A Landover, Maryland Landlord’s Maintenance & Landscaping Responsibilities

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

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

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

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+.

 

Finding Tenants in Landover, MD :: Benefits of Property Management Firms

September 28th, 2012

When it comes to landlording in Landover, Maryland, one of the hardest tasks you have is finding good quality tenants to fill your rental property. This is not only important to ensure a good tenant-landlord relationship, but you also have a responsibility to your other tenants to fill your rental properties with reputable occupants. To accomplish this, you have several options. You can spend hours upon hours, days upon days, and weeks upon weeks screening and interviewing tenants or you can rely on a property management firm, like Potomac Valley Management (PVMGT), to do this for you.

PVMGT has the experience you need to ensure you fill your rental property with the highest quality tenants you can. We have seen thousands of applications before and know how to quickly sort through candidates, analyzing information and identifying warning signs.

The Benefits of Tenant Screening from PVMGT

There are several benefits to using a professional property management firm, like PVMGT, to screen your tenants. The tenants PVMGT finds generally pay rent on time, rent longer, leave the rental unit in good condition, and cause next to no problems. But that is just the beginning. Other benefits include:

  • Minimize Risk:  Tenant screening is crucial in ensuring that you are safeguarded against potential fraud. While tenant screening cannot always guarantee the best possible tenants, it can help weed out previously known midnight movers, evictees, and lease defaulters.
  • Avoid Legal Troubles: The eviction process is long, expensive, and something every landlord would rather avoid. However, the only way to avoid eviction is to ensure you fill your rental property with quality tenants.
  • Keep Existing Residents Happy: As we mentioned earlier, you also have a responsibility to keep your existing residents happy. Tennant screening helps you find tenants who are unlikely to pose a threat to other nearby residents, creating a safer rental environment.
  • And much more!

As a landlord, the only real protection that you have against bad tenants is due diligence and tenant screening.

Hopefully you have found these Property 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 association management and maintenance services to the Washington-Baltimore area since 2004.

Potomac Valley Management (PVMGT) manages and maintains various condominium and homeowners associations as well as rental commercial properties throughout the region. 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.

And we are here to serve you!

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

Tips & Best Practices: Add Curb Appeal to your Bowie, MD Rental Property

September 23rd, 2012

Every homeowner knows the benefits curb appeal. But as a landlord, curb appeal is not just a method for evoking an emotional response in passersby; curb appeal is also a tool to be utilized to keep your Bowie, Maryland rental properties occupied. While image isn’t everything, it does make a big difference and could give you the competitive edge over the competition.

Landlord Tips: The Benefits of Curb Appeal

  • First Impressions: They say don’t judge a book by its cover. Well, guess what? People still make snap judgments based on their first impressions of everything from candy bars and books to cars and even rental properties. Sometimes, potential tenants will not even look in a rental unit if the outside is not aesthetically appealing.
  • Staying Power: Curb appeal can help reduce turnover. After all, if your tenants are proud and happy with their living situation, they will be less likely to leave. And as a landlord, your goal is to keep your rental properties filled, right?
  • Quickly Fill Vacancies: Even the best rental property is not filled all of the time. But exceptional curb appeal can help attract new tenants and ensure that your rental property is not vacant for long.
  • Save Money: By keeping up with regular maintenance requirements, you can slow wear and tear on your rental property and minimize expensive repairs.
  • And more!

Potomac Valley Management (PVMGT): Maryland Property Management

At PVMGT, we not only help you secure qualified tenants for your Prince George’s County rental properties, but we also bill renters, provide you with a comprehensive financial report, conduct regular property maintenance and grounds maintenance as needed, and so much more. We ensure a clean and aesthetically pleasing environment for your residents in addition to free and open communication between management and tenants.

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, LLC has been providing association management and maintenance services to the Washington-Baltimore area since 2004.

Potomac Valley Management (PVMGT) manages and maintains various condominium and homeowners associations as well as rental commercial properties throughout the region. 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.

And we are here to serve you!

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

Rental Management Services from Potomac Valley Management

September 17th, 2012

Let’s face it: the real estate market right now is a buyer’s hot ticket item, not a seller’s. But if you’re looking to call a new property home and can’t obtain a fair return on your current house, renting your place may be the way to go. The problem is, though, many homeowners don’t exactly delight in the idea of becoming a landlord when they sign the deed to a new property. That’s why Potomac Valley Management offers rental management services to those looking to occupy their house with tenants.

At Potomac Valley Management, we’ll streamline the rental process for you, offering the following help as you seek a second property:

  • Screen and obtain qualified tenants for occupancy
  • Offer maintenance services when requested by tenants
  • Conduct credit and rental history checks for potential tenants
  • Advertise your property to occupy it efficiently
  • Provide comprehensive financial reports including balance sheets, income statements, general ledgers, accounts payable reports, check disbursement reports, and income and expense budget comparison
  • Bill renters and track accounts receivables
  • Should problems arise, file court and eviction notices to delinquent tenants and attend eviction court sessions

Potomac Valley Management will be on call for your renters at all times so that you don’t have to; enjoy the extra income of a rental property without having to partake in the hassle of maintaining one. We’ll make sure you see the fruits of your decision to lease your property – the rental payments – on time and without complications. Let us take the stress out of renting your home with our management services.

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 association management and maintenance services to the Washington-Baltimore area since 2004.

Potomac Valley Management (PVMGT) manages and maintains various condominium and homeowners associations as well as rental commercial properties throughout the region. 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.

And we are here to serve you!

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

 

Basic Household Maintenance Tips: Preparing your Home for Fall

September 15th, 2012

Summer is quickly coming to an end, which means one thing; fall is right around the corner. But before the seasons change, there are a few preventative maintenance steps you, as a homeowner or landlord, should take to better prepare your property and make it as energy efficient as possible.

Fall Maintenance Tips

1) HVAC Maintenance: With temperatures dropping, your furnace is going to start getting a lot of use. Is it ready for the increased workload? The only way to really know for sure is you call your local HVAC contractor to come out and inspect your system. It is also a good idea to have them clean your ductwork while they are at your home.

There are a few simple tasks that you can take on to improve the efficiency of your HVAC system. For starters, change your air filters (this should be done every month). Secondly, make sure your home’s heating vents are clear and are not obstructed by furniture or carpeting. Finally, dust your vents to ensure they are free from dirt, debris, and whatever else has accumulated on them during the summer.

2) Clean the Gutters: Fall is the perfect time to clean those pesky gutters to prevent clogging. Otherwise, leaves, twigs, and other debris could cause water to accumulate. And if this water freezes during the winter months, it could back up into your roof and cause a lot of problems.

3) Chimney Inspections and Cleanings: Do you plan on using your fireplace at all with the weather cooling down? If so, a chimney inspection is a must. You never know what may have found its way into your chimney while it sat dormant. And, if need be, have your chimney professionally cleaned.

4) Test Smoke and CO Detectors: Test all of the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in your home and replace batteries as needed.

5) Clean Dryer Vents: One of the leading causes of house fires each year is dryer fires. Because of this, it is important to clean your dryer vents annually. And fall seems as good a time as any.

6) Prepare your Water Heater: You can prepare your home for cooler weather by draining your water heater and clearing out any debris that has settled in the tank. This will help improve the efficiency of your water heater while also prolonging its useful life.

7) Check for Drafts: Your home’s energy efficiency is affected by several different factors, including what is known as your home’s envelope (the outer walls). By checking for and fixing any drafts, you can make your home much more energy efficient, saving yourself money every month on your heating bills.

Hopefully you have found these Fall Maintenance 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 association management and maintenance services to the Washington-Baltimore area since 2004.

Potomac Valley Management (PVMGT) manages and maintains various condominium and homeowners associations as well as rental commercial properties throughout the region. 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.

And we are here to serve you!

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

Hello world!

August 30th, 2012

Our new blog is coming soon!