Choosing the Right Neighborhood to Live In

Real estate experts have always said that buying a home is like getting into a relationship. Do you think this is true? When you get into a relationship, the intention is to spend the rest of your life with your spouse. The same thing happens when you buy a home because it becomes your lifetime place of rest after daily activities. Therefore, your home should be situated in the right neighborhood so that you can feel at home whenever you are there. Remember that the state of the neighborhood matters a lot when buying a home. In fact, you need to consider the neighborhood even before you ask about the cost of the home. If you are hunting for a home to buy, here is a checklist for choosing the right neighborhood to live in.

1. Access to basic social amenities


You should not be fooled into thinking a place is livable if there are no social amenities even if homes are cheap. In order to live a comfortable life, it is important to choose a neighborhood with adequate social amenities such as recreational centers, health care centers, schools, shopping centers, places of worship and other things that you need to live a comfortable life. Social amenities should be within your neighborhood or easily accessible from your home.

2. Good security

Security is a very important factor to consider when choosing the right neighborhood. Life can be very unbearable if you buy a home in a neighborhood where crime is the order of the day. It is important to make sure that your home is located in a secure neighborhood where you can live without worry.

3. Good infrastructure

Good infrastructure is very important as far as livability of a place is concerned. A good neighborhood should have good street lighting, good road network, drainage and sewer lines, smooth pavements and good landscaping among others. Good infrastructure is very important because it also determines the class of a neighborhood. You can easily tell if an area is a posh estate based on the existing infrastructures.

4. Cost of living

The cost of living is another very important factor that you need to consider when choosing the right neighborhood to live in. You need to know your financial capability when choosing your neighborhood. It is important to make sure you can afford to pay for your utilities, food, medical services and other things that you need to live a comfortable life. It is better to live in a standard neighborhood where you can afford the cost of living than in a high-class estate where you are struggling to make ends meet.

5. Sociable neighbors

Humans are social beings. It is important to make sure your home is situated in a neighborhood where people are friendly. You should live in a neighborhood where you can relate easily with your neighbors and not live constantly as strangers. Your children also need a neighborhood where they can play freely with other children in the area.

6. Means of transport


This is a very important factor to consider when choosing the right neighborhood, especially if you do not have your own car. It is important to live in a neighborhood where transport is not a problem and you can easily move to and from your home any time of the day. There should be good and affordable means of transport to take you to where you need to go.

7. Proximity to workplace

Proximity to your place of work is another very important factor to consider when choosing the right neighborhood to live in. You should try and live near your workplace to save yourself time. Moreover, living far away from your place of work can be very stressing because you will have to leave your home very early in the morning to avoid being late and leave your workplace earlier so that you can be back to your home before it is too late. People are also generally happier when they live closer to their workplace.

James’ Property Profits in Spokane Valley

Howdy Guys,

This is a guest post from my goof friend James. He happens to be a pretty good player in the game. Enjoy!

My childhood dream was to build a real estate Portfolio and probably become a real estate mogul one day. I was brought up in a rental house in the Suburbs of Spokane and my ambition was to become a real estate investor in the future so that I can enjoy passive income like other property owners do. Well, I cannot brag that I am now a real estate tycoon but I am happy because I have several properties that give me enough income to live comfortably. I retired from formal employment as a banker at the age of forty to concentrate on my real estate portfolio and to me that was a lifetime achievement.

I not sure whether it was a wise decision, but all my properties are situated in Spokane Valley. Either way, I have no regrets for buying all my properties in there because they are all doing very well. I have seen rent shoot up year after year and believe you me, my next property will most likely be here. The reality is that my competitive advantage comes from knowing this area well. If you have an area that you know better than your competition, you can do the same. If you are an aspiring real estate investor and you want to take my path, the following are key advantages of investing in Spokane Valley (you can use the methodology for any area).

1. Demand for rental properties is very high

Spokane Valley is a place where your rental property can never remain vacant as long as it is in good condition and strategically located. It does not matter whether yours is a Condo, commercial property, a rental home or a rental apartment, Spokane Valley is a home to different types of people and you will always get someone willing to rent your property. I can tell you freely that none of my properties in Spokane have ever remained vacant for more than two months for the last 15 years, unless when doing renovations. Unlike in other places where property owners struggle to get tenants, here, the demand is always more than the supply.

2. Property management in Spokane Valley is amazing

When I acquired my first property, there were no adequate local property management companies to take care of properties on behalf of investors. However, things have changed over time and now there are numerous property managers in Spokane Valley for property owners to choose from. I remember I had to manage my first three properties myself, but currently, all my properties are managed by a local property management firm, Guenther Management. You do not have to manage your properties yourself in order to make profits. You can buy your properties and hire a property manager to take the responsibility of looking after the investment and handling all tenancy related issues. However, it is not mandatory to hire a property manager to look after your properties. If you do not have other commitments and you have a few properties, you can manage your investments by yourself and make it a full-time job.

3. Political stability and security are awesome


Another admirable thing about Spokane is its security and political stability that has attracted many investors in the region. Spokane Valley has enjoyed good governance for many years and investors are sure that their properties are safe. The crime rate is very low and you do not have to worry about the security of your properties or that of your tenants. I have received only two complaints from my tenants about some people breaking into their houses for the last 20 years. In many cases, robbery incidences are inside jobs where some members of the family connive with housebreakers. Generally, security is very good in Spokane and real estate investors should not be discouraged.

4. Properties keep on appreciating

Although mine are all rental properties, I can tell you freely that real estate properties are gaining value rapidly. Those aspiring to venture into the business of flipping properties should also consider the region because you can find a property in bad shape cheaply, do a few renovations and sell it for almost double the buying price within a very short period. In my case, all my properties have appreciated with over 40 percent in the last five years. I am sure that even if I decide to sell my properties today I will make over hundred percent profits because I acquired some of the properties cheaply in the mid-90s. I understand that real estate was badly hit by the 2008 real estate crisis in the country, but Spokane has managed to recover from the crisis and the real estate market is doing very well.

My Personal Experience Investing in Real Estate in Littleton Co

Investing in real estate is very profitable if you are able to plan well. I have a portfolio of rental properties in Littleton Co that are doing very well. The demand for rental houses is very high and real estate is affordable in Littleton compared to other areas of Denver. When I acquired my first property, I decided to manage it myself because I wanted to understand how the market works. However, it became very difficult to manage my properties after I acquired my third property and I decided to hire a property manager to look after my investment. It is now 15 years down the line and I cannot regret my decision to hire a property manager to take care of my real estate in Littleton Co. I know that many aspiring real estate investors think that they can enjoy more returns if they manage their properties by themselves, but I can tell you freely that it reaches a time that you need to hire a property manager. The following are some specific situations when you need to hire a property manager to take care of your investments.

1. If you have invested in properties with complex legalities

Some properties in Littleton are situated in areas that require a lot of paperwork. For instance, one of my properties is under the affordable housing project in the area and there are a lot of rules and regulations to adhere to. It can be very stressing to observe all these legal requirements, especially if you are not conversant with properties under such programs. I did my best to adhere to the requirements but it reached a point and I had to hire a property manager to help me. I remember there was a time I was issued with a notice from the local housing authority because my tenant exceeded certain income limits. I was not aware that properties under the affordable housing project were meant for persons with certain levels of income (Rookie Mistake).

2. If you own multiple units or properties


When I bought my first property in Littleton, it was easy to manage it effectively on my own. I had adequate time to look after my investment and go on with my other routine activities. However, things became difficult when I acquired my second and third property. It became difficult for me to work, look after my properties and make sure my tenants are comfortable. I had to hire a property manager to take care of the investment on my behalf because I could not manage all the properties effectively and work at the same time.

3. If you have other commitments

One thing that I have realized  is that tenants are very demanding. If you do not have other commitments you can manage to take care of your investment and do it as a full-time job. However, if you are busy with other things, then it becomes important to hire a property manager to look after your investment.

4. If you are looking for a passive source of income

Rental property management is not a tedious undertaking, they say. Do not be fooled, I managed my first properties in Littleton Co for three years and believe me, it was not easy. If you are looking for a passive source of income, then you need to consider hiring property management Littleton Co to look after your investment. That way, you will free yourself from the stress of having to run after tenants every end of the month to collect rent.

5.If you live away from your properties

If you live close to your properties, you can easily manage them during your free time. However, if you live far from your properties, then it becomes necessary to hire a professional property manager to look after your investment. When I acquired my first property in Littleton Co, I was living within the area and managing it was very easy. However, five years later I moved out of the area due to my new job and managing the properties from there wouldn’t have been possible. The stress of dealing with tenants increased as I acquired more properties in different parts of Littleton and I had to hire a property manager to help me take care of the properties. I decided to hire McGuire Property Management and it has been an excellent decision.

In the beginning, you can look to manage it on your own, I actually recommend it. It is a good experience and it really shows you everything involved in the business. As you grow and own more properties, it no longer can be done from solely you. You’ll need to outsource to a professional you can trust. Just see it as a business expanding and hiring new employees.

How to Compare Property Management Companies in Atlanta

Hiring a property management company in Atlanta to look after your real estate investment can help you maximize rental returns. However, it is worth noting that not all property management companies in Atlanta have what it takes to deliver quality services. Your real estate profits depend on the efficiency of the property management company that you hire to take care of your investment. We have numerous property management companies in the region and all claim to offer the best property management services in the region. This makes it difficult for real estate investors to determine the most reliable company to entrust with their properties. If you are a real estate investor in Atlanta facing such challenges, here is a checklist to look for when comparing property managers so you can pick the best one.

1. Check whether it is a genuine property management company

There are numerous property management firms in Atlanta, but some of them are not genuine. There are some property management firms who were started by dubious people whose sole intentions were to take advantage of the growing real estate market. Therefore, the first step when comparing property management firms in Atlanta is to confirm that you are dealing with genuine companies. You need to check their registration and certification to operate as property managers in Atlanta. It is also important to confirm their physical offices and permanent address. You also may want to look out how long they’ve been in business.

2. Check whether they are local or foreign companies

Once you have confirmed the legitimacy of the companies that you are comparing, the next step is to check whether the property management companies are locally owned or not. Remember that real estate management in Atlanta has attracted even foreign companies that lack a proper understanding of how the local real estate market works. It is important to consider local property management firms because they are likely to satisfy your needs and those of your tenants. Dealing with local property management firms is easier than dealing with foreign ones.

3. Adequate resources

A good property management firm in Atlanta should have adequate resources to enable it to handle property management tasks efficiently. Some of the key responsibilities of property management Marietta Ga companies include the screening of the possible tenants, marketing properties on behalf of owners, doing repairs and other maintenance needs. You need to compare different companies on your list to see which company has enough resources to deliver quality services that satisfy your expectations and those of your tenants. Companies that have been operating for several years are generally more equipped than new ones working under a limited budget.

4. Consider property management firms with outstanding marketing skills


It is the responsibility of property management firms to market properties on behalf of their clients. Property managers are required to reach out to possible tenants and entice them to rent a property. It is, therefore, important to consider property management firms with outstanding marketing skills when comparing different companies in Atlanta. Choosing a property management firm with poor marketing skills can make your properties remain vacant for a long time because competition for tenants is quite intense in this region.

5. Consider property management firms with a good reputation

A good reputation is essential in this industry. At the end of the day, property management is about managing people and expectations. Real estate investors in the region prefer to entrust their properties to property management firms that have been highly rated to deliver excellent services. Similarly, the majority of the tenants in Atlanta prefer renting properties managed by firms that have a good reputation. It is, therefore, important to consider property management firms in the region, which are highly rated by both tenants and property owners. Today, this can be done very simply with an online search.

6. Consider skills and experience

It is important to hire property management firms with good skills and rich experience to take care of your real estate investment in Atlanta. This is a very important aspect when comparing property managers because companies run by highly trained professionals with vast experience are likely to offer better services than those run by individuals with a smaller track record. A good firm should be able to handle all tasks related to property management effectively. Individuals who are able to take good care of the property on behalf of owners, and manage all aspects related to the business are the ones you should entrust with your property. As a starting point, use these criteria at the minimum to compare firms so that you can make the best choice.