Verandah Central Florida Blog

Where To Invest In Housing In 2018 - Orlando Named Number One!

Pamela McNab-Syvertson - Friday, April 27, 2018

After another year of rising home prices and declining inventory across the country, it has become increasingly difficult to find a place to lay your money (and head) with a reasonable expectation of a return on your investment. Sweet spots, nevertheless, are still scattered across the nation. These cities offer a rare combination of better than average job growth and some runway before homes become overpriced--both things anyone looking to make a smart real estate investment should be after.

To find out where you should be house hunting this year, Forbes tapped Local Market Monitor, which tracks more than 300 housing markets. For each market CEO Ingo Winzer (a Forbes contributor) analyzed housing indicators as well as broader growth trends to come up with 20 markets where you can park your money in 2018 and still sleep easy.

Orlando outperforms: The land of Mickey Mouse and Harry Potter World takes the No. 1 spot this year. Orlando home prices increased 9% in 2017, hitting an average of $247,550. Nevertheless, Local Market Monitor still judges the market as fairly valued and forecasts prices will increase 35% by the start of 2021. That optimism is thanks in large part to Orlando’s 7.1% job growth over the past two years and 7.6% population growth over the last three. In general, Orlando does well when America at large is doing well, since its economy depends largely on tourism. It also doesn’t hurt that Orlando’s home prices, still dinged by the housing crash, are 22% below the national average. " Orlando has recovered in the sense that job growth has been strong and home prices are moving up along with income at a healthy pace," observes Winzer. "Home prices are still below the peak of the bubble, so in that narrow sense they haven't recovered."

Source:  Forbes Online

How do I find a rental property to purchase in Orlando Florida?

Pamela McNab-Syvertson - Sunday, March 18, 2018


First and foremost, start your search not through a Realtor who specializes in real estate sales, but instead seek out the advice of a reputable Professional Property Management company.  Why?  Because the property management company is thoroughly versed on what types of homes qualified renters are looking for.  They can also give you advice on what areas are very desirable, how quickly you can expect to rent the investment property and can give you an accurate rental valuation. 

Property management companies work with investment properties and their tenants on a daily basis.  They have specialized knowledge on what makes a property a good investment.  They will be able to give you sound advice and moreover some management companies have ‘in-house’ sales divisions for the specific purpose of helping investors find the right investment for their budget. 

If you have any questions on investment property buying strategies, please contact us at Verandah Properties, LLC 


Pamela McNab-Syvertson

Broker/Owner Verandah Properties, LLC

For close to 25 years, Pamela and her team have managed their clients' investment portfolios, making them experts in the field.  Verandah Properties blog series is an invaluable tool for investors looking for guidance on property management and their in-house sale’s division is key to purchasing desirable investment properties.

Is Orlando a Good Place to Invest in Real Estate?

Pamela McNab-Syvertson - Sunday, February 4, 2018

The simple answer is YES!

Here’s a few compelling reasons why:

According to the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, Orlando ranked the fastest growing large metropolitan area in the country in 2017. While not the largest in terms of total jobs, 3.8 percent employment growth means Orlando is outpacing Riverside, Calif., San Antonio, Austin, Seattle and every other large MSA in America in terms of the number of jobs added this past year relative to their December 2016 starting points.

At the same time, Orlando has consistently maintained some of the lowest unemployment rates this past year; lower than both the state and national average. Orlando’s explosive employment growth and ability to maintain such low unemployment rates speaks to the region’s impressive ability to attract new talent from elsewhere in the United States and abroad. Orlando’s capacity to attract and retain talent will become even more important in 2018 as unemployment rates continue to drop and the labor market across the United States tightens.

Besides being a dream destination for tourists (thanks to Florida weather, beautiful beaches, and Disney World), Orlando also stacks up high in terms investment opportunities. In fact, it has been ranked as the third best investment location by Forbes.

In fact, Orlando boasts the second highest rental yield in the United States. Its rental yield is almost twice as high as in San Francisco, according to a study done by Finder.com.

Furthermore, not just Orlando, but three Central Florida cities — Orlando, Melbourne and Deltona — are among the fastest-growing municipalities in the nation, according to a new analysis by WalletHub, a personal-finance website.

All these reasons make it clear that Orlando (and Central Florida) is one of the best cities in the country for investing in residential real estate.

Contact us when you’re ready to start your real estate investment analysis.  We are a full service real estate company with both Property Management and Investments Sales divisions.  We are dedicated to your financial success.  

4 Questions to ask before you decide to hire a Property Manager

Pamela McNab-Syvertson - Sunday, December 3, 2017

Choosing the right property management company is an important decision. Whether you are an owner of a new investment property or an experienced investor, these are four important questions to ask:

1. What is in your contract?

Common questions to ask: How long are you committed to the service and what is the cancellation fee should you choose to end the agreement? Does the contract automatically renew?  If you want to cancel, do you still have to pay management fees if the tenant remains at the property? 

2. How is your company set up?

Portfolio Style: Do you have one property manager in charge of marketing the property, advertising the property, showing the property, vetting applications, approving tenants, signing leases, performing move in inspections, managing the tenants, managing maintenance, owner/client relationships, completing interim inspections, sending lease renewals, handling notices to vacate, performing move out inspections and finally completing security deposit settlement statements?

Department Style: Is each property management function handled by a specific department?  For instance, Client Services handles applicants and tenants, as well as owner/client relationships.  Operations department handles marketing and advertising of properties, signing and renewing lease agreements and notices to vacate. Most importantly, Maintenance & Inspections Department manages maintenance and move in inspections as well as move out, interim inspections and final settlement statements. 

3. How do you screen applicants and manage tenants?

Is the process outsourced or is it handled in-house? What factors are considered before approving a tenant?  Is there a policy in place to ensure that the highest risk tenants are not approved? Do you have the ability, through your accounting software, to report to the ‘big three’ credit bureau agencies automatically in case of default or damages owed?

4. How do you report back on a property inspection?

When an interim or move out inspection is performed what is provided to the owner/client in terms of a report?  Does it include date stamped pictures if the owner/client requests it?  Does the report include areas of concerns as it relates to deferred maintenance with an action to handle the maintenance issue?  Does it include information informing the owner/client about the upcoming need for cosmetic updates, so the owner can start to prepare for possible future cost?

Choosing the wrong management company jeopardizes your investment.  At Verandah Properties, we are passionate about our industry and can help you navigate the decision process.  Contact us today for a private consultation. 

Verandah Properties ‘Sets Up Shop’ in Clermont Florida

Pamela McNab-Syvertson - Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Wow Clermont has really seen some amazing growth in the past few years and we’re glad to be a part of it!  Verandah Properties has opened its newest branch office within the rolling hills of this beautiful ‘Old Florida’ location.  You can now also find us at 15701 SR 50, Suite 204, Clermont, FL 34711. 

We’re here to serve the Clermont community with our full service Real Estate Brokerage.  Whether it be our original flagship company ‘Verandah Properties’ who is home to our ‘Property Management Only’ Division or our newest addition to our brand ‘Everyday Luxury Real Estate Group @ Verandah Properties’ who is home to our ‘Real Estate Sales Only’ Division.  Both divisions are committed to excellence in service with a passion for ‘all things Real Estate’ - Two Missions.  One Focus.  YOU!

Here’s a few ‘fun facts’ about our newest home’s most famous ‘Focal Point of Interest’

What is that Tower ‘towering’ over Clermont?  The Citrus Tower of Course!  Built in 1956, rising 226 feet above ground level putting the total height above sea level at more than 500 feet!   The site chosen stands in stark contrast to the rest of Florida’s otherwise flat landscape.  We LOVE Clermont’s hills because they are just not something you see in Florida otherwise.  Many of the ‘hills’ are more than 250 feet high, making it look more like Georgia than Florida. 

Built as a tribute to Florida’s citrus industry, the attraction was very popular in the pre-Disney days.  The history of the Citrus Tower and its construction are illustrated in the lobby with photos taken in its ‘heyday’ which highlight its storied past.  The tower is still open where you can take the elevator’s ‘ride to the top’ where from the windowed observation deck, can see downtown Orlando’s beautiful skyline only 26 miles away.  Come and visit beautiful Clermont, and hey you may decide to make it your home! 

Contact us at 407-855-0331 or www.verandahproperties.com for any Property Management or Real Estate Sales needs!

It’s a GREAT time to Invest in Real Estate – Especially in Orlando, Florida

Pamela McNab-Syvertson - Monday, June 5, 2017

It’s a GREAT time to Invest in Real Estate – Especially in Orlando, Florida

Why?

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, American home-ownership plunged again in 2017 to its lowest rate since 1965. After the peak of 2004, when around 70% owned their homes, now just 62.9% own versus rent. It’s a throwback of almost a century—and the lowest on record, according to Census and Federal Reserve data.

Why is this happening?

We are seeing (and hearing) more and more that the U.S. is becoming a ‘renter’ nation.  There are a few reasons for this but it is said to be based on two key leading factors as it relates to the ‘millennial’ generation. 

One; They saw their parents lose and lose big!

The millennials witnessed our Great Recession which of course was the worst since the Great Depression.  They witnessed family and family friends lose jobs, security, money and of course what could hit closer to home but the loss of the family home?  They felt the devastation and that future perceived pain of loss can outweigh what may be considered the benefits of home ownership.

Two; Freedom

Millennials have often been referred to as the generation of movers.  They seem to cherish ‘memories’ rather than ‘things’.  In many cases, they can work from anywhere as long as they’re plugged in to the internet. Why have a big ball and chain made up of what they may perceive as maintenance and a big mortgage?  They'd rather travel, live and make memories they can take throughout their lives and share with their friends instantly. 

Third; Affordability

According to a Senior Economist at Wells Fargo Securities, one of the biggest challenges right now is affordability. House prices are rising far faster than incomes. Access to credit just isn’t there like it used to be for regular home buyers. High rents aren’t helping either. Even renters who want to buy can’t get home loans, can’t save enough for down payments, and are finding it harder and harder to make the leap.

So Why Invest in Rentals and Why Orlando?

Someone has to rent to the ‘renter nation’ and why not you?  Provide a desirable and well-kept rental home and rent to qualified renters who will help you grow your personal wealth.  And Orlando has been named number 2 by Forbes as America’s Fastest-Growing Cities 2017.  Orlando has seen tight rental markets, rising rents and an influx of qualified renters for well over the past two years.  It’s not likely to change with Forbes prediction but continue to make Orlando desirable for both real estate investors and renters alike. 

Contact Verandah Properties to not only help you locate and purchase your rental portfolio but also professionally manage that portfolio (even if it’s just one!) so that you can benefit by our expertise which is locating, placing and educating tenants to not only pay their rent on time, but maintain your investment.  It’s what we do!  Two Missions.  One Focus.  YOU!

What types of properties SCREAM Rent Me to the Most Qualified Applicants?

Pamela McNab-Syvertson - Monday, April 17, 2017

Simple; those in the 'Best Condition'.

What?  It's just a rental, why do I want it to be in the best condition?  I'm not selling the property, I'm going to rent it.  The renters aren't going to take care of it, why would I throw money away worrying about the property's condition?  That's just nonsense!  

WRONG!  If this is your opinion about rental properties you shouldn't own them.  

Really?  Really.

You are offering a product and that is your rental property.  In order to interest the most qualified renters who will not only pay the rent on time, but will also maintain your investment, your property needs to be in excellent condition.  

Let's think about it.  

Let's say there are three rental properties on the market; they are all similar in terms of size, amenities and price however one has horrible curb appeal and the lawn is simply an overgrown mess; the other has a really dated kitchen and bathrooms and needs a fresh interior paint job but the last one has a very simple and clean yard with green grass and tidy beds.  It also has a fresh interior paint job and the kitchen and bathrooms are all in very good, desirable condition.  Which one do you think the qualified renter will choose?

Remember the qualified renter (the one YOU want) can rent any property within their price range, and you want it to be yours.  Make sure you're offering the best value and the best product so that you can entice and retain a desirable tenant who will take pride in their home, which is your investment!

When you're ready for professional property management, reach out to us!  We're here to make sure you meet your real estate goals.  





Two Missions One Focus YOU

Pamela McNab-Syvertson - Sunday, March 5, 2017

Introducing our New Real Estate Sales Division!  That’s right, we now offer a full suite of real estate services, not just a small slice. 

Two MissionsOne Focus. YOU!

Why?  To offer you a full service real estate menu to make any real estate transition easy for you!  Let’s face it, at some point you’ll want to ‘cash out’ and sell your real estate investment. 

Why let Verandah Sell Your Property When You’re Ready to Sell?

  • Smooth transition from landlord to SOLD!
  • One stop shop; we’ll handle all of the expert details!
  • We’ll work with your tenants to get that property sold as quickly as possible!
As the Broker of Verandah Properties, I have been searching for the right fit in a Real Estate Salesperson to match our high standards and it has been a challenge!  FINALLY I have found your personal real estate advocate… Meet Christopher Diaz:

Christopher comes to us with a wealth of knowledge and experience in the residential and investment home markets having assisted clients across the US and abroad.  He is recognized by the Orlando Regional REALTOR® Association for his excellence and professionalism.  He has served as a Branch Manager and Advisory Board Member for one of the top 75 brokerages in the country and leads the Everyday Luxury® Real Estate Group, now a part of Verandah Properties.  

Christopher has made customer service his top priority and created raving fans among his clients.   He and Verandah Properties share the same focus to ensure our clients needs and goals are not just met, but exceeded through excellent service and expertise in our ever changing real estate market.  Along with keeping up with real estate, Christopher enjoys spending his time enjoying all that the Central Florida area has to offer with his wife Courtney and their four children.

Pamela McNab-Syvertson
Broker/Owner
Verandah Properties, LLC





So, you’re ready to buy an Investment Property; who should you turn to for advice?

Pamela McNab-Syvertson - Monday, December 5, 2016

It’s an exciting and often anxiety producing decision fraught with questions and concerns.  Most people who choose not to invest in real property have valid concerns about things like; will my tenants destroy my property, what if they don’t pay their rent and I have to evict them, what about the liability involved in owning investment property, what type of insurance will I need, how long will the vacancy times be in-between tenants?? etc., etc.

Although these are all real concerns that need to be addressed and managed, most people don’t take into consideration the two major factors that can reduce and/or eliminate all of the above concerns.  So, what is that you ask?

The location and condition of the rental property; period.   

Some new investors don’t realize how imperative these two elements are.  Most simply turn to a real estate salesperson to find their perfect investment property.  Of course, that does seem logical; if you want to buy a piece of real estate, go to a real estate sales person, right? 

Actually, it is only partially true. 

You need a team to seek advice from.  The first person you need to consult with is a professional Property Manager.  Their expertise is to advise you of the areas that are desirable, what condition you should seek out, and to further provide you with a rental assessment in terms of what amount of rent to expect and how quickly a qualified resident can be expected to be secured.   

After the area and type of property has been targeted, then a Real Estate Salesperson can help you search for and purchase your investment property. 

As professional Property Managers, we have seen time and time again the opposite steps being taken which result in frustration and disenchantment for the new investor.  Why is this?

Because sales people are looking for a good ‘buy’ for the investor. 

Of course, this IS an important aspect, however a good ‘buy’ does not magically equate to a good ‘rental’ property.  Sales people know how to look at the numbers, but they don’t know about property management.  When you purchase a rental investment, it is about long term management of the property and the tenant.  You need to purchase in an area where qualified renters want to live. The property also needs to be in good condition to compete in the marketplace and win over the most qualified renters who will not only pay the rent on time, but will maintain your investment for you. 

Contact us first when you’re seeking to purchase a rental property and we’ll guide you through the steps to ensure a good outcome; one you would hope for.   Purchasing a desirable rental property will ensure that you can command a qualified tenant who will be responsible and honor your lease and your property.  

Marketing Check Up; How Does your Property Management Company Rate?

Pamela McNab-Syvertson - Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Think about it; we are in a digital age and have the ability to showcase properties and rent them sight unseen.  This happens more and more with the tight rental market we’re currently in as well as, the potential tenant’s ability to ‘virtually’ view a rental home.  Your company should be showcasing your property (and their site) to ensure that their marketed properties reflect a well-established, well-run company which in turn demonstrates their commitment to professionalism and instills confidence in a potential renter. 

This leads to the question; When was the last time you’ve checked out your property management’s online marketing?  It’s so important, that you should make it a priority.  Below are some items you should be looking for to ensure your Property Management company is representing their company and in turn your product (your rental investment) in a professional and confidence-building manner.

Timeliness: How quickly does your pm company get your property on the market?  Time is money.  Your property, whether it is newly listed or is being re-listed should be marketed as promptly as possible to reduce your vacancy time. 

Uniformity:  Is your company’s rental marketing page consistent?  Meaning; are all pictures that are displayed as the ‘main’ picture the same size all the way down the page?   Are all titles similar in the information they provide?  Are all of the colors and type-fonts uniform?  How about the lighting of the pictures; are they consistent?  If not, they should be. 

Accuracy:  Is the information precise?  Accuracy is a must.  Is the rental rate advertised correct?  How about the pet policy or whether utilities or services are or are NOT included?   What about the date the property is available for a new renter to move in?  Precision is important so that there are no inaccurate statements that can lead a potential renter away from your property. 

Exterior Photos:  Exterior photos should be taken when the property is at its best.  Some examples of this: the lawn should be freshly cut and the shrubs well maintained; all cars should be removed from the driveway so the full view of the property can be seen.  The front picture of the exterior of the home should be centered; i.e., none of the property should be cut off, like the roof line or half of the house.  The pictures should include the sides of the house and back yard to showcase the entire exterior, not just a small portion.

Interior Photos:  Interior photos should be plentiful.  Do the pictures accurately portray your home in a logical manner?  Meaning your pm company should start from the entry way of your property and walk through the property logically taking all pictures of the complete interior.   There should be at least three pictures of the kitchen from different angles showcasing the amenities and where the kitchen is located within the property.  The interior photos are the backbone of the advertising and should be taken seriously and professionally showcased. 

Amenities:  Are all amenities highlighted?  This is paramount to entice new renters who are interested in amenities such as private pools or community playgrounds or tennis courts.  All of your property’s amenities should be highlighted to appeal to as many tenant-prospects as possible. 

Spell Check:  It’s very simple; misspelled words say ‘unprofessional’.  There is no reason that your pm company’s marketing should have any misspellings or inaccurate grammar.   

These are just a few items you can check on to ensure your property management company is representing your investment in the very best light.  The goal is to reduce vacancy and attract the largest number of potential applicants.  You want to be able to draw a vast pool of applicants to ensure you obtain a qualified tenant as quickly as is possible.

As a reminder, we are always here to provide professional property management consultation and management.  Contact us anytime.    


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