What are the main reasons you should invest in Houston Real Estate?

Have you been thinking about investing in Houston Real Estate but you’re not sure if now is the right time for you to invest or not?

Now is a great time to invest in Real Estate especially for these reasons:

Reason #1 – Demand

Thanks to a recent study by the Harvard University Joint Center for Housing Studies and their 2015 State of the Nation’s Housing Report we know that demand has been one of the primary factors which has been driving the Real Estate market during 2015.

There’s been huge demand for rental properties and an even bigger demand for homes for sale thanks to historically low mortgage interest rates which has brought out the first time home buyer, and casual investor, in search of Houston Texas Real Estate and homes nationwide.

Reason #2 – Mortgage Interest Rates Will Increase

Many economists predict that Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen will be increasing mortgage interest rates gradually in the coming months and these increases can mean the difference between paying less money now for a mortgage payment, or more if you buy a home in the future.

Reason #3 – Home Ownership Has Dropped While Renting Has Increased

Last of all, but most important, you should invest in Houston Texas Real Estate is because of the fact that renting has increased across the United States while the actual homeownership rate has decreased.

With a greater demand for rentals nationwide especially among Millennials and Baby Boomers it makes sense to invest in Real Estate because that demand isn’t expected to change in the coming years.

Get Property Management Here!

To get started with investing in Houston Real Estate contact Vestpro Residential Services, LLC today by calling us at (832) 498-0016 or CLICK HERE to connect with us online.

Houston Real Estate

Pool Safety Tips To Start Using Now

The “dog days” of summer are officially here and for the coming months we can expect temperatures in the Houston area to reach the triple digits.

If you own a rental property with a pool or spa area it’s more important than ever for you to be enforcing pool safety rules because not only will this protect your tenants, it will also protect your best interests as well and avoid any accidents, injuries or lawsuits at your swimming pool.

Pool Safety Tips You Should Start Using Now

  1. Install anti-entrapment drain covers. Make sure that your drain covers are compliant with the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool & Spa Safety Act of 2007. Virginia was the 6-year-old granddaughter of former Secretary of State James Baker. She was killed in 2003 when the suction from a hot tub drain caused her to drown. The federal law was named in her memory. Between 2012 and 2016, 17 people were trapped by drains, 14 of whom were younger than 15 years old. 2 of those victims drowned, both in residential spas.

  2. Use safety vacuum release systems with pool pumps. If the pump detects a change in vacuum pressure that could be caused by a person’s body, the pump will either shut off, or the system will inject air into the pump. This will free the person from the suction, thereby preventing drowning.

  3. Educate parents on community pool safety tips, including keeping children away from pool drains.

  4. Train staff on first-aid and lifesaving techniques. Have a Red Cross employee train your staff and any interested residents on community pool safety.

  5. Child-proof pool enclosures. Fencing around your pool area should be at least 4 feet high. Check for areas where older children could sneak through. Make sure that gates are self-closing and self-latching, with latches out of reach of very small children.

  6. Post community pool safety rules in a prominent location. In writing these rules, residential managers must balance community pool safety with the danger of discriminatory language. A blanket rule such as “No children under age 13” may not pass legal muster. This is particularly true in California, where we have at least two precedents: Iniestra v. Cliff Warren Investments, Inc. and Llanos v. Estate of Coelho. Both cases found that rules restricting children from using pool facilities without an adult, or keeping them away from adult-only areas, were overly restrictive and constituted prima facie discrimination. For more on this topic, check out our post Watch Your Language: What Can We Learn from Recent HUD Enforcement Actions?

  7. Enforce no-alcohol rules in your pool area. Give your security guards the authority to remove residents or guests who are disregarding community pool safety or abusing pool privileges.

  8. Don’t allow plugged-in devices anywhere near the pool deck or hot tub. You can also disable electrical outlets that are in close proximity.

  9. Prohibit glass containers in the pool area. One shattered glass endangers a lot of bare feet.

  10. Get a staff member certified in pool maintenance. Even if you subcontract pool maintenance out, it’s a good idea to have someone on staff educated in chlorination, sanitation procedures, and what it takes to maintain a busy swimming pool. Here’s a list of certified pool operator training programs from the Center for Disease Control and the National Swimming Pool Foundation.

  11. Check chlorine and pH levels at least twice a day with pool test strips. The Center for Disease Control recommends that you check for free chlorine (2-4 ppm) and bromine (4-6 ppm). The pH level should be between 7.2 and 7.8. This will prevent outbreaks of Legionnaire’s Disease, which can be caused by pathogens that develop in insufficiently sanitized water, and can spread via water vapor or droplets.

  12. Inspect pool equipment annually, such as pumps, drains, and heaters. Keep a logbook to track inspections.

  13. Inventory lifesaving supplies. Check to make sure that no one has stolen, vandalized, or lost your pool rings and rescue poles.

  14. Consider hiring a lifeguard. Outsourcing this to a lifeguard service may make sense from a liability perspective. Ensure that your vendor is insured and bonded. If your budget is tight, you can potentially hire a pool attendant rather than a trained lifeguard. You can learn about the differences between pool attendants and lifeguards on Guard for Life.

  15. Hire a pool management company. Again, a properly licensed, bonded, and insured pool management company can take the day-to-day load of pool maintenance off of your staff. It also relieves you of the hassle of storing large amounts of HAZMAT materials on-site. Furthermore, since they carry their own errors and omissions insurance as well as general liability coverage, their insurers will absorb any liability that may arise from pool-related incidents. A professional pool maintenance firm will also keep up with community pool safety-related federal, state, and local laws—something that your staff may not have time to do.

  16. Consider installing CCTV cameras to surveil your pool area. These systems are much less expensive than they used to be even a few years ago. They can feed directly to your security shed at night and help you to prevent after-hours incidents and lawsuits.

Get Property Management Here

For professional property management contact Vestpro Residential Services by calling us at (832) 498-0016 or click here to connect with us online.

 

Tips for Finding a Contractor You Can Trust

Are you planning on having some work done on your rental property? If so, one of the keys to success with maintaining rental property for the long term that also produces consistent cash flow is finding a contractor you can trust. Thankfully, we got you covered with these 11 tips that will help you to connect with the right contractor.

1. Insist on a license.

Don’t accept excuses like, “I haven’t renewed my license yet this year” or “It’s pending.” All of these coverages ultimately protect you, the consumer, with vital safeguards like insurance requirements.

2. Ask for referrals.

One of the best methods for finding a contractor that you like is to ask your fellow property managers who they use.

3. Check with state or county authorities.

They’ll have a record of any complaints or revoked licenses. Keep in mind that any contractor who’s been in business for a while may have a few complaints; what you want to be wary of is a negative pattern on their licensing record.

4. Use a General Contractor Firm.

General contractor’s licenses are more difficult to get. General contractors are accustomed to carrying insurance that protects both them and you, the customer, against damage that may be caused by their subcontractors.

5. Anticipate problems.

Jobs may not be completed as planned for a few reasons: a scheduling error, inadequate manpower, insufficient materials, or an injury on the job site. If you enter each job prepared for the worst, you’ll be more resilient in the face of unexpected issues.

6. Get multiple bids.

This is about more than getting the best price. A variety of bids will set a price range, and set your expectations for how the work will be done.

7. Don’t automatically take the lowest bid.

The lowest price, though enticing, may be because the company is using subpar materials or illegal labor; or they may be skimping on workers’ compensation.

8. Don’t pay for bids.

Reputable contractors will get their fair share of work from their own bids, without you having to pay just to get them to consider your project.

9. Get proof of insurance.

Specifically, you want to see proof of sufficient general liability, contractors liability, and workers’ compensation insurance as a minimum.

In addition, make sure that the total coverage amount is adequate in proportion to the size of the job and the nature of the building. If it’s not, you should feel comfortable asking the contractor to purchase more insurance.

10. Verify liability coverage.

Errors and omissions in professional liability coverage comes in two basic forms: “occurrence” and “claims made.” It’s important to understand the distinction.

  • Occurrence: Provides coverage for any incidents or accidents that occur during the policy period, even if you don’t file the claim or issues don’t even become apparent until after the policy expires.
  • Claims made: These policies do not provide coverage after the policy has expired, unless the contractor purchases tail coverage.

11. If you’re a landlord, consider a surety bond.

A surety bond is a kind of insurance protection for the landlord. The contractor pays a sum to a bond company, and in the event that the contractor fails to perform, the surety bond company pays a sum to the landlord.

Get Property Management Here

For affordable and professional property management contact Vestpro Residential Services today by calling us at (832) 971-1841 or click here to connect with us online.

For Rent in Houston TX – Small Renovations Will Boost the Value of Your Rental Property

Are you searching for ways to boost the value of your home For Rent in Houston TX? If so, you’ve come to the right place! At Vestpro Residential Services we manage a wide variety of rental properties in the Houston area and can tell you that small renovations will boost the value of a rental property every time.

In this article, we will share with you small renovations that you should make to your Houston Texas rental property.

Kitchen

Since we all spend the most time in kitchens and bathrooms one of the first places that you should invest some renovation money is in your kitchen. Some of the small renovations you should make in your kitchen include replacing flooring or lighting, purchasing matching appliances, repainting or refinishing cabinets and replacing door knobs and drawer pulls.

Bathroom

When it comes to the bathroom you should also focus on refinishing or repainting cabinetry, replacing drawer and door pulls, installing a new bathroom fan, removing carpeting if your bathroom still has it and of course painting the entire bathroom.

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Bedroom

In the bedroom of your Houston Texas Rental Property, you should focus on repainting the entire room, replacing flooring and replacing the light source in the bedroom with a ceiling fan.

General Improvements to Your Rental

Besides making improvements to the kitchen, bathroom and bedroom in your property For Rent in Houston TX you should also clean the HVAC / air conditioning system, replace old/outdated light fixtures throughout the rental property and improve curb appeal.

Market Your Home for Rent in Houston TX

If you’ve been thinking about renting out your home For Rent In Houston TX save the time, money and hassle of property management by contacting Vestpro Residential Services today by calling us at 832-971-1841 or click here to connect with us online.

 

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What Does A Houston Texas Property Manager Do?

What does a Houston Texas Property Manager do? This is one of the biggest questions that property owners who manage their own rental properties have had over the years because some owners are under the misconception that we just collect a check without doing much to actually manage their rental properties.

In this article, we will break down what a Houston Texas Property Manager actually does so you will be more aware of what to expect when hiring a property manager to manage your rental properties.

Houston Texas Property Managers Ease Stress

One of the first things that Houston Texas Property Managers do is ease the stress that you may have experienced with owning rental properties in the Houston area in the past because we are your first line of defense when it comes to making sure that your rental properties are rented to the most qualified tenants, rent is collected on time every month and your single family home, condo, townhome or apartment is professionally managed each month.

Houston Property Managers Insure Efficiency

From determining what your rental property should be rented for, to coming up with a marketing plan to market your Houston Rental Property, your property manager ensures efficiency and can be relied on especially when the time comes to make repairs so you don’t have to make any of those repairs yourself or come out to your rental property to manage repairs on your rental property.

Handle All Financials

With every move in your Houston Property Manager will professionally handle the financials for your rental property which includes placing the deposit in a trust account, making payments for owners (if needed), maintain historical records for the rental property, provide easy cash-flow statements on a monthly basis and annual reporting that has been structured for tax purposes.

Get Houston Property Management

For professional Houston Texas Property Management contact Vestpro Residential Services at (832) 498-0016 or click here to connect with us online.

Houston Texas Property Management – 3 Tips for Tenant Retention

 

By Vestpro Residential Services, LLC

As a long time Houston Texas Property Management company we can tell you without a doubt that tenant retention is one of the keys to success with owning profitable rental properties because, the longer you have your properties rented for means you will have long term cash flow from each rental property.

If you haven’t thought about what you can do to retain your tenants this article will provide you with 3 tips you can use for tenant retention.

Tip #1 – Practice the Art of Regular Communication with Your Tenants

Although you may have the best tenants in the world, you should always practice the art of regular communication with them because, regular communication with your tenants will not only show them that you care and appreciate their business, it will also encourage them to contact you should problems occur at your rental property that need to be fixed or resolved.

Houston Texas Property Management

Tip #2 – Offer Your Tenants Incentives

Another successful Houston Texas Property Management tip that we can offer you is to consider offering your tenants incentives for doing things like paying their rent on time to reporting maintenance problems or issues to you when they occur. Some of the incentives you should consider offering your tenants include: free Wi-Fi (depending on rental property), free memberships to local health clubs and gift cards from local grocery stores.

Tip #3 – Create a Referral Program

Last of all, but most important, in the world of property management we know that if a tenant is responsible, pays their rent on time and keeps their rental clean the chances are that they have friends or family members who have similar tastes and traits so if you want to get more great tenants like the one that you currently have you should consider starting a referral program which includes paying your tenants a “bounty” when they refer people to you who may be interested in renting one or more of your rental properties.

Get Houston Texas Property Management

For Houston Texas Property Management contact Vestpro Residential Services, LLC today by calling us at (832) 498-0016 or click here to connect with us online.

3 tips for getting your Houston Texas Rental Property Ready For Summer

 

Houston Texas Rental Properties

Summer is right around the corner and with the weather already in the 70’s and 80’s during the spring one can only imagine what the summer is going to be like that’s why it’s important for you to get your Houston Texas Rental Property ready for summer by following these simple tips.

Tip #1 – Inspect Your HVAC System

Since your tenants will be using their HVAC systems during the summer months you should get HVAC and air conditioning units inspected now to insure that they are all running smoothly during summer months once warmer weather arrives.

 

Tip #2 – Check Insulation and Weather Stripping

Last of all, but most important, you should check the weather and insulation in your Houston Texas Rental Properties because proper insulation and weather striping will help your tenants to lower their energy costs and insure that their homes stay cool during the summer months.

Tip #3 – Close Up Crawl Spaces Under Homes

If your Houston Rental has a crawl space underneath it you should close up that space or any access point to your basement or underneath your home immediately because snakes and critters will seek shelter in cool spaces during the warmer months in Houston.

Tip #4 – Clean Up Brush And Dead Vegetation Surrounding Your Property

Take the time to clean up brush and dead vegetation surrounding your property since this will also make your yard space less attractive to critters and also create a firebreak between your home and open spaces if a fire breaks out during the summer.

Tip #5 – Remove Wood From Your Home

Another fire hazard and inviting spot for critters like snakes are wood piles and if one of your Houston Rental Properties has a wood pile somewhere on the property you should move it immediately to insure that the best interests of your tenants are protected during the hot Houston summer.

Get Property Management For Your Houston Texas Rental Property 

To learn more about how you can get your Houston Texas Rental Property ready for summer, or to speak with us about our property management services, contact Vestpro Residential Services today by calling us at (832) 498-0016 or click here to connect with us online.

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.

Is Buying Too Many Houston Texas Rental Properties A Bad Thing?

By Vestpro Residential Services, LLC

Thanks to historically low mortgage interest rates you may be buying Houston Texas Rental Properties at a fast rate but, is it a bad thing to buy too many rental properties?

The answer to this question is yes, if you don’t have Houston Texas Property Management. Here’s why:

Rent Collection

One of the biggest problems most property owners who own homes or multi-family properties have is collecting rent from their tenants each month especially when their tenants fall behind on paying.

Thankfully when you hire Vestpro Residential Services to manage your Houston Texas Rental Properties you can have confidence that your rentals will be professionally managed and rent will be collected from your tenants on time each month eliminating the need for you to contact tenants or start collections against them if they don’t pay.

Maintenance

Another big problem for some owners has been the issue of maintenance because, it’s not always easy to handle maintenance issues if you own multiple properties.

With Vestpro on your side you will have peace of mind in knowing that your tenants will call us when they have maintenance issues and this will also help you keep tenants as well because, your tenants will know that the can depend on the property management company to solve problems when they occur instead of hearing making empty promises.

Customer Service

Last of all, but most important is customer service.

Many property owners offer customer service and poor support so that whenever there is an issue at one or more of their properties it will go unresolved for weeks or months.

At Vestpro we take pride in offering great customer service so that if your tenants call in with an issue they will be served by true customer service professionals every time.

Get Houston Texas Property Management

To learn more about how Houston Texas Property Management will make your life easier contact Vestpro Residential Services today by calling us at (832) 498-0016 or click here to contact us online.