautiful neighborhoods.

Bothers

Regions of Tampa can have a tremendous rodent issue and this is unquestionably a major issue merchants attempt to stow away. Homes can be a million-dollar homes or only a consummately clean wonderful normal home and it could in any case have rats. You can’t pass judgment on a book by its spread with regards to bothers. Merchants may manage rats by putting out lure and mouse traps, once the house is recorded, they typically expel them so the purchaser or the auditor won’t see the issue. There are approaches to manage the rats however it can be costly and an aggregate disturbance. Asking the vender particular inquiries over email about the historical backdrop of the home, with the goal that you have a record of their answers, will for the most part get reality when dealers attempt to shroud this. Along these lines you will know how to manage the issue, what you can expect later on and/or what to request on the examination reaction.

Mold

Home purchasers go nuts when they see mold, dealers know this and they attempt to cover it up. Where we for the most part see mold is around windows, storage rooms, lavatory, storm cellars and upper rooms. A simple approach to manage the mold is blanch and paint. When it is painted you will never know it’s there yet give it a couple of years and it can return. This is a colossal wellbeing hazard for a few people and can be an exceptionally costly to expel. Mold is an issue that can be settled and relying upon where it is at and why it develops, will decide the cost variable. By asking the vender mold questions, it will help you decide the most ideal approach to handle it. Additionally by talking with the monitor, check whether it’s conceivable to figure out whether the mold issue is something to be worried about or not.

Spills

Rooftops, flawed fixtures, storm cellars and pipes are all issue ranges for water, which we get a great deal of in Tampa. A few dealers attempt to conceal this by doing the speediest and most effortless fix to settle the issue. By and large, it’s a concealment and not a genuine arrangement. Continuously ask the dealer, in composing, in the event that they needed to alter any water issues inside the most recent five years. This will weed out any brief fixes the merchant may have done and help the examiner focus in on issue ranges. The greatest issue, when talking about breaks, and the most costly are broken storm cellars. Getting the genuine response to this is very imperative. To tackle a cellar water break can be as basic as rerouting downspouts yet it could be as costly as detaching the border and putting in a French channel. You need to void this since it’s not a shoddy fix. Try to likewise read What Type of Home Buying Inspection you require subsequent to discovering everything dealers attempt to stow away.

Establishments

By and large, venders don’t conceal establishment issues however they don’t reveal them either. Now and again, we will see an establishment with an entirely extreme break in it yet for the most part we simply find homes that are not level. Make sure to stroll around the house and know whether it inclines. The most ideal path is with a marble. Numerous more seasoned homes have inclining issues and with the serious ones, it for the most part costs a critical add up to revise. It would all be able to be remedied yet at what expense would you say you will put into a home to right it?

Property revelation articulation

This revelation articulation is a six page report in the condition of Washington, which dealers are required to round out to advise the purchaser of any imperfections to the home. A simple route for venders to not uncover data is to reply “don’t have the foggiest idea” on things. The property exposure can give you understanding in the matter of how candid and honest the merchant is by perceiving how least the answers are. When it is rounded out with a great deal of ‘don’t knows’, we know the vender is a uninvolved merchant or it could be a dealer who knows there are issues yet wouldn’t like to reveal them. Remember that most merchants don’t round out the property exposure articulation well. They should be helped to remember things in the house so give them a little effortlessness however it is their duty to give an exact photo of the home they are offering.

It is to your greatest advantage to try not to take a rearward sitting arrangement approach when purchasing a home. You need to focus and pose the vital inquiries with the goal that you don’t get caught into purchasing an issue home. On the off chance that you have a decent operator close by, they will be of huge assist but at the same time it’s dependent upon you to be steady in getting your inquiries addressed and accept each open door to know as much about the house as you can. The best individual to answer those inquiries is the vender, the individual that knows it best so get the data while you can before making this expansive venture.