Henderson and Las Vegas, Nevada Home Owner Articles

Are you a homeowner in Las Vegas or Henderson, Nevada? Enjoy home owner tips for renting your property.

While most of us have heard of a loan refinance, many have not heard of a loan recast. What is it? Simply put, if you have a considerable amount of principle to put down on your home after you’ve already purchased it, you can have your mortgage lender recast, or re-adjust, your monthly payment based on the amount you put down. Keep in mind that not every lender offers this, but many do.

What’s the difference between this and a refinance? When your refinancing your home, your taking on new mortgage terms and a new interest rate. It’s as if your purchasing a home all over again and qualifying for a new loan. People tend to refinance because they have a higher interest rate or they have paid down their mortgage to the point that a refinance will save them on a monthly payment. Many times it is a combination of both.

However, if you already have a low interest rate and loan terms that you are happy with, you may hesitate to refinance your home. But say you came into a lump sum of money, perhaps due to an inheritance, business transaction or other reason. And you are looking to lower your mortgage payment. A loan recast will allow you to put additional money down towards the principle and keep your loan terms the same. Your mortgage lender will re-adjust your payment based on your new loan amount yet keep the term, interest rate and other provisions of your loan in tact. Even better, you do not have to qualify for a new loan and the cost to do this is fairly minimal. You will then save considerable interest for the remainder of your loan term and enjoy a lower mortgage payment.

On the contrary, if you make a lump sum payment on your mortgage without doing anything else, even though the principle balance will lower, your payment will remain the same.

Of course, be sure to talk to your mortgage lender about this to get all of the details and the availability of it. Saving money is key when it comes to your home. Perhaps this is one avenue that may work for you.

Stay in the know with Nicklin Property Management.

Colors are endless. Choosing the right one, though, is key and the most challenging decision. Reality shows on TV showcase a variety of different designs, color schemes and decor. Your local home improvement store has samples galore! So, what should you base your decision on?
One thing to remember: Painting is time consuming and costly, even when you do it yourself. You have to buy the paint, tape, tarp and painting materials. Then you have to invest your precious time into it. So, make the color count!

If you are planning on painting a rental property or perhaps a home you will live in with the intention of renting it down the road, we suggest a neutral color scheme with perhaps accent hints. A common color which is used by builders is Swiss coffee, which is an off white color that still adds a touch of warmth to the home. A neutral color scheme, though seemingly bland, is one that will go with most tenants furniture and decorum and as a result, appeal to most tenants. However, if you feel inclined to add a touch of color, accent walls are a good way to do it. You can choose, for example, one wall in the living area and add an earth tone color. This way, the color matches the neutral scheme and can still appeal to most tenants.

Choosing vibrant colors, such as red, purple, yellow or blue, though it may be in good taste, does create a theme on its own. This may not appeal to tenants if their furniture and decor will not match. Always be mindful of what will appeal to the majority of potential tenants so your home can lease quickly to the best qualified tenant.

Other colors to consider are in the family of brown and gray. Gray is a neutral color as well, especially when it is light. It tends to go well with espresso or light maple cabinetry and adds a modern look yet keeps the home open to a variety of decor. Very light brown colors can add warmth to a home, especially when the shade is light. Try to avoid dark colors as this makes an area look smaller and it is more difficult to repaint down the road!

When choosing paint for a rental home, especially when repainting the entire home, consider using paint with an eggshell finish. Eggshell gives you a moderate sheen which makes it easier to clean down the road without being shiny like semi-gloss. Bathrooms, however, are perfect candidates for semi-gloss as it will repel water.

So, be sure to choose your colors wisely and enjoy the benefits of a tastefully painted home!

Contributed by Nicklin Property Management.

You hear it all the time – location, location, location. Why is location mentioned so often when a buyer is ready to purchase? Wouldn’t a well maintained, even new home be valued the same as any other comparable home?

Location is a unique trait for each and every home. After all, every home is built in a different location, even when comparing homes in your own neighborhood or one street apart! They all sit on their own unique parcel. If you zoom out, now each home is in its own unique subdivision, their own quadrant of the city and their own side of town. So, what makes location so important?

As a buyer, you have to make sure that you are comfortable with that specific parcel – the location of the home you are looking to purchase. Are all the amenities you are looking for within the distance you are comfortable with? Are you satisfied with the subdivision? The location of the home within the subdivision?

Beyond that, every subdivision and location has their own price point, appreciation rate, HOA fees (if applicable), rental rates and more. Are you going to be comfortable with that aspect? With the rate of return on a rental property? The fees associated with owning that specific home? Some homeowners purchase a home and realize later that rents are not as high as they anticipated. Or that appreciation isn’t as high as they were expecting. This is where location is an important part of a home search!

Doing your research with a qualified Realtor who can research market trends, rental rates and resale values is important. Combining this with your personal preferences for a home and location amenities along with other criteria that are important to you will help you make the best decision possible – to find the right location for your future home or investment!

Contributed by Nicklin Property Management.

Are you tired of looking at stains and tire marks on your garage floor? There is a solution! You can epoxy your garage floor – for a very reasonable price! While some homeowners hire a contractor to do this for them, spending on average $800 – $2000, if you are on a budget, you can do this for less than $200 (for a typical 2 car garage). All you need is some time and, well, $200 (or less!).

Many home improvement stores sell some type of garage paint or epoxy. However, epoxy is stronger than paint, as it is typically a two part mix of epoxy resin and hardener, allowing for more durability. Home improvement stores typically sell kits that include the epoxy mixture and concrete cleaning product, such as the “Rustoleum Epoxy Shield*.” Usually, a few colors are available. The average cost is between $115 – $140.  Don’t forget to add in paint rollers, rags, paint trays and a paint brush.

The most important step is prep work. Once your garage is emptied out, leaving the entire floor exposed, be sure to do a good sweeping and vacuum out any dust/debris/grass clippings from between the concrete grooves, otherwise known as contraction joints.

The next step is crucial and a few hours should be allowed to complete this. The concrete prep work. The garage concrete floor has to be cleaned and etched. Etching involves creating a “rough” surface for the epoxy to adhere to. Though most kits include a cleaning and etching product, typically citric acid, having an additional cleaning and etching citric acid product will go a long way. You will find that right next to the epoxy kits in your home improvement store. If you have oil stains, be sure to buy a de-greaser and apply that first to remove as much of it as possible. Once you use the epoxy kit provided cleaner / etching product, you may choose to use the second cleaning / etching product, depending on how your concrete looks. The goal is to have clean concrete that has a slightly coarse feel to it.

Effectively rinse the garage floor to remove the product once done. Allow the concrete to dry thoroughly. Then you can begin taping walls and giving the garage one final sweep and applying the epoxy product. Of course, follow the products user guide and safety instructions as to ideal weather conditions, humidity and length of time until fully cured.

You will be surprised how much of a difference a new floor coating can make and you will be proud of doing it yourself and adding value to your home!

Contributed by Nicklin Property Management.

**Nicklin Property Management does not promote any one brand of epoxy product. It is up to each homeowner to determine which product will fit their needs.  Always be safety conscious and follow directions as listed in product manual.**

With summer behind us and fall in full swing, many trees are at their full growth for the season. With each year, you may have observed that small sapling become a mature tree – a tree that may now be offering considerable shade but also getting very close to structures on your property. What should you do? Here are a few basic tips!

1. If you observe limbs of a tree starting to hang over the roof, it may be time to trim them back. Smaller trees may be easily maintained by you. Larger trees, on the other hand, with large limbs, may need a professional arborist. Limbs hanging over your roof line or other structures, such as shed, can invite unwanted guests such as rats, who can use these to climb onto your property. They can also pose a human and property hazard. During strong winds, these limbs can give way, break and cause significant damage or injury. So, be sure to take note and address these issues in a timely fashion.

2. Trees planted close to dividing walls or structures, such as your home, can cause foundation issues. As these trees grow, so does the root. After some time, you may notice a block wall begin to lift, a side walk beginning to buckle or even the foundation of your home beginning to heave. These are signs that the root system is encroaching on those areas. It would be time to contact a professional to determine your options, including removal of the tree.

3. Along with point 2, tree roots can encroach on your plumbing, entering your drains and even exit or sewer lines. Homeowners who have reported difficulty flushing toilets or water draining have been surprised to learn that roots were the cause! This too would be an indicator to contact a professional to learn your options.

When planting trees, be sure leave plenty of room between structures. Also, be sure to choose the right tree as well, before planting. That small tree can one day be huge! Talk with an expert at a nursery and do your research. The more you do ahead of time the more headaches you will avoid in the future.

Contributed by Nicklin Property Management.

Most of us enjoy the look and feel of grass. After all, it stays cooler in the summer than perhaps rock and adds a nice green space in the neighborhood and your yard. Before you install this commodity, here’s a few things to keep in mind to make sure this is the best decision for you and for our precious resources:

Grass needs to be mowed regularly, preferably weekly. If left to over grow, it will block the path of sprinklers and cause dry brown spots to appear, making it unsightly. To restore it will take additional time and money for seed or sod. If you hire a landscaper, keep in mind the costs that go along with it. Additionally, grass needs fertilizer periodically to ensure it stays healthy and green and free of weeds.

Many know all to well that it takes lots of water, especially in the spring to fall season. This adds considerably to your water bill and taxes this resource, which is already in high demand.

If your willing to undertake the maintenance and costs of installing and maintaining grass, here are a few reminders from the Southern Nevada Water Authority about preserving water:

If your grass is:

A. Only touched by a mower
B. Bordering a street
C. Difficult to access
D. Never used

Then your grass is wasting water.

By converting useless grass, you can save our community 12 Billion of gallons of water per year.

Be grass and water smart! Only install grass that you will use and will benefit you.

Source: Southern Nevada Water Authority: snwa.com

Contributed by Nicklin Property Management.

We have all seen that house – it looks good as you drive by, as you pull into the driveway and no doubt even looks good when looking out the windows. Its the house everyone notices in the neighborhood and if it should ever sell, it will no doubt fly off the market.

This house has excellent curb appeal! Tastefully designed landscaping surrounded by a well maintained house that can be seen clearly from the street. Most of us want that type of house, however, few of us achieve it. What can you do to bring curb appeal to your home, even if your not selling or renting it? The improvements can be fairly simple!

1. Prune trees: When a tree starts off in a small 5 gallon bucket and is planted, it is overpowered by the rest of the landscaping and house. However, fast forward 5 or 10 years, and that tree probably has grown considerably. Even if it’s not the largest tree, branches have probably grown in different directions and may make the tree look somewhat irregular. Be sure to look at the tree from the street / sidewalk and see what branches may need to be trimmed back some to keep the tree looking neat and clean and have a more uniform look.

2. Trim plants and bushes: We’re all excited to see our plants grow, however, if not trimmed back, they can overpower the house and look unkempt. This will lead to a messy look around your house. Be sure to trim plants and bushes on a regular basis. If there are too many plants that are over crowding your planter bed, you may want to consider removing some. A simpler landscape has more curb appeal.

3. Painting your house: With each year, the exterior paint wears more and more. Run off from rain water from the roof of your house coupled with the strong desert sun leads to stains. You can touch these stains up by matching some paint at your local hardware store. Simply grab a cable or phone cover plate on the exterior of your home and have it paint matched. You can then touch up the stains and even caulk and paint any cracks around your house.

4. Light fixtures: Older light fixtures, such as porch lights or ceiling lights by an entry can date a house as well. Adding newer, modern brushed nickel or bronze lights can really push your house into the 21st century and give you good curb appeal.

5. Garage driveway: Every garage driveway gets tire and oil stains. Be sure to buy the appropriate cleaners to keep your driveway looking sharp.

These 5 steps can give you the curb appeal you want. You will have pride of ownership or if your thinking about selling or renting, you can maximize your profits!

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Contributed by Nicklin Property Management.