Henderson and Las Vegas Residential Property Management Articles

When owning a rental property, one of the more costly improvements is the flooring. Logically, then, you want to make the best decision possible – finding a quality floor that can last a considerable amount of time without breaking the bank. What choices do you have? What should you stay from?

CARPET
Carpet may seem a strange option initially. However, if you are on a budget, this may be your best choice. An average quality carpet should last between 5 – 8 years with proper shampooing and average wear and tear. The cost compared to the life expectancy is a good choice. Choose a carpet that has a minimum of a 25 – 30 oz density.

VINYL
Vinyl has come a long way over the years. Today, there is sheet vinyl, vinyl planks and vinyl square’s. Vinyl planks are gaining popularity since they are installed piece by piece, similar to laminate or engineered wood flooring. However, they do not absorb water, tend to be fairly durable and are reasonable in cost. Kitchens, living and dining areas are prime candidates for this type of floor. This floor, with average wear and tear, can last a long time. Of course, be sure to choose a finish that will flow well with your home.

TILES
Tiles can be a long lasting floor as well. Materials and labor are reasonable compared to the life span of the floor. With average wear and tear, tile floors can last for many years – 15 years or more. Be sure to choose the right material that will last a long time and be resistant to cracking or chipping.

FLOORING THAT MAY NOT BE THE BEST CHOICE FOR A RENTAL PROPERTY

LAMINATE WOOD

Laminate wood has an appeal to many. Primarily because it resembles a wood product and the cost is hard to beat. However, laminate wood is made out of recycled wood with a thin veneer over the top. It is subject to scratches that cannot be repaired and swells when exposed to moisture. It requires specific care in order to last. If damaged, the floor has to be replaced in order to remedy the issue. As a result, it is not a good product for a rental property.

EXPENSIVE / UNIQUE FLOORING
On the opposite spectrum, expensive and unique flooring may be beautiful and even rated highly for durability. Perhaps it is flooring that you wish to enjoy in the future when making the house your primary home. However, even the most durable floor is subject to damage and wear. Trying to repair it correctly may incur considerable cost. As a result, it may not be the best choice for a rental home and may cause more expense and worry than the monetary benefits of rent.

Choose the right floor that will make your home look clean, presentable and give you the best return and life span for your money!

Contributed by Nicklin Property Management.

The Las Vegas real estate market has been the talk of many homeowner’s and investors for a long time. The uniqueness of the city itself dazzles many and the recovery of the market continues to draw attention. As a matter of fact, the Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors recently stated that Septembers average home price reached $310,000, just $5,000 short of the peak during 2006. What is on the horizon, as we head into 2020?

Though prices inched up, the market has slowed down. More homes are available on the market with no offers and buyers are finding more room to negotiate. After years of steady appreciation, the market has stabilized. This will allow buyers to gain some traction. For first time home buyers, this is no doubt relief, as they will hope to find a home without the same competition as months and years prior.

However, not to be understated is that there is still demand for housing. Investors are looking for opportunities. And new home builders are continuing to expand with new communities, such as a new multi builder community in northwest Las Vegas. Interest rates are still low as well, contributing to an interest from buyers.

With sales price appreciation came rental rate appreciation as well over the last few year, and so the reason investors are interested in the market. Rental property owners are finding that their properties are leasing for substantially higher rates than in years prior and many existing and new investors want to capitalize on a more stable market and higher rental rate returns.

Homes below $300,000 are still in demand since they fall into the affordability range of most buyers. Those properties we expect will continue to be in demand throughout 2020. Though we do expect the market to stabilize more and even see prices pull back some, we anticipate there to be strong demand for housing.

Contributed by Nicklin Property Management.

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.

The stories are out there. Tenants who found a rental listing online, met the “owner” at the property, gave them rent and a security deposit and then never heard from them again. Rather, they found themselves in the middle of eviction proceedings by a property manager or the real owner of the property. The stories are sad to see and hear about.

So, what can a tenant do to protect themselves? Here are 3 basic things:

1. Be weary of someone who says that your credit or rental history don’t matter and are willing to lease the home to you. A quick move in, without obtaining an application with your information, especially when it involves a privately owned home may be a sign that something isn’t right. Be weary! The individual you are working with may not be the owner or in any way connected to the rental of the property. Do your homework. Check the Clark County Assessors website to see who the owner of record is and verify the information.

2. Read the lease! Does it include pertinent information, such as the security deposit, monthly rent, where to pay rent, owners legal name as listed in official property records and in other ways comply with Nevada Statutes.

3. Try and use a Realtor. A Realtor will have access to the MLS where properties are listed through real estate agencies or property management companies. This way, you can have a more reputable way of searching for your future home.

Make home hunting more exciting by being safe and savvy.

Contributed by Nicklin Property Management.

Fall is in the air! Now is the time to prepare for colder temperatures!

With cooler temperatures setting in, it is now the perfect time to get a little bit of fall time maintenance taken care off! Here are our top 5:

1. Tune up your heating system: While turning on your heater may be a distant thought, cooler temperatures are really, not so distant. Now is the time to test your heating system out and make sure it starts and runs after being off for many months. Keep in mind that the first time you turn on your heater you will have a burning smell as the dust that has settled burns off. It is also advisable to hire a qualified HVAC technician to check all components so your not stuck in the cold when you need the heater most!

2. Protect your anti siphon valve: Your anti siphon valve, located on the side of your home with a pressure regulator at the top, connects with your landscaping and keeps water from siphoning back into your clean water supply. Now is the time to visit your home improvement store to insulate the valve and pressure regulator. Valves that have no insulation can crack and create a substantial leak when temperatures drop down to freezing during winter.

3. Protect your water spigots: As with the anti siphon valve, it is good to insulate the water spigot valve. Home improvement stores carry special covers to keep freezing air from damaging the spigot. Save yourself from an unexpected water leak!

4. Change out door seals: Door seals wear out over time. Check to see if you see any gaps or light between the door and the outside. If so, pick up a roll of door seal to replace. This way, you can keep bugs out and save on your power and gas bill by keeping warm air in!

5. Gutters and yard maintenance: Though most homes in the desert don’t have gutters, some do. If you have gutters and large trees surrounding your homes, such as pine or a leaf dropping tree, be sure to check your gutters and get them cleaned to keep water moving during a storm. Even if you don’t have gutters, be sure to clean leaves from your landscaping regularly as they fall to prevent an unsightly yard and a potential HOA violation.

Enjoy fall and all that comes with it (such as pumpkin latte’s and pumpkin pie) and stay ahead with these fall maintenance tips!

Contributed by Nicklin Property Management.

Crime seems to be everywhere, no matter where you live. Even guarded and gated neighborhoods are subject to it. As a result, a whole industry exists that manufacture and promote burglar deterrents. Of course, it would be ideal if we could all purchase a complete home alarm system, camera’s to record every angle of our home and possibly even metal shutters to cover our doors and windows. The reality is, though, that many burglar deterrents are costly, beyond the budget of many. So, what are some cost effective measures to deter burglars from your home? Here are 5:

1. LIGHTS AROUND YOUR HOUSE: Many homes have their lights completely turned off at night. This allows the cover of night to conceal those with less than desirable intentions. What can you do? Try to keep your home lit during the night. Do you have porch lights next to your garage? A light next to your front door? Or a light in your backyard or on a balcony? How can you make sure to keep those lights on during the night efficiently? You might want to consider leaving certain lights on during the night, such as the ones by your garage. Look into dusk to dawn sensors that can plug right into your light socket. You can keep the switch for the lights on all the time and the lights will turn on automatically when darkness falls. Or you can look into light bulbs that have built in dusk to dawn and motion sensors. You might even decide to replace a light fixture with one of these features. The idea is to keep the area around your house lit or have measures in place to light it up when needed.  Of course, don’t forget energy efficient light bulbs for these!

2. SECURITY DOOR: Your local hardware store will have a variety of security doors on display. These add an additional layer of protection to your front door and even a sliding glass door. They come in many designs and varying price ranges, though many are cost effective. You can also make sure that your existing door does not have a loose dead bolt or handle, tightening those as needed. Additionally, consider replacing the screws for the latches in the door frame with longer screws that can grab well into the wood framing, adding more security to your front door.

3. SMART DOORBELLS: Many are starting to install smart doorbells, which have a built in camera and connect to your phone or other electronic device. These devices are within a reasonable price range. They can activate and begin recording even before the button is pressed and notify you that someone is at the front door.  They record the activity that is within the area of your front door as well, just in case you need to access it later.

4. DUMMY CAMERAS: If you are looking for a very low cost deterrent, look into dummy cameras. These don’t do anything but look very comparable to a real, recording camera. It may be just enough to deter someone.

5. SIGNS AND STICKERS: This is yet another very cost effective deterrent. Signs and stickers for an alarm at the home can be very useful, as it notifies everyone of the potential for an active alarm system, even when no alarm is present!

Being proactive and vigilant is the best way to protect your home. While no way is completely proof, putting in place certain measures, depending on your budget, can reduce your risk of dealing with a burglary. Be safe!

Contributed by Nicklin Property Management.

Many landlord’s understand the importance of keeping a well maintained home. It attracts well qualified tenants and preserves the home into the future. However, when repairs do come up, many landlord’s face the daunting decision of which repairs to complete. Decisions are usually based on the cost of the repair. Are there repairs that should be done sooner than later? Absolutely! Here are five of them and the consequences of not acting diligently in completing them:

1. WATER LEAK: Whether your toilet, sink, garbage disposal, tub or roof is leaking water, you will want to repair a water leak quickly with no delay! An active leak can cause serious damage. A roof leak can create havoc for the attic space and ceiling of your home, causing expensive repairs. Running water inside the house can damage cabinets, floors, drywall and create mold quickly – within 72 hours! An unresolved leak can make your property uninhabitable, leading to costly repairs and lack of rental income.

2. HVAC: The air conditioning and heating system is an important part of your property. When it fails, it can become difficult for a tenant to live in the home, especially during the summer or winter months. When left unresolved, the home can be deemed uninhabitable, leading to lost rent.

3. IRRIGATION ISSUES: While not necessarily a habitability issue, irrigation issues can lead to the vegetation and grass dying, especially during summer. Failing to repair it correctly or replace a malfunctioning irrigation clock can cause issues and problems fairly quickly. This can lead to costly replacement of shrubs and trees. It is best to have irrigation issues repaired quickly.

4. FLOORING ISSUES: Loose tiles or worn out flooring, such carpet pulling away from tack strips, can pose safety issues. Loose tiles can lead to a tripping hazard while exposed tack strips can poke someone in the feet. It is best to hire a professional to look at the issue and resolve it.

5. EXTERIOR: Worn paint on the exterior, such as fascia boards, can cause premature rotting of those boards, leading to replacement. Large cracks in the stucco or lack of seal around windows can allow water to penetrate, leading to damages. It is best to seal those areas and apply paint to preserve your home and keep it in good shape for years to come.

So, be maintenance smart! Preserve your property. Be a proactive landlord.

Contributed by Nicklin Property Management.