Property Manager Education About Carbon Monoxide Detectors Is Critical

Carbon monoxide (CO) is an odorless, invisible gas produced when any fuel such as natural gas, kerosene, wood, oil or even common barbecue charcoal is burned. At high levels without proper ventilation carbon monoxide can kill humans in a very short period of time, even after just a few minutes. Moreover, there is credible research that acute exposure or poisoning by CO can cause chronic health effects such as lethargy, severe headaches, amnesia, psychosis, concentration problems, memory impairment, personality alterations, and even Parkinson’s disease. The American Medical Association states that CO is the primary cause of accidental poisoning deaths in the United States year after year. The federal Centers for Disease Control estimates that CO poisoning kills approximately 500 people annually and causes another approximately 20,000 injuries per year. Needless to say CO is a very important topic and issue for property managers to understand and embrace in order to act as professionally as possible and to protect their client’s best interests.

Today there are laws requiring listed and labeled CO detectors within all residences, rental units, investment properties, multi-family residences, and apartment buildings. It is tantamount for property managers and property management companies to be fully educated about CO, CO detectors, CO poisoning, exposure and prevention. There are also some ‘best practices’ guidelines for property managers to be mindful of and incorporate into their property inspection checklists.

Various State Laws Require Carbon Monoxide Detectors in Dwellings

In California as of July 2011 the Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Prevention Act of 2010, (hereinafter “The Act”) requires carbon monoxide detectors to be installed within every dwelling unit intended for human occupancy. The Act also requires CO detectors to be installed in ‘all other existing dwelling units’ on or before January 1, 2013. Thus, as of 2014 “ALL” dwelling units need to be equipped with properly listed and labeled CO detectors.

How are CO Detectors Energized

The standards for manufacture of CO detectors are well documented in state laws. Standard 720 of the National Fire Protection Association is the basis for manufactured detectors. Most home improvement and hardware stores carry several code complying varieties of detectors. CO detectors can be battery powered, can be plug-in (outlet) with battery backup, or can be hardwired with battery backup. CO detectors that are manufactured with a combination smoke detector must emit an alarm or voice warning with each signal different than the other.

Where in a Dwelling Unit are CO Detectors Required?

CO detectors are required to be installed in a manner consistent with building code standards for new construction. For minimum effectiveness and security CO detectors should be located outside of each sleeping room or in the vicinity of bedrooms. CO detectors must also be installed in every level of a dwelling unit including basements within which fuel-burning appliances exist and dwelling units that have attached garages. The CO detectors should be at least six (6″) inches from exterior walls; three (3′) feet from HVAC supply or return ducting vents, and not obstructed by other equipment, furniture, or occupant belongings.

Landlords and Property Managers are required to Supply Carbon Monoxide Detectors in All Dwelling Units

The standards and requirements for CO detectors apply equally to landlords and property managers. After proper notice has been granted to a tenant property managers have the authority to enter dwelling to install, repair, test and maintain CO detectors. CO detectors are required to be operable at the time the tenant takes possession of the unit. Tenants are required to notify the property manager if the CO detector becomes defective or inoperable. A property manager will not be held responsible or in violation of the law if a tenant has failed to notify the property manager of the deficient device.

Common Sources of Carbon Monoxide in Dwelling Units

Any fuel burning appliance located in a residence or dwelling unit is a potential CO producer. Gas burning heating systems, gas burning cooking appliances like cooktops, ovens, griddles, and water heaters are all possible sources of CO. Typically, the gas burning appliance somehow becomes mal-adjusted and begins to burn the fuel incompletely, leaving CO molecule production. This is sometimes caused by the equipment failing, but can also be caused by alterations in the dwelling unit interior atmospheric pressures.

Another common source of CO in a dwelling unit is from attached garages and vehicular exhaust. It is always a best practice to start a vehicle in an attached garage and move it to the driveway exterior while allowing it to warm up. Never allow vehicles to be running within a closed garage as the exhaust will most certainly find its way into the dwelling potentially causing problems.

Property Managers Must Take Carbon Monoxide Education Seriously

Because CO is a silent killer it is imperative that property managers be diligent about CO detector education and maintenance. Carbon monoxide is such an extremely important area of concern for property managers for the reasons stated above. In addition to protecting your client’s best interests diligence in maintaining properly functioning CO detectors can save lives.

Property managers and property management companies must be adequately educated about CO, CO detectors, CO poisoning, exposure and prevention.

The Joy of Wholesaling and Flipping Houses

The Wholesaling technique usually excites new real estate investors because it’s a niche strategy that can produce quick payoffs for people that are just getting started in the field of flipping houses.

The thing that I love best about this technique is that it offers a level playing field for everyone with or without experience. A newcomer or even a seasoned investor can start using this strategy to getting paid quickly without the need for credit, cash, lenders, contractors, a 401-k, an LLC or very much else.

Real estate wholesaling or flipping houses for cash is when you act as the middle man between a motivated seller, looking to unload their property ahead of imminent foreclosure or divorce perhaps, and a motivated buyer looking to take over the payments on a property they expect to quickly rise in value or one that they expect to perform the repairs on that will force the value. You make money by charging a fair amount, an “Assignment Fee” on every sale. You move the property quickly, often transferring the property from motivated seller to motivated buyer at closing. Of course, there are few things you should consider before setting out on what could be a very lucrative career.

Envision Your Successful Wholesaling Business and Personal Life First

Get cozy with your hopes and dreams because they are of you and they matter to nobody else like they matter to you. The mind is a powerful thing and when that mind meets with the law of attraction….much can be granted and achieved.

I remember how it happened to me. I went to my first real estate training seminar and left there like a newbie on steroids with absolutely no place to go… but my mind was buzzing with everything that I’d learned over that 3 day boot camp. My head felt like it was literally stretching and expanding… I was growing. In retrospect, I now know that it was because of this growth that I couldn’t get all of this new knowledge to quiet down or even allow me to get sleep without dreaming about “running the numbers” and I was also seeing all sorts of houses in my sleep. Most importantly- I saw myself happy and prosperous in my newly chosen field. My passion for real estate investing drove my conscious and unconscious thoughts and I was determined to see it through. So, I’m a true believer that before you do anything, you have to “see it” first. See it in your minds’ eye, see it in your dreams and then hold it in your heart. We all have hopes and dreams that extend beyond the money making aspect of having a profit producing wholesale business…right?

Remember to see yourself doing those things also… whatever they happen to be. But do not stop there. You have been educated, you’re empowered and at this point… you must execute.

Make a Plan – This is your business, not your part-time hobby

Benjamin Franklin said, “Failing to plan is planning to fail” and this is especially true in the real estate wholesaling business too. And, I say business because that is what it is, a money making venture where you expect to receive financial rewards for the time and effort you apply. It might start out as something you do in your part-time, but that doesn’t mean it always will be. So, you must start by setting goals and establishing objectives to reach those goals. Things might change as your experience grows and you learn new methods to locate, buy and quickly sell properties for a profit, but having a good plan from the outset will keep you focused on the short-term.

Allow Wholesaling to become your life: Make It Real

If you really want to make money in real estate and in particular, wholesaling properties, you have to make it real… make it part of your life. The best athletes train hard, the best musicians practice relentlessly and the most successful real estate investors always work and study to get better. This means reading books, newsletters and websites; listening to tapes and CDs; and watching DVDs that can help you transition from your 9 to 5 job confidently. Become obsessed, especially at the outset, with learning everything you can about how to wholesale real estate properties and mastering the business.

Find your market

Do a little research and select a 2-3 good neighborhoods or a part of town that you know offers the best potential for making a good profit and work it, work it, work it. These would be the areas with a minimal number of days on the market because they are in sought after locations.

Target your market

Choose your promotional materials, your advertising medium to target your farm area. Are you going to be using signs, direct mail, vehicle magnets, website submission forms, flyers or perhaps a huge billboard or local grocery cart with your name and the benefits outlined all over the seat flap? Many investors, especially in today/s market will have to test different materials because what may have worked in the past, may not be a good use of advertising dollars in today’s market, it’s different time. You’ll have to explore what your sellers respond to and then saturate them with it.

Market, market, market… oh and did I say market?!

Find motivated sellers

The one thing above all that can set you apart from all the other people out there is looking to make some extra money by wholesaling / flipping properties is the ability to locate undervalued property and negotiate a great price with the owner. This takes a little leg work and often the development of research skills if you really want to look for deals that other people in the business overlook or don’t want to really expend the effort. Motivated sellers are out there, though, and once you know how to find them you will be well on your way to watching your wholesale profits explode.

Find motivated buyers

Another critical component to completing any deal in real estate wholesaling/ flipping houses is creating a list or file of people who want to buy undervalued real estate to either fix and flip or want to add to their rental portfolio to create an income stream. These are often builders, contractors or people who are already renting property throughout your chosen area. Get to know their buying habits, the type of property they like to “flip” or rent out. The stronger your list, the easier your task and the faster you’ll get paid through your wholesaling your real estate deals. In my course, I teach my students 3 valuable ways to make sure that they’re not adding tire-kickers to their list.

Flipping The Deal

Now its time to sell your sweet 5-6 figure wholesale deals for cash money! It’s easier than you think. We have developed an amazing 90 Days To Cash e-course which explains how to build a great database of Performing Buyers and also how to sell properties on the retail market to end buyers.

Wholesaling is a great way for people without a lot of cash flow to begin taking advantage of the tremendous profits to be made in real estate. If you think real estate wholesaling is for you, take the time to develop the plan and learn as much about the business as you can before starting out. To get more info on finding the BEST deals check out 90 Days To Cash Wholesaling Houses.

If you like what you’re hearing about wholesaling / flipping real estate because you now realize deep down that it can help you create a bigger, bolder life than you now own… then you cannot waste another day. Once you really, really take it as a spirit (because it is) that this business is out there, in today’s market conditions where you can undoubtedly find a property today and wholesale it tomorrow for thousands of dollars…you have no choice but to do Whatever It Takes To Make That Happen… not later but Now.

Wholesaling Gets You Paid Now and I Guarantee That You Will Absolutely Love It!

Karen

Property Management Tips – Top 5.5 Tenant Problems and How We Fix Them

In today’s real estate market the key to thriving lies in “good tenants.” Many people fear becoming property managers and for good reasons, but if you really want to succeed in real estate you need to think long term. That’s right… history has proven that real estate doubles every 10 to 14 years. The problem is that many novice investors purchased hoping to flip for a small fortune and greed led them to invest in properties that were extremely negative in cash flow production. However, if you invested wisely the most pressing problem you will have to deal with is selecting the most qualified and ultimately profitable tenants.

Because I want to empower you to succeed I am going to share with you my top 5.5 tenant problems and how our team of experts maximizes on those opportunities. There are several simple strategies that you can apply to your real estate investments to do the same. If you follow these fundamentals not only will you make money, you will avoid a ton of headaches. So let’s go over these opportunities right now.

1. Non Payment / Late Payments/ Bounced Checks:

If you “the investor” are the one paying your own rent on an already occupied property, there are severe problems with your cash flow. The same goes if your tenant is constantly paying you late or even bouncing checks. While there are a multitude of reasons for tenants not keeping their end of the bargain, the root of the problem lies in a bad screening process of tenants up front. This includes weak lease agreements. If you want to avoid these major problems you will need to…

- Verify prospect’s credit history

- Make sure to contact references

- Have a strict legal lease agreement

- Keep good communication with your tenants

- Offer rewards for paying on time (Discount a month’s rent after consistent payments)

- Don’t be afraid to go after your money legally

I’m not saying that doing things right up front is easy (or cheap) but ultimately finding the right person(s) as tenants will benefit you in the long run more than almost anything else in the buy and hold real estate game except for buying at a discount. Keep in mind that if you are not willing to collect your money, you won’t be in this business very long.

2. Illegal Activities:

Whether you own a residential property or multi-unit buildings, illegal activities can destroy your property values. Many times tenants conduct illegal activities in the properties they rent from you the landlord- leaving you the owner liable for many potential problems. This was an issue I had to deal with when we as a network purchased over 25 town houses last year. It was horrible to learn that some of the tenants were dealing or using drugs. We knew that if we did not act quickly it would affect the over all value of our investment. Because we have zero tolerance for crime we notified the local authorities with these problems and let them do their job. We also encouraged our nearby good tenants to do the same. In less than 6 months the neighborhood had a much better atmosphere- one that made people feel safe.

Can you see why you too should deal with these issues at the root?

3. Bad Maintenance:

The poor upkeep of your properties can cost you BIG in the long run. Tenants are not by nature irresponsible. However, human beings as a rule more often value that which they own. So challenge your tenants to be responsible, by not only keeping the property in good condition but also by reporting issues as they arise. Make sure your lease agreement covers this section in detail. Walk through the unit with your tenants before handing over the keys. Also, I would highly recommend you drop off a new air filter at least quarterly. Most tenants never change their filter, which can cause your central heat and air systems to break over time. By dropping off a new one it will give you an opportunity to inspect the condition of your investment without prying- but be sensitive to privacy and non-intrusive. In fact, your tenants will likely thank you for the extra service and you will be rewarded by avoiding many costly issues that are caught on time.

4. Unauthorized Residents:

Any resident that has not been screened or signed off on your strict agreement can pose a high risk to your investment because they are not bound by the standards in your contract. People tend to act differently when no one knows who they are or can hold them accountable. This normally occurs when an authorized tenant brings in a roommate without contacting you. The best way to avoid this potential liability is to charge an additional fee for roommates, keep track of vehicles and unidentified people in your properties, and be up front with your existing tenants what your policies are to bring new people into the unit.

5. Noise Violation:

Loud music and screaming tenants can annoy your other paying customers in a multi-unit building. In a neighborhood where your unit or house is one among many it can rouse bad sentiment among other resident homeowners or landlords who own rental properties. No one likes when loud annoyances shatter the night, or prompt neighbors to bring in the police. The best way to deal with this situation is to call them on it and if they do not respond to your call, get the authorities involved. There are many regulations that the government has put in place to stop noise violations. Again, your lease agreement should cover this area. Be respectful, but be firm. After all, you have money tied up in an investment that loses perceived value when those types of goings-on are prevalent.

5.5 Bad Management:

Many investors suffer because they do not have an efficient property manager. If you are the problem, don’t let your pride keep you from thriving in real estate. Just interview professional property management companies in your area and make sure they cover all and more of these topics. The number one thing I would recommend you do when you sit with a manager is have them give you a copy of the agreement they use and have your attorney read through it. For example, when we invest in bulk properties- whether they be residential or commercial- we like to already have a solid manager signed up to complete the task that is ahead. Should you do the same?

If you just apply these few principles I can assure you that you will save thousands of dollars in mistakes and you will be re-positioned to increase your monthly returns. So keep building your long-term wealth and stay connected for more resources.