Quick Tips to Fix Up a Rental Property Without Breaking the Bank

Putting a little time and effort into your rental property can easily put you above the competition. Everyone tries when they are selling a home to make it look the best it can, which means pouring lots of dollars into renovations and appliances. Investors who are looking to rent a home cannot afford extensive work and don’t have the time to wait for such work to be done. Once a property becomes available for rent, it is a race to fill the space.  We have found some quick fixes to make sure your rental property looks it’s best without cutting into your profits.

Inexpensive Kitchen Upgrades for Rental Property

Don’t be afraid of a little color to start. Extremely bold colors aren’t necessary, but adding a pop of color to cabinets that are outdated or dark can open up a kitchen and change the entire look of the room. Once the paint is taken care of, matching, modern hardware is a must and small investment in the long run. Think storage and get creative. Hang fruit baskets, put up a pot rack and add an island if you have enough space.  Add backsplash, but it is not necessary to do so all the way around the kitchen. Use tiles for accents rather than spending an arm and a leg on covering the entire wall. Invest in the floor and make certain you get something neutral, stylized and (maybe most important) durable. Consider updating plumbing to modern fixtures that can stand up to heavy use.

Curb appeal plays a big part in the appeal of your rental property, learn more here.

Improve Bathroom Appeal on a Budget

Job one: Make sure everything matches. From doorknobs to light fixtures and even down to toilet paper holders, it should all go together. Mismatched fixtures are an immediate sign of age and will turn renters off quickly. Once again, pay special attention to the floor. If water damage has occurred, replace what is there with a water and mold resistant material.  Use color in the floor, make the bathroom fun! Choose a color palette to use in the bathroom décor. Storage is important here too if there isn’t a linen closet. Try to maximize space with corner shelves and towel hangers with multiple racks. Add a frame to a mirror, either modern or ornate, but it should definitely be eye-catching.  Last, but certainly not least, ensure there is ample, natural light.

Beautify Your Rental Property with some Minor Adjustments

Clean rooms from top to bottom, checking for cobwebs and dirt on baseboards. Clean windows and mirrors and do it well! Hire a cleaning crew if you feel the need to do so, it will be worth it. Paint where it’s needed, do not leave peeling paint or half-finished paint anywhere. Clean up the back yard, as well as the front. Deep clean carpets, shine wood floors and dust everything! Make sure fixtures, doorknobs and the like match throughout the home.  A uniform look is the best way to go in any home showing situation.

With minimal spend and a bit of work, the money saved and tenants earned will be worth it! If you would like to discuss more about what TALK Property Management can do for you contact us today!

5 Reasons It’s Time to Drop Your Bad Property Manager

Property management is all about doing the best work possible for property owners.  At least, that’s what we believe at Talk Property Management/Broker.  We know not everyone thinks this way and many agencies fail to live up to the standards set for them by their owners. If you find yourself in this situation, keep calm and hire a new property manager who will take care of you, your tenants and your property.

  • You’re Losing Money. If you are working with a property management company that can’t promote your property, doesn’t make time for you, isn’t keeping an eye on your investment and won’t deal with troublesome tenants, then you are definitely going to hurt in the long run, even if you aren’t currently.  The only way an owner can charge a premium for their property is if the property is being properly promoted and appropriately managed.
  • Good Tenants Will Leave. When there is an issue with difficult tenants and it isn’t dealt with properly, your otherwise happy tenants won’t stick around. One, it’s unfair to those who are considerate of others, keep things clean and make an effort to be good neighbors for someone else to be getting away with bad behavior.  Two, tenants who are behind on rent and stick around aren’t always likely to keep that information to themselves.  If your tenants who pay rent promptly on the due date get wind of this, you can guarantee they will be moving on or possibly adopt their own bad habits.
  • Your Name is Being Tarnished. They might take some of the heat, but ultimately it will come down to you, as the owner. If a situation arises that gets the attention of local government, activists, media or law enforcement it doesn’t matter whether or not you were aware of it, you are on the hook.  This is particularly important for property owners who live out of the city or state in which their property is located.  When you have no opportunity to even drive by and check in, you are at the mercy of your property manager.
  • You Can’t Get a Renter Interested in Your Property. You’ve listed the property, your property manager swears they are promoting it but can’t give you any real proof and you aren’t seeing any real interest, applications or activity that means much of anything.  In this situation, you may be paying for services that are not being provided or something has happened to the property that is keeping people from acting on it.  The reason could be anything from a dirty house, to insect issues, or something more serious like graffiti or massive damage to the interior of which you are unaware.  If you are dealing with this, it may be time to pay your investment property a little visit.
  • You’ve Been Getting Complaints. It takes a lot of aggravation for a tenant to not only track down owner information, but then to contact them directly. If you find you are receiving multiple direct calls or emails from tenants who are getting little to no response from property management, then you know business is not being taken care of and it is time to deal with the issue pronto before you start losing leases.

When you encounter a difficult or absentee property manager the frustration can drive you to believe maybe you would be better off managing the property yourself.  But, remember there was a reason you hired them in the first place.  You can find a partner in that has your interests and success at heart.  Work with one of the best property management companies in Austin, Texas, and get in touch with TALK Property Management today!

TALK Property Management is a Company You Can Trust

What makes TALK Property Management/Broker Different?

TALK Property Management/Broker is a full service company that puts your needs first. We are always just a phone call or email away. Ours is a company you can trust and rely on to take care of your investment and treat your tenants with respect.

TALK Property Management’s staff is knowledgeable, professional and courteous. Communication is very important to us. Whether your are an owner or a tenant, we keep you informed.

Our services include:TALK-Property-Management-Meaning

  • Monthly Accounting Reports
  • Automated Owner Distributions
  • Owner Portal with WebCloud Document Retrieval and Notifications
  • Multi Media Marketing and Leasing
  • Regular Property Inspections and Texas Property Code Compliance
  • Inexpensive Maintenance/Repair Vendors
  • Comprehensive Tenant Screening (Credit, Rental History, Criminal Check, Income Verification)

Give us a call and Let’s TALK! or click here to sign up for a free consultation.

Texas, It’s Finally Time to Winterize Your Home!

We thought it might never happen, but the cold is here, which means if you’ve been putting off winterizing your home because of the warmer weather we’ve been experiencing, it’s time to stop procrastinating. Not only will these tips help keep the cold at bay and your home nice and toasty, but they can help reduce your utility bill as well.

• First thing’s first, make a checklist by taking a survey around the house of problem spots.

• Flush your water heater. Sediment can build up in the bottom of your water heater over time which can affect its performance. You can flush water through the drain valve to clear out material. For a step-by-step video click here.

• Change the rotation of your ceiling fans. Remember that reverse switch? It’s time to use it. Make sure they are moving in a clockwise direction in order to direct hot air from the ceiling to the floor.

• Remember to replace filters for your central air and heating system. This a small thing that can save you lots of aggravation.

• Here’s a trick for insulating your windows you may not have been aware of…window insulation film. This inexpensive film comes with a kit and can keep a significant amount of heat from leaking out of your windows.

• Under the door draft guards can work well to keep drafts from exterior doors at bay. They aren’t always ideal if you have a lip to get over when the door is closed, or they can be tough when there is carpet to deal with. In those cases, a towel blocking the bottom of doors with less traffic or overnight can help as well.

• Weather-stripping is one of the easiest ways to seal doors and windows. It comes in different thicknesses and in convenient rolls as tape.

• If you don’t already have one, invest in a programmable thermostat. If you do already have one, use it! Programming cooler settings while you are away at work or on a trip can save you money, and you can still ensure you walk into a warm house by the time you get home. Because, really, who doesn’t love the feeling of walking into the warmth from the freezing cold?

• Chimneys, which aren’t used much if at all around Central and South Texas can be a major source of chill and wasted heat. You can plug it up with a chimney balloon which will keep drafts from sneaking in. Make sure you’re not going to be using it first. Chimney balloons should only go in inactive chimneys.

• Cover pipes if a freeze warning occurs. Pipe covers can be found at many stores and can be a lifesaver when it comes to saving money and aggravation over the winter.

With these handy tips, we hope you have a warm and cozy home all winter long. Winterizing is less extensive around these parts than in other areas, but it still pays to take the time to care for your home!  If you’re a property owner looking for a great property management company, contact TALK Property Management today!

Don’t Do it Alone: A Property Manager Makes Your Life Easier

Whether you are an individual owner or an agency, managing your own properties is an exceptionally daunting task. You may be unaware of all the time, stress, financial administration and paperwork that a skilled property manager can take off your hands. On the other hand, you may be reading this because you have already ventured in to self-management and realized that it is time to get some help. You’re in luck! TALK Property Management is here to teach you about what property management can do for you.

Property managers are your ambassadors.

They handle situations that arise with tenants as they occur. A good property manager not only takes care of tenant needs in a courteous, professional and timely manner, but keeps the property owner apprised of any and all issues, as well as their resolution. Keeping tenants happy with the service they receive is a main point of property management. Happy tenants = long term leases.

Property managers conquer the digital realm for you.

Do you have time to post on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Periscope, YouTube, LinkedIn and the like? Are you confident in the digital advertising space? What is your email marketing reach? Do you know what keywords will perform the best, which social networks work for you, how to target your audience demographics online or what SEM and SEO mean? No? When you hire a property manager, you don’t have to. Property managers in the digital age make sure they can work as hard for you online as off.

At TALK Property Management, our focus is YOU. The services we can offer you will make your life easier and ensure you are getting the highest exposure to top quality tenants. Once they are in the door, TALK will help you keep those excellent long-term renters happy with awesome and swift service. Click here to contact us today for a free property management consultation and let’s TALK.