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Mike Cooper's Blog

By Mike Cooper | Broker in 22602
  • Are you an out of town landlard? Don't be an out of town victim.

    Posted Under: Rental Basics in Winchester, For Rent in Winchester, Rentals in Winchester  |  October 7, 2012 7:17 PM  |  240 views  |  2 comments

    Are you an out of town landlard?  Don't be an out of town victim.

    Out of town landlords are at a great disadvantage when it comes to dealing tenants.  Some tenants can do a lot of damage to a property long before a landlord ever knows.  The tenant moves and requests his security deposit back, and too often, the landlord returns it without knowing the condition of the property.

    What if the tenant damages the property?  I'm amazed when some tenants think they deserve their Are you an out of town landlard? Don't be an out of town victim.security deposit back when they leave a house trashed.  I recently took on a new rental management opportunity for a client.  He had a tenant whose lease was about to expire and he wanted us to take over the management side of things.

    The tenant knew a company was taking over the management, and he also knew I'd be stopping be just before he left the property.  I did, but he refused to let me review the property before the lease ended.  Initially, he got confrontational with me, but when I moved toward him and didn't back down, he settled down.  I guess he thought his size would intimidate me.  It didn't.

    He had a few days on his lease so I agreed to wait until the last day.  No problem.  He did tell me he painted the entire house inside, and he would shampoo the carpets before leaving.

    I finally got in on the last day of his lease.  He was shampooing the carpets at that time.  I left and came Are you an out of town landlard? Don't be an out of town victim.back later.  The house was empty this time, so I had plenty of time to give it a thorough inspection.  It was in new condition when the tenants moved in.

    I found 7 doors that needed to be replaced, dozens of burned out or missing light bulbs, dirty carpets, holes in the walls, a broken fan remote, torn screens, broken door hardware, missing garage door remote, broken fence boards, a trashed trash can, a paint job that requires that we will eventually have to paint the entire house inside and numerous other forms of damage.

    Are you an out of town landlard? Don't be an out of town victim.Three thousand dollars later (and that is still climbing), the tenant still wants his deposit back.  Really?  Are you really that vague?  If you are an out of the area owner, don't leave your rental property to chance.  Even good tenants can have a reversal of fortune that show up in the way they take care of your property.  Take the wise path and put your property in the hands of a good management company like Cornerstone.  

    Are you an out of town landlard?  Don't be an out of town victim.

  • If you follow a fool, you get a fool's reward

    Posted Under: Agent2Agent in Winchester, Rental Basics in Winchester, Rentals in Winchester  |  January 14, 2012 10:04 AM  |  488 views  |  2 comments

    If you follow a fool, you get a fools reward

    If you follow a fool, you get a fools reward.  That's life according to Mike.  It's also my assessment of the dealings with some of my rental clients last year.  In a particular property, I had 5 tenants from a company that was installing a new power lines through our area.

    In the beginning, they were awesome tenants.  The first 5 were very responsible, paid their rent on time and always kept me up to date in the event the house had any issues.  It was great.  Then, the main contact had a family emergency and had to go home to Michigan.

    He was replaced by a fellow from Florida.  If you're familiar with the Winchester/Frederick County area you know it's more like Michigan than Florida.  We have all four seasons and it can get pretty cold and snowy in the  Fall and Winter seasons.

    When the replacement took over the role of the former leader, things started to decline.  The rent was late, he complained all the time and over the holidays he let the heating fuel run out and the pipes broke.  That was followed by January rent that didn't come. 

    When I called to request it, he told me that they wouldn't pay the rent until I had the heating system serviced.  We had already had the heating system serviced so I knew it was working fine.  He was cold, and he figured it must be our heating system. It couldn't possibly be the 8 degree temperature outside and fact that he only put 30 gallons of oil in the fuel tank (1500 gallon tank) at a time.  I explained to him that he could not live there free to which he replied, "OK then, kick us out!" 

    A few days later he received his 5 day notice to move, and that was followed by a summons to court.  He decided to represent himself.  My attorney told me over and over, "This guy thinks he's an attorney." It has been said that a man who represents himself has a fool for a client. 

    In court, he told the judge he didn't owe the rent because the house was a horrible place to live, and court date was set.  In the interim, he had a home inspector go through the house, and with his help, he pointed out everything that needed to be repaired. 

    I could have put the list on a 3X5 index card.  Ironically, they caused most of the problems.  Well, I'm not foolish enough to represent myself in court at this level, so my attorney took him and his crew of mindless followers apart, and of course, we won.  They were required to pay all back rent, court costs and interest for the time in question and move.

    Before you follow someone down a path, make sure he knows where the path will lead.  If not, you may both fall in the ditch, or even worse, be lost.  "Nature teaches beasts to know their friends."  William Shakespeare, (Coriolanus, Act II, Scene I).


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    Give me a call for all your real estate needs, and let's make something amazing happen. 

    Mike Cooper @ Cornerstone Business Group, Inc., 888-722-6029

    Real Estate Sales and Property Management


    (Disclaimer:  All grammatical mistakes, punctuation breakdowns and misspellings are purely for your amusement and entertainment.  Feel free to cackle.)

 
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