The Results Are In – 2014 Edition

As we finish another year, it seems like a good time to review our Satisfacts scores.
 
In all honesty, there were very few changes and T. R. Lawing Realty still maintains a very high level of satisfaction among our residents. 
 
For reference purposes:
                Exceptional                         4.50 – 5.00
                Superior                               4.00 – 4.49
                Average                               3.50 – 3.99
                Warning                               3.00 – 3.49
                Red Flag                               Less than 3.00
 
Overall …
 
·         14% fewer residents responded in 2014  (174 vs 150)
 
·         Our overall portfolio score increased by 1% (4.00 vs 3.97)
o   The average portfolio in America has a score of 3.85
 
·         Courteousness and professionalism of the property management staff
o   Unchanged:        4.16 (2014) vs 4.14 (2013)
o   National Average:  4.05
 
·         The availability of the property management staff to hear your requests and concerns
o   Up 2%:                  3.95 (2014) vs 3.88 (2013)
 
·         How promptly the property management staff returns or responds to phone call or emails
o   Up 2%:                  3.93 (2014) vs 3.85 (2013)
 
·         The courteousness and professionalism of the maintenance staff
o   Up 3%:                  4.25 (2014) vs 4.13 (2013)
o   National Average:  4.14
 
·         The speed with which your maintenance requests have been handled
o   Down 1%:            3.69 (2014) vs 3.72 (2013)
 
·         The quality of maintenance work done
o   Up 3%:                  3.97 (2014) vs 3.87 (2013)
 
·         Was your service request completed properly by the maintenance staff the first time?
o   Up 5%:                  73% (2014) vs 68% (2013)
 
·         Has there been follow up (by phone, email or survey) after your service requests was completed to make sure everything was handled to your satisfaction?
o   Up 3%:                  33% (2014) vs 30% (2013)
 
·         The value you receive for the rent you pay
o   Up 1%:                  3.99 (2014) vs 3.93 (2013)
o   National Average:  3.35
 
·         The appearance of your neighborhood
o   Down 2%:            4.23 (2014) vs 4.33 (2013)
o   National Average:  3.90

How to Avoid Holiday Home Fires

Tips from the Experts in Property Management Charlotte Residents Trust

More than at any other time during the year, diligence is required during the holidays to avoid one of the leading causes of death and destruction in the home; fire. Almost everyone is using more electricity – for warmth during the winter months, as well as for the festivities and decorations. This inevitably leads to more outlets being used; in fact, U.S fire departments dealt with 230 fires every year between 2006-2010, which resulted in four deaths and 21 injuries*. Here are some things to consider that reduce the chances of fires during the holidays.

Beware of Heat Sources

As a staple of property management in Charlotte for over 50 years, we have seen time and again that wintertime is the period during which the most fires happen. This is largely because of these three factors: heating, frequent indoor cooking, and holiday decorations.

People spend the majority of their time indoors because of the cold, and space heaters are common. It is imperative that the safe recommended distance of at least three feet is adhered to – especially because many holiday decorations consist of combustible wreaths, gift wrappings, boxes and clothing.

Furthermore, the preponderance of candles, holiday lights and Christmas tree decorations for the numerous people who celebrate the Christian holiday, can bring with them their own hazards for those who are not mindful of the increased danger from the load on their electrical capacity.

Steps to Take to Freeze Out Winter Fires

Because of their electrical requirements, it is wise to plug any heat-producing appliances – such as space heaters – into an outlet that has no other appliances. Alternatively, using a higher-gauge wire should significantly reduce the chance of fire.

For homes with chimneys and vents, these should be professionally inspected once per annum.

Many people employ portable generators for greater energy efficiency and accessibility; these should be positioned away from the main residence for greater safety. Any ashes from the chimney should be kept secured away from these sources, which can ignite any unburned residue.

Space heaters aren’t the only sources to keep three feet away from flammable or combustible materials; many people have furnaces, water-powered radiators, fireplaces and other sources of heat.

Staying fire-free for the holidays – especially the months of December, January and February – is simply a case of due diligence. Avoid keeping holiday lights on at night whenever feasible, in order to head off any unforeseen instances of kids playing near them. Most fires start when something is left unattended – so be diligent!

Questions? Contact T.R. Lawing

T.R. Lawing is one of the oldest and largest property management firms in the Carolinas, and we pride ourselves in being the experts in property management Charlotte residents have come to rely on. If you are interested in finding a new rental property, contact us today!

 

*source: http://www.diversifiedfiresafety.com/christmas-tree-fires/

Great Ways to Maximize Space in Your Home or Apartment

Advice from the Charlotte Property Management Experts

Most people are constantly looking for simple ways to maximize the space in their dwelling – whether it’s an average-sized house or a small apartment. Since organization is the best answer to clutter, the creation of “zones” goes a long way in making the space look larger. You should create “zones” based on what determining which activities go on in each space in your home and how to maximize the efficiency of that space. studio

Clearing room for cabinets and shelves, for example, gives more vertical space for odds-and-ends, which leaves the walking area feeling free and open. Zones like these can be created with window seating and judiciously-placed chairs and tables.

 

Double the Use of Furniture

There are plenty of storage and organization products that can turn an armchair into a storage space, by using the room underneath to hold books and decorative elements. So-called Murphy beds accomplish this double-duty admirably, where the sturdy but comfortable top is held up by a horizontal shelf area. Clever use of mirrors can easily expand the appearance of space in a room, and decorators that replace a single large coffee table with two smaller ones readily see the difference it makes both visually and practically. Take it from the Charlotte property management experts- nearly everything in your home can be utilized in a helpful, space-saving manner!

Consistency in Design

For small rooms, mixing transitional décor elements with contemporary, modern or stucco won’t accomplish anything except minimize the overall space. A constant, steady design employing a natural color palette and cool shades evokes the greatest sense of calm – while also giving the appearance of more space. In hallways and small bathrooms, a bit of splash and design won’t unduly minimize the appearance of more space, but they will enliven those rooms.

A Theme of Verticality

The kitchen space is perfect for exploring how many elements in a room can be set upright, in order to provide more walking room. Employ cabinets on as many walls as are feasible, which serve as both storage and promote an aesthetic appeal. Solid whites give a feeling of cleanliness and expanse. A microwave above the stovetop is a mostly 20th century idea, and should be used to full effect.

Bright white lighting in the kitchen area is more favorable than the warm white that’s better-suited to living rooms and bedrooms. There are many more options for creating more space in a small apartment; but the above general themes are a good start. Sight lines leading to the outdoors, especially to a backyard patio or garden, go a long way to make that apartment as large as possible.

We hope those tips are helpful, as we pride ourselves in providing quality advice to renters in and around Charlotte NC. If you would like help finding a home that suits your lifestyle, contact the Charlotte property management experts at TR Lawing today!

Caution! Congestion Ahead On The Information Superhighway

Do you already have a Smart TV or Wi-Fi-enabled thermostat?  How about a Wi-Fi refrigerator or coffee maker?  Are you already wearing a FitBit or similar wearable technology device?  Apps that offer customized recipes according to the items in our refrigerators. Washing machines which routinely clean clothes in the middle of the night when electricity demand & costs are lower.  Sensors in clothing, toothbrushes & everyday items to monitor our heart rate and dental health. 53% of Millennials (ages 18-25) plan to buy an in-home IoT technology device in the next 5 years.  Cheap sensors, cheap bandwidth, cheap processing and ubiquitous wireless coverage, the Internet of Things (IoT) will reach “critical mass” by 2020 … or just 5 years from now.  How will it change our lives?

e-signatuer Read Trends Magazine entire article on “The Internet of Things” here.