September 30, 2010

NARPM: Green Landlording Survey

Property Managers actively work on finding new ways to differentiate their services from the competition, we were interested to learn how many residential property managers see going green as a benefit.

Going Green
A small but growing demand from renters who are looking to live in an eco-friendly home is an excellent opportunity for property management companies to differentiate their rentals and stand out from the crowd.

Property Managers Are Going Paperless and Using Web-Based Technology
76% of all property managers are very interested in using less paper.  Moving towards a paperless office eliminates ink cartridges, hours of  filing, pricey bank checks, postage and  paper.

The use of web-based technology is also allowing property managers to make great improvements in their business productivity. The kinds of technology used in the office to reduce paper consumption according to a NARPM survey included:
  1. Web-based Property Management Software: 48% of respondents take advantage of the mobility provided by web-based property management software.
  2. Using Email: 88% of respondents to this survey said that using email for owner statements, reports, reduces paper costs and is fast.
  3. Accepting Rent Online: A large number of property managers surveyed (50%) accept online rent payments, significantly reducing the time and cost associated with processing rent checks
  4. Owners Portal: Almost half of the property managers surveyed (41%) report using an owner’s portal to communicate with owners and post statements and documentation.

It Will Help Tenant Retention
Attract Residents with Green Landlording
VOC Free Paint: VOCs are found in most household paint. These paints off-gas harmful compounds months after application. Opt for low or even zero VOC paints and You’ll appeal to potential tenants because its healthier

Water Conservation: Outfit new rentals with water conservation devices. Add low flow showerheads to your green arsenal. Add water aerators to all faucets and save even more.

Water Conservation: Install toilets that use less water. Water-saving toilets are now standard on all new construction due to a 1992 federal mandate for plumbing fixture manufacturers.Low-flow toilets,  use 1.6 gallons per flush of water or less, compared with older toilets that use 3.5 to 7.0 gpf.

Dimmers: Add dimmer switches and replace all light switches allowing the user to determine how much light they need, reducing the amount of energy used.

Programmable Thermostats: They will save a ton of energy.

Doing good can pay off if you let prospective tenants know you are thinking about their health. Produce a flier, market yourself as green. At this point, green alone wont make the sale or get the client. However, all things being equal, its a no brainer to choose the green owner manager.

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September 8, 2010

FHA Offers Short Refi Program For Underwater Homeowners

FHA Offers Short Refi Program For Underwater Homeowners In an effort to help responsible homeowners who owe more on their mortgage than the value of their property HUD adjusted its refinance program.  The changes will enable lenders to provide additional refinancing options to underwater homeowners. see chart

Starting September 7, 2010, FHA will offer some underwater non FHA borrowers the opportunity to qualify for a new FHA insured mortgage. Designed to meet its goal of stabilizing housing markets, by helping 3 to 4 million homeowners through 2012.

FHA provided some guidance

Participation in FHA's refinance program is voluntary and requires the consent of all lien holders. To be eligible for a new loan:

1. The homeowner must owe more on their mortgage than their home is worth and be current on their existing mortgage.
2. The homeowner must qualify for the new loan under standard FHA underwriting requirements and have a credit score equal to or greater than 500.
3 The property must be the homeowner's primary residence.
4. And the borrower's existing first lien holder must agree to write off at least 10% of their unpaid principal balance, bringing that borrower's combined loan-to-value ratio to no greater than 115%.
5.The existing loan to be refinanced must not be an FHA-insured loan, and the refinanced FHA-insured first mortgage must have a loan-to-value ratio of no more than 97.75 percent.

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