Hawthorne Ln To Close For 6 Weeks

Traffic in one direction of Hawthorne Lane at Central Avenue continues to be detoured this week but …

This coming Mondayall traffic in both directions of Hawthorne Lane will be affected.

For 6 weeks beginning Monday, January 23, Hawthorne Lane will be closed in both directions at Central Avenue.  

Sunnyside Ave will also be closed for one block.

This Monday morning, a barricade will be erected on Hawthorne Lane at E. Seventh St. and, for the next 6 weeks, only local traffic will be allowed along the stretch at Hawthorne Lane United Methodist Church.

Sewer line construction near Central Avenue will continue until Monday, March 6.

This will increase the traffic on Clement Ave, Lamar Avenue and Louise Avenue plus other streets in Elizabeth.

The published detour will be through the intersection of E. Seventh St and Central Avenue (at the Grady Cole Center).

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As we prepare for the cold weather, we wish to remind everyone to take precautions inside and outside of their homes. If your home is unoccupied, please make sure you have someone take these precautions in your home.

Protecting against frozen pipes

Before the onset of cold weather, prevent freezing of these water supply lines and pipes by following these recommendations:
• Remove, drain, and store hoses used outdoors. Close inside valves supplying outdoor hose bibs. Place insulated cover over hose bibs to ensure protection from the elements.
• Check around the home for other areas where water supply lines are located in unheated areas. Look in the basement, crawl space, attic, garage, and under kitchen and bathroom cabinets. This would not apply to condominium properties.

During Cold Weather, Take Preventative Action

• Open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Be sure to move any harmful cleaners and household chemicals up out of the reach of children and pets.
• Keep the thermostat set to the same temperature both during the day and at night. By temporarily suspending the use of lower nighttime temperatures, you may incur a higher heating bill, but you can prevent a more costly repair job if pipes freeze and burst.
• If you will be going away during cold weather, leave the heat on in your home, set to a temperature no lower than 55° F.

Protecting your home and staying safe

• Never use a stove or oven to heat your home.
• If you are using a space heater, place it on a level, hard surface and keep anything flammable at least three feet away – things such as paper, clothing, bedding, curtains or rugs. Turn off space heaters and make sure fireplace embers are out before leaving the room or going to bed.


SOURCE: Cedar Street Commons Condominiums Owners Association, Inc. 



2016 STATS

In an average week, 800-900 prospects view our virtual tours.   Last week, 1715 prospective tenants viewed our 89 online tours.

As a result, we processed 144 rental applications in December 2016 which was the busiest December in at least 4 years.

In 2016, we processed 2197 rental applications compared to 2159 in 2015 and 2208 in 2014.  For the last 3 years, we’ve processed an average of 9+ rental applications every work day.

In 2016, we processed 8804 work orders compared to 8947 in 2015 and 8019 in 2014.  For the last 3 years, we’ve processed an average of 35+ work orders every work day.

We have the properties!   We have the prospects!     We have the staff & systems!

And T. R. LAWING REALTY is excited about 2017!

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New For 2017! We Are Going Paperless!

A growing number of our owners receive their monthly statements and payments electronically.  What our owners may not be unaware of is that it takes many elves, a lot of patience and tons of paper to provide each individual owner their monthly statements.

After a long and thoughtful search, we found just the right system to handle our volume of business and during the month of December, we have been progressively implementing this new system and training our staff.

Our new platform is by AvidXchange, a local company with a national presence, and:

  • Is tightly integrated with MRI (our current and long trusted software)
  • Will eliminate the manual coding of 90+% of our invoices, especially from utilities
  • Will eliminate the need to manually scan invoices at the end of each month
    • Each of our owner/clients will receive a custom emessage including links or attachments
  • Will eliminate the need to manually file each entity’s monthly statements
    • Paper files will be maintained only for miscellaneous correspondence, insurance policies, leases, etc.
  • Will add more safeguards, for example, in regards to large invoices and duplicate invoices.
  • Will keep each Property Manager better informed as to the expenses for his/her portfolio.
  • Will expedite payments to all of our vendors.
  • Will provide access to all accounts payable data from all types of devices.

Another reason you can trust your investment to an experienced, local manager with proven abilities, systems, integrity, industry knowledge and management expertise.


Property Management: Who is responsible for lawn care?

Who is responsible for lawn care at rental properties? Some people feel that it’s the responsibility of the tenant while others believe that the owner or property manager should handle the task. Unfortunately, there is no clear cut answer about who should be in charge of yard work. The answer typically depends on the situation and the property.

When property management should be responsible:

There are some situations where yard work is clearly the property manager’s responsibility. If the property has multiple units, such as an apartment building or complex, it would be unreasonable to expect tenants to maintain the yard. Most lawn areas are shared spaces, so it would be difficult to allocate lawn care tasks fairly. Plus, having a tidy, uniform lawn area is part of the appeal for apartment complexes and this uniformity would be absent if each tenant did a portion of the work.

The gray area:

Single unit properties can create a gray area about who should be responsible for lawn care. One important issue in solving this quandary are homeowner association rules. If the rental property is located in a neighborhood with an HOA, it’s likely that there are rules that govern lawn maintenance. If the HOA will fine the tenants directly, the landlord may require tenants to handle lawn care. However, if the HOA will fine the property owner for poorly-maintained lawns, the owner would be wise to hire a landscaping company and adjust the rent accordingly. Also, property managers who are highly particular about the appearance of the yard may want to take control of maintenance instead of relying on tenants.

The bottom line:

Yard care can be a sticky subject for property managers and tenants alike. The bottom line is that tenants and property managers will have to come to an agreement about lawn care prior to signing the written lease. It is quite common for property owners to ask renters to maintain the yard for single family homes, so renters should make sure to read their lease carefully for stipulations about lawn care and ask the property manager for clarification prior to signing. Tenants that will be responsible for lawn care should also ask if they will need to provide their own mower or other equipment because purchasing this equipment will be an added cost that tenants will need to plan for.


Spectacular Christmas Light Displays in the Charlotte Area

With the holiday season soon upon us, now is a good time to start planning activities for your entire family to enjoy. Visiting some of the spectacular Christmas light displays throughout the Charlotte area is a special treat that everyone can enjoy, regardless of age. These displays have become more elaborate each year with special lighting effects and choreography that will amaze all and put you in the holiday spirit.

Free Light Shows

Many homeowners are getting in on the act by creating their own light displays and the best thing is they are free. However, some do accept donations to give to their charity of choice. This year check out the following displays around the Charlotte area:

Lights at the Quarter – Located behind the PNC Music Pavilion in Charlotte, LATQ offers thousands of lights that you can enjoy free from the comfort of your card. Check their Facebook page for start dates and any weather-related announcements.

Christmas Town USA – Enjoy the hometown feel of Christmas Town USA with additional entertainment and events throughout the holiday season. Located at 100 Main Street in McAdenville, the lights go on December 1.

Make it a Speedway Christmas

Returning again this year to the Charlotte Motor Speedway is Speedway Christmas. Drive through three and a half miles and taking in over 3,000.000 lights and take the children to see Santa, pet the animals at the petting zoo or watch a movie on their giant 16,000-foot movie screen. Ticket prices start at $20 per carload.

You do not have to pay much to make holiday memories holiday memories with your family. Just hop in your car and enjoy the festive entertainment


Tips for renters; preparing your home for colder weather

There’s no better time than the fall for getting your rental property ready for winter. Routine tasks that you address now – such as the ones listed here – will prevent serious issues that could arise when colder temperatures creep in.

Make service calls

It’s always a good idea to service those systems that are used heavily in the winter before the temperatures start to dip. Both you and your property management team can schedule these tasks, especially those that require the services of a professional – such as an HVAC/furnace specialist. If you own a fireplace, make sure it’s clean and inspected before using it for the first time.

Clear out gutter, drains, and down spouts

Your property management team can handle this routine but very necessary maintenance. Clogged gutters and drains can lead to expensive water damage. You never know when a winter storm is going to hit – whether it’s heavy rain or snow – this task will give you peace of mind.

Talk to tenants

Being proactive about getting your rental home ready for winter should always be the goal of you and your property management team, but it’s the tenants who will have the greatest impact on your rental’s condition during colder months. Talk with them about the importance of keeping the house ventilated, as well as the importance of reporting any issues, no matter how minor. Your property managers can also provide tenants with a checklist of potential issues they should be aware of.

Check window and doors

Loose caulking and gaps between windows, doors, and their frames are a source of heat loss that can raise your energy bill. Make sure to check if all of your doors and windows are properly sealed.

Inspect the roof

Your roof can take a beating during the harsh weather conditions of winter. Your property management team can check for loose or cracked shingles that may indicate more serious issues.

Disconnect outdoor hoses

Disconnecting and draining outdoor hoses is another important winter prep task – especially if you live in colder climates. This will prevent pipes from freezing.

Safeguard your A/C unit

Fall is a great time to safeguard your air conditioning unit for winter. Make sure it’s clear of debris, and cover it if you live in harsh weather regions.




What is the screening process for tenants by a property management company

One of the greatest benefits of having a property management company manage your rental properties is having the company handle the screening process for potential renters. The screening process leaves little room for error, because if you rent to the wrong renter, it could take you years to recover from the financial implications if the tenant defaults on rent or destroys your property. A property management company will do a comprehensive vetting to screen out risky renters and help reduce your risks.

Red Flags a Property Management Screens For

Potential renters are required to fill out a rental application that will provide financial and previous renting information. This information is used to conduct their screening to determine whether they are too much of a risk to rent to.

Checking credit scores and credit reports are pretty standard when screening potential renters, but these two items could be considered only the top of the iceberg when vetting new renters. There are other factors to consider, such as:

  •  Confirmation of income and employment. Confirming that a potential rental is actually financially able to pay their rent is very important. If their income cannot justify their ability to pay their rent or they have a history of job-hopping, they would be considered too risky to rent to.
  • Criminal history. It’s a serious red flag if an examination of a potential rental’s criminal history shows that they have multiple convictions for offenses other than traffic-related violations. This usually means they have issues with following rules, so it is more likely they will not obey the terms of a rental lease.
  • Bad or no references from previous landlords. A prospective renter that doesn’t have good references from previous landlords presents a risk. They may avoid giving this information to avoid tipping you off that they have prior evictions or are not responsible renters.
  • Previous evictions. Checking nationwide eviction data is important to avoid renting to people who make it a habit of not paying their rent or destroying rental property. Multiple evictions show that a potential renter would be too risky to allow to rent your property.

Hiring a property management company that will screen your prospective renters for you will save you some of the headaches associated with the screening process. This allows you to focus on other areas of your property dealings.

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Language Line – Oct 2016

We are always proud when we use Language Line as it shows that we give our international prospects & residents the very best service available.

We thought you’d be interested to know that Leasing Dept is becoming the poster children for Language Line!

In October, we used online translators 12 times for a little more than 2 hours.



Early voting starts this Thursday.   Do you know who you will be voting for?

The candidates we elect at the federal, state and local levels will decide many issues including:

  • Data privacy & security
  • Copyright protection
  • Mortgage interest deduction
  • 1031 like-kind exchanges
  • Flood insurance
  • Student loan debt

Your vote counts!