Terra Residential - Houston Property Management
May 2014
 
Address
14655 Northwest Freeway
Suite 124
Houston, Texas 77040
Phone
(713) 895-9966
(800) 275-7776
Houston's only
Certified Residential
Management Company.
Specializing in
Investment Brokerage
& Management
since 1990.
 
 
 
What Do Our Clients
Think About Us
5 Star Google Review
A Google User: I am a Realtor and my client's rental property needed a property management company to care for his property while he was out of the country. We put the home on the market, and I have to say Jamie at Terra Residential was wonderful to work with.
Google Review
A Google User: The best management company I have dealt with in the past 30 plus years and have been with for over 20 years.
Google Review
Stephanie A.: Many times, people take time to make complaints when things go wrong. But, they don't take the same quality time to stop and give compliments. As very new residents working with Terra Residential, Inc., my husband and I have experienced GREAT customer service...
Serving You
 
Michael Mengden
MPM®, RMP®, GRI®
President/Broker

(713) 895-9966 x305
mmengden@terraresidential.com
Bridget Mengden
Accounting

(713) 895-9966 x304
bmengden@terraresidential.com
James Dominy
Property Manager

(713) 895-9966 x308
jdominy@terraresidential.com
Jennifer Steward
Property Manager

(713) 895-9966 x306
jsteward@terraresidential.com
Rebecca Winkelmann
Assistant Manager

(713) 895-9966 x307
swinkelmann@terraresidential.com
Judy Wyble
Administrative Assistant

(713) 895-9966 x303
jwyble@terraresidential.com
 
Our Services
  • Leasing
  • Make Readies
  • Rent Collection
  • Evictions
  • Electronic Statements
  • Online Payments
  • Property Acquisitions
  • Sales
  • And More
Our Associations
Terra Residential Services - Associations
Announcements
Check Your Insurance: Events can happen - flood, extreme heat, hurricanes, fire, and more! It is important to check your insurance to obtain the best coverage possible and ensure that it is current. Review now with your insurance agent before a disaster/emergency occurs.
If An Emergency Occurs: Our first priority during any emergency is to handle the situation, taking any necessary measures for the safety of your property and your tenants. Then, we will contact you as soon as we are able.
Houston Real Estate Market
Many of you have been inquiring about the Houston real estate market. We're doing great. In fact better than great. Houston is officially a BOOM TOWN again. The greater Houston area is growing in employment, people moving here for employment, job transfers in, etc.
RENTS: The rental market has been very strong for the past 4 years and is currently at the best we have ever seen. We also have the lowest vacancy rate that we have seen for 20 years, meaning that almost all new leases are at a higher rent than the previous rent; and they have been renting faster. Almost all lease renewals are for higher rent.
SELLING: The Houston area is having steady price increases so we won't be repeating our previous reports that prices were flat and sales were slow. As with the rentals, there are so many people moving here that the activity has driven the sales prices up. While we rarely recommend selling a good investment, if you need to sell, let us know.
TAXES: With the tight sales market, the appraisal values are really going up and that affects your property taxes for the year. Most of you should have received your county tax appraisal value notice for 2014 already. We have seen increases in almost all the notices we have received. So even if you do appeal the value and file a protest, expect higher tax bills this year.
BUYING: Despite having the steady price increases, this area remains one of the most affordable in the nation according to a recent report by HUD. Our affordability index of 2.8 means that the median price home is 2.8 times the region's estimated family income. Compared to Orange County's index of 6.4 and the Bay Area's 5.7 means homes in the Houston area are still a great deal. Short supply means they may take longer to find, but they are here and when you find the right property, you have to pounce or you will lose it. There is still the opportunity for some with older homes to exchange (via 1031 tax deferred exchanges) for newer homes with more rents and less repairs. There is also more mortgage money available to investors than there was for the last few years. So if you want to expand your investment portfolio, contact us and we can help you.
Does Your Property Need a Tune Up?
If you maintain a car by having periodic oil changes, adjustments to timing, interior/exterior detailing and more, it will not only keep the machine in working order but also help with the value when you decide to sell. In short, your vehicle periodically needs a tune-up. It is the same with an investment property; you need to maintain the property in order to keep or increase its value.
With the change of seasons and in particular, the advent of spring, it brings flowers, showers, and hopefully, great weather. However, properties often have a "tired" look after the harshness of winter and it could be that your investment just needs a tune-up. Performing various routine maintenance items is also preventative; this can avoid much larger expenditures. It can also assist with maintaining good tenant relations.
A property, like any vehicle, can look and feel tired after winter. Your tenant may be responsible for the general maintenance of the exterior - mowing the grass, keeping flowerbeds cleaned up, minimal pruning of bushes, etc. However, an overall cleanup of the property usually entails more than the tenant's obligation.
Assess the exterior
An exterior clean up can prevent damage as well as keep your property from becoming the eyesore of the neighborhood. You don't want people to "identify the rental property" as they drive through the neighborhood, particularly prospective tenants if the property is vacant. To prevent that sad look, pay attention to the following items.
  • Trim bushes and trees, removing dead branches from winter storms.
  • Clear all walkways and driveways of landscape debris and check for damage.
  • Repair any roof issues to prevent unnecessary leaks and damage to the inside of the property.
  • Clean out gutters as well to prevent unnecessary leaks and damage.
  • Check any irrigation systems to ensure they are working properly and adjust for the warmer season. Often pipes and connections crack or split and can cause problems with the first use. This can also waste precious water resources.
  • Check for areas that may be collecting water that can lead to problems with pests or cause damage to landscape.
  • Have all exterior windows and doors repaired for any leaks or damage.
  • Review landscape for any necessary changes and if appropriate, consider adding lower maintenance plants if appropriate.
  • Review the exterior paint. Sometimes just touching up the trim can improve the look of a property, preserve exterior wood/siding, and prevent damage. It could be that it is now time for an exterior paint job.
  • If appropriate, clean up weeds and debris around the property to prevent unnecessary fires.
Check for pest invasions
More than flowers and showers pop out with spring weather. It is very common to have increased pest problems, such as major infestations of wasps, ants, mosquitoes, and more. While the tenant has some minimal responsibility, pests can become a health issue and therefore, a liability. Ordering a pest control spray for the season could keep this under control.
Don't forget interior maintenance
While occupied, tenants normally report any necessary maintenance. However, it can pay off to have a maintenance tune up of air conditioning/heating units. Once again, this will help prolong the life of the units. In addition, it is a good idea to have the interior windows and doors checked when there is exterior maintenance.
As your property management company, we will be watching and taking care of necessary maintenance and we will contact you if necessary. We want to keep your property "tuned-up" to protect your investment.

The material provided in this newsletter is for informational and educational purposes only.
It is NOT legal advice.
Although we believe this material is accurate, we cannot guarantee that it is 100% without errors.

 
 
 

Services Provided By: Property Management Newsletters

Terra Residential Services - Property Management and Rental Homes in Houston, Texas (TX)

 

Terra Residential - Houston Property Management
May 2014
 
Address
14655 Northwest Freeway
Suite 124
Houston, Texas 77040
Phone
(713) 895-9966
(800) 275-7776
Houston's only
Certified Residential
Management Company.
Specializing in
Investment Brokerage
& Management
since 1990.
 
 
 
What Do Our Clients
Think About Us
5 Star Google Review
A Google User: I am a Realtor and my client's rental property needed a property management company to care for his property while he was out of the country. We put the home on the market, and I have to say Jamie at Terra Residential was wonderful to work with.
Google Review
A Google User: The best management company I have dealt with in the past 30 plus years and have been with for over 20 years.
Google Review
Stephanie A.: Many times, people take time to make complaints when things go wrong. But, they don't take the same quality time to stop and give compliments. As very new residents working with Terra Residential, Inc., my husband and I have experienced GREAT customer service...
Serving You
 
Michael Mengden
MPM®, RMP®, GRI®
President/Broker

(713) 895-9966 x305
mmengden@terraresidential.com
Bridget Mengden
Accounting

(713) 895-9966 x304
bmengden@terraresidential.com
James Dominy
Property Manager

(713) 895-9966 x308
jdominy@terraresidential.com
Jennifer Steward
Property Manager

(713) 895-9966 x306
jsteward@terraresidential.com
Rebecca Winkelmann
Assistant Manager

(713) 895-9966 x307
swinkelmann@terraresidential.com
Judy Wyble
Administrative Assistant

(713) 895-9966 x303
jwyble@terraresidential.com
 
Our Services
  • Leasing
  • Make Readies
  • Rent Collection
  • Evictions
  • Electronic Statements
  • Online Payments
  • Property Acquisitions
  • Sales
  • And More
Our Associations
Terra Residential Services - Associations
Announcements
Check Your Insurance: Events can happen - flood, extreme heat, hurricanes, fire, and more! It is important to check your insurance to obtain the best coverage possible and ensure that it is current. Review now with your insurance agent before a disaster/emergency occurs.
If An Emergency Occurs: Our first priority during any emergency is to handle the situation, taking any necessary measures for the safety of your property and your tenants. Then, we will contact you as soon as we are able.
Houston Real Estate Market
Many of you have been inquiring about the Houston real estate market. We're doing great. In fact better than great. Houston is officially a BOOM TOWN again. The greater Houston area is growing in employment, people moving here for employment, job transfers in, etc.
RENTS: The rental market has been very strong for the past 4 years and is currently at the best we have ever seen. We also have the lowest vacancy rate that we have seen for 20 years, meaning that almost all new leases are at a higher rent than the previous rent; and they have been renting faster. Almost all lease renewals are for higher rent.
SELLING: The Houston area is having steady price increases so we won't be repeating our previous reports that prices were flat and sales were slow. As with the rentals, there are so many people moving here that the activity has driven the sales prices up. While we rarely recommend selling a good investment, if you need to sell, let us know.
TAXES: With the tight sales market, the appraisal values are really going up and that affects your property taxes for the year. Most of you should have received your county tax appraisal value notice for 2014 already. We have seen increases in almost all the notices we have received. So even if you do appeal the value and file a protest, expect higher tax bills this year.
BUYING: Despite having the steady price increases, this area remains one of the most affordable in the nation according to a recent report by HUD. Our affordability index of 2.8 means that the median price home is 2.8 times the region's estimated family income. Compared to Orange County's index of 6.4 and the Bay Area's 5.7 means homes in the Houston area are still a great deal. Short supply means they may take longer to find, but they are here and when you find the right property, you have to pounce or you will lose it. There is still the opportunity for some with older homes to exchange (via 1031 tax deferred exchanges) for newer homes with more rents and less repairs. There is also more mortgage money available to investors than there was for the last few years. So if you want to expand your investment portfolio, contact us and we can help you.
Does Your Property Need a Tune Up?
If you maintain a car by having periodic oil changes, adjustments to timing, interior/exterior detailing and more, it will not only keep the machine in working order but also help with the value when you decide to sell. In short, your vehicle periodically needs a tune-up. It is the same with an investment property; you need to maintain the property in order to keep or increase its value.
With the change of seasons and in particular, the advent of spring, it brings flowers, showers, and hopefully, great weather. However, properties often have a "tired" look after the harshness of winter and it could be that your investment just needs a tune-up. Performing various routine maintenance items is also preventative; this can avoid much larger expenditures. It can also assist with maintaining good tenant relations.
A property, like any vehicle, can look and feel tired after winter. Your tenant may be responsible for the general maintenance of the exterior - mowing the grass, keeping flowerbeds cleaned up, minimal pruning of bushes, etc. However, an overall cleanup of the property usually entails more than the tenant's obligation.
Assess the exterior
An exterior clean up can prevent damage as well as keep your property from becoming the eyesore of the neighborhood. You don't want people to "identify the rental property" as they drive through the neighborhood, particularly prospective tenants if the property is vacant. To prevent that sad look, pay attention to the following items.
  • Trim bushes and trees, removing dead branches from winter storms.
  • Clear all walkways and driveways of landscape debris and check for damage.
  • Repair any roof issues to prevent unnecessary leaks and damage to the inside of the property.
  • Clean out gutters as well to prevent unnecessary leaks and damage.
  • Check any irrigation systems to ensure they are working properly and adjust for the warmer season. Often pipes and connections crack or split and can cause problems with the first use. This can also waste precious water resources.
  • Check for areas that may be collecting water that can lead to problems with pests or cause damage to landscape.
  • Have all exterior windows and doors repaired for any leaks or damage.
  • Review landscape for any necessary changes and if appropriate, consider adding lower maintenance plants if appropriate.
  • Review the exterior paint. Sometimes just touching up the trim can improve the look of a property, preserve exterior wood/siding, and prevent damage. It could be that it is now time for an exterior paint job.
  • If appropriate, clean up weeds and debris around the property to prevent unnecessary fires.
Check for pest invasions
More than flowers and showers pop out with spring weather. It is very common to have increased pest problems, such as major infestations of wasps, ants, mosquitoes, and more. While the tenant has some minimal responsibility, pests can become a health issue and therefore, a liability. Ordering a pest control spray for the season could keep this under control.
Don't forget interior maintenance
While occupied, tenants normally report any necessary maintenance. However, it can pay off to have a maintenance tune up of air conditioning/heating units. Once again, this will help prolong the life of the units. In addition, it is a good idea to have the interior windows and doors checked when there is exterior maintenance.
As your property management company, we will be watching and taking care of necessary maintenance and we will contact you if necessary. We want to keep your property "tuned-up" to protect your investment.

The material provided in this newsletter is for informational and educational purposes only.
It is NOT legal advice.
Although we believe this material is accurate, we cannot guarantee that it is 100% without errors.

 
 
 

Services Provided By: Property Management Newsletters