Simple Tips For Improving Your Houston Texas Rental Property

Winter is a great time to do improve your Houston Texas Rental Property especially if you’re between renters now and want to rent your property for more money.

In this video you will learn simple DIY projects that you can do yourself without having to spend a lot of money.

About DIY Projects

Do it yourself, also known as DIY, is the method of building, modifying, or repairing something without the direct aid of experts or professionals. Academic research describes DIY as behaviors where “individuals engage raw and semi-raw materials and component parts to produce, transform, or reconstruct material possessions, including those drawn from the natural environment (e.g. landscaping)”. DIY behavior can be triggered by various motivations previously categorized as marketplace motivations (economic benefits, lack of product availability, lack of product quality, need for customization), and identity enhancement (craftsmanship, empowerment, community seeking, uniqueness).

Source – Wikipedia 

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For affordable and effective Houston Texas Property Management contact Vestpro Residetial Services today by connecting with us through our website or calling (832) 498-0016.

Should You Require Your Houston Renters To Have Renters Insurance?

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Houston Renters

By Vestpro Residential Services

One of the biggest questions that many property owners have is if they should require their Houston renters to have renters insurance. An answer to this question is yes.

In this post will break down exactly what renters insurance is and how it affects the lives of every renter by being a form of insurance protection that they can rely upon should their personal belongings be damaged or destroyed due to an act of God like a fire, flood or some other type of damage.

How Should Houston Renters Get Started With Renters Insurance?

 Thankfully it’s very easy to get started with renters insurance thanks to the Internet, any Houston renter can search online and get quotes for a renters insurance policy in as little as 10 minutes.

A typical renter’s insurance policy will cost a renter about $30 per month and the average deductible will be about $500.

Property owners in Houston should require their tenants to have renters insurance because, not only does the renters insurance policy protect the tenant if their personal belongings are damaged or destroyed due to fire or some other act of God, the renters insurance policy also acts as a liability policy by protecting the tenant if one of their guests is injured and needs medical attention while they are in the tenants rental property.

Besides covering the medical costs and expenses, the renter’s insurance policy will also cover the tenant’s legal costs as well.

General Renters Insurance Requirements

Many large and medium-sized rental properties include a requirement in their lease that tenants hold renters’ insurance. If the tenant damages the premises, the landlord and other tenants can recover against the perpetrator’s insurance. Renters’ insurance also informs the tenant that the landlord is not responsible for their belongings and that the tenant has coverage for them. But it is important to know what type of damage your insurance covers. Basically, there are three types of coverage available: loss of use, personal property, and personal liability.

Source – Wikipedia

The Asset Your Tenants Need

Another benefit of a typical renter’s insurance policy is that the coverage will also provide financial assistance for the tenant if they are displaced in have to live in a hotel for a time following damage to their rental property.

Get Houston Property Management

To get started with Houston Texas property management contact Vestpro Residential Services today by calling us at (832) 498-0016 or click here to connect with us online.

For Rent In Houston – What’s Different about This Housing Market?

For Rent In Houston
For Rent In Houston

By Mike Buish – Vestpro Residential Services

If you own one or more rental properties for Rent in Houston you have most likely noticed that this Real Estate market is different than other Real Estate markets in the past.

What’s different in the Real Estate market now compared to previous markets?

The main thing that’s different about this current Real Estate market compared to others is that that current housing boom is considered to be far less precarious than other markets and recoveries because, after the recent collapse of the housing market in 2006 many mortgage lenders have tightened up their lending requirements and standards so it’s more difficult for people to get a mortgage loan now than before especially if they can’t prove their income and that they have the ability to repay their mortgage loans.

Is Now A Great Time To Buy A Rental Property?

 Yes, now is a great time to buy a Rental Property and list it for Rent In Houston because we still are enjoying the lowest Mortgage Interest Rates that we’ve seen in years and the supply of rentals has still not been able to keep up with demand so now is a great time to buy rental properties and build rental income.

Save Time and Money with Property Management

Once you start adding more rental properties to your portfolio it’s time to save yourself time and money by investing in professional property management service before marketing your property for rent in Houston yourself.

Contact Vestpro Residential Services today by calling us at (832) 498-0016 or click here to connect with us online.

5 interest rate basics to know in advance of the Fed’s big move

The Federal Reserve could boost interest rates as early as this month, as has been discussed in a gazillion news articles. That move, when it comes, will affect almost everyone, in some way.

But a lot of the reporting and speculation about the Fed’s next move likely has gone over the heads of millions of Americans. If a sizable slice of the country has problems grasping the basics on interest rates — how compounding works, the link between rates and inflation, and so on — they might not understand what the next central bank action could mean.

Various surveys indicate that many Americans continue to struggle with financial literacy topics, including those related to interest rates. This hasn’t stopped millions of people from using credit cards, taking out student loans and buying homes and cars with borrowed money, though it does help to explain why some people face debt problems.

Source – Usatoday

Little movement in the bond market

Mortgage rates have tended to fade big moves in the bond market lately. When rates fall well below 1.9% on the ten-year bond, mortgage rates slightly fall. Similarly, when rates rise to 2.3%, mortgage rates tend to rise slightly.

Mortgage rates have largely ignored the moves in the bond markets lately. Last week, ended December 4, they fell by four basis points while the ten-year bond yield rose from 2.22% to 2.27%. Investors interested in making directional bets on interest rates can look at the iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond ETF (TLT).

Effect on mortgage REITs

Mortgage bankers such as Nationstar Mortgage (NSM) and Wells Fargo (WFC) are looking forward to 2016 at this point. The Mortgage Bankers Association has put out initial estimates for 2016, and it’s predicting improvement in the purchase business, but a continuing fall in the refinance business, as rates rise.

The drop in prepayment speeds would be good news for mortgage REITs such as Annaly Capital Management (NLY) and American Capital Agency (AGNC) as they are highly-leveraged agency REITs with a lot of prepayment exposure. Non-agency REITs such as Redwood Trust (RWT) tend to swap interest rate risk for credit risk.

Investors interested in trading in the mortgage REIT sector through an ETF can look at the iShares Mortgage Real Estate Capped ETF (REM).

Source – marketrealist.com

 

About Vestpro

Started by Mike and Kim Buish, Vestpro Residential Services is a property management company specializing in residential property management in the Houston area and surrounding cities.

Whether you are a property owner or a prospective tenant, Vestpro has the expertise to handle your property management needs.

Call us at (832) 498-0016 or click here to connect with us online

 

 

How To Get Started With Houston Rental Property

Houston Property Management
Houston Property Management 

Are you thinking about getting started with investing in Houston Rental Property? If so, you’ve come to the right place.

In this post we will provide you with several tips for getting started with investing in rental property so you will start enjoying positive cash flow and enjoy all of the benefits of owning rental property. 

The media and real estate professionals continually report that 2012 is the year to buy real estate. Since home values have dropped considerably, the U.S. median list price has dropped considerably, too. Couple that with interest rates that are the lowest they’ve ever been and it’s a perfect storm of real estate buying opportunity, especially for starting out your career as a landlord.

Here are tips to get started. And, if you start a few years out of college, and amass several properties, you will probably be retiring early.

Go for the long haul — Rarely do people increase their wealth by owning property for short periods of time. Long-term investing in cash flow-producing assets like real estate is the way to go.

Don’t’ give up your day job! – You need a solid job to be able to save money for a down payment and be able to obtain financing to buy properties.

Buy cash flow-positive properties – If you don’t understand why to do this, you might want to skip real estate ownership. See “What is a Good Real Estate Investment” article.

Buy a property that you love! – The more you love the property for all the right investment reasons, the better chances you’ll own it long term.

Skip the prize properties – Prize properties have negative cash flows and are NO prize, it’s the moderately priced properties that are the real prizes.

Buy as a personal residence to change to rental – Buy properties in life that make good rental property investment sense and first live in them as a personal residence. When you buy as owner occupant, you get the best financing and can put down a smaller down payment if you so desire. Plus you learn the property characteristics, issues, and can fix issues so they won’t be issues once you make it a rental. Then, move out after one to three years and into your next personal residence that will become a rental property a few years later. This also ensures you will only buy properties in areas where you are willing to live, and that’s very important to do as a real estate investor.

If it sounds too good to be true, it is! – Real estate is high risk as there are many things that can go very wrong. If it sounds too good to be true, be very careful. Once you take ownership of the property, you have to correct the problems and issues,or live with them.

Fully educate yourself for 3-6 months – Talk to other people who own properties, read books, go to the local real estate investment clubs, etc. The better you educate yourself, the higher the chances you will take the proper steps to reduce your risks and make smart and safe decisions.

Buy properties in good shape – Fixer-uppers are money pits and rarely sell at a large enough discount to compensate for all the work needed. Buy properties that are as close to rental ready as possible. A great move, if possible, is to buy a property with a good tenant already renting the property!

Be conservative on your expectations – Always overestimate the amount it will cost to renovate a property, underestimate the rental income you will earn, and overestimate the expenses you will have to pay. Then, when you blow it out of the water, you’ll have a big smile on your face and be able to gloat to all your friends!

Source – Zillow 

Contact Vestpro Residential Services 

For more information on the on how to get started with owning Houston Rental Property, or to learn more about the property management services we can offer you contact us today by calling (832) 498-0016 or click here to connect with us online. 

3 Reasons to Consider Passive Houston Texas Real Estate Investing

So you’re thinking about getting involved in Houston Texas Real Estate Investing but will your Real Estate investment be a passive investment?

In this post we will share with you 3 tips you can use to insure that your Houston Texas Real Estate investment will be 100% passive so you can continue working in your current job while your rental property makes money for you, even while you sleep.

Passive Tip #1 – Purhase a Property with Existing Tenants

Instead of buying rental property that’s vacant or needs repairs you should search for rental properties with existing tenants because the cash flow for those properties is already established and your money can start working for you 24-7.

If you are short on funds to purcahse a propert consider crowdfunding.

Crowdfunding is opening up investing to anyone with a little extra cash these days as regulations change and entrepreneurs take advantage of the expanding marketplace.

Source – abc15.com

Passive Tip #2 – Hire a The Right Property Management Company 

One of the big mistakes most investors make when they are just getting started with buying rental property is thinking they can do everything themselves.

Don’t make this mistake! Hire a property management company in Houston Texas immediately when you buy your first rental property because this will save you the time, money and hassle of having to manage your property yourself and you will have more time to actually grow your portfolio.

As an investor and entrepreneur, you should always be on the lookout for ways outside the obvious to improve your return. When using personal funds to invest, the best way to do it is through a self-directed IRA. A self-directed IRA is the same as the usual IRA, however, it allows alternative investments for your retirement savings. By investing through an IRA, you can avoid using your taxed income. Most banks have this option, so it’s best to speak with a financial advisor before diving in head first with this kind of investment — and remember to leave yourself with something for retirement.

Source – entrepreneur.com 

Passive Tip #3 – Use The Tax Advantages Uncle Sam Offers You

Last of all, but most important, as you are buying Houston Texas Real Estate you should keep in mind that there’s a lot that Uncle Sam can do for you especially if you have an investment that’s equity structured because will be able to keep most of your income and have cash returns which are tax deferred.

As a rental property owner, you are able to deduct nearly all the expenses you’ll pay to manage your property. Everything from the mortgage interest you pay on the loan all the way down to the paper you buy for your printer (if you are using that printer primarily for real estate investing purposes, that is).

Source – Biggerpockets.com 

Get Houston Texas Property Management

To get Houston Texas property management contact Vestpro Residential Services, LLC today by clicking here to connect with us online or calling us at (832) 498-0016.

 

7 Things To Know Before Owning Houston Texas Income Property

HOUSTON – Your friends, family members and co-workers have all been suggesting that you invest in Houston Texas Income property because it’s a great way to build wealth especially in this day and age where there’s a HUGE demand for rental properties in Houston and across the United States.

Although you’re excited about the prospect of investing in Houston Texas Income Property there’s a problem, you don’t know what to expect with being a property owner.

In this post we will share with you 7 things to know before owning Houston Texas Income Property.

Tip #1 – Think About The Marketability Of The Rental Property

Before buying Houston Texas Income Property you should first think about the marketability of the rental property because even though the rental you’re interested is on sale for a great price, if that property is not in a prime location then it’s not going to be in demand.

Here are some questions to ask when buying a rental property:

  • Is it located near the highway?
  • Are there stores, shops and restaurants nearby?
  • How far is the rental from community colleges or major universities?
  • Is the location of the rental in a walkable neighborhood so that a renter can get to and from anywhere on foot if needed?
  • How many recreational amenities or attractions are nearby?

Tip #2 – Make Sure The Rental Property Is Ready To Be Rented

Now that you’ve found a great rental property in Houston the next step is to make sure that it’s actually ready to be rented and won’t require thousands of dollars in maintenance or repairs before you can start advertising it.

Tip #3 – Be Ready For Paying Higher Property Taxes

When buying Houston Texas Rental Property it’s important to remember that you may be required to pay a much higher property tax bill that what you are currently paying right now because you may be benefiting from an exemption on your primary residence and could be in for a shock when you realize that the property tax cap in your rental property could be at least one percentage point higher than what you’re accoustomed to paying right now.

Before buying a rental property in Houston it’s best to consult with an accountant to verify the property tax rate you could expect to pay so you can budget for paying that tax bill and determine the rent you will have to charge so you can turn a profit.

Tip #4 – Yes, There Are Some Bad Tenants Out There

One of the biggest things you have to be ready for when buying Houston Texas Income Property is that there’s going to be a few “bad tenants” that you will encounter but the good news is that by hiring an experienced Houston Texas Property management company like Vestpro Residential Services can save you a lot of time and money of advertising, screening and choosing the most well qualified tenants for your rental properties.

With great property management on your side you can enjoy the benefits of owning rental property while ultimately deciding to grow your portfolio of income properties as you move forward.

Tip #5 – Excellent Tenants Are Literally Worth Their Weight In Gold

Over the years that you own rental property in Houston you’re going to have at least one tenant who will take such great care of your property that you will hate to see them go.

In this situation it’s best to consider offering that tenant incentives to stay like not increasing their rent next year or waving any pet deposit fees so they can have a dog or cat in the rental property.

Tip #6 – Repairs Will Come And It’s Best To Be Ready For Them Now

Another important thing to remember when owning Houston Texas Income Property is that repairs will come and when they do you’re going to be often shocked with the amount you will be required to spend to make those repairs so it’s best to start budgeting for them now so that when the time does come to make repairs on your rental property you will be ready.

Tip #7 – Don’t Be Afraid To Set Rules And Then Stick With Them

Last of all, but most important, don’t be afraid to set rules and then stick with them because you’re going to find that some tenants will not respect you or your rental property unless you lay out the rules and then let that tenant know what the penalties are for breaking them.

For example: some property owners in Houston may be okay with their tenants paying the rent “when they can” and even give their tenants a 10 day window until their rent is actually due. This is always a bad idea because most tenants won’t hesitate to pay their rent by the tenth day of the month, every month, so you should always be strict when it comes to when you want to be paid rent and let tenants know that they will have to pay a late fee if they fail to pay on time.

Get Property Management For Your Houston Texas Income Property

To get property management for your Houston Texas Income Property contact Vestpro Residential Services today by calling us at (832) 498-0016 or CLICK HERE to connect with us online.

Should You Accept Cash From Your Houston Texas Renter?

 

So you’re just getting started with owning your first rental property and your Houston Texas Renter wants to pay their rent in cash. This is one of the most common Houston Texas Property Management questions property owners have and for good reasons because although accepting payment in cash may seem easier than other forms of payment it’s not always the best option for the property owner especially for these reasons.

You Won’t Really Know Who You Are Renting To

Although not everyone who refuses to pay via check has something to hide, you will always know who you are renting to when you require your tenants to pay via check, money order or cashier’s check because each form of payment has an actual record associated with it and you can always go back to the institution that issued the check or money order if problems arise with tat payment.

You’re Not Safe Storing Or Carrying Cash Rent Payments 

Another reason to have a no cash policy is because you will ultimately have to take that cash to the bank, or store it in your office temporarily, and there’s always the potential risk of keeping large amounts of cash lying around until you’re able to deposit it.

Cash Isn’t The Easiest Optin For Your Houston Texas Renter 

Last of all, but most important, another reason to not accept cash from your tenants is that those payments will always have to be logged and the tenant who pays in cash will have to receive a receipt.

Accepting cash can open the door to problems for your company because the tenant can always say that they didn’t receive a receipt from you so it’s best to state your preference for checks, cashier checks or money orders in the very beginning rather than accepting cash or make it easier for your tenants to pay their rent by setting up an online payment system so they can pay rent via their smart phones or mobile devices.

Contact Vestpro Residential Services, LLC

To learn more tips on dealing with Houston Texas Renters or to get more information about the property management services we can offer you contact us today by calling (832) 498-0016 or CLICK HERE to connect with us online.

 

What Is A Surety Bond? Should You Consider This Alternative To Security Deposits?

 

By Vestpro Residential Services

As a landlord one of the most common problems that you may face is the possibility of renting to someone who may have great references, a full-time job and seem like an awesome person but, they don’t have the money you require for a deposit.

Although you may have had to walk away from potential renters like this in the past who didn’t have the money that you required for deposit, there is a solution to this problem in the form of a surety bond.

What Are Surety Bonds?

Surety bonds are the least understood alternative to the deposit, but it’s also one of the most viable, because, a surety bond is actually a contractual promise to you that if your tenant fails to comply with the terms of your lease the bond company will be ready to compensate you up to the limits of the surety bond.

How Do Surety Bonds Work?

If you’re familiar with how the justice system works at all, when somebody gets arrested their bail can sometimes be set at anywhere from $1000 or more and, the person who is detained only has to put up about $100 or higher depending on the bail amount and if they are able to make bail at all.

The only catch with bail is that if the formerly detained person decides to skip town, or skip the hearing, they will have forfeited the bond and the bail company now has the legal right to go after them.

A surety bond functions exactly the same way. The tenant who is unable to pay the deposit but decides to go with the surety bond will be responsible for paying a deposit to the bond company of up to 20% of the total sum of the deposit.

Let’s say that a tenant decides to break or violate some terms of their lease, the landlord has the legal right to file a claim against the tenant which the bond company will be responsible for paying for, and as with the example of somebody skipping bail, if the former tenant decides to skip town and not pay the percentage of the surety bond then the bond company will go after them as well.

Get Professional Property Management Here

For professional property management for your rental property contact Vestpro Residential Services today by clicking here to connect with us online or calling (832) 498-0016.

How Much Money Should You Charge For Rent?

By Vestpro Residential Services

HOUSTON – As longtime Houston Texas property managers, one of the most common questions that we’ve seen every single owner have after they’ve purchased a rental property in the Houston area, or elsewhere across the United States is: what should I rent my property for?

The answer to this question depends on who you ask but, thankfully determining the right amount to rent for your Houston Texas rental property is a lot easier than you think especially if you follow these simple steps.

#1 – What Does Your Houston Texas Rental Property Offer?

The first thing that you need to do when determining what to charge for rent is to think about all of the features and amenities that your Houston Texas rental property has to offer a typical renter.

Some of the features and amenities that your rental property might offer a typical renter could include:

  1. Your rental is located in a quiet neighborhood.
  2. It’s close to the University.
  3. Offers more storage space because it has a garage, attic or basement.
  4. It’s located near the best restaurants, bars, shops or stores.
  5. Your rental property is close to public transportation like: trains and buses.
  6. Your Houston Texas rental property is located in a walkable neighborhood, meaning that anything that a typical renter could want is within easy walking distance.

#2 – What Is The “Ballpark” Rent In Houston Right Now?

Depending on when you’re reading this article, that Houston Texas rental market could either have gone way up, or it’s gone down, depending upon economic conditions, job gains or losses and the state of the global economy.

This is why it’s important to establish a ballpark rent for the Houston Texas rental market right now that includes the average high rent, and average low rent for single-family homes, condos and townhomes in the Houston area.

Now you’re probably asking “how in the world am I going to determine the ballpark rents for an average Houston Texas rental right now?” I’m not a property manager. The answer to this question is a lot easier than you thought, to determine the average ballpark rent for a property in Houston right now just go online and visit websites like Zillow or rent jungle.

What’s great about websites like Zillow is that they offer you plenty of historical data and also accurate information regarding the rental market so you know what your property may have rented for in the past and what it should be renting for right now because the goal is to always rent your property for what it’s worth right now.

#3 – What Do Comparable Properties Have To Offer?

Last of all, but most important, think like a renter and take at least one day to visit comparable rental properties in the area and find out what those properties offer.

Do they offer the same bedrooms, bathrooms and square footage that your property offers? Do they have plenty of amenities like a hot tub, on-site fitness center, dog run or laundry area?

After taking the time to come up with a ballpark rent for Houston Texas rental properties, analyzing all the features and benefits that your rental property has to offer and visiting comparable properties in the area you should have more than enough information at your fingertips to come up with an accurate rent to charge for your Houston Texas rental property.

Get Houston Texas Property Management

To save time and money with renting your Houston Texans rental property yourself, contact the team of property management experts at Vestpro Residential Services today by clicking here to contact us online or by calling us at (832) 498-0016.

Are Low Oil Prices Affecting Multi-Family Rental Performance In Houston?

By Vestpro Residential Services, LLC

HOUSTON, Texas – Earlier this year the multi-family rental market in Houston was booming as the city remained one of the top relocation destinations in the United States and in spite of low oil prices Houston still continues to remain strong and doesn’t show any sign of slowing down.

Rent Growth Levels Are Increasing

Thanks to recent statistics from Jay Parsons of MPF Research we know that lease renewals have actually increased every month of this year instead of decrease like many people initially thought they would.

As of April 2015 lease over rent growth increased by 6.1% and that’s much higher than the 5.3% lease over rent growth that we saw back in 2011.

Renter retention has also increased for 20 months straight and hasn’t shown any sign of stopping but the big question is why are renters staying put and renewing their leases?

In a recent interview Jay Parsons had this to say about renter retention in 2015: “Renters are increasingly choosing to stay put and renew their leases in spite of rapidly rising rents and historically large levels of new supply, which logic would suggest would be driving down retention. And the fact that retention is still so strong speaks to the depth of demand for apartments and to the absence of any sort of affordability crisis in conventional, investment-grade apartments.”

Grow Your Rental Property Portfolio Now

Another great reason to grow your portfolio of rental properties now is low mortgage interest rates which have continued to remain at 4%, or lower, all year long.

Recent news from Janet Yellen and the Federal Reserve indicates that the Fed most likely will not raise interest rates this year so if you’ve been thinking about adding more properties to your portfolio there’s never been a better time than right now

Get Houston Texas Property Management

Stop managing your rental properties yourself, save time and money with effective Houston Texas Property Management by contacting Vestpro Residential Services today by clicking here, or calling us at (832) 498-0016.