St. Robert Location: 573-336-3002
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Property Management Blog

Fort Leonard Wood Housing: What Are Options for Military Housing? PCS Tips

System - Wednesday, August 10, 2016

 

With our proximity to the Fort Leonard Wood Army installation, we have a lot of experience with military housing. Today, we want to talk about the types of Fort Leonard Wood housing that’s available to soldiers who have received PCS orders and are coming to the area. These PCS tips will be helpful to you if you’re here already and looking for military housing, or you know you’re coming, and curious about what you’ll find for Ft. Leonard Wood housing.

Fort Leonard Wood Rentals On Post

If you’re looking for Ft. Leonard Wood rentals on base, you’ll find that there is plenty of housing available. Most of those units are duplexes, and there are also some single family homes. If you want to stay on post, contact the housing office at the base, and you’ll get details on what’s available and how to choose a place to live.

Fort Leonard Wood Rentals Off Post

When you want to live off post, there are a variety of options that can fit any circumstance or need. Whether you want Fort Leonard Wood family housing or a small apartment just for yourself, we have properties that will fit what you’re seeking. There are apartment complexes, townhomes, and single family homes that are all within minutes of the Fort Leonard Wood Main Gate and the West Gate. That means your commute will be fast and easy to manage. Most of the single family homes are in subdivisions, which allows for easy interaction with your neighbors. If you are looking for more solitude and prefer Property Managerprivacy, we can also show you properties in subdivisions that have larger lots and even areas with some acreage.


If you need help planning your move and finding a place to live, contact us at Century 21 Prestige. Tell us what your preferences are and we can give you some PCS advice, and tell you what’s available. Then, we’ll arrange to show you the properties once you’re in town.

What Does a St. Robert Property Management Company Do for Their Fee?

System - Monday, May 23, 2016


Landlords are sometimes uncertain about what exactly a property manager does for the fee that is collected. This is our second blog in a two-part blog series. In the first part, we talked about finding tenant and in this blog, we’ll discuss what is done when we’re professionally managing your property.


Responding to Tenant Needs

Most rental property owners believe that the most important thing we do is to take the calls in the middle of the night from your tenants. So when your tenant has no water or no heat, they are able to call our emergency number. We have someone available 24 hours a day to handle these calls. Some of our vendors will go out in the off hours. Sometimes, we’ll take the call and then get a service provider out to the property as soon as the doors open in the morning. This is an important service so you aren’t bothered with the emergencies in the middle of the night or over the weekend or while you’re on vacation. We also take routine maintenance calls. If we need your permission before doing any work, we get estimates, let you make your decision, and coordinate repairs.


Conducting Routine Inspections

During occupancy, we do routine inspections every six months. Sometimes it takes a little longer to get into the property since we need access from the tenant. Once we’re in, we take a look around and make sure all is good with the property. We report back to you so you know the status. When tenants are ready to move out, we do move out inspection. This is our opportunity to review how the home looks, and determine how much of security deposit should be returned. Then, we get it back to them in a timely manner.


Providing Technology for Efficient Management

With our software system, tenants can log in 24/7 and request a routine repair. This is usually something that needs to be fixed, but is not of immediate concern. It’s a maintenance issue that needs to be taken care of to protect the condition of your property. The tenants can log in when they realize what is needed, and we will see it and get the repairs scheduled.


Accounting and Bookkeeping for Your Rental Property

You’ll get end of year accounting for your tax records. We can provide you with a record of all bills, charges, and money you have earned. It’s easy to take that information to your accountant and prepare your taxes. You don’t have to do the record keeping. We Property Manageralso make all the calls if there is a collection issue. If tenants are not paying rent, we send them a reminder. As soon as the grace period is up, we start collections and work out whatever arrangements we need to. In rare circumstances, when the tenant needs to be evicted, we will assist with that process and help you get your property back.


If you have any questions about property management fees and services, please contact us at Century 21 Prestige.

How Do St. Robert Property Managers Find Good Tenants? Understanding Property Management Fees

System - Wednesday, May 18, 2016


When you pay a fee to a property manager for the services involved in getting your home rented to a good tenant, there are a number of things that are involved in finding that tenant and earning that management fee. We’re bringing you a two-part blog series about property management fees, and in this first part, we’ll talk about how we place your tenants.

Marketing Your Rental Property

The most important thing to do when you have a property for rent is to market it well. We are able to take advantage of our relationship with Century 21 Prestige to market our rental listings throughout the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), which also enables us to feed these listings out to a lot of national websites. We also put the listing on our own local website and advertise your home in the housing office at Fort Leonard Wood.


Conducting Vacancy Checks

In addition to marketing, we do vacancy checks. So if you have a vacant property, we go out every two to three weeks to walk through and make sure your property is secure and nothing is wrong with it. Then, we report back to you. So if you’re not living in the area, you don’t have to worry about an unsecure, vacant property.


Responding to Potential Tenants

The next phase of finding a tenant is taking calls from all Internet leads, scheduling showings, meeting people at the property and walking them through it. We explain the features of the property and discuss the rental terms. At that point, if the tenant is interested in renting the property, we use a third party rental screening company that allows us to do a background and credit check. This is a professional company that gives us a letter grade for each applicant, which helps ensure they have the ability to pay and there is no criminal background or history that would preclude them from renting your property.


Signing a Lease and Accepting a Security Deposit

Once your tenant is approved through this objective service, we put a lease together for signatures and we collect the security Property Managerdeposit. We can hold the deposit in our corporate escrow account, and it stays there until a tenant moves out, at which point we do a walk-through of the property. If everything looks good, we promptly return the deposit. If there are any damages, we get estimates and have repairs made. Then, we return whatever portion is due back to the tenants. There are legal rules about when to return the deposit. We have 30 days to have it back in their hands, so we are sure to return deposits appropriately and in a timely fashion.


If you have any questions about the services we provide in exchange for the fee you pay to find a tenant, please contact us at Century 21 Prestige. We look forward to talking with you.

Rent vs. Sell: What Should I Do with My Home When Leaving the Area? Relocation Advice from a Propert...

System - Wednesday, March 30, 2016


Homeowners have many factors to consider when they are relocating out of the area and deciding whether to sell their property or rent it out. After thinking about these initial things, you will be more prepared to make the decision that’s best for you.

Consult with an Agent

Speak with a reputable real estate agent. A Realtor can help you determine the current market value of your home based on existing market conditions in your area. The agent can also explain what might need to be done to the property in order for it to sell and what the costs would be to sell. If you have not lived in the home very long and the market has not increased in value, the best decision is to rent the property out. When you do that, you can build equity until you’re ready to sell it at later time.



Repair and Maintenance Costs

When you want to rent it out, consider if you have enough money set aside to make any necessary repairs. You will need to maintain the home and keep it in good condition for your tenant. Tenants won’t want to wait for repairs while you save up to make them.



Mortgage and Tax Considerations

Think about whether you can afford to pay your mortgage if the tenant’s rent is late or you have a vacancy period. Talk to a tax expert who can explain the tax advantages and disadvantages involved in owning a rental property. These change based on your personal situation, so speak with someone who understands your financial picture and can explain the implications prior to tax time.



Plans to Return

Sometimes homeowners still can’t make a decision. They know they will be okay financially either way. In these cases, I ask if they would ever consider returning to the area. If it’s a place where you can see yourself living in the future, the it’s a good idea to hang onto the house and rent it out. When you return to the area, you’ll have a place to live once your tenant’s lease is up.



Selling and Renting Together

Many people ask if a property owner can list the home for sale and rent at the same time and take whichever happens first. This is a good strategy and it can be done. Make sure your real estate agent and property manager consult and communicate frequently so if you accept an offer or sign a lease, it’s pulled from other market.

We are always available with a team of experts to answer any questions you might have. If you’re not sure whether to sell your home or place it on the rental market, please contact us at Century 21 Prestige.

Should My Family Live On Post or Off Post? Advice from a Military Wife in Fort Leonard Wood

System - Tuesday, December 22, 2015


Today at Century 21 Prestige, we are going to talk about living on and off post. Choosing to live on post or off post is a decision every military family makes during PCS moves. You’ll want to consider the cheaper option and the better option for you and your family. 


Before putting too much time and effort into this decision, you need to know if you have a choice. Some military installations have specific positions that are required to live on post. So be sure that the service member reaches out to their incoming unit to be sure there is a decision to make and off post living is an option. 

BAH Rate

 
If you are in a position to choose for yourself, you’ll wonder about the cheapest option and you’ll want to decide based on what will make the most financial sense for you and your family. A lot of that will have to do with your BAH. If you don’t already know your BAH, you’ll need to find that out as soon as possible. You can go onto Google and type “BAH calculator” and it will take you to a Department of Defense website, where you’ll input your rank and the zip code of your duty station, as well as the year. BAH rates change every year and you’ll want to keep up with that. 

In the Fort Leonard Wood area, BAH rates range from $700 a month up to $1,600 per month. There’s a lot of variation in the allowance that you’re given every month for housing. You want to be sure you know your range. 

Lifestyle Considerations 


Keep in mind what your family’s lifestyle is as well. Most military installations set up family housing to feel like a subdivision. They tend to have cookie cutter houses, which is great if that’s what you’re looking for. But if you want more of a rural feel or country living or you would prefer to be in a big city or a specific area, keep that in mind. You might not get those options on post. 

Find out what amenities are offered on post. Some installations have hospitals and schools, as well as commissaries where you do most of your grocery shopping. You can find post exchanges that are similar to retail stores. If you value those, then consider living on post. But if you want to experience more of the local culture and take advantage of small businesses in the areas and local restaurants and grocery stores, then off post would be better. 

Making Connections 


The military is a relatively small community, and you can get a lot of helpful advice and feedback from friends you know or people who have been stationed in the area to which you are moving. Check social media too because Facebook groups are popping up all the time for family members and service members assigned to duty stations. Facebook can help people moving to a new duty station where they may not know much about the local area. Nearly every military installation has their own Facebook group with information about neighborhoods and community. Join those groups and ask your questions as you get invested in your move. 

If you have any questions about the decision to move on post or off post, please contact us at Century 21 Prestige.

Biggest Mistakes that St. Roberts Landlords Make When Renting out Their Homes

System - Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Today we’re talking about some common mistakes that landlords make in St. Roberts and surrounding areas. If you’re working with a property management company, you’re already taking really good steps towards preventing these mistakes. A good property manager has the same goal as you: to do whatever they can to get your home rented. Some of our homeowners never intended to be landlords. But perhaps they’ve had to leave the area with military orders or they are renting out their property after they were unable to sell. 

Changing Your Mindset


Switching from a homeowner to a landlord can be difficult. You’re looking at what was once your dream house and you have to start looking at it as a landlord. It’s not your house anymore; it’s now an investment property. So you’ll need to treat it that way. For example, a fence is important. All of our tenants are looking for a fenced backyard. Fences contain animals and children, so it’s a desirable amenity. A lot of homes don’t have fences, so if your property has been vacant for a while, you need to think like a landlord and not a homeowner. Put up a fence. 

Not Updating the Property 


While you were living in the house, you might have done some minor damage and there might be scuff marks on the walls or worn carpet in high traffic areas. If you’ve been renting it out for a few years, you’ll also need to make some repairs. Previous tenants probably left normal wear and tear. Address those things and make smart updates and upgrades. This will help you can get your home rented, and it’s a mistake to ignore the need for new carpet or fresh paint. 

Timing 


With the updates you need to make and the preparation that goes into renting out a home, some landlords wait too long to make improvements. A lot of the tenant movement happens in summer, between June and August. This is particularly true in those areas so close to military installations. It’s referred to as PCS season. That’s when most of the move outs and move ins happen. If you have a tenant or a new property that’s going into the rental market in May or June, you’ll get the most traffic in those months. So make sure it’s ready for the market sooner rather than later. It will help you rent. 

Pricing 


Overpricing the home in the hopes that you’ll get a little more rent is also a mistake. You want to price competitively, and even offer a move in incentive. Make those decisions as quickly as possible to help your visibility. You want more people to see the home and take advantage of the incentive. Don’t wait for September or October because your volume of tenants is smaller in the fall and winter. These are just some of the common mistakes that local landlords tend to make. If you have any questions about this blog, or you’d like more information about how to avoid these mistakes, please contact us at Century 21 Prestige.

Should I Allow Pets in My Investment Home? Tips from a St. Robert Property Manager

System - Tuesday, November 10, 2015
As a homeowner, your ultimate goal is to have a profitable investment. Considering that 62 percent of American homes now include a pet, there is no quicker way to increase the pool of rental applicants than by allowing pets in your home. 

Recently, studies have shown that homes allowing pets are actually more profitable than those that don’t. Homeowners that go a step further and offer pet-friendly amenities such as fenced backyards and refundable pet deposits experience shorter vacancies than those who do not. This is a big deal for a homeowner. 

At Century 21 Prestige, we advise, before taking the pet friendly plunge, that you have a few things to consider. First, think about the type of pets you’ll allow; cats, dogs, fish, snakes. As the property owner, the choice is completely yours. You will want to reach out to your homeowners insurance company to see if there are any breed restrictions. 

If you have any questions while you’re putting together a pet policy for your rental property and your tenants, please contact us at Century 21 Prestige. We’d be happy to tell you more about how to protect your property while allowing tenants to have pets.

Why Choose Century 21 Prestige to Manage Your St. Robert Home

System - Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Today we are talking about why you should choose us to manage your rental home. Century 21 Prestige serves a large and diverse population of rental homes in the area of Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, where many of our elite armed forces are trained. Many of our homeowners are taken away from the area on military orders, and they trust their homes in our care. These are a few reasons that you might want to do the same. 

Marketing and Advertising 


We provide excellent marketing and advertising services to our clients. Our website automatically filters listings to third party rental sites like Zillow.com, Trulia.com and Homes.com. We also post our rental properties on AHRN.com, which is a site that specifically helps military service members and their families to find housing. We follow up on our rental leads every day and make appointments to show your home to potential tenants. 

Tenant Screening and Leasing 


We perform a thorough tenant screening process that includes a full background check and a credit check for anyone interested in applying to live in your home. Once we choose a qualified applicant, we work through the lease agreement with that tenant and conduct a detailed move in inspection of the property. We provide a copy of that inspection to you and the tenant. 

Rent Collection and Maintenance 


Once your tenant is comfortably settled into their new home, we collect rent payments every month and facilitate any work orders throughout the tenant’s stay. Tenants can always reach us if there is a problem, even at 2:00 a.m. when the heat is out in the dead of winter. We respond to those emergencies so you don’t have to. 

Move Out Process 


At the end of the lease term, we do a full move out inspection and coordinate any repairs that need to take place. After that, we start the process over again by helping you find another great tenant for your home. 

If you have any questions, or you’d like to hear more about our services, please contact us at Century 21 Prestige.

Landscape Maintenance and Rental Properties

System - Monday, March 23, 2015
While residents want to rent a nice looking home, they often have no interest, time, or knowledge on how to maintain the property. They may agree to landscape maintenance in the rental contract but it can be difficult for a property manager or owner to enforce. The owner can charge the tenant for maintenance or include landscape maintenance but it is not always practical to increase the rent with the full cost, particularly if the landscaping on the property is extensive.

Century 21 Prestige • 100 Bosa Dr. Ste C • Saint Robert, MO 65584 • St. Robert Location: 573-336-3002
104 Downey Place • Cuba, MO 65459 • Cuba Location: 573-885-3633

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