Boston Property Management: Make sure your contractor is insured

Boston property management

Boston Property Management: Make sure your contractor is insured

Home-improvement projects should always be a lot of fun for you. However, not everyone is able to tackle them and have to hire contractors to do the work for them. A project means that you can get an extension at home or be adding a new bathroom. It is a horrible thing when your home-improvement project is ruined because of a contractor’s negligence. You entrust the contractor to take care of your home to make those improvements. If he is not careful, there can be a lot of damage. There have been scenarios where they have been break-ins, fires or flooding all because of the contractor.

Damage

It is too late to do anything as the damage has already been caused. The only way out is if the contractor has liability insurance. Unfortunately, if you have a high-end home, it is a different scenario. That is because they will have to file a claim with their homeowners’ insurance instead of the contractor’s insurance. The reason being that the homeowner’s insurance policy will give you a better experience and more insurance coverage. Sometimes the policy is for a certain amount but the damage could be more than what the policy covers. When you file a claim with your insurer, they will seek reimbursement from the contractor’s insurance company. A high-end home usually is not covered by the contractor’s insurance as there will be items which won’t be covered by his insurance.

The cost of Home Renovation

It is estimated that people will spend around more than $300 billion from April 2017 to March 2018. Data also shows that claims for damage done by contractors are really low as most of them are filed under the contractor’s policy.

Boston Property Management: Stress-free Renovation

Not all renovations are stress-free as something or the other occurs from time to time. A good idea is for you to get in touch with your insurance agent before you take on a home improvement project. That is a good way of finding out whether you have the right amount of coverage or not. You may never know if your coverage has ended or if you need to extend it. If you are lucky, you could even get an insurance discount.

Vet your Contractor

Lastly, before you start working on the renovation of your home, you should ensure that your contractor is fully vetted. Make sure that he has a license and has adequate insurance. A good contractor will also ensure that his workers are covered too. The coverage includes medical care and lost wages. If he doesn’t have coverage, it could fall upon you.

Also, keep copies of everything so that you know there will be no issues. Finally, you should take inventory of everything at home so that if there is a loss, you can make a claim.

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Property Manager MA: How to terminate a contract with your Realtor

Property Manager MAProperty Manager MA: How to terminate a contract with your Realtor

It is not an easy job finding the right realtor. It’s worse when you are unable to make the relationship work as there will be some issue or the other. However, it is not an easy task terminating your current relationship. Once you sign a contract you are bound to it. There are proper ways to cut down your ties. This is what you should do when you are having issues with your current realtor.

Clear the Air

For starters, you can try and clear the air with your real estate agent so that any issues can be resolved. You can explain your concerns to see if there is room for improvement. That is a better step than terminating your contract. If you can work things out, it will be better for everyone. If not, then you can always terminate your agreement.

Fine Print

You can’t just terminate your contract like that as you will need to read the fine print. There will be a list of conditions listed which will let you terminate your agreement. It will list the scenarios which will allow you to terminate it. Usually, agreements allow you to terminate the arrangement with a letter of cancellation/termination. Experts feel that you should also get a letter from the real estate agent so that you can confirm the termination.

Property Manager MA: Broker

In the event that you can’t work it out, you can always send talk to the agent’s broker. It is very helpful as a broker has more power over an agent. Real estate agents must work for the broker. The broker has supervisory powers and the brokerage gives agents access to their listing services, insurance, etc. this means that when you sign a contract, it is essentially one between you and the brokerage. That is where the brokerage makes money from the sale of a house.The brokerage has to get involved as a bad agent means that their bottom line will be affected. It also means that the broker can also terminate the agreement without the consent of the input. Alternatively, you can be assigned a new agent at the brokerage. This way you won’t have to find one.

Lawyer 

If none of those methods works, then you must find a lawyer to help you. A lawyer will be able to use a loophole to get you out of the contract. If you can’t afford a lawyer, you should just wait it out as contracts need to renewed after some time.

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Property Manager MA: Getting credits

Property Manager MA

Property Manager MA: Getting credits 

It takes a time to find the right home. This could mean months of searching and spend a lot of time going through the grind. You may make plenty of offers but not get the home of your dreams as you will be competing with other buyers. When you finally get a deal, it will be after a lot of negotiations.  The only problem is that it is not the end of it and you have to go through another round of negotiations.

Ask for credits after Property Inspection

When you are buying a home, the contract stipulates that you can ask for a property inspection or that you can inspect before signing the contract. There could be any number of issues in the house. Plus the buyer can also ask to have a particular type of inspector for certain portions of the house.

Once the inspection is over, it will bring to light certain issues which the buyer may not have knowledge of. At times these issues are not so big, that a buyer will want to scupper the sale. This does mean that the buyer will have to spend money on making the repairs. This also means that the buyer has to ask for a reduction in the purchase price or credits for the same amount.

Property Manager MA: Inspection before listing

When you are looking to sell your house, you should not negotiate when you are under contract. If there are faults in your house, you will have to pay for them. The worst scenario is that you could lose out on the sale. The best thing you can do is to be upfront when it comes to your property. Let the buyer know if there are issues so that they do not think you are dishonest. The best solution for you is to get an inspection of your property before you put the house on the market. You will be able to discuss any potential issues and share the inspection report with the buyers. This way you will be transparent and there will not be any issues.

Sellers may try to avoid giving credits

If you are a seller, you can agree to have work done on the property before it closes. If not, then you can allocate the funds to the contractor for doing the repairs. This will help the seller as the buyer may not utilise the credits allocated for the repair work. It also helps as sometimes the estimates are overstated.

In other scenarios, the buyer could just ask for credits to bring the price down as they assume the seller won’t have any other buyers. It could backfire if it’s a strong seller’s market. The last thing a seller needs to remember is that a buyer may want some minor repair work. So leave some space for that. In the end, if you do everything right, you will have done your job.

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Boston Property Management: Why you should renew your Lease

Boston Property Management

Boston Property Management: Why you should renew your Lease

Not everyone can afford a house and that is why they prefer to rent a place. Nothing lasts forever as your lease will come to an end some day. You can be tempted to move out of your place towards the end of your lease as you want to experience a new neighbourhood or upgrade. However, you should stay put as it could be a better option.

Costs

When you factor in the costs, it comes to a lot at the end of the day. There will be security deposits to pay, the cost of moving everything, time off from work and the cost of redecorating your new place. A move will cost you a lot of money. The bigger the market, the more it will cost you. A city like Boston will also be quite expensive and you will have to think twice if you want to do that.

Sometimes deposits are also really huge and that will take a huge chunk out of your bank account. Not everyone gets most of their deposit back as the landlord will make some deduction or the other. Even if you take good care of your rental, it may be a while before your deposit is refunded.

Boston Property Management: You have the advantage

When you want to move, the property manager has to make an effort to fill the vacancy. This could mean a loss of some rent till the new tenant moves in. there is also the cost of the advertisement to fill the vacancy.  This is why they would prefer to keep you around if you are a good tenant. They would save a lot of effort and money keeping you there instead of going for someone new. This gives you some bargaining power. So ask for a better lease, discount on your rent or some complimentary amenities. The only thing you need to be aware of is that the landlord is restricted by how much he can increase your rent. So check around to see if your rent is the norm and if it is then you can negotiate for a lower price. This will still be cheaper than what you would pay for at another place.

Community and Relations

When you are a good tenant, you usually have a good rapport with your landlord and neighbours. You also have good links with everyone as you have made an effort to establish them. When you move to a new place, you will have to start all over. You could be jeopardising everything for a place where you won’t be happy.

So before you make any decisions, do the math and see if the pros and cons outweigh everything else. You may find out it’s better to stay where you are.

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Finding the perfect Property Manager MA

Property Manager MA

 Finding the perfect Property Manager MA

It is essential to find a property manager if you want someone reliable to take care of your property when you rent it out. It is not easy giving your property to a stranger but a property manager can make the task easier for you. You have spent a lot of money on your home and you cannot just hand it to the first person you see. A property manager makes everything easier.

The best way to find a good property manager is to ask for referrals from family and friends. A good property manager is one who is dependable and trustworthy. Those are the two traits you need to keep in mind when you hire a property manager. You also have to look at other factors when you hire a property manager.

Communication is key

When you rent out your property, you want your property manager to communicate with you. It depends on how much you want to stay in touch. Some may want a lot of updates, while others will just settle for a few. A property manager who is available and has a fast response rate is one you should go for. It is easy to get clues about a property manager’s speed, courtesy, and availability.

Property Manager MA: Residents

A good property manager is one who will find you quality residents who will pay the rent on time. They will also stay in the property longer and are more reasonable. The only issue is that it takes longer to find good residents.  The property manager must make an effort to investigate a potential tenant.

If the property manager makes a bad bet, it is quite expensive for you as you will have to wait for an eviction. It costs a lot as you won’t get any money for a few months and the damage costs are quite a lot. A good property manager can avoid that by performing a credit check and a background check to ensure you are not getting any criminals.

Fees

A good property manager will charge between seven to 15 percent of a month’s rent. However, you can usually get one for 10 percent. You will also have to pay for maintenance costs and pay a finder’s fee when the property manager finds a new resident for you.

House visits and earning potential

The property manager should look at your property from time to time to ensure that there are no issues. This is why you must select one with a  reasonable workload and not someone who is overworked.You must also find a property manager who knows how to market a unit so that it’s not empty for long.

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Boston Property Management: How to get a home with low credit

Boston property management Boston Property Management: How to get a home with low credit

You do not have to have an excellent credit score to get a mortgage. A lot of banks will still lend to you if you have a 640-credit score. The only problem is that even if you get a loan, you will have to pay a lot in interest.

You can get a mortgage and an FHA loan. The former is a conventional mortgage which you can get even if you have a 640 score. Some lenders will be flexible with a lower score but they will make the process a lengthy affair for you. It will need a lot of paperwork and a great deal of time.

If you go for an FHA loan, you can get away with a  score of 580. The FHA will require 3.5 percent in equity. In some cases, you can even go for 550 but you will have to pay at least 10 percent in equity. So that means a 10 percent down payment for both the purchase of a home and when refinancing.

This does not mean that you are a shoo-in for a mortgage as some lenders will not want to take any risks. A bank will only take you on if it wants to take you on as a risk.

Rebuild your credit

The best way to rebuild your credit is to pay off your credit balances, make sure that any discrepancies are taken care of and dispute errors on your credit report. Once your credit score improves, you will have better chances to get a good mortgage rate.

Boston Property Management: Down Assistance

You can only get access to a payment assistance program if you have at least a 640 score. If your score is lower than that, then you are ineligible. No one wants to take a risk by helping someone with a score lower than 640.

Seasoning Period

If you have been through a  foreclosure or a bankruptcy, then you will have issues getting a mortgage. There will be a three-year waiting period which is known as the seasoning period. This means you will have issues getting a mortgage. The waiting period for a bankruptcy is two years. The same applies for those who have been through a foreclosure.

 Higher Debt-to-Income Ratios

The FHA will allow you to have a loan if your debt-to-income ratio is in excess of 54 percent. The caveat is that your credit score should be 640 or higher. You will have issues trying to get a loan if your score is lower than that.

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Property Manager MA: How to budget for your dream home

Property Manager MA

Property Manager MA: How to budget for your dream home

When you are a renter and you want to buy a home, you must be meticulous before you make any moves.

It is not easy saving up for a down payment as you should budget for it. This guide looks at how you can save money and move into your dream home.

Homeownership cost

It is easy for renters as they just must pay a monthly fee for their rent. However, it means that they don’t end up owning the home towards the end. When you are a homeowner, you must pay a mortgage, insurance, taxes. The mortgage is basically two payments as it has principal and interest. Once you get a better idea of the costs, you can see what sort of a house you can afford.

Some people don’t realise that the principal helps you pay off the loan balance every month while the interest is the cost of borrowing the money. If you use a mortgage calculator, you will know how much you should pay overall.

The taxes depend on the county you live in and are a small portion of the cost of your home.

Insurance is mandatory as it protects you if there is any disaster or if your home is damaged. You should ensure that the lender agrees to the replacement cost before you sign off on it. The insurance cost is around $700 to $1200 per year for a single-family home. If you opt for a condo, then you have an additional fee: the HOA dues. These include the common areas, maintenance, landscaping, exterior painting etc.

It helps to have savings in place so you can build up your reserve fund. You never know what it might come in use for.

Property Manager MA: Tax benefits

You get to deduct your mortgage interest and property taxes when you file your annual tax returns. This will lower the cost of your homeownership. The savings will add up over time.

Study rent-vs.-buy math

Do a comparison of how much it would cost you to rent vs buying the property. Do the math and see how much you would save with tax benefits for owning a home as compared to a rental. Go for homeownership as it will obviously be cheaper over the long run.

Mortgage which fits your budget and timeline

It doesn’t matter if you don’t have the funds to go for the home you want. You can go for a mortgage with as little as 3 percent. However, you will be paying for mortgage insurance and you won’t be able to make any tax deductions from it. Your payments will be quite high for the time period.

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Boston Property Management: How to buy a home after you graduate

Boston Property Management

 Boston Property Management: How to buy a home after you graduate

When you graduate from college, you need to look at starting a career. You also need to look at buying a house in the near future. The thing is that you have to establish a good credit history so you can get what you want.  A good credit history allows you to get a mortgage which is easy on your wallet. It also helps you qualify for other loans, apartment rentals and even get a job.

How to start

The first step is to look at your current status.  You can do that by checking your credit history through a credit agency. Go through it with a fine-tooth comb so that you can spot any errors. It is important to get them corrected because they can be quite damaging.

Boston Property Management: Credit History

The best way to start is to get a credit card so you can start building your credit history. It does not matter what you buy or do, as you have to focus on building your history. Buy everything you can with your credit card, so that you will have a history. When you make your payments on time, it will register on your credit file. That is the best way to get a credit score. It will also help you set up your creditworthiness.

Try to find a credit card which you can get easily. The only issue is that you will get one with a higher interest rate. The good thing is that you will be able to build up your credit history with those cards. Just ensure that you make the payments on time. Alternatively, you can check a credit union or a site where you can get options to see who will accept you. Department stores and gas cards are also a good way to get started. If these options aren’t good for you, then get a secured card where you will have to place a security deposit.

With great power comes great responsibility

When you get a credit card, try to live within your means. Leave at least 30 percent of your available credit and pay off your balance in full every month. When you have a good credit history, you will get a higher score as the credit agencies will see that you are not a credit risk. Also, make sure that you are paying off your student loans on time. A lender will only be worried if you are not fulfilling your obligations.

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Boston Property Management: Why you must not make your Agent’s job harder

Boston Property Management

Boston Property Management: Why you must not make your Agent’s job harder

When you buy a home, you must go through a long process. It can suck a lot of time out of your life and give you a headache. Not only do you must go through a lot of paperwork but the anxiety will add more to your life. Sometimes it can take very long for a purchase to go through. You will need the help of an agent to get through everything.

The thing is that not everyone is a good agent. Then there are some buyers who are horrible and make life hell for agents. This post looks at the sort of behaviour which can make it difficult for them.

Price swap

Sometimes a buyer can ask for credit from the seller if there are issues within the house. That is understandable. However, it is not ok if you try to negotiate the price down without informing your agent. Your agent needs to be in the loop about everything. Not only will you alienate him, but you can jeopardise the transaction.

Boston Property Management: Lowballing

Imagine if the seller is selling his property for a certain amount, which is close to the market value. Yet you end up offering a low price, which the seller will baulk on. The seller won’t take the buyer seriously because it is not justified. Of course, the buyer wants a bargain but he won’t get one nor will he be treated seriously. In the end, a slightly smaller reduction will make it easier for another buyer.

Too many requests

When you are on the path to being a serious buyer, you can ask for a private viewing twice or thrice. It can be frustrating for the buyer when you keep making more requests and show up all the time. The worst part is that if you make all those requests and then you end up not making an offer. You will be wasting everyone’s time if you make multiple visits, only to pull out later.

Don’t buy if you are not ready

There are buyers who think they are ready to buy a home. The only issue is that they may be years away from buying one. This means that they only waste the agent’s time when they keep making demands. They are not at your disposal to do research on permits or properties. They can do that if a client is ready to buy a house sooner rather than later.

So just don’t waste an agent’s time and do your homework before you climb the property ladder.

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Property Manager MA: Avoiding bad movers

Property Manager MA

Property Manager MA: Avoiding bad movers

Moving to a new place is fun but sometimes it can be a nightmare. It can be very stressful trying to get everything right. Sometimes nothing goes right but at least you know you could have avoided it if you had taken the right measures. On other occasions, you can’t do much about anything as certain circumstances are out of your control. It is horrible when things don’t go as you planned.

This is how you must avoid a bad move.

Incompetent movers

This happens when the movers are not there on time or are a no-show. If you are on a tight schedule and the movers don’t show up, it can throw into a tailspin. It doesn’t matter what their excuse is for not showing up, as you will be stressed out and a lot of time will be wasted. In the worst-case scenario, the movers turn out to be fraudsters and eat your deposit. If you are not careful, they can ask for a lot of money in advance and never show up. In other cases, they could just hold your belongings hostage and not release them till you pay a certain fee. The worst could be that they can steal your belongings and throw the rest away.

If they show up and are not doing a good job, you can tell that they are being either very careless or are inexperienced. Perhaps they could even show up in a smaller moving truck which is not sufficient for your belongings. They could also mishandle your stuff and not know how to handle it properly. The worst case could be them dropping your equipment and breaking something.

This can all be avoided if you research your movers or ask for references from family and friends. Also, make sure that they are licensed and have the right insurance.

Property Manager MA: Traffic

Traffic can be a real mood killer and disrupt your move. Sometimes traffic jams can eat valuable time and ruin your move. In other situations, there could be a road accident and it takes time for traffic to get back to normal. If you are unlucky, it could be your moving truck which gets into an accident and you lose all your belongings. Worst is that if the truck is stuck somewhere because of bad weather, you can lose your belongings to thieves.

Plus, you could face parking issues for the truck or not be able to find a good space. This means the movers would have to park far away and that would lead to more fees. The only way you can avoid it is if you can get a parking space in front of your old and new homes. An experienced moving company will also be able to handle everything.

Being Unorganized

When you are unorganised you are responsible for your move not going well. It could be you not packing on time, not taking measurements for furniture, or doing the right paperwork. So make sure you get everything right.

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