Questions to Ask When Hiring a Professional Property Management Company

The Charlotte area is booming with opportunities and those opportunities are attracting new residents of every age, profession, and familial status. For those who have invested in real estate, this makes now an outstanding time to own rental properties. But owning rental properties and effectively operating them are two very different kind of things and many owners of rental properties find that operations go a lot smoother when they work with a professional property management company.

A professional property management team takes charge of all those nitty-gritty aspects of operating rental properties that most owners don’t have the time, knowledge, or capacity to handle on their own. These tasks include showing the property, tending to current tenants, managing and recording all finances, interviewing and hiring contractors, and so much more. It’s no wonder why so many real estate investors work with a professional property management company in Charlotte.

But before you just pick the first professional property management company listed on Google, be sure to ask prospective services the following key questions:

  • Do they have an Owner’s Manual? One of the first things a professional property management company will offer you is an owner’s manual that details how their company runs their operations and what property owners can expect to occur in certain scenarios, such as dealing with late rents or move out procedures. An owner’s manual provides both parties with clear, written expectations of how operations will run. Any management service that does not offer this and instead runs on assumptions and ambiguity should be avoided.
  • How often are formal inspections performed? Conducting routine, formal inspections of your real estate properties should be considered a normal part of a property management service package. If a management company starts to balk at the request or demand a higher price for regular visits, then it’s time to walk away. It’s no secret that rental properties in the hands of poor tenants age fast, a good rental management service will do those routine inspections necessary to ensure your investment is and stays in good condition. Additionally, new property managers should complete a full inspection of the property and produce a ‘building file’ for both their records and yours before the first tenant moves in.

For more information about property management and best traits to look for when hiring a service, contact us.

Online CE: Property Management in Today’s World

Recently, an online real estate education company, Real Time Learn, produced and is offering a 4-hour CE class which our Vice President, Joe Rempson wrote and conducted.  This is an excellent course by an experienced, hands-on property manager and we are excited to tell you all about it!

4 hours of elective credit from a hands-on, experienced CPM & CCIM.   What is a good investment property?   How to determine rental rates?  What you should know about tenant screening, security deposits, service animals, escrow accounts, leases, management agreements and the NCREC rules & regulations.   Learn from a true subject matter expert!

Get your CE credit in your pajamas at home!   Register today at http://realtimelearn.com/courses/nc-approved-electives/property-management/

What to Look for in a Real Estate Property Management Company

When you’re considering renting out your home, condo or a townhouse that you own, the expertise of a great property manager can save you time, money and headaches. Here’s how to identify a reliable real estate property management company. Choose a company that provides:

  • Thorough tenant screening: Experienced property managers know the latest background check techniques and can access the most reliable information about tenant applicants. Dedicated property managers check credit, rental histories and more. They are familiar with the hallmarks of terrific tenants. If eviction or disputes should arise, your property management company can save you the stress of dealing with the issues personally.
  • Legal compliance: The best RE property managers are well versed in local, state and federal regulations on housing discrimination, proper eviction procedures, collecting rents and deposits—and much more. Housing and landlord-tenant regulations are often complex for individual property owners to sort out. Get peace of mind by letting a property management expert handle it.
  • Contacts for maintenance efficiency: Your real estate property manager, if well-established in the community, has relationships with the best local renovation and repair professionals. This allows your property manager to negotiate money-saving contracts for repairs, cleaning and more.
  • Local area experience: The ideal property manager knows the area very well, from the county and city level, down to details about the specific Charlotte neighborhoods. This helps leasing agents fit the right tenant to the right property, which leads to stable and happy tenant relationships.
  • Marketing know-how: Top property management firms know how to get the word out and find the best renters, quickly. In addition, pro-active property managers and leasing agents can bring you innovative rental property marketing ideas to ensure you receive the most value from your property. Ideas like marketing/renting your property as corporate housing or making minor home upgrades that attract today’s renters.
  • Excellent communication skills: Be sure to choose a real estate property management company that is able to clearly explain their methods for managing the above duties and responsibilities. Your property management company should provide monthly rental property statements and address any questions or concerns you may have promptly.

T.R. Lawing is the leading Charlotte real estate property management company–in business for 60 years–and well known throughout the Carolinas. If you’re considering turning your property into a unique investment opportunity by renting it out, call on us for expert advice. Contact T.R. Lawing today.

5 Ways to Get Involved in Your New Community in Charlotte

Moving to a new city is seldom easy. You have to learn the ropes, starting with finding a place to live, learning which local spots speak to your style, and finding friends to help you enjoy your new journey.

If you’ve recently decided to call one of North Carolina’s most popular cities home, here are five ways to get involved in your new community in Charlotte:

1. Volunteer

Volunteering encompasses tons of different types of people and places. What’s important is finding something you enjoy doing so you’ll have a good time for a great cause as you learn about your new home. As an added bonus, you’ll probably meet some like-minded folks who can turn into great friends if you’re open to the possibility.

Here are some volunteer options to consider:

  • Animal shelters
  • Youth organizations
  • Hospitals
  • Nursing homes
  • Adult literacy programs
  • Helping with landscaping at senior living facilities
  • Food kitchens

2. Join a Club

Do you have a hobby you’re passionate about? Perhaps there’s something you’ve always wanted to learn how to do, but you never made time. This is the perfect opportunity to spread your wings and find a club or two where you can spread your wings. Consider:

  • Book clubs
  • Photography groups
  • Writing sessions
  • Walking or jogging with neighbors

Check out NextDoor or Meetup for ideas and easy-to-join groups!

3. Take a Class

From fitness to fine art, classes are a great way to meet people and put yourself out there. Keep your eyes and ears open, and take any class that may be of interest to you. You don’t have to go back if you don’t like it, but, chances are, you’ll find a few things you really enjoy doing.

Be sure to check out rec centers, colleges, and any online interest groups that fit your fancy, as these folks will lead the way to fun events around town.

4. Get Out!

Take yourself to brunch. Make a list of coffee shops, and hit one each Saturday. Talk to the bartender at your local dive.

5. Engage with Neighbors

Whether you’re walking your dog or wandering through a garage sale, there are plenty of people waiting to meet you!

We hope have you found these five ways to get involved in your new community in Charlotte to be helpful. If you have any other advice, please feel free to share it on our social media pages!

Renter’s Rights: What You Need To Know

Home renters in North Carolina are entitled to certain rights. Here is what you need to know about renter’s rights whether you are a renter or a landlord.
Rights Regarding Security Deposits
State law places a limit on how much a landlord can charge you for a security deposit. If you have a month-to-month lease, the maximum security deposit is one and a half month’s rent. For rental terms longer than two months, the maximum deposit is two months. If you have pets, your landlord might add a reasonable nonrefundable deposit.
Your landlord must disclose information about where your security deposit is held. This information, including the name and address of the bank where the deposit is held is usually disclosed in your rental agreement.
Refund of Your Security Deposit
If you move, your renter’s rights include that your former landlord return your security deposit within 30 days of your move. When a landlord makes a claim against your deposit and cannot finalize it within the 30 days, they must send an interim accounting at that point. A final accounting must be submitted within 60 days of your move. If your landlord doesn’t return your deposit, you can sue him or her in small claims court for deposits up to the amount of $5,000.
Late Fees Rules
Your rental agreement should include what your late fee is and when a late fee will be imposed. State law specifies that late fees cannot be imposed until your rent is five days late. The fee cannot be more than $15 or 5 percent of your rent payment, whichever is greater.
N.C. Gen. Stat. § § 42-1 to 42-14.2; 42.25.6 to 42-76 refers to landlord-tenant laws. Depending on the city where you are renting, there may be additional health and safety, anti-discrimination or noise and nuisance standards and rules that might apply to renter’s rights.

Quality Property Management

How do you know a quality property management company? There are several things you can look for that will allow you to assess their worth. Whether you are willing to put your property in their hands or are looking for the ideal home for your family, you are placing your family’s future on their doorstep.

Member of Local Organization

Look for a property management company who is vested in the Charlotte NC community. Do they belong to the local Chamber of Commerce or Better Business Bureau? Members of these organizations take pride in themselves as well as their community. They are always looking for ways to make the neighborhoods better and safer.

Solid Reputation

Ask your friends and family who they would recommend. A quality property management company works for its clients and will do everything they can to ensure they are fully satisfied. Customer satisfaction is a keystone for any business foundation and shouldn’t be overlooked. Check out their standing with the BBB and talk to people who have used them in the past.

Knowledgeable and Professional Staff

A quality property management company must have knowledgeable and professional staff members who are available when you need them. Professionalism is the key to any good business. Staff should be knowledgeable about every aspect of the property management business and willing to go the extra mile to make sure every detail is taken care of.

At T R Lawing, Charlotte NC residents can depend on the staff to do what needs to be done when caring for their properties. As a quality property management company, they have a reputation for making sure each property is properly cared for at all times.

Residential Property Management Services

Residential property management services are offered to residents who live in the Charlotte, North Carolina area to help them successfully manage and maintain their properties. Potential renters who live in the area can use the services offered by property management companies to locate the ideal property to fit their family’s needs.

Services Offered

Residential property management services include the following:

  • Markets properties
  • Performs general maintenance and inspections
  • Handles legal matters involving the property, including evictions
  • Interviews prospective tenants and handles all steps of the leasing process
  • Collects rent and takes care of financial obligations

Property managers assume the responsibility for the care and upkeep of the property and are available 24 hours a day as needed.

The Benefits of Hiring A Residential Property Management Company

Hiring a company to take care of residential property management services allows the owner all the benefits of property ownership without the worry of constant care and maintenance. Property management services are performed as they are needed without having to bother the property owner with the details. Management companies give owners peace of mind knowing their properties are being well taken care of.

If you are interested in learning more about property management services or want to rent a home in the Charlotte, North Carolina area, contact the staff of T R Lawing Realty Inc. They have the answers you’re looking for!

How to Find Rental Homes Perfect for You

The two most important first steps to moving to a new city like Charlotte, NC is to find a job and a house. While our team might not be able to help you with the former, we can help you with the latter. We are proud to represent a wide array of Charlotte area rental homes of all sizes, types, and budgets. To help us narrow down your search and expedite the process to ensure you find the perfect rental home for you, consider starting with the following tips:

3 Tips For How to Find Rental Homes Perfect for You

1. Determine your budget. Don’t wait until you fall in love with a house you cannot afford. Start now with determining your cost window by drawing up a monthly budget and looking at where your income is going and estimating what you can realistically afford for the next year. Typically, you will want to spend no more than 30 percent of your income on rent. However, this amount may vary if utilities are or are not included. For example, a higher priced rental home that includes electricity, water, and cable in the rent may be more affordable for you than a low rate place that does not include the above. So keep your acceptable rent variances in mind when researching new rental homes.
2. Write out your must-have features. While you aren’t buying a home, it’s important you love your new place. Write down a few must-have and nice-to-have features like an outdoor patio, stove type, shower vs. full bath, and other features that are important to you. Let your rental agent know what you are willing to compromise on and what you are not as this will help expedite the rental home search.
3. Map out the area. This tip for how to find rental homes is especially important if you are new to Charlotte. Spend a few days getting acquainted with the various neighborhoods in and just outside of Charlotte. Consider where your work is, whether you plan on driving, biking, or using public transport, and what you like to do outside of work. Finding a home in an area where you will often be at is often recommended as it will cut down on your travel time, costs, and stresses.

Contact us when you’re ready to start finding your next rental home!

Houses in Charlotte NC For Rent

If you are ready to make a move into a larger home or ready to downsize, a residential property manager is your best choice for finding the perfect property. There are a wide variety of houses in Charlotte NC for rent or lease. Hiring a property manager to assist you will allow you to learn important information about the homes you look at, as well as the neighborhood, school systems, and any other details you want to take into consideration before you make your move.

What To Consider If You Want To Rent A Home

When you’re looking for houses in Charlotte NC for rent, there are a few things you want to consider. This includes the neighborhood you would like to move into and what school system you want your children to attend. Drive through the area at different times during the day so you can get a feel of what the neighborhood will be like in terms of activity and traffic. Renting or leasing a home isn’t something you want to take lightly. The goal is to find the right property that will allow your family the comfort and security they want.

Choosing The Right Property Manager

It’s important to find the right property manager that understands your needs and will work with you to find the right property. Not all managers are the same. Many cater to the owner of the property, while others may not be consistent with maintenance. Ask for referrals from friends and co-workers. Look at a manager’s rating with the Better Business Bureau. Just like with any service-oriented professional, you will want to connect with the management team and make sure you like working with them. If something doesn’t feel right, choose a different property manager.

If you’re looking for houses in Charlotte NC for rent, the property management company you choose will be the key to finding the perfect property. The manager will carefully evaluate your needs and work with you to find the home that you are most comfortable with. The team of professionals you choose to work with will be your line of support if you have questions or concerns about your rental agreement or the property itself. Take the time to find the right property manager and the search for your home will be an easy one.

Moving to Charlotte, NC: Where to Live

Are you getting ready to move to Charlotte, NC? Like any city, Charlotte’s filled with plenty of neighborhoods that have their own unique personalities. Before you settle in, take a look at this Charlotte neighborhood guide to help you decide where to live.

Historic Homes in a Family-Friendly Atmosphere

Eastover in southeast Charlotte is known for the stunning historic homes notable to this part of the South. Tree-lined streets set the stage for hundred-year-old single-family homes throughout the neighborhood.

Eastover offers you freedom from the hustle and bustle of the city without forcing you to live in seclusion. Although happily situated as a suburb of Charlotte, this neighborhood is just minutes away from Uptown.

Notable Characteristic: Outstanding schools make this area ideal for families.

Getting Down in Uptown (or Downtown)

In most cities, downtown is the central business district, while uptown is often synonymous with highfalutin folks who dare not dwell where regular people reside.

Charlotte is quite the opposite for several reasons. In fact, in Charlotte, downtown is uptown. The central business district came to be known as uptown long ago because it’s the highest point of elevation in the city, meaning people are heading upwards no matter which direction they’re coming from.

Uptown is a vibrant neighborhood filled with outstanding museums, small tech startups, a good amount of Fortune 500s, phenomenal food and any type of entertainment you could imagine. It’s a smalltown downtown with a livable appeal.

Notable Characteristic: Unlike many other cities’ downtowns, Charlottesville’s Uptown neighborhood affords you an abundance of accommodation options, including high-rise condos and revitalized Victorian homes.

A City In A Suburb

Ballantyne is the neighborhood you’ll want to head to if you’re looking for brand new builds and tons of luxury amenities. Armed with its own PGA-ranked golf course, quality country club, and a vast array of eateries and recreation opportunities, Ballantyne is the type of neighborhood that’s really more of its own town.

Notable Characteristic: Ballantyne has become a business hub of Charlotte, meaning you can easily avoid the cluttered commute to downtown by finding a company within the community.

Let your Realtor get to know the true you. Once your Realtor has a handle on the things that really make you tick, he or she can help you hone in on the perfect pad, making it easy to learn where you should live when you move to Charlotte, NC!