Beautiful multi-level home in great area. Close to 35E/ 35W, shopping & parks. 4 spacious bedrooms, large family room w/ gas fireplace. Kitchen with granite and stainless steel appliances. Large deck for entertaining in your private backyard. Available August 12th with 12 month lease term. Tenant pays all utilities and is responsible for snow removal and lawn care. Up to 2 pets, max 70lbs allowed with $400 pet deposit per pet. Every pet/animal must go through professional screening process and apply. The fee is $20 for the 1st pet and $15 for each additional, if applicable paid directly to the 3rd party screening vendor. $20/pet app fee paid at time of move in. Application Fee: $45/ adult non-refundable. Information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Renters insurance required. Section 8 not approved. Minimum 24 hour notice to show.
Insights on Owning Rental Property During the Pandemic
The pandemic has certainly impacted all areas of our lives. What has remained relatively strong amidst the uncertainty has been the housing market. Mortgage interest rates are at record lows. Inventory of homes for sale remains low, resulting in sellers routinely receiving multiple offers on homes quickly after listing.
The rental market has been a different beast altogether. Mortgage protections are not available to landlords in the same way they are to homeowners. Many rental property owners have tried to get creative with their property management style in order to stay afloat while also working with tenants impacted by the pandemic.
Given the unknowns of the months ahead of us, these factors will be worth keeping a close eye on in the coming months if you own a rental property:
- Changes in government protections for renters. Whether its payroll protections, rent subsidies or a local eviction moratorium, many renters have been supported through the recent hard times when it comes to their monthly financial obligations. While this attempt at stability has been good for many renters, some of these protections may be coming to an end soon, and many renters will face the struggles of disproportionate cost burden in the COVID-19 economy. With all the movement in local and temporary regulations due to the pandemic, it can save a lot of headaches to seek the help of a property management company, so you know you’re a compliant landlord while focusing on your own day-to-day priorities.
- Changes in the labor market, and its effect on renters. Job growth is one of the key factors of rental market health in any city. Today’s rental market has been served a major blow by the pandemic, leaving the unemployment rate at record highs. While protections for renters have temporarily provided relief for those who have lost their jobs or have been furloughed by their companies, landlords have absorbed the impact. Additionally, while homeowners have experienced some relief around their mortgage obligations, those same measures have not applied to commercial property owners.
While protections are short for landlords and rental property owners, it doesn’t hurt to take advantage of resources that have your interests at heart during the pandemic uncertainty. The professional property managers at Tradewinds Properties can relieve a great deal of the stress of managing rental property through the pandemic.
Tradewind Properties is here to help you take the headache out of managing your rental property. As a Tradewind client, your most difficult task is checking your monthly statement. Contact us!
6 Common Lease Violations
While renting is a rewarding enterprise, you won’t always have model tenants. Leases are put in place for a reason – whether it is to maintain the value of a property or keep people safe. When renters decide to break the terms of their contract, landlords may be forced to take action.
In order to learn how to handle lease violations, it can be helpful to familiarize yourself with some of the most common violations.
1. Unauthorized Pets
Four-legged friends can be an important part of the family – but they can also be quite a hassle. This is why many landlords prohibit pets to some degree. Pets can cause damage to the property and annoy neighboring tenants.
2. HOA Conflicts
If your property falls under the jurisdiction of an HOA, renters must stay up to code. These often involve things such as making sure the property is free of trash and limit your external storage.
3. Smoking Indoors
Indoor smoking can be a damaging and dangerous habit. It can discolor home interiors, lead to burns, and leave a lingering odor.
4. Noise Disturbances
While being noisy doesn’t lead to structural damage, it can damage the atmosphere of your living complex. Loud tenants can lead to unhappy neighbors and visits from law enforcement.
5. Long-term Guests
Especially if you offer a flat rate for utilities in your rental agreement, unauthorized, long-term guests can be bad for business. It’s not unusual for a non-renting guest to be overstaying their welcome. Some renters may even take it upon themselves to sublet without your permission. The popularity of services such as Airbnb has made this even more common.
6. Damaging Decorations
While there is nothing wrong with making a living space more personal, some decorating can lead to damage. Something as simple as hanging up a couple of pictures can cause countless holes in the wall.
What to do if a renter breaks a clause in the lease agreement?
The moment a tenant violates a lease, you should begin taking measures to protect yourself. There are different approaches you can take depending on the severity of the violation.
If you notice the violation during the renting period;
- Keep Evidence: Always be sure to save original copies of all of your contracts and get proof of any relevant information. This includes taking photographs of the property before tenants arrived.
- Notify the Tenant: Send a letter to your tenant alerting them of their violation and offer them time (minimum a week) to correct the problem. This is a legal obligation if you decide to take matters further.
- Eviction: When violations aren’t corrected or are continuously repeated, you are within legal grounds to file for an eviction.
If you only recognize the violation (or failure to correct the violation) during the inspection following the end of a contract, you may withhold all or a portion of the security deposit. If the amount is not enough to cover damages, you can consider taking your case to small claims court.
Tradewind Properties is here to help you take the headache out of managing your rental property. As a Tradewind client, your most difficult task is checking your monthly statement. Contact us!
Monitoring and managing utility usage.
If you own a property, you know that managing utility usage can feel like nothing short of a headache at times. Owning an income-based property might make this headache feel like a full-on migraine. With a little bit of planning, knowledge and know-how you don’t have to let utility expenditures balloon out of control.
Troubleshooting a water leak
- A water or plumbing leak is something no one wants to experience; however, they happen. Train yourself, maintenance staff and tenants alike to identify and report things like a dripping faucet or running toilet. Additionally, be on the lookout for paint that is peeling or a musty/wet smell in an area that should be dry. Finally, a spike in the water bill is a pretty good sign there’s a potential leak.
- If you suspect a leak, it’s time to call a professional, but you can potentially confirm a hidden leak by turning off every water fixture, faucet and appliance that uses water (for say six hours or so) and noting whether or not the property’s water meter readings rise during the time these are turned off.
- Living in Minnesota means your heating system is probably working overtime for at least six months of the year, then of course your cooling system has got to kick it into gear. A smart thermostat can be a worthy investment. They are designed to make temperature adjustments based on a resident’s detectable patterns, that way you’re not paying to heat an unoccupied property. Further, you can always fine-tune manually and monitor as necessary so you or your tenants are not surprised with a huge bill.
Efficiencies with energy consumption
- Whether you’re renting your property or not, the efficiency of your utility usage should be high on your priority lists to improve costs. Fortunately, there are both quick and easy ways to reduce costs as well as those that require a little more initial investment.
Installing LED fixtures
- Want an easy win, win? Consider changing old, incandescent lightbulbs to LED. Not only can they cut the electric bill by almost 25 percent, they last almost 10 years requiring much less maintenance.
Upgrading to Energy Star appliances
- If your appliances are old, it might be time for an upgrade. Initial costs of replacing these appliances (think refrigerators, stoves and dishwashers) might seem high, but you’ll save on energy costs and new appliances could help drive more potential renters to your door.
Consider air leaks
- You can probably guess that air leaks are some of the biggest offenders when it comes to energy inefficiencies, but how do you find them? While a visual and physical inspection can easily tell you where your building is leaking air, you can hire a professional to do a thermographic test that uses an infrared camera to locate those more invisible areas of air leaks.
Tradewind Properties is here to help you take the headache out of your rental property utility management, Contact Tradewind Properties. We are here to help!
There’s a chill in the air, holiday decorations are up in stores, and you are thinking about what resolution to make this year. Anything from losing weight, a better work-life balance, or saving more money for retirement. With the income from your property, you already are investing in your retirement future. However, do you feel like these investments are taking over your life and leaving you with little to no time for relaxation with family and friends?
It’s easy to think the best person to care for your rental properties is yourself. But the truth is, while owning income-based property can be tremendously rewarding, it’s also stressful and incredibly time-consuming. It seems like those maintenance phone calls always happen at 2:00 a.m. and they are starting to wear on you–especially if you have multiple rental properties.
For many income property owners, the thought of giving up control of their properties can be difficult. However, Tradewind Properties Rental Property Management Services could give you the balance you desire.
Tradewind Properties makes life easier by helping rental property owners to achieve their goals. Working with our professional property managers means less stress and more life balance. Here are several practical services that Tradewind Properties offers to deal with common rental owner property stresses.
Reducing rental turnover
Tradewind Properties can help to reduce tenant turnover by providing these services.
- 24/7 maintenance coordination
- Routine maintenance inspections
- Supervising all tenant relations
- Comprehensive rental screening
- Owner’s assurance program
- Free lease renewals
Helping to fill vacancies
Tradewind Properties can help fill vacancies fast by providing these services.
- Property evaluation & market analysis
- Aggressive marketing, MLS listing, and rental showing
- Move-in inspection reports with photos
- Final move-out inspection
Keeping compliance with the law
Tradewind Properties stays up-to-date on local, state, and federal law and ensures your rental properties are compliant by providing these services.
- Negotiation & execution of lease
- Preparation of CRP and MISC-1099
- Tenant applications and rental agreements applications
- Collection of 1st month’s rent and deposit(s)
- Collection and disbursements of monthly rents
- Enforcing rental and lease agreements
Tradewind Properties would like to help you reach your work-life balance resolution in 2020 and beyond. Learn more about our comprehensive rental management plan including all the services listed above.
Heading South for the winter? If you’re one of the fortunate retirees who has smartly chosen to sit out the grueling Bold North winter in a more temperate climate, you’ll want to make sure your home here in Minnesota is thoroughly prepared for your absence and cared for while you’re away. Here are some expert tips on prepping and safeguarding your temporarily vacant home that will give you the peace of mind you deserve while enjoying that warm lush life.
Protect Your Pipes to Avoid Water Damage by Turning Off Your Water Supply
- A burst pipe could cause significant damage. Consider completely turning off your water supply if you will be away for an extended period of time. If your home is heated by steam heat, consult with an HVAC specialist to determine if it is safe to turn off your water supply for your particular heating system. Also, if your home is protected by a fire sprinkler system, make sure that you do not turn off the water to this system.
- If you do turn off your water supply, drain your pipes of all water by opening the faucets, and flush your toilet to clear the water from the tank and bowl. Many snowbirds pour antifreeze in toilet tanks and bowls to prevent any remaining water from freezing, but if you opt for this, make sure to use non-toxic antifreeze rated for plumbing systems.
- You may wish to hire a licensed plumber to complete these steps. The plumber can also confirm that the pipes have been fully drained by blowing compressed air through the pipes.
Take Steps to Protect Your Home from Thieves
- Make sure your alarm systems are working and activated.
- Secure doors and windows with deadbolts, and install slide locks on sliding glass doors.
- Store valuables in a safe deposit box or other secure offsite location.
- Avoid posting your vacation or travel plans on social media sites, as potential thieves can use that information to learn when your house will be vacant.
Keep Your Home and Plumbing Warm
- If you decide not to turn off your water, keep your furnace running to ensure your home stays warm and your pipes don’t freeze.
- Set the temperature at 55°F to 60°F to help keep the interior above freezing temperatures. Leaving cabinet doors open can also help heat circulate and warm the areas where pipes are located.
- Shut off the water to washing machines and dishwashers to avoid any leaks or broken hoses while you are away.
- Turn off hot water heaters (if separate from your boiler).
- Consider shutting off and draining outdoor faucets to prevent water damage due to freezing.
Prevent Your Home From Appearing Unoccupied
- Forward your mail and stop newspaper delivery.
- Arrange for someone to remove snow after storms.
- Put motion-sensitive exterior lights and interior lights on timers and set them to come on at varying times to discourage prowlers.
- Consider using an experienced snowbird property management firm Tradewind Properties who will make sure that issues like mail and package delivery, plowing and shoveling and lighting are managed so that your home looks occupied and active while you’re gone.
Cozy 1.5 story 4 bedroom home with a 2 Detached car garage. Hardwood floors on the main level. Large living room and Kitchen, enjoy the 3 season ‘sun room’ & door onto nice size deck on a large corner lot perfect for entertaining. Just minutes away from Lion’s Levee Park. Available May 1st- 12, 18, or 24 month lease terms. Tenant pays all utilities (water/sewer, trash, gas and electric) and tenant responsible for snow/lawn care. No pets allowed. Smoking is not allowed. Non-refundable Application fee: $45/adult. Information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Renters insurance required. Section 8 not approved. Minimum 24 hour notice to show.
Convenient Location in Plymouth!Read More
Considering renting out your property? When it’s time to spruce up your rental, attract potential tenants with these quick, simple improvements.
- Focus on that Kitchen
Today’s renters are putting a lot of emphasis on one room in the house: the kitchen. The layout, details, and functionality of the kitchen can make or break a property. While you don’t have to do a complete remodel or change the layout of your existing kitchen, there are a few quick improvements that can make the kitchen wow your tenants.Install new cupboard hardware, a shiny new retractable faucet, and a hidden space for the trash can. Repaint the walls if they’re looking dim, and spend some time thinking of smart storage solutions for the kitchen. Making the kitchen inviting, clean, and modern will help potential tenants imagine themselves in this important space.
- In-Home Laundry
Carrying around loads of laundry is a pain, and in-home laundry is one of those items that shows up on most tenants’ wish lists. Even if it is a small washer and dryer, stacking or side-by-side, see if you can fit in these appliances to make your tenants’ lives easier.
- Allow Pets
There are pros and cons to allowing pets or not allowing them, but being open to dogs and cats can open up your rental pool significantly. Read more on this subject.
- Clean It Up
This may seem obvious, but deep cleaning all parts of your rental space is crucial. Don’t skimp on washing windows, floorboards, door frames, blinds, and every inch of the bathrooms. Hire a carpet cleaning service to make sure your carpets are fresh. Although most people won’t notice that your place is spic-n-span, they will notice if it’s not.
- Improve Your Curb Appeal
Taking time to amp up your exterior can range from repainting the entire façade, to planting flowers or putting an afternoon’s time into the lawn. Try any of these simple ideas to make your property more inviting: spray for weeds, scatter grass seed on bald spots, plant shrubs or flowers, repair cracks in the sidewalks or driveway, and repaint trim or shutters.
For more assistance with renting out your property―including vetting and finding tenants or conducting a Home Rental Analysis, contact the real estate experts at Tradewind Properties: 763-657-1957. We are here to help!
As a landlord, you have two major concerns: keeping your rental property occupied, and keeping it in good shape so it appeals to tenants. Tradewind Properties takes care of the first concern for you, so let’s focus on the second.
Each tenant will have ways to make your rental property feel like home to them, as they should. But as the landlord, what changes should you allow and when should you say no?
To put it simply, think about which changes will be either reversible when current renters move out, or a clear upgrade that will improve the value of the property.
For example, changes that will make tenants happy, but are reversible, could include:
- Changing the blinds.
- Swapping out light-switch covers.
- Painting the walls. This one can be a triumph or a disaster. It is best to either approve any colors the tenants are suggesting, or arrange a fee for the walls to be painted back to original upon them moving out.
- Replacing shower heads, specialty light bulbs, or other easy swaps.
- Light fixtures, although it is recommended that a licensed electrician be hired for this job.
- Custom built-ins for the closets.
- Any baby-proofing.
Generally-speaking, most major upgrades should come out of your wallet, as the owner of the property. But small changes to the rental can be the tenants’ choosing (and on their dime), and will help give them a say in how their living space feels. Assuming they gain your permission and that the upgrades improve the value of the property, consider giving a thumbs up to these:
- Replacing drawer pulls and other hardware.
- Deep cleaning the carpets, power spraying the deck, or other major cleaning endeavors.
- Painting walls or cabinets (see above).
- Installing shelving in the garage, mud room, laundry room, etc.
- Upgrading the kitchen sink to include a retractable kitchen faucet, an in-sink soap dispenser, or adding a garbage disposal.
- Bringing in their own appliances that they will leave behind (assuming they’re a step above what you currently have).
- Bathroom upgrades like towel rods, towel hooks, or a medicine cabinet.
- Installing ceiling fans (again, with the help of a professional).
- Planting herbs, bulbs or flowers in garden.
When to Say No
Sometimes what seems like a fabulous idea to some is either too permanent, too hazardous, or too ugly to allow in your rental property.
- Cut-outs for an A/C unit.
- Fire pits or other fire hazards.
- Basketball hoops installed on the exterior. Chances are good the next tenants might not be as keen on a game of hoops.
- Anything that diminishes the functionality or character of a place, such as painting over original brick, closing off a fireplace, or adding an awning which only keeps light from getting in the windows, etc.
- Changing the locks or security system. Unless you mutually agree to change the locks, and the landlord takes the lead, this is obviously a big no-no.
Please note that safety issues, repairs and major upgrades are part of a landlord’s responsibilities. The staff at Tradewind Properties can help you manage all of these, including emergency handyman visits for repairs.
Keep an open line of communication with your tenants, and be open to suggestions for how they can make your property feel like home. It’s beneficial to both parties if tenants and landlord are satisfied and in agreement.
If you have any questions about becoming a landlord, or renting out your property, Contact Tradewind Properties. We are here to help!