Goals for Commercial Property Managers

The role of a commercial property manager is a bit different than that of a sales or leasing specialist. On that basis the goals to be achieved should be different. Work quality is really important in a commercial or retail real estate brokerage. Everyone must perform as part of the total team. When it comes…

The role of a commercial property manager is a bit different than that of a sales or leasing specialist. On that basis the goals to be achieved should be different. Work quality is really important in a commercial or retail real estate brokerage. Everyone must perform as part of the total team.

When it comes to goals, you would expect that a sales or leasing specialist would focus on a mixture of the following:

  • Listings
  • Commissions
  • Time on market
  • Market share

You can track all of these on a monthly basis and then see where things are changing.

So what would you track and monitor from a property manager perspective? Try some of these:

  • Arrears as a percentage of portfolio income
  • Vacancy factors in the portfolio
  • Time to respond to a tenant contact call
  • Time to respond to a maintenance event
  • Time to complete a maintenance repair
  • Reports to clients being sent out on time
  • Time to respond to requests or calls from clients

These points are all very good key performance indicators. The fact here is that these numbers start to 'blow out' when a property manager is underperforming or heavily loaded with work. That's when you see the errors occurring.

It is a sad fact that the 'management division' in many brokers are the 'forgotten cousins' of the business. When things are going well, everyone leaves them alone. When things start falling apart in the division, the whole brokerage struggles.

For a commercial brokerage to thrive, it needs a very good management division that is operating at 'peak performance' all of the time; that includes the managers and their work results. It directly follows that sales and leasing opportunities for the brokerage will occur over time from a top commercial or retail service.

Tracking the actions and results of managers in their respective ports will help in client service, property portfolio growth, and the contribution of supporting management fees. The tracking process will also help expropriate underperforming or poor quality property managers. Training or replacement of the manager can then occur.

So how can you do something with this? Take these factors listed above, and make them central to the reporting process in the weekly team meetings. In this way you can compare the numbers coming from each property manager or portfolio. Any threats to the business and the portfolio can then be seen and responded to.

Whilst this may seem like a 'witch-hunt', the reality is that you must keep the property management division of a commercial real estate brokerage functioning efficiently and accurately.

Condominium and HOA Insurance Basics

No one likes to deal with insurance or insurance companies, this is just a natural fact, however a necessity of life. Insurance policies can be rather confusing and most people feel like they need a lawyer to translate all the legalese that is contained within a policy. Outlined below is Insurance 101 when it pertains…

No one likes to deal with insurance or insurance companies, this is just a natural fact, however a necessity of life. Insurance policies can be rather confusing and most people feel like they need a lawyer to translate all the legalese that is contained within a policy. Outlined below is Insurance 101 when it pertains to Condominium and Home Owners Association (HOA) insurance policies.

Condominium Policy – HO-6

Even though your HOA owns an insurance policy for the common areas of the property you, as a homeowner, need to obtain your own Condominium insurance which is called an HO-6 policy. A condominium insurance policy protects your condo against water damage, covers damage to your personal property, theft, burglary and liability in the event someone inside of your condo slips and falls injuring themselves.

As a condominium owner you are responsible for your own walls walls and possibly fixtures (this is if you upgrade the original fixtures inside of your condo). You are also responsible for your own personal property and any liability to others while inside your condominium unit. Most condominium policies cover damage due to: fire or lightning, windstorm, hail, smoke, VMM (vandalism and malicious mischief) theft and accidental discharge of water such as an overflowing toilet.

When looking into condominium insurance choose a policy that is an ACV (Actual Cash Value) policy. ACV means if any of your personal belongings are destroyed or stolen you will get the actual replacement cost of such items less any applicable depreciation and deductible that may apply.

If you have valuable jewelry or expensive art work, you will need to have these approved and have an endorsement added to your condominium policy as the basic policy only covers up to a certain dollar amount of jewelry and artwork. The same goes for firearms, if your firearms are worth over $ 2,500.00 you will need an extra endorsement to achieve full coverage. Cash is not covered under any type of insurance policy.

HOA Insurance

You are probably wondering why you need condominium insurance if there is a Home Owners Association policy. Your HOA carries what is known as a 'master policy'. This policy covers common property that is shared by all of the condominium owners in your association. This policy includes insurance coverage of roofs, common walls, lobbies, stairway, elevators, sidewalks and basements. You will need to obtain a copy of the HOA Master Policy to make sure when you purchase your condominium policy you are fully protected against any and all losses that may occur. It is important to compare the HOA Master Policy coverage with your Condominium Policy and fully understand what is and what is not covered.

The HOA policy generally covers anything that is inside of your walls, such as plumbing and electrical wiring as well as original fixtures within your condominium unit. If something goes wrong with an original fixture which causes water damage or fire to your property, your HOA Master Policy will provide you with coverage. However, if you decide to upgrade your lighting fixtures and plumbing fixtures yourself and you have a water loss your personal condominium policy will cover the loss instead of the HOA Master Policy.

Different HOA Insurance Master Policies

Each state and each Home Owners Association has different rules and regulations when it comes to their insurance policies. If you are unsure of the policy language have a real estate attorney go over the policy with you and explain what is and what is not covered. As a condominium owner you have the duty to protect yourself, your personal belongings and to make sure the inside of your condo is safe from harming others. The HOA has a duty to protect its residents with regard to all of the common areas of the association. The best 'policy' to have is to ask questions if you do not understand the policy language. Talk to your association manager about the specifics of your HOA or condo insurance policies.

Does Your Sectional Title Scheme Have a Managing Agent?

Managing a sectional scheme requires a very comprehensive knowledge of the Sectional Act and rules, and access to secretarial and accounting facilities. Although some body corporates (BC's) would rather manage their own scheme without any assistance, this is the case as most schemes possess the knowledge nor the facilities to manage themselves. Majority of BC's…

Managing a sectional scheme requires a very comprehensive knowledge of the Sectional Act and rules, and access to secretarial and accounting facilities. Although some body corporates (BC's) would rather manage their own scheme without any assistance, this is the case as most schemes possess the knowledge nor the facilities to manage themselves. Majority of BC's will appoint a registered agent to take over the day to day management of the scheme.

A managing agent is appointed in terms of the management rule 46, which states the new appointment must be in writing for a period of one year, with automatic renewal on the anniversary of appointment without either party giving notice to the other that the contract will not be renewed. If the appointment of the agent is not reduced to writing within thirty days, it is void at the opinion of either party. The trustees are entitled to appoint a managing agent and must do so if directed by a simple majority of members of the BC's at general meeting or by a registered mortgagee who holds 50% of the bonds within a scheme.

The decision as to which agent to appoint is usually made by the trustees and not the body corporate, even if the decision to appoint a managing agent may have been made by the body corporate. The body corporate can, by special resolution, terminate their appointment in which case the agent will have the right to claim for compensation from the body corporate should it be proved that the reason for termination was not justified.

Trustees who are involved in their duties usually collectively a list of managing agent who operates in the area in which the scheme is situated. These agents are invited to give a presentation at special trustees meeting, at which the trustees should ask questions to establish the agents level of knowledge, relating to the sectional title act and how to manage a scheme. It is important to ask and check the agent's references. All managing agents who handle body corporate money must be in possession of a current fidelity fund certificate issued by the Estate Agents Affairs Board. ( www.eaab.org.za ). If the agent is not able to produce this, the body corporate should check with the EAAB before appointing the agent.

Management rule 48 requires a managing agent who is aware of anything that adversely affects the scheme or sections within the scheme to bring the matter to the attention of all the owners and holders or registered mortgage bonds who have not the body corporate of their interest.

Important Things To Know Before Buying Property

Property laws vary from state to state but there are general guidelines real estate buyers would do well to know before investing in property. It is not simply a matter of having enough money to purchase real estate: you want to make sure it does not turn out to cost more in the long run.…

Property laws vary from state to state but there are general guidelines real estate buyers would do well to know before investing in property. It is not simply a matter of having enough money to purchase real estate: you want to make sure it does not turn out to cost more in the long run.

The value of property appreciates if it's structural sound, has essential amenities such as electricity, plumbing and water supply and is located in a neighborhood with easy access to hospitals, schools, colleges, transportation hubs, offices etc. Location is so important that it's often the single factor that impacts resale value.

Can you build a house on land?

You may have found a nice plot of land to build a house on. But can you? Some states have zoning restrictions on building houses and finding out what the laws are will eliminate expensive problems.

Know that buying land and building a house will cost a small fortune. Construction is not cheap especially when building for a family. The cost of materials is high and you'll have to find a trusted contractor to advise you along the way.

Visit a house / land several times a day

When house-hunting, it's wise to visit properties several times in the day. Evening and night visits mask problems with the house, noise levels of the neighborhood and intensity of traffic. Some buyers may be looking for a quiet street but will not be able to tell the difference at night.

If land is purchased, find out how close it is to amenities and whether there are any upcoming plans for commercial real estate construction. Some buyers inadvertently find themselves stuck in the middle of a commercial hub they did not expect would be built. Noise, traffic and crowds can mar the peacefulness of any location.

Do a house inspection

This is a vital part of the house-hunting process and the services of an inspector are required. Same problems like chipped or broken stairs, faulty doors and windows and peeling paint are cheaper to repair than those you can not see. Inspectors may use tools like thermal imaging and draw on their expertise to pinpoint problems with insulation, plumbing and unsound foundations. The cost of an inspection is not very cheap but it is a lot less expensive than being saddled with big repair works later on.

Check taxes

Some areas reappraise housing tax so it's important to find out what the recent taxes are on a house. If you purchase property at a good deal only to be bogged down by rising taxes every year, you'll take longer to pay the mortgage and the cost of maintenance will rise.

Check past renovations

The seller you approach may have made renovations to the house in the past. If this is the case, find out what it cost and what improvements were made. The cost will tell you if quality materials were used. Find out the date of the renovations as well to give an idea of ​​whether you'll need to make further improvements in the near future.

Do not buy for short-term stay

Buying a house cost much more than renting one, at least for short stays. Do not make the mistake of purchasing property if you do not intend to live in it for at least several years. Paying off a mortgage takes time and a year or two is not enough for most people.

What To Check When You Are Viewing A House

When you're looking to buy or rent a house, there are a few things you can not forget to check. Before you go to the viewing, do your homework: find out about the area, council tax band, local parking situation … You can easily find out about all these by yourself or asking your estate…

When you're looking to buy or rent a house, there are a few things you can not forget to check. Before you go to the viewing, do your homework: find out about the area, council tax band, local parking situation … You can easily find out about all these by yourself or asking your estate agent.

Once you get to the house for the viewing, concentrate on the important. Examine the house as if you were surveying it for problems. The following list will help you focus on some important aspects that can help you make the best decision:

1. Take someone to view it with you. Even if you are buying it for yourself, another pair of eyes will help you see things you may miss.

2. View the house in daylight. It's easier to see problems with natural light. Some estate agencies turn all the lights on for the viewing, but do not fall for this. Turn them off so that you can see how light the house really is.

3. Which way does the house face? This will tell you which rooms will be lighter at what time and you will know if you'll be able to enjoy a sunny afternoon in your garden. You can take a compass with you, or your mobile might have an in-built one!

4. Look outside the house as well as inside. Look for cracks in the structure. Have a look at the pipes and drainage. Check how old the roof is, and what state it is in. If you do spot problems, it does not necessarily mean that you should not consider buying the property, but you might want to get a professional surveyor and use this to renegotiate the price.

5. Do not rush it. It's your money we are talking about, so do not feel pressured by the agent or the owner trying to rush you through or pushing you to make a decision. And do not be afraid to ask any questions you may have. A good estate agent will be happy to help you with everything.

6. Check the electric installation. Ask when it was last rewired. Are there sufficient power points? How do they look? You may also want to check the fuse box, to get an idea of ​​how old the wiring is.

7. Check the plumbing. Make sure there is enough water pressure coming from the taps, especially in the shower! Ask how old the boiler is and when it was last serviced.

8. Look out for damp. There might not be any physical signs, as the seller might have painted over it, but keep your nose open for a musty smell. Damp could be an indication of more serious structural problems.

9. Will you have enough storage space? Having adequate storage space is very important if you plan to stay in your new home for several years, yet some new built houses are not too generous with it. Check if there will be enough room for your stuff in wardrobes, attic, etc.

10. Listed buildings and conservation areas. Check if the building is listed or in a conservation area. This could restrict any future alterations you may want to undertake.

What Metering Questions to Ask

Prepayment Metering Question You Should Ask In order to make an accurate determination of how much electricity is consumed by each customer or end user in a sub-metering environment; individual sub-metering is of critical importance. Sub-metering is the most appropriate way to measure the amount of electricity consumed by a consumer behind a bulk supply.…

Prepayment Metering Question You Should Ask

In order to make an accurate determination of how much electricity is consumed by each customer or end user in a sub-metering environment; individual sub-metering is of critical importance. Sub-metering is the most appropriate way to measure the amount of electricity consumed by a consumer behind a bulk supply. Because sub-meters will meter consumers after the municipal bulk supply it is very important that metering equipment is accredited and approved by the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS) and is installed and programmed in accordance with the set standards in order to comply with the municipal by-laws. As a bulk supply owner and service provider what types of metering equipment do you use to measure consumption of your sub-metered consumers? How are your meters set up to calculate your DSM (demand site management) and any other municipal charges? How are your tariffs set up? These are all important questions that any bulk owner and service provider should ask continuously to make sure that they comply with the law and municipal by-laws. This article discusses such questions in the prepayment environment.

What is an STS meter and what are its uses?

STS meters are some of the most common prepayment meters both in municipal and sub-metering applications. For the last two decades STS meters have been the only option when it came to prepayment metering and they are still installed worldwide. Most STS meters are recognized by the STS logo on the meter as well as the familiar token transfer technology. Any meter where you need to enter a 20 digit token is a STS meter, making the recognition thereof very easy. STS is a widely adopted prepayment standard internationally and founded in South Africa by the STS association (sts.org.za). By purchasing equipment that has STS certification, one can be assured of a long standing standard of compliance in prepayment metering technology.

How visible and accessible are your meter (s)?

Accessibility to the end users for the purposes of recharging a prepaid meter is a very important factor. The user must be able to see their consumption as well as the total kwh remaining at all times. This will avoid any inconvenience if the meter runs out of electricity because the user can not see the reading on the display.

What happens if there is something wrong with the meter?

As common with all electronic devices things can go wrong. At times there can be issues of usability and the end user may need support, while in other cases there may be technical faults that need to be fixed. A user that does not know how to do something on the meter can be very frustrating, while a meter that does not work has the potential to create losses for the bulk owner if the problem is not deal with quickly. For this reason it is very important that the bulk owner or service provider has user backup support for the metering equipment 7 days a week, as well as some sort of maintenance plan to ensure continuity of utilities supply.

Are your tariffs correct?

To ensure accuracy of prepayment collection funds the meters have to be set up correctly and in alignment with municipal bulk supply charges. This means that the prepayment system must enable the all possible tariffs such as: IBT (inclining block tariff), seasonal triffs, ToU (time of use tariffs), and any other municipal tariffs that may be adopted at any point in time. However, this in itself is not sufficient for accurate collection. The system must also be able to apportion and charge correctly any other municipal utility charges such as DSM (demand site management) and similar levies that a municipality may charge.

What happens if your municipality all of the sudden changes the bill and charges differently than your initial prepayment setup? You need to check how fast your service provider may be able to handle that, including how retroactive corrections will be applied where necessary.

Can the prepayment system provide transparency and 24/7 access?

Last but not least as a bulk owner or even manager it is very important that one has access to data at all times. Such data may include purchasing history, reporting, tamper notifications and such reports. Without such reports one can not import the data into the property accountancy system to reconcile utilities and obtain a correct view of the financials of a property.

Furthermore, the access is also highly important for end users. End users may themselves need such data for their own tracking of consumption and transparency while in commercial environments for purposes of accountancy.

The Benefits of Building a Park Cabin

If you have ever wanted to live within the cozy comfort of a nice park cabin, there are a variety of options available to you and this is really a nice way to live. A lot of people like to get away from the busy cities and live out in the wild, and if you…

If you have ever wanted to live within the cozy comfort of a nice park cabin, there are a variety of options available to you and this is really a nice way to live. A lot of people like to get away from the busy cities and live out in the wild, and if you have some property of your own that happens to be located somewhere further away from metropolitan areas, this could make an ideal spot to set up a great park cabin or a bungalow to live in. Even if it does not turn out to be your primary place of residence you will at least have a beautiful place to spend the weekend or holidays out away from the busy world. This is a dream for a lot of people and there is definitely a way to make it.

Finding a great cabin builder

You have a number of options when it comes to building a cabin, and one of them is to do it yourself. This is something that a lot of people have managed to perform successfully, but at the same time you have to realize that a lot of effort and dedication is going to need to be put into setting up a cabin on your own, mainly because there area lot of tools and materials you will be needing – along with the experience.

The second option that you have and the one that is far preferred to people is to have a park cabin builder take care of the entire job for you, which is a great way to ensure that your cabin is built exactly according to your specifications. There are definitely a lot of companies out there that would be able to do this for you, and if you have a specific idea on how you would like your dream cabin to look, all you have to do is make this clear to them. If they are a good company they will be more than willing to put some quality effort into making your cabin look gorgeous and have all of the facilities that it needs, including warm running water and showers.

Deciding on a price

It is clear that if you are going to have a bungalow or cabin built for you, it needs to look good and be exactly the way you want to be. At the same time, you may have a limited amount of money available to spend on a new cabin, so it is important to have a good look around and see if there is a way that you can get an inexpensive deal.

Wrapping things up

As you can see, there are definitely a lot of great ways to find a cabin and have it set up according to your specifications, but you will want to put some good effort into finding a company capable of designing it for you according to your exact plans, which should not be too hard to do with a bit of research.

Overview of China Property Sector

The Chinese property sector is characterized by rapid urbanization, increasing per capita income and surging investment which has asserted in construction boom and increase in home prices. Real estate is an important sector of the Chinese economy. The Chinese economy has been driven by an investment led growth model. Real estate investment as a percentage…

The Chinese property sector is characterized by rapid urbanization, increasing per capita income and surging investment which has asserted in construction boom and increase in home prices. Real estate is an important sector of the Chinese economy. The Chinese economy has been driven by an investment led growth model. Real estate investment as a percentage of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) rose to 14% in 2012 from 9% in 2006. Though there are concerns in the market about residential property demand being fueled by speculative demand, end users center a significant portion of the physical property market.

The urban population increased at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 3.5% to 712 million in 2012 from 583 million in 2006. Urbanization rate stood at 52.6% at the end of 2012, compared to 44.3% in 2006. The CAGR of investment in real estate during 2006-2012 was about 24% while that of Gross Floor Area (GFA) of properties under construction was around 20%. This is much higher than the growth witnessed in the area of ​​properties sold during the corresponding period, which stands at just about 10%. The GFA of properties completed also increased by approximately 10%.

The outstanding residential mortgages as percentage of GDP have been below 20% since 2006 (16% in 2011). This indicates two possibilities – i) demand is mostly speculative and since purchases are made by buyers in cash to invest their savings and ii) end users have sufficient income and can fund home purchase with their savings. End users accounted for about 64% of the total GFA sold in 2011, indicating the presence of final demand. Investment demand is dominant in higher end property segment such as luxury villas and apartments projects. The growth in per capita disposable income of urban households has been 13% CAGR for the period 2006-2012, and savings rate has been high since a decade. This suggests the second scenario as more likely. The low level of mortgages may make the ties between property sector and financial sector look less. However, there are strong links between the two through project / construction bank loans and trust financing availed by the developers.

China is a vast country with 23 provinces (additional 4 municipalities and 5 autonomous regions) and around 70 key cities which are regularly tracked by China's National Bureau of Statistics. Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, and Tianjin are the tier-1 cities. Nanjing, Wuhan, Shenyang, Xian, Chengdu, Chongqing, Hangzhou, Qingdao, Dalian and Ningbo are some of the strong tier-2 cities. About 60% of GFA sold in tier-1 cities in 2011 was to end users. The proportion of end-user sales was 68% in tier-2 cities while it was 62% in tier-3 cities.

China property sector accounts for a significant share of the Asian High Yield USD bond markets. The sector has been the largest issuer of junk bonds in the primary market this year year-to-date. While this provides investment investments, retail fixed income investors need differentiate various issuers on the basis of their business models. It is not enough just to look at the credit rating of the companies and their financial strength. It is important to know the cities where the companies operate and the price segments that they target. Given the geographical diversity in China, this can really get mind boggling and the services of financial advisors can come in handy.

Florida’s New Laws Spell Significant Change for the Real Estate World

July 1st was a pretty big day for Florida – over 150 different new laws were put into effect, many of which will have a significant impact on those who own and rent homes not only in the metropolitan Jacksonville area, but all across the state. Here are a few of the major highlights of…

July 1st was a pretty big day for Florida – over 150 different new laws were put into effect, many of which will have a significant impact on those who own and rent homes not only in the metropolitan Jacksonville area, but all across the state.

Here are a few of the major highlights of these laws and what they might mean to you:

  1. According to new Florida Law HB77, there are new provisions that make it easier for landlords to evict tenants who only make partial payments on their rent. Now, when a tenant makes a partial payment, they only have a matter of DAYS to pay the remaining balance before eviction proceedings can begin.
  2. According to this same law (Florida Law HB77) there is a new two strikes and your out policy. This means that if a tenant breaks rules of their lease (like parking violations or having unauthorized pets) two times in ONE year, they can be evicted.
  3. Not all of the laws were negative, though. One law, Florida Law SB342, eases homestead exemptions for those who have a homestead exemption but need to rent their homes temporarily . This does NOT allow for long-term leases or rentals, but can protect some homeowners who find themselves in temporary binds (up to one month of rentals per year.)
  4. Another Florida Law HB87 also makes some significant changes to the foreclosure process here in Florida, where we have the highest number of foreclosures in the nation. This will do a number of things, including placing a greater burden of proof on lenders when it comes to tracking and maintaining the ownership and default status. It also drops the statute of limitations for banks to go after foreclosed owners and judgments from five years down to one year.

What kind of difference will these laws have on you and your home? Does this introduce any new obstacles to your retirement plans? Or, perhaps this opens up a few opportunities. Regardless of whether these changes bring about good or bad tidings, it's certainly time to take a careful look at your own particular real estate circumstances to see if adjustments need to be made.

If you're not sure, that's a fairly safe indicator that it might be time to seek a little advice from the professionals. Consult with a local real estate lawyer, real estate agency or property management firm to find out how this could affect you and your greatest investments.

Condo Management Services: Why Board Member Participation Is Beneficial

The board of directors for an association-governed community must devote its time and skills to the betterment of the neighborhood. Although a condo management company can handle most of a community's administrative needs, board members must attend neighborhood meetings and spend a reasonable amount of time making plans for the community. Otherwise, other board members…

The board of directors for an association-governed community must devote its time and skills to the betterment of the neighborhood. Although a condo management company can handle most of a community's administrative needs, board members must attend neighborhood meetings and spend a reasonable amount of time making plans for the community. Otherwise, other board members will be left to pick up the slack, and the management company may have less leverage to render services that benefit the community.

If your association has a member who does not devote sufficient time to needs of the community, there may be a way to resolve the problem amicably. As with handling any official issue in the community, the first resource to consult is the community's governing documents, which should have a section that addresses the subject of non-participating board members.

Interpreting the Rules

Most association-managed communities have a “non-participation” clause that requires members to play an active role in their position. The key is determining what playing an active role entails. If the language of governing documents is open to interpretation, a provider of condo management services can help establish minimum requirements for participation. Once requirements are established, the board, with the assistance of the condo management provider, can assess whether an individual fails to participate.

If non-participation exists, the first step is to attempt to resolve the issue amicably by speaking with the person. In many cases, non-participation has an understandable cause, such as a member experiencing temporary health problems or having an unusually heavy workload from his or her day job. If the person does not experience a problem that causes participation and will not acknowledge that non-participation is a problem, then action to remove and replace the individual should be considered.

How removal and replacement occurs depends on state laws and the governing documents of the association. In some cases, residents must remove the person via vote recall instead of the board dismissing the individual. A provider of condo management services will offer guidance in the matter. If legal assistance is needed, the provider will secure the help of attorneys.

Conclusion

A non-participating board member can be a difficult issue for the association to handle. But with the help of a condo management services provider, the problem will be resolved as amicably and quickly as possible. For additional information about how to address non-participation on the board, contact a provider of condo management today.

HOA Management Services: Should Your Community Permit Green Technologies?

Green technologies such as solar panels and windmills make it possible to produce electricity while creating little or no carbon pollution. Long popular for businesses that need a way to reduce emissions and lower energy consumption, these technologies have also become popular in the residential sector, where they help homeowners and association-controlled communities reduce annual…

Green technologies such as solar panels and windmills make it possible to produce electricity while creating little or no carbon pollution. Long popular for businesses that need a way to reduce emissions and lower energy consumption, these technologies have also become popular in the residential sector, where they help homeowners and association-controlled communities reduce annual electric bills. Even so, some communities have HOA property management companies enforce community rules that prevent the large-scale implementation of energy efficient technologies.

In such cases, alternative energy equipment is banned for the sake of aesthetics. If a neighborhood violates satellite dishes from being installed in yards and common areas, chances are that implementing windmills would be out of the question as well. Likewise, a neighborhood that requires roofs to be uniformly shingled or tiled probably would not favor solar panels on roofs. However, if the board is open to discussing green energy installations, there are some good reasons to consider making an amendment to community governing documents to permit the installations.

Cost Savings

The most obvious reason for implementing green technologies is cost savings. A technology such as solar panels could be used to fully power common buildings, generating cost savings that could have been applied to the community's reserve fund. A provider of HOA management services can perform a cost analysis to determine the Return on Investment (ROI) for a prospective installation. If the installation is profitable enough, it may be a long-term solution for freeing extra funds the community needs. HOA management companies will help a neighborhood determine the long-term value of an installation.

Attracting Homebuyers

Since the advent of the green movement, architecture that contains energy efficient technology has become increasingly popular. With the help of HOA property management companies, association-controlled communities that have green energy installations can leverage them to attract new homebuyers. In addition to attracting homebuyers, efficient technology can help them stay in their homes after the sale is complete. A new study from the Institute for Market Transformation (IMT) and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill found that occupants of energy efficient homes are 32 percent less likely to default on the loan. The fewer foreclosures a community experiences, the more assessment fees it receives.

Conclusion

If your community does not permit energy efficient installations such as solar panels and windmills, there are some good reasons to speak with a provider of HOA management services about the benefits of permitting the installations. For assistance calculating the benefits of green technologies for your community, contact a provider of HOA management services today.

HOA Management Services: How to Deal With Problematic Neighbors

People move into association-governed communities with the expectation that their neighbors will be civil, considerate, and keep their property in good condition. In most cases, this is exactly what happens, but there are also instances when a neighbor makes life difficult for others in the community. In some situations, the problem results from the person…

People move into association-governed communities with the expectation that their neighbors will be civil, considerate, and keep their property in good condition. In most cases, this is exactly what happens, but there are also instances when a neighbor makes life difficult for others in the community. In some situations, the problem results from the person intentally causing an annoyance; while in others, it results from unintentional conduct, such as performing work that creates a high level of noise late at night.

Regardless of the cause of the problem, the people that it importsunes must have a way to address it. If the person who causes the problem will not resolve it voluntarily, board members or a community management service will need to intervene. Whether the board handles the issue or hires property management specialists, residents should know the plan of action for bringing the issue to the attention of the authorizations. In most neighborhoods, a proper course of action is as outlined below.

Refer To Governing Documents

When becoming a resident of an association-controlled community, people must adhere to the rules in the community's governing documents. Most governing documents have a section that addresses nuisances, describing certain behaviors, actions, and situations that are not permitted in the neighborhood under any condition.

Determine If A Nuisance Is Present

Efficient Management Firms will help your community determine if a nuisance is present. If it is, the resident who causes the nuisance should be amiably approached about resolving the problem. If the person is unwilling to participate in the resolution process, an official complaint will be filed.

File a Formal Complaint

Filing a formal complaint established that a nuisance officially exists and allows HOA Management Services to implement measures to resolve the problem. The penalties for the resident who causes the nuisance will depend on the course of action set forth in the governing documents.

Conclusion

Most residents in association-governed communities are content with the majority of their neighbors. Occidentally, though, a resident does something that makes life difficult for their fellow property owners. When this occurs, the proper course of action is to consult the neighborhoods governing documents concerning nuisance regulations, attempt to resolve the issue amicably,

And refer the matter to the board if necessary. If your community needs assistance enforcement nuisance regulations, HOA services can help. Do your research and choose a company in good standing with experience and positive testimonials in managing all aspects of association-governing communities.

HOA Management Services: Don’t Let the Bedbugs Bite

Until recently, bedbugs had been significantly eliminated from the US homes and businesses. However, when the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulated the use of dangerous chemicals that were used to alienate the insects, they began infesting homes and buildings from coast to coast in record numbers. According to a 2013 study conducted by the National…

Until recently, bedbugs had been significantly eliminated from the US homes and businesses. However, when the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulated the use of dangerous chemicals that were used to alienate the insects, they began infesting homes and buildings from coast to coast in record numbers. According to a 2013 study conducted by the National Pest Management Association (NMPA) and the University of Kentucky, over 99 percent of US pest management companies have owned homes or buildings for bedbugs in the past year.

Unless the insects are subsequently exterminated after they are discovered, occupants of the home or building that they infest are subject to attacks from the insects, which put HOA management companies in the position of determining what course of action should be taken to resolve the problem. Eliminating bedbugs can be expensive. However, as providers of HOA management services can attest, alienation may not be as expensive as letting the problem remain. Many people have successfully sued the party that is responsible for not addressing a pest infestation.

Assessing an Infestation

It is often impossible to know how bedbugs arrived in a property. However, when new occupants of property report the presence of the insects shortly after they move into the property, the chance that the pests were there from the previous occupants is high. That is why some states have laws that require landlords to treat a property for bedbugs if the problem is reported in writing within the first few weeks of occupancy. What can happen when the problem is not addressed recently played out in a Maryland courtroom, where a woman was awarded $ 800,000 for her landlord's failure to treat her residence for bedbugs.

Could home owner's associations face a similar predicament if they fail to treat an infected property after a new resident reports the problem? Because pest control costs are typically included in a resident's assessment fees, many HOA management companies think the answer is yes. If your association receives a complaint about bedbugs when a new homeowner arrives, having an HOA management services provider resolve the problem is the best course of action.

Conclusion

With the recent upsurge in bedbug infestations, many states have taken measures to protect people from moving into infected properties. This means that homeowners associations should coordinate a plan with their HOA management companies to address the problem quickly when it arises. For assistance selecting a vendor for pest substitution, contact a provider of HOA management services today.

A Guide To Successfully Buying Property

Buying a property, whether it is your first or fifteenth time, is a stressful process. For most people, buying real estate represents the largest financial decision of their lives. Because there can be so much riding on this one purchase, it is imperative that you do the correct research and follow the correct procedures -…

Buying a property, whether it is your first or fifteenth time, is a stressful process. For most people, buying real estate represents the largest financial decision of their lives. Because there can be so much riding on this one purchase, it is imperative that you do the correct research and follow the correct procedures – a failure to do this can mean financial disaster.

Below is a brief guide to buying residential property. Consider this guide a starting point for your own research into buying property – information is your best friend in the real estate game!

Research

Research forms a solid base for any major purchase and the good news is, that you are doing some right now by reading this article! There is a variety of information you need to gather about your desired property and the local area before you commit to buying.

The first thing you need to do is look at the historical sales results for the suburb you wish to buy in. It is very likely that in the last few years a house very similar to the one you wish to purchase has been bought, or sold, in the local area. By comparing the historical prices paid to the current asking price, you can start to build a picture of the local market and decide if you are getting a good deal.

The next thing you need to seriously research, is the properties boundaries and any limitations on the use of the land it sits on. As people rebuild fences and conduct home improvements, the official boundaries can often be compromised. It is important that you are aware of the exact boundaries of the property you are purchasing – you can not just rely on what your eyes tell you! In addition to this, local councils often place provisions on the use of residential land, such as specifying drainage areas and wildlife corridors. You can contact the council responsible for the suburb you wish to buy in order to find out more about any land use restrictions.

Inspections

Once you have done your research on the local real estate market and selected a property that you feel is a good deal, you need to start scheduling more in depth inspections. For this, you should hire a qualified building inspector. They will go over the property with a fine tooth comb, finding any major or minor faults, which may compromise the structural integrity of the house now, or in the future. If a house has faults, this does not necessarily mean you should not buy it. However, you need to consider how much repairs will cost when deciding how much you will offer for the property.

Financing

Before you even start looking, you should have finance arranged. By knowing how much you have to spend, you will be able to focus your search on properties that you know are in your price range. Without positive confirmation of finance, you could just be wasting your own and everyone else's time by looking at properties to buy.

This article is just a starting point for your own research – there are many more things to consider when buying property. For more information, consider speaking to a real estate professional.

What HOA Property Management Companies Establish In Vendor Contracts

Without an association-controlled community receives maintenance services from employees, it must hire third party vendors to perform them. HOA property management companies can assist with the vendor selection process by evaluating the experience and reputation of candidates, receiving bids, and executing the contract, which must contain the following information before a provider of HOA management…

Without an association-controlled community receives maintenance services from employees, it must hire third party vendors to perform them. HOA property management companies can assist with the vendor selection process by evaluating the experience and reputation of candidates, receiving bids, and executing the contract, which must contain the following information before a provider of HOA management services finalizes the agreement.

Credentials of the Contractor

If the vendor must have a license from the state to perform work, proof of licensure should be provided in the agreement. You can determine whether a contractor must be licensed by contacting your state's board of licensing for the type of work that will be performed.

Start Date and End Date

To ensure that the contract is fulfilled, the start date and end date for the work performed should be clearly stated. For critical services such as security, some HOA property management companies recommend condemning the hour at which the agreement is fulfilled.

Cost and Payment Terms

In addition to listing the total cost for work, be sure to list how the business will be paid. This prevents vendors from coming back later and requesting a form of payment that is not advantageous for the community. Many communities have a provider of HOA management services handle vendor payment.

Description of Work

The description for work performed should be clearly stated to protect the business from over performing, and protect the community from having work that is not performed according to the written agreement.

Provision for Termination

To protect the community from paying for work that is not performed as stipulated in the agreement and keep the business from rendering services without reimbursements, the agreement should have a double-sided termination clause.

Provision for Warranty

The contract should include a section that states the warranty for the business' work and any materials used in the work. This helps protect the community against poor workmanship and defective materials.

Proof of Insurance

The vendor should carry insurance that protects the community from damages incurred during the work process and covers the business' workers in the event that they are injured on the job. Proof of insurance should be provided in the contract.

Provision for Legal Costs

The agreement should state that, in the event of a legal dispute, the prevailing party can collect attorney fees and legal costs. This helps protect both parties from illegal legal action.

Conclusion

Before your community executes a vendor contract, it should ensure that the agreement contains the provisions above. If the board members of your community are inexperienced at dealing with vendors, HOA property management companies can perform vendor selection on their behalf. For more information about hiring contractors, contact a provider of HOA management services today.