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Sell or Buy? A 2017 Outlook

When it comes to buying and selling real estate, getting the timing just right can depend on your property, local market trends, and other factors that are purely subjective. Across the board, however, the 2016 Q4 HOME Survey by the National Association of Realtors found that optimism abounds among residential real estate buyers and sellers. Those with a little more experience and more money to spend are also more optimistic than first-time homebuyers, and a majority of those surveyed said they believe home prices have increased in the past year.

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How Online Videos Can Increase Occupancy Rate

Video tours of your rental property are highly undervalued. They’re the workhorse of around-the-clock marketing plans that can create buzz about your property and make it the hottest place to live in your town. Don’t have any videos of your property doing all the work for you? Here’s why that’s a mistake:

  1. Visual appeal. A bulleted list of amenities can appeal to some rental property shoppers, but a video tour or simple slide show is far more persuasive. If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video adds much more value to someone who is able to see inside their new home.
  2. Timely. Prospective tenants can get a lot of information in a three-minute video tour than they can reading through a lengthy list of amenities. Their eyes can see details that your words might not describe as well, and it’s a quick way to give them all the information they need about your property while respecting the value of their time.
  3. Searchable. Search engines love videos, so if you’re not using video tours of your properties, you’re missing out on a whole lot of exposure. Link to your videos from articles, social media posts, and a YouTube channel to cast the widest possible net for new renters. It’s important to promote your videos properly to maximize your audience.

Videos are popular online because they’re engaging and convey a lot of information. They’re a real estate sales tool that works, and they work just the same for rental properties. Nine out of 10 prospective renters search multiple websites when looking for a new home. If your property’s video shows up near the top of all their searches, that keeps your property top-of-mind and keeps occupancy rates high.

Learn more! Contact us today at 817-284-1411 or via email at info@classamgmt.com.

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Do You Need a Roommate?

So, you graduated college and got a job. The next logical step in the process might seem like moving into an apartment or rental home on your own; but hold the phone. The cost of living is rising and that means tougher times ahead for individuals who are or want to be living on their own.

The following infographic, designed by Condo Move, takes a deep dive into the rental living situation on a worldwide basis. Do you need a roommate? This is designed to help you figure that out:

roommate1

 

Class A Management manages a number of affordable, well-maintained and operated multifamily properties across Texas and in areas of Oklahoma and Kansas. Take a look at our properties for updated information and to view contact details. Have a question or concern? Contact a management professional at 817-284-1411 or by email to: info@classamgmt.com.

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How to Winterize Your Property

How To Winterize Your Property, Street Light

Winter is the favorite time of the year for most of us. The excitement of Christmas and New Year is in the air but not knowing how to winterize your property could get you in trouble. Here are a few ways to do so:
1. Exterior pipes
The responsibility to keep the exterior pipes insulated becomes high-priority during the winter season. Completing this task can help you prevent any unwanted pipe breakage.
2. Shut the windows
Pull any storm windows down. This will build yourself that extra layer of protection. Remove the screen outside of all windows.
3. Maintain cleanliness
Remove debris by cleaning ledges, chimneys and exhaust systems.
4. Quick fix:
If the bottom of the doors are left with gaps then the chance of heat being lost increases. A plastic “door sweep” or a towel kept along the bottom of the door will be a simple and an easy solution to keep the warmth intact indoors.
5. Curtains:
A set of beautiful curtains will not only bring a refreshing feel to the place but it will also help in keeping the place warm.
6. Change filters:
To maintain efficiency, change all the filters and get the mechanical systems checked.
7. Turn the direction of your fan:
When you turn the direction of the ceiling fan clockwise, the heat is forced to stay in the lower direction.
8. Air conditioning window units:
If any air conditioning window units are not installed correctly, properly insulate them or simply remove them for a season.
Making yourself ready for the winter will help you and your family enjoy the holiday season blissfully.

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The Trend Continues: Backyard Chickens

About three years ago, I wrote an article on the popularity of raising backyard chickens, and why it might not be a bad idea to consider allowing tenants to keep either individual or shared coops on your property. If you were among those who laughed at the idea, it may be time to reconsider.

According to the Worldwatch Institute, “Raising backyard chickens is an extension of an urban farming movement that has gained popularity nationwide. Home-raised livestock or agriculture avoids the energy usage and carbon emissions typically associated with transporting food.” Additionally, the quote from my last article begs repeating:

Backyard chickens have become so mainstream that retailers from Wal-Mart to Williams-Sonoma carry coops. Cities from Portland, Ore., to Portland, Maine, have revised their laws to allow small flocks. After more than a year of study, the Richmond County City Council (WASH) this spring agreed to allow residents to keep up to four chickens. Rob Ludlow, the owner of BackyardChickens.com, said his community forum has grown from 50 members to 200,000 in the past six years.

Yet, avoiding energy usage and carbon emissions aren’t the only reasons why people are turning to the chicken way of life. A more sustainable way of obtaining food is a major driver, but companionship is just as important for many chicken-raisers.

As a property owner or manager, the thought of chickens may give you heartburn. The noise…the smell…the noise…it may be hard to see the benefits. Yet, it’s really not the chickens who are loud…it’s roosters. And, you can have one without the other. Roosters are only necessary if tenants are asking for baby chicks. Chickens lay eggs without them and are relatively quiet on their own. In fact, any noise they make is akin to a small yard dog. They also are relatively low maintenance, and can be kept clean with proper care.

As far as true benefits, we learn from research that a growing one’s food, in effect, “gets people together, fosters tenant loyalty, and encourages further community involvement. Loyalty? Absolutely. It comes from the desire to watch the chickens grow and experience the fruits of one’s own labor.

Ready, set, coop!

If you’ve been approached for chicken coop approval, you’re not alone. Apartment managers everywhere are feeling the pressure. But before you say ‘yes,’ you must first make sure your property is zoned to allow them. If you find that it is, then my best recommendation is to include a clause or amendment in your lease that is specific to the construction and maintenance or participation of the coop and its residents. There should also be language about tenant accountability for rehoming the chickens and discarding the coop if and when there is no longer interest in maintaining them.

Or…you can just call the professionals at Class A Management. Chickens? We got that covered, too. Call us today at 817-284-1411, or send us an email to info@classamgmt.com.