Archive for October, 2012

A Landover, Maryland Landlord’s Maintenance & Landscaping Responsibilities

Thursday, October 25th, 2012

As a landlord, it is your responsibility to not only make repairs when requested (within 24 hours), but to also stay on top of regular maintenance and landscaping issues. Failing to keep your rental property in good shape can have several negative effects. These include:

1. Failing to repair problems in a timely manner can give your tenant the right to withhold rent, repair the problem his or herself and deduct the repair costs from their rent, sue if injuries occur as a result of a poorly maintained rental property, or your tenant can move out without giving notice.

2. You may have trouble filling an unkempt rental property once it becomes vacant.

3. By failing to repair a small problem or conduct preventative maintenance, you could (and probably will) end up spending more money on large repairs and renovations.

4. A poorly maintained rental property will hurt your reputation as a landlord. And in this business, reputation means everything!

To ensure repair requests don’t fall through the cracks and to ensure that you perform preventative maintenance annually, you need a system in place to handle these tasks. And hiring a qualified property management firm can be just the solution you are looking for to help keep your rental property in tip top shape!

Potomac Valley Management: A Landover, Maryland Property Management Firm

As part of Potomac Valley Management’s rental management services, we provide maintenance and landscaping services on an as needed basis for tenants. As a mid-size firm, PVMGT has a vast array of resources and service capabilities which are immeasurable, taking care of your needs from bookkeeping to tenant screening to landscaping contractor oversight.

Hopefully you have found these Quick Tips & Best Practices useful. If you have any questions, please contact Potomac Valley Management by calling 1.877.390.4090 or visit PVMGT.com today!

Potomac Valley Management is complemented by a full service professional team who together have a depth of experience in management, leasing, marketing, rehabilitation, and disposition of multi-family properties.

We are here to serve you!

You can also follow PVMGT on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+.

 

Basic Household Maintenance Tips: HVAC Maintenance, Inspection, and Repair

Wednesday, October 17th, 2012

The temperature is quickly dropping as fall is now in full swing. This means that winter is right around the corner. Is your HVAC system ready? The only way to know for sure is you call your local HVAC contractor and have them inspect your system.

Although you should leave HVAC system inspection and repair to the professionals, there are still several do-it-yourself HVAC maintenance projects that you can perform.

DIY HVAC Maintenance Tips

1. Air Filters: As a homeowner, you should change your air filters on a monthly basis.

2. Thermostat: Check your thermostat to make sure your HVAC system is working properly. Is your system achieving the set temperature? If not, you could have a problem.

3. Programmable Thermostat: You could also consider installing a programmable thermostat, allowing you to preset temperatures for different times of the day. This will ensure that your heating system only works when it needs to.

4. Vacuum: Vacuum any debris from your furnace blower compartment.

5. Air Vents: Always make sure your supply-air and return-air vents are open and unobstructed to ensure proper air flow.

6. Unusual Behavior: If you witness any unusual noises, or excess heat or water, you may have an issue.

7. Attic Insulation: While not directly related to your HVAC system, your attic insulation, or lack thereof, can affect the energy efficiency of your home. As a general rule of thumb, if you look across your attic and can easily see your floor joists, you do not have enough insulation.

8. Weather Stripping: Like attic insulation, weather-stripping doors that lead to cold or outside areas can help increase the energy efficiency of your home.

If you notice any issues, call a professional HVAC contractor to have these issues fixed before winter. Delaying repairs could cause your system to work inefficiently, costing you every month on your heating bills, and could cause your system to fail prematurely, costing you even more money.

Hopefully you have found these Basic Household Maintenance Tips useful. If you have any questions, please contact Potomac Valley Management by calling 1.877.390.4090 or visit PVMGT.com today!

You can also follow PVMGT on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+.

Financial Management Tips: Managing your Mortgage

Friday, October 12th, 2012

For homeowners, especially first time homebuyers, managing the mortgage can, at times, be a struggle. But failing to properly manage the mortgage can have big consequences, such as a decreasing credit score or even foreclosure. To help avoid problems, the Real Estate experts at Potomac Valley Management have compiled the following Tips for Managing your Mortgage.

1. Budget: Every household has a different set of expenses. The trick is to familiarize yourself with these expenses and budget accordingly. You will have to manage not only your mortgages, but also the electricity bill, water bill, trash service, cable and Internet fees, and more. Make sure that your budget can safely cover these expenses.

2. Build a Reserve Fund: Unfortunately, surprises happen, from burst pipes and broken water heaters to roof leaks and more. So in order to deal with these unexpected expenditures, we recommend building a reserve fund. This safety net will ensure that you never miss a mortgage payment. We recommend saving 3-6 months of living expenses in a separate account.

3. Avoid Big Purchases: Do not going on a crazy shopping spree in an attempt to furnish your new home. Take things one step at a time. Spend slowly and schedule your big purchases.

4. Pay the Mortgage on Time: Lenders can start foreclosure proceedings after you fall just 60 days behind in your mortgage payments.

Hopefully you have found these Financial Management Tips useful. If you have any questions, please contact Potomac Valley Management by calling 1.877.390.4090 or visit PVMGT.com today!

Potomac Valley Management, LLC has been providing quality property management services to the DC Metropolitan area since 2004. We specialize in multi-family property management for apartments, cooperatives and homeowner’s associations.

You can also follow PVMGT on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+.

Sources: New Homeowners: 4 Tips for Managing Your Mortgage

Tips for Hiring a Qualified Contractor in Prince George’s County, Maryland

Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012

Hiring a contractor can be a real hassle. Not only do you have to sort through the hundreds upon hundreds of listings, but then you have to try and find the right balance between cost, qualifications, and benefits. It is no easy task.

Luckily, we have compiled a list of Tips for Hiring a Qualified Contractor.

1. Narrow Down your Options: First, narrow down your potential contractors to the top 3-5.

2. Get an Estimate: Next, call each of your potential contractors and schedule on-site estimates. Make sure you get these estimates in writing. And never trust over-the-phone estimates. Most importantly, never choose a contractor solely based on price. This is just one part of the puzzle.

3. Background Check: How long has the contractor been in business? Is this his full time job or does he do contracting work on the side? Can he provide you with any referrals or a list of past clients you can contact? You can also check with the Better Business Bureau to make sure the contracting firm has no unresolved consumer complaints.

4. Insurance: It is very important that your potential contractor be insured. Otherwise, you may be held liable for anything that goes wrong during construction, including employee injuries.

5. Get Everything in Writing: To cover all of your bases, make sure there is a well written contract that includes costs involved, details of work to be done, construction timetables, project guarantees and warranties, other expectations, etc. Have a lawyer review this contract and make sure you have a copy.

Don’t want to go through the hassle of hiring a qualified contractor? Then trust Potomac Valley Management!

We provide a number of options specifically tailored to your needs. We take care of everything from bookkeeping to tenant screening to hiring qualified contractors, and much more. Let us take the stress out of renting your home with our property management services.

Hopefully you have found these Tips for Hiring a Contractor useful. If you have any questions, please contact Potomac Valley Management by calling 1.877.390.4090 or visit PVMGT.com today!

Potomac Valley Management, LLC has been providing quality property management services to the DC Metropolitan area since 2004. We specialize in multi-family property management for apartments, cooperatives and homeowner’s associations.

You can also follow PVMGT on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+.