The Practical Move: Tips for First Time Renters

One of the practical ways to start living on your own is to rent an apartment. It’s much cheaper and it provides enough privacy for you or your family. The process can be a bit intimidating, especially for first time renters.

So to help you out, here are some tips I have prepared to sort your options and make the right decisions. In this post, we will take you through the steps from finding an apartment, navigating the lease agreement, and managing your rights as a tenant.

  • Know your budget

Track-your-budget-for-the-week-and-the-monthConsider your monthly income and your daily expense. Many experts recommend you should only be spending around 20% to 30% of your net income on rent or housing. You should also consider other “hidden” costs like maintenance fees, monthly dues, and possible renovations. Take note that some apartments may also have income requirements.

If you think you can’t handle the expense, consider getting a roommate.

  • Consider your needs

There’s a big difference between getting what you want from what you need, but it’s not impossible to get both. List down whatever comes to your mind. What are you looking for in an apartment? Do you need a studio type or a single bedroom? Do you need a fully-furnished unit? These are some of the things you need to consider. While you may not get everything on your list, it will definitely narrow down the possibilities.

  • Look for more options

It is always better to have a backup plan. You can start your search by browsing online. Do not be deceived by the photos you see in the gallery. Visit the unit to see if it suits your preference.

  • Review the terms and conditions

Be familiar with the policies. Keep in mind that each landlord may have differentour_legal_services rules and regulations. The first thing you need to find out is the payment scheme. Make sure you fully understand your contract to avoid discrepancies. You may also consult a legal counsel to analyze the contract and other policies included. This is to make sure everything is in order and the terms they have are fair.

Finding a place to move in is not that difficult if you know what you’re doing. Always remember that planning ahead of time is always a good thing.

First Impression that can Last for a Long Time: Why you need Office Cleaning Services

The first thing that people will notice when they enter any business premise is the overall cleanliness of the facilities. From storefront to main office, people expect it to be clean. This is why I strongly suggest to every business owner to hire professional cleaning services. This can help make good impressions to your business partners and future clients. To give you a better look, here are some of the benefits you can get from hiring a commercial cleaning service:

Make good impressions

A clean and organised office can leave a good mark to everyone in the building. This is crucial especially if you are in the food business. This only shows how you value your products and service quality. In fact, this is your first opportunity to attract more future clients.

Prevent health issues

spring-cleaning-officeRegular disinfectant to every area is advisable to kill germs and other viruses lurking around the entire building. Dust can easily trigger allergic attack, especially to employees who have breathing problems. Always remember that prevention is better than cure.

Improve staff productivity and satisfaction

Employees work better in clean environments. Maintaining office cleanliness is leaders-what-your-team-wantsessential if you want them to be more efficient with their work. And the best way to address sanitation issues is to hire a professional. Your people can be organised with their workstation, but you can expect them to handle all the “dirty work”.

Expertise, experience, and equipment

You may have office maintenance staff to clean the facilities regularly, but a commercial cleaning company offers the added benefit of scale and expertise. They are highly trained and more experienced when it comes to sanitation services. They also have the right equipment to make sure every area is safe and clean.

When looking for this kind of service, make sure to hire a reputable company. Browse through their website and read more reviews about the quality of their work. Check their packages and compare the rates they offer from other service providers.

Remodeling Projects that can Increase your Property’s Curb Appeal

Remodeling your home takes more time and effort to achieve the best results. Here are some of the things you need to remember before you proceed to your next project.

remodelingHome improvement projects can be a daunting task, especially if you don’t know where to start. This is why you need a solid game plan even if you’re planning to hire a licensed contractor. To help you out, we have compiled a list of tips and tricks to help you complete your projects on time and on budget.

Improving your lawn

Having a colorful lush green garden can make your home more welcoming. This can also increase property value. It gives your exterior that relaxing and tranquil environment.

Remove unnecessary clutter blocking the entryway. Your goal here is to highlight the main features of your home. Every detail should complement each other—from choosing the right plants to adding outdoor furniture. As much as possible, choose plants that are easy to maintain.

Upgrading the kitchen

Your kitchen is one of the most functional areas of your home.  Your main kitchenobjective here is to maximize the space. Instead of adding more large cabinets, install wall mounted shelves to provide more space. This can make your kitchen look more comfortable and convenient. Make it easier for you to move around. Renovate those non-structural walls. You should also consider external wall cladding services to add more style.

Remodeling the bathroom

article_affordbathupgrade_heroFirst, you need to check those leaking pipes and faulty shower knobs. Make sure everything is in good condition. For bathroom renovations, you also need to create some space. Be creative and resourceful. Choose elegant fixtures like pedestal sinks instead of huge cabinet vanity. When it comes to bathtubs, bigger is not always better. Just make sure there’s still enough room to stretch out your body.

These are some of the things you need to remember when remodeling your home. To save more money, stick to DIY projects for simple tasks like painting the walls. Read home magazines or research online for more tips and suggestions.

Buying a Piece of Land

Buying a vacant lot require more time and research to make sure you’re investment are worth it. First, you need to know why you want to buy the property. Keep in mind that it’s a bit different from buying a house.  With land, you could choose to build your own house, use the property as long-term investment or even start up a business. Whatever your reasons are, it is advisable to know the possible risks. So before you look for a potential vacant lot, here are some tips you could use:

Choose the best location

timthumbEvery real estate investor knows how important it is to consider the location of the property. The market value of a property relies heavily on the location. When buying a property, you should develop a general idea where you’d like to make a purchase. Do your research. Examine the area carefully. Consider things like access to schools, hospitals, job opportunities, shopping malls, and restaurants.

Know the costs involved

As every expert would say, “the more time you spend preparing, the more ready you’ll be to spend your time wisely”. And by now, you should know how much you’re willing to spend for a property. Knowing the market value can help you make the right decisions. This put you to a better place when making negotiations. Consider other expenses like title insurance, land surveys, utilities and building costs.

Understand the zoning restrictions

Planning___ZoningKeep in mind that there are laws you need to have in check. This is why you have to know your purpose of buying a piece of land. Make sure to comply with all the building codes. Consult a professional homebuilder and go to your municipal office for the requirements needed.

These are just some of the things you need to consider before buying a vacant lot. To help you find a good property, you may hire a licensed real estate agent or a professional property manager.

5 Keys to Success when Investing in Commercial Real Estate

Investing in commercial real estate may sound like a good plan. This however takes a lot of time and effort to reach your goals. Having the right mindset and perseverance are the main keys to success. Make sure you work with the right people. Analyze every move and always weigh the pros and cons. Know the right type of investment. To help you get the best possible results, I have prepared these key points to make sure you’re on the right path. Read on.

  1. Be familiar with your investment

Corporate - Real EstateFirst, you need to narrow down your options. Bear in mind that there are different types of commercial properties—industrial buildings, offices, and retail stores. Your marketing strategies will depend on which type of property you’re investing. The expenses may also vary on the properties you’re maintaining. In some cases, offices and retail stores require more maintenance fees.

  1. Find the best location

Location is one of the main keys to success. In fact, this could be the best selling point of your investment. Check the area carefully. Just like when you’re looking for a place to live, you need to check out the environment and accessibility of the place. You should also study the demographics so you can weigh your options thoroughly.

  1. Know your budget and the current market value

By now, you should know how much you’re willing to spend for this business. Set office-space-for-lease-signa detailed budget for everything. Your forecast budget should include all the possible expenses such as maintenance fees, document fees, loans, labor costs, and many more. You may also make a more precised evaluation of the market value bases on location, the size of property, and the construction project. As mentioned earlier, location can be a huge factor. You may see some price changes with rural and urban places. You should also allot your budget on maintenance and renovation projects.

  1. Understand the process of return of investment

Return-On-InvestmentIn my previous posts, I have mentioned a brief discussion about the return of investment in real estate. Again, whether residential or commercial properties, both require some time before you get the cash flowing. According to some reports, there are lower risks in residential properties, but also lower return. And commercial properties may have a steady cash flow due to a smaller upfront money.

  1. Know the possible risks

One obvious risk of commercial real estate is vacancy. A good example for this is the warehouse. Usually, it may take some time to find new tenants for this type of property, while finding a new tenant for houses or apartments may only take some weeks. Another risk is when the tenant has to close down due to financial issues.

These are just some of the things you need to keep in mind when investing in commercial real estate. If you are really serious about this investment, I strongly advise hiring a reputable property management firm and seek advice from financial consultant. Find a seasoned real estate agent to help you choose the right investment.

 

 

The Transformation: Turning your Garage to a New Room

Converting an old garage into a personal office space or a bedroom has become popular these days. This is one way to maximize unused space and utilize it to its full potential. This will not only improve the curb appeal of your home but can also increase its resale value. To help you out, here are some tips you could use when turning your garage to a nice and cozy bedroom. Read on.

TIP #1 Inspect the area

Before you proceed to your new project, make sure to check the area. It is also advisable to visit the municipal’s office and check the local building codes. Prepare all the necessary documents including the general floor plan for your project. This will make process run smoothly. Review the checklist and make sure to comply with all the requirements. It might be tempting to do the work immediately, but it is always better to do it legally to avoid any discrepancies in the future.

TIP #2: Review the floor plan thoroughly

awesome-garage-floor-plan-on-bay-garage-with-apartment-garage-plans-alp-096c-garage-floor-planOnce you get the permit for construction, consider reviewing the floor plan. Get the exact measurements to make sure everything is in order. The problem with most people is they tend to get excited when revamping the space. As a result, they usually end up buying the wrong items for their project. Most of the time, the appliances and furniture they get do not fit where they supposed to be. This can only cause delays and not to mention a waste of money. So before anything else, check the materials you need.

TIP# 3:  Begin the construction and observe

You should set a timeline for your project. This can help you monitor the progress. As much as possible, stick to the original floor plan and avoid making any changes during the construction. You might get better ideas along the way, but it is always better to make necessary adjustments AFTER the construction.

TIP# 4: Consult a professional

For your own safety, it is always better to look for professional house inspection services. If you want to make a few adjustments, never hesitate to bring it up to your contractors. Consider the climate in your area when remodelling the space. You should be comfortable at all times. For better results, consider hiring a professional interior designer as well. This will help you achieve your goals and could even come up with a better output.

TIP# 5: Maximize your options

In any home improvement project, you always need a plan B. You can read home PlanBmagazines or search online to get more ideas for your next project. Just make sure to be realistic with your goals—the more complicated it is, the more money you need to spend. This however doesn’t mean you cannot reach your objective without burning holes into your pockets. You just need to be resourceful. Be patient. Look for reliable suppliers and reputable contractors.

These are just some of the things you need to consider when converting your garage to a new personal space or a bedroom. Again, always consult a professional for better results.

Boosting Your Home’s Curb Appeal

Home renovations can be really stressful. This article is a detailed guideline to make sure you’re on track.

Improving the curb appeal of your home is one way to increase property value. The question is where do you start? So, let us discuss some of the key factors when dealing with home improvement projects. From improving the exterior area to kitchen and bathroom remodels, there are so many ways to give your home a fresh and new look.  You don’t necessarily have to spend a fortune to achieve your goals. You just need to be resourceful and creative. Set your budget accordingly and do your best to stick to it. Know your priorities and set realistic expectations based on the resources you have.

Working with the exterior 01-cred

Since the entry way is the focal point of its curb appeal, it is only advisable to start with the exterior. Walk around the house and check which areas you need to improve. Remove unnecessary clutter and consider reshaping the lawn. Pay attention to outgrown landscape.

Replace old hardware and make sure every fixture is working. Check the condition of the front door and exterior windows as well. Repaint them if needed. The key here is to highlight the best features of your property.

Upgrading the garage is also a good idea. This can boost your home’s curb appeal. Organize the yard tools by using large containers. You may also try installing shutters to maximize security and to add more style to your property. Today, this has become a popular option among home owners.
Remodeling the kitchen

Kitchen is one of the most functional areas of the house, but you don’t have to simple-kitchen-pfflvmkpmake things complicated. The problem with most people is they tend to buy too many kitchen items and furniture. As a result, they eat up the entire kitchen space. Keep in that your priority here is to maximize the space for your own convenience. So instead of buying large containers or cabinets, install wall mounted shelves, where you can store condiments and utensils.

Hiring a professional

Hiring a reputable interior designer or home decorator can simplify things for you. Just make sure to discuss the goals you want to achieve. Consider getting your house inspected by a professional as well to ensure your safety. They should be able to fix any danger spot from your property.

These are just some of the things you need to consider when renovating or remodeling your property. Search online and read home magazines for more tips and suggestions.

Choosing The Right Place to Live

They say “home is where the heart is”, but what if you’re still struggling with your decisions involving bright opportunities for your career, raising a family, or looking for a brand new start? Yep, there is always a choice for everything, and sometimes, it takes a lot of sacrifices.

In this article, I will try to help you make better decisions when looking for the right place to live. As we all have different reasons—be it job relocation or for personal reasons, it is always better to take a timeout and weigh your options.

hqdefaultChoosing where to live is not that easy. There are many things you need to consider—from the environment and healthcare system to education and employment rate. Truly, finding that perfect place you can call home requires more time and research. So to help you with your decision, here are some key points you should consider.

Affordability

No matter how much your income is, living comfortably and within your means should be your first priority. Affordability is more than just housing expenses. This includes the prices for consumable goods, the price of gasoline, utility services, taxes, and others. Although your expense depends on your lifestyle, it is still advisable to be familiar with the average cost of living in certain areas

Security

iStock_000011785457MediumSpend time walking through the neighborhood. Observe the condition of the houses—the front yards, the streets and the sidewalks. You should also feel comfortable with the people you encounter. Check if there are vacant lots or abandoned buildings. You should also consider making a background research about the place. Check the crime rate and make sure the place is accessible to hospitals, police department, and fire department.

Employment opportunities

Employment opportunity is another thing you need to consider. This may vary from state to state or city to city. Check out the different jobs available in the town or city. Analyse the quality of employment within your industry. Do not move in unless you have a regular job.

Real estate value

It is advisable to know the value of the property. Search online and check the value of other properties within your area. You may also hire an expert to inspect the property and estimate the value.

Proximity to family and friend

If you love spending holidays with your family and friends, then you need to consider the distance of your new home.

These are just some of the things you need to consider when looking for a place to live. Again, choose the best community that suits your personality and lifestyle.

The Right Way to Sell your Property

Just like when you’re looking for a new place to live in, selling a property requires a lot of time and effort to increase your chances of getting more prospect buyers. The first thing you need to consider is your asking price. By now, you should know the value of your property. Take some time to inspect every area. Are you really giving them a fair price? This is why property managers strongly recommend making a few upgrades to improve curb appeal and property value. Simple paintjobs or replacing those malfunctioning windows can really make a huge difference.

But this is just a beginning. There are many other things you need to consider. So, for your further guidance, I have prepared these key pointers from some of the most successful property investors today. Read on.

Thinking-About-Selling-Your-House

Find a reputable contractor

It is advisable to get your house inspected by a professional to find out which areas need improvement. Whether for major or minor renovations, it is always better to ask for an initial quotation so you can prepare your budget. While hiring or consulting an interior designer can be a huge advantage, it is always better to do your own research. Read magazines or search online to get more home design ideas when renovating or remodelling your property. This will also give you an idea about the value of your property.

Hire a licensed real estate agent

real_estate_agent_sold_sign_hg_clrWhile hiring an agent is not always necessary, it can also be a good advantage. Just make sure to run a thorough screening process to make sure you get the right agent. A good real estate agent should not only help you find potential buyers. They should also formulate a solid marketing plan. They should also explain to you all the important details. Don’t hesitate to ask them about their current sales. Inquire about the strategies they will use to sell your property. Do your own homework as well. Check out those property ads, auction schedules, and sales results in every state.

You should also have at least three or more options. Compare their property portfolio so you can easily gauge the quality of their services. It’s all about credentials nowadays. And before sealing the deal, make sure to consult a legal counsel. Have the contracts reviewed to make sure everything is in order.

Maximize your selling strategies

Some investors prefer joining auctions. This is simply because they believe they can put pressure among other investors and homebuyers. They also believe that they can sell their properties higher than their asking price.

The key here is to dictate a competitive bidding among buyers. There shouldn’t be a price limit so the bidders can react quickly. Meanwhile, private selling gives you an opportunity to re-evaluate the offer of your buyers.

Another way to boost your selling strategy is to implement online marketing. This is probably the easiest way to improve your ads.

Keep these things in mind and you can make a more sensible decision. For more information, consult a property management firm.

Everything you Need to Know When Buying a Property

Finding a placing to live is getting more and more difficult these days. There are many factors you need to consider. This includes the location, accessibility, comfort and convenience, and of course your budget. The problem with most people is they tend to get excited when searching for a house. As a result, they end up splurging their money for the wrong property. To avoid these costly mistakes, we will discuss some of the key factors when searching for your perfect home.

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When to hire an agent?

Hiring a licensed real estate agent has several advantages. They can make things easier for you—from fixing your documents, finding the right property, and other errands you need to do, they can definitely make the transactions easier. The only downer is the feeling of uncertainty about the real value of the property. Of course, there’s a bigger chance of getting it cheaper when you negotiate directly to the owners. The question is how do you find them? Do you have the time to accomplish everything? If so, then you don’t have to hire an agent or a property manager.

Where to look for potential properties?

house-for-saleIn this time and age, searching for a new house is no longer difficult. You can simply go online and look for properties available. Real estate investors also strongly recommend checking the credibility of the firm when looking for potential properties. Read reviews and feedback to know more about their services. A reputable real estate agency should present you all legal documents including business permits and proper licensing. Property auctions can also be a good avenue.

Before you seal the deal, consider looking for other options. Be patient and take your time. Always consider your lifestyle and the environment of the place. Keep in mind that you want to move in to a new home so you can make things more convenient for you and your family.

When to expect your return of investment if you’re getting properties for business purposes?

ROI-shutterstock_116288464Just like any other business, it takes time to reach that steady cash flow. Don’t expect too much. Yes, you need to deal with a lot of issues in the beginning. This includes maintenance fees for the time being, the search for prospect buyers or tenants, legal documents, permits, and many more. This is why you need to a lot your budget carefully.

Keep in mind that there is a slight difference between searching for home and property investment. In addition, the cash flow for commercial and residential properties is also different. There’s a bigger chance for you to earn more money when you sold a residential property, but it may take a while since it requires bigger upfront money. On the other hand, the cash flow for commercial properties may be a bit faster. But there are also underlying factors such as economical status, location of your property, and your marketing strategy.

These are just some of the things you should keep in mind about buying a property. Whatever your purpose is—whether for personal or business reasons, you should always weigh your options. Don’t be an impulsive buyer. Do your research or consult an expert to make sure you’ll make better decisions.