After Hurricane

All tenants are asked to submit maintenance requests with pictures attached for damages sustained after the recent hurricane.

If you are no able to submit a request through online portal, we ask that you email or text over the information.

We are working hard to get all work orders taken care of as soon as possible, but as you can probably imagine, our vendors, and others are all getting swamped with requests for work.

We are handling emergencies first, and then the rest will follow after.

We have heard from most tenants, but we have some that we have not heard from yet. If you have not contacted our office, please make sure to do so. We would like to know you and your family are safe, and if there is anything that needs to be taken care of at the location.

Posted in Gulf Breeze, Gulf breeze rentals, Gulf Coast rentals, Holley By The Sea, Home rentals, Navarre, Pensacola Beach rentals, Pensacola Home rentals, Pensacola Management, Pensacola Managers, pensacola-gulf breeze property management, Property Managers in Pensacola, Uncategorized | Comments Off on After Hurricane

Hurricane Season

With a close call this week, our tenants and owners are concerned about another potential storm hitting our area.

Barrons Property Managers emailed all tenants last week about what to do in case a hurricane does come to our area.

All outdoor sports equipment, potted plants and flowers, lawn furniture, and other outdoor items are to be brought inside the home, garage, or shed.

Tenants are not permitted to install storm shutters or boards. If the owner of the property wishes for them to be installed, BarronsPM will have a licensed vendor complete this task. They will also remove them once safe to do so.

In the event a tenant feels the need to evacuate the area due to a storm, they are directed to follow the guidelines in the tenant handbook. This handbook is emailed to all tenants at move in and at every renewal thereafter. It is also available 24/7 on our website under the tenant dropdown button.

For properties with no shutters, owners have asked for estimates to be prepared. Most of the time, when a storm is forcasted to our area, it is too late to ask for shutters or boards. Any Owner wanting to acquire shutters or boards, are asked to do so before the season starts.

Email is a very important means of communication for BPM. It allows us to generate and email owners, tenants and vendors in a short period of time. Please make sure to regularly check your email and to update the email on file.

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COVID Update

Our office is taking ample measures to ensure that everyone is being safe during this challenging time.

Our leasing system has been mostly unaffected. We are still showing properties to any perspective tenants via our lock box system, Rently. This allows perspective tenants to view the property anytime between 9 am – 5 pm daily, without meeting someone or coming into contact with someone of another household.

We are still taking all calls and answering emails as normal and processing applications and placing deposits has also carried on as normal. Any documents needing signing and any funds that are to be paid can be done electronically to further prevent contact with others.

Maintenance has mostly resumed normal procedures, with the exception of those who are in quarantine, or are suspected of having COVID-19.

Our tenants will already know that we have temporarily paused late fee posting during this time to assistant our tenants in getting back on their feet.

Meeting new owners are able to be done remotely via Zoom meetings or phone conferences.

Our office is being overloaded with communications of all kinds, so to make sure we answer everyone’s questions in a timely manner, please make sure to leave a voicemail if you call and to allow 24 hours for emails to be answer.

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Air Conditioners and Summer

What should I set my A/C at?

A/C’s should be set between 72-78 degrees. If you have an older system, you will need to make sure and not have your system at a low temp as it will begin to work to hard and may stop all together.

Why is this?

One of the main reasons a/c units freeze up is because of backed up air flow. The cold air cannot go anywhere and therefore freezes, sometimes into big blocks, on the unit and stops the cooling inside the house.

How do you prevent this?

The main ways to prevent an a/c from freezing over or not cooling in general are below

  1. Have the refrigerant level checked.
  2. Change the filter monthly.
  3. Keep the supply vents open.
  4. Have the fan speed increased.
  5. Have the thermostat checked out.
  6. Inspect the condensate drain weekly.

Now, if you are a tenant with BarronsPM, you will already have number 2 covered under the filter program we require for all tenants. The other items can be done annually under the preventative maintence program we offer to our owners.

This will help insure everything is working properly and nothing needs maintenance.

Another thing to do is to clean the drain line with bleach regularly. This can be done very easily. If you want to know more on how to do so, follow this link here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KHV4XOwZrfk

Sources: https://byrdheatingandair.com/articles/what-causes-an-air-conditioner-to-freeze

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HOAs and Rental Properties

Do I want a property with an HOA?

There are pros and cons of Home Owner Associations, or HOA’s.

Some “Pros” are every house has to follow the guidelines, lawns will stay manicures, trash cans are hidden, and some even have recreation centers / pools that are available to residents.

Some of the “Cons” are fines. They will implement fines to residents who are in violation of the HOA rules, you have to have approval before making changes to the exterior of the property, colors have to approved, etc.

HOA are normally very good at doing drive-by inspections, and will write formal letters if a violation is found. We have many properties under HOA’s and we receive notices about the lawn needing trimming most often. Other times the garbage cans are in view of the street.

If you are interested in renting a house or purchasing an investment property in a HOA neighborhood, make sure to read the regulations that the HOA has.

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Do We Combine Income For Roommates?

The short answer is no. We do not combine income unless you are a legally married couple. Even if you are engaged to be married, or boyfriends/girlfriends.

The reasoning behind this is that “roommates” are able to leave a little more freely than if it were a married couple. Couples who are married have more ties to sever than roommates do, such as a divorce, separation agreement, pets, kids, etc.

Roommates are still able to rent with BPM, but we require that at least one of the roommates qualify on all portions of the qualifications, the main being 3 times the monthly rent in gross income.

Everyone over 18 will still be on the lease, however if that person who qualified decides not to renew, then BPM cannot allow other roommates (who did not qualify) to stay without another qualified person.

Now what if you have a family member or friend willing to “co-sign” with you?

BarronsPM does not do co-signers, however we will allow a person to apply and be on the lease with you if you cannot meet the qualifications yourself. This is very similar to co-signing, but there is a distinct difference, they will be on the lease, and just as responsible as you are, even if they aren’t living with you.

This means, if the lease defaults, rent payments go unpaid or late, it will show on all parties’ background / credit.

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Resuming Normal Schedule

As states reopen, Barrons Property Managers is working to get back to normal as well.

We are starting to scheduled and coordinate inspections for renewals and pet inspections as well. Due to the amount of time that BPM was not able to safely complete these, we have quite the backlog of inspections that need to be completed.

We would like to ask that you be cooperative and help us during this time and work to get these completed for the owners to view. 

Renewal inspections take about 15-20 minutes and are a walkthrough of the property and includes photos of each room and is to document the condition of the home.

A pet inspection, one you as a tenant already paid for, is again, a quick walk through but does not include photos. Instead it looks specifically for pet related damages, such as scratches, smells, odors, holes in yard, etc.

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Avoiding Scammers

Lately, with everyone being told to stay home and “social distance” we have noticed a very sharp increase in scam listings being posted all over the internet, especially Craigslist.

Unfortunately, we have even had someone pay lots of money and many give personal information out, under the impression that the “owner” is leaving the management company.

Barrons Property Managers has taken the initiative to regularly check for any scam “listings”, posting notices on our properties, and flagging any numbers / names that are reported to us as being a scam.

But you need to make sure you are further protected, so here are some tips and things to keep in mind

  • Drive by the property and check for a professional sign in the yard. Management companies will not keep signs in the yard for a property that they no longer manage.
  • If it seems too good to be true, it probably is. A house that is listed for $700 a month on craigslist but seems it should be higher, is a good sign you are seeing a fake listing.
  • If they say “I’ll meet you at the property for a viewing” and then never show up and say there’s a box there, you are being baited into getting the key for them.
  • If there is a lock box on the property, but they say to leave the key in the mail box, or somewhere else, they want you to do the dirty work for them so they can scam other people too.
  • If they say “just cash app me the money” or something that sounds weird for a landlord to request money through, please do not send them anything.

If you suspect you are being scammed, do your research and see if you can find any listing on Zillow, rent.com, Trulia, or any other official website that may list a different contact. Scammer do not pay for anything, they only take money.

If you find that you have been scammed, given information like a social security number or credit card number, file a police report with the local authorities and give them any and all information you have on the scammer.

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Lease Options

“What if I need a lease shorter than 12 months?”

“Do you offer a 6 month lease?”

“Can I stay for one more month to finish up my schooling?”

All are very common questions received by landlords and property managers. BarronsPM offers a 12 month lease, a 7 month lease and a month to month option.

A lease under 6 months and 1 day is considered a vacation rental and BPM no longer manages that type of rentals. BPM offers a 7 month lease. This is a “long term” rental and is available for most properties, pending owner approval.

Another alternative to a 12 month lease is a month to month agreement, which is an extension of the lease you already signed with BarronsPM. It is only available after a 12 month or 7 month lease. This option is available for UP TO 3 MONTHS. After those 3 months, a new 12 or 7 month lease must be signed, or the tenant must vacate the premises.

Both are great options for someone who knows they will be moving in the near future but not immediately. If you are one of these renters, you should check in with BPM about the options available to you and the property.

If you sign a 12 month lease then move 4 months in due to relocation or just bad planning in general, you will be liable for rent and care of the property until the end of your lease or until a new tenant is secured for the property, regardless if you are still living there or not.

We never like to lose tenants, but we understand jobs change locations, situations change, salaries differ year to year, more kids, and empty nesters downsize. We are always happy to talk with any tenant of ours about moving to a bigger or small residence we have available.

Make sure to talk with your property manager/landlord and get your plan ready, your lease is always available for review in your tenant portal, make sure you know when it ends, what the notice requirement is and what the move out procedures are.

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Renters Insurance

Why should I get renters insurance?

An Owners insurance policy covers the property itself due to fire, flood, slip and fall incidents, earthquakes and plumbing breakages.  The owners insurance does NOT cover a tenants belongings or compensate for alternative arrangements the tenant incurs.

Renters insurance is available to all renters and can be purchased through most car insurance agencies as a bundle.

What is it?

  • Financial reimbursement for tenants lost or damages possession as a result of fire, theft or vandalism
  • Liability in the event of injury to visitors on premises
  • Provide compensation for alternative living arrangements if property becomes uninhabitable due to fire or storm damage.

Sources:

“Learn Renters Insurance 101 with These FAQs.” TrustedChoice.com, www.trustedchoice.com/renters-insurance/coverage-faq/#Question2.

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