Hecht Property Management, LLC

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Wall Street Is Investing in North Carolina, are you?

I just read an interesting article in Realtor Magazine by Jon Boughtin.  You can read it here.



While the theme of the article is about the federal government helping Wall Street companies access funds to purchase homes and transition them into rental properties, here's are some key quotes and points that should be of interest to investors in the North Carolina market.

  • "Deals like these are going to lead to more investor purchases, and further draw down inventory.  And generally where's there is an inventory shortage, there is a rental shortage as well." - Lawrence Yun NAR's Chief Economist.

  • According to public filings, Invitation Homes is looking at purchasing in California, Florida, North Carolina, and other areas with limited supply.

  • Fannie Mae outlined a strategy of investing in markets they believe "will...exhibit constrained levels of new-home construction.  As a result, we believe our markets have and will continue to outperform the broader U.S. housing and rental market in rent growth and home price appreciation.

I've personally seen many individual investors sell over the last three years, missing out on gains from 20-50% over that time frame.  Rents have improved by 10-20% during that time frame in most of our markets, turning investments that were previously a push into cash cows.  As I drive around daily conducting business, my eyes are telling that that the number of housing starts don't match the current growth in the greater Charlotte market.  The sharps and sharks are buying and holding in this market, I'm taking notice.












In Support of Pelotonia

A brief detour from real estate and property management.  One of our property owners / clients brought this charity to my attention earlier this week.  http://pelotonia.org  Pelotonia raises funds for cancer research at The Ohio State University, something even my Wolverine fans would support.  Check out their website if you have a moment.  100% of the funds raised go towards research.

Independent Review of the I77 Toll Road

By Scott Jenson from www.charlottestories.com




At yesterday’s Charlotte Regional Transportation Planning Organization meeting, NC Secretary of Transportation, Jim Trogdon announced a new independent review of the I-77 toll lanes.

He was careful to note that the review would be performed by an independent agency that had no prior involvement with the toll lanes in the past. He also noted that the contract with the independent company would be completed by next week.

“I personally regret that this has become a divisive issue in this community over the last three years. We can’t change what got us here but we can change where we go next,” Trogdon commented at yesterday’s meeting.

This ‘toll lane review’ is the second of its kind in less than a month. Republican Senator Jeff Tarte also ordered a separate independent review back on February 29th.

In his press release, Senator Tarte noted that, “it is generally acknowledged that this contract has many issues and would not be a template for future state contracts. It is time to ensure all the rules, procedures, protocols and guidelines associated with the RFP and contract were followed in accordance with state and federal laws. If any material issues are identified during this audit we can determine the appropriate action(s) to remedy such. A desired outcome from this exercise will be improvements to future state contractual provisions to optimize the benefits and protect the interests of the citizens of our great state.

The toll lanes have now been under construction for over a year. If they are completed, they will stretch from uptown Charlotte to Mooresville for 26 miles, offering drivers the option to pay a fee to drive in less-congested lanes.

Criminal Background Checks - Part 2

Last year HUD provided some guidance on use of criminal history screening and potential Fair Housing impact.  I'll link the entire release below, but here are my major takeaways from the release.


1) Use conviction records, not arrest records.  Arrest records do not provide proof of unlawful conduct.

2) Criminological research shows that, over time, the likelihood that a person with a prior criminal record will engage in additional criminal conduct decreases until it approximates the likelihood that a person with no criminal history will commit an offense.

3) Section 807(b)(4) of the Fair Housing Act provides that the Act does not prohibit “conduct against a person because such person has been convicted ... of the illegal manufacture or distribution of a controlled substance as defined in section 102 of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 802).”37 Accordingly, a housing provider will not be liable under the Act for excluding individuals because they have been convicted of one or more of the specified drug crimes, regardless of any discriminatory effect that may result from such a policy.

4) The Fair Housing Act prohibits both intentional housing discrimination and housing practices that have an unjustified discriminatory effect because of race, national origin or other protected characteristics. Because of widespread racial and ethnic disparities in the U.S. criminal justice system, criminal history-based restrictions on access to housing are likely disproportionately to burden African Americans and Hispanics. While the Act does not prohibit housing providers from appropriately considering criminal history information when making housing decisions, arbitrary and overbroad criminal history-related bans are likely to lack a legally sufficient justification. Thus, a discriminatory effect resulting from a policy or practice that denies housing to anyone with a prior arrest or any kind of criminal conviction cannot be justified, and therefore such a practice would violate the Fair Housing Act.

Policies that exclude persons based on criminal history must be tailored to serve the housing provider’s substantial, legitimate, nondiscriminatory interest and take into consideration such factors as the type of the crime and the length of the time since conviction. Where a policy or practice excludes individuals with only certain types of convictions, a housing provider will still bear the burden of proving that any discriminatory effect caused by such policy or practice is justified. Such a determination must be made on a case-by-case basis.

Selective use of criminal history as a pretext for unequal treatment of individuals based on race, national origin, or other protected characteristics violates the Act.  


Link to HUD Release


Criminal Background Checks

According to a Boston research firm, only 44 percent of landlords conduct sex offender checks, and only 51 percent conduct criminal background checks on applicants.

Along with credit checks, criminal background and sex offender checks should be part of the application process – for many reasons.

Click here to read full article by Mary-Kirsch-Bock

 

 

 

 

Cleaning Tips For Your Appliances

Occasionally cleaning household appliances like stoves and refrigerators may seem obvious, but what about equipment that does the cleaning, like the dishwasher and washing machine? Give these often overlooked appliances a deep clean with the following tips before the holidays have them working overtime.
Unclog the dishwasher. The cleaner the dishwasher, the cleaner your dishes will turn out after going through a wash cycle. Take a moment to clean the dishwasher's filter, usually located on the inside bottom of the machine. This detachable filter becomes clogged with food and debris over time, so empty it out regularly to keep it working efficiently. 
De-gunk your garbage disposal. Use a natural abrasive combo of ice and salt to loosen grime from the blades. Though it will be loud, run the disposal until the ice is gone. When finished, you can grind up a lemon or lime wedge to deodorize the drain. 
Give your washing machine a wash. Hosting out-of-towners during the holiday season? Avoid musty bedding and towels by sanitizing the machine and removing mildew buildup every few months. To do this, run a hot wash cycle without a load and add one cup of bleach to the soap dispenser or directly into the machine.
Give your vacuum more power. Increased foot traffic could have this tool working harder over the holidays. Keep your vacuum maintained with simple fixes like unclogging hoses, cleaning the rotating brush and replacing the filter.

Happy Thanksgiving

Our office will re-open on Monday, but as always, we have an on call property manager available all weekend including Thanksgiving.  You can reach Rod Kerley at 704-502-1679.  Leave a message and he will return your call.


5 Fun Thanksgiving Facts:
  • 88% is the number of Americans who eat turkey on Thanksgiving Day.  Americans eat over 46 million turkeys on Thanksgiving.
  • 4,500 is the number of calories the average American consumes at their Thanksgiving meal. 
  • In 1953, Swanson overestimated how many frozen turkeys it would sell by 26 tons.  Swanson decided to slice up and repackage the meat creating the first ever TV dinner!
  • The first Thanksgiving meal was in 1621 and did not include turkey, milk, cheese or even forks!
  • Over 50 million people will view the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade (which debuted in 1924 as a Christmas parade).

No Dogs Allowed - Assistance Animals

Clipped from the North Carolina Real Estate Commission's Real Estate bulletin by Eric A. Mine, Associate Legal Counsel II


Link to the full article here http://www.ncrec.gov/Pdfs/Bulletins/May2016-Vol47-1.pdf


One sunny afternoon, a woman comes into your office. Walking beside her on a leash is a small brown cat. The woman strolls up to your desk and asks if you have any units for rent. You tell her that there are some units for rent, but, nodding toward the cat, you mention that no units permit pets.  The woman laughs and tells you Jasper, apparently the cat’s name, is not a pet. She says that she has a condition that Jasper helps her with and asks that you make an exception to the no-pet policy. But as far as you can tell, the woman doesn’t have any apparent disabilities.

Are you required to make an exception for Jasper?

 

FHAA Applicable Law

When it comes to making an exemption to a no-pet policy for a rental unit, be it an apartment, condominium, or house, the FHAA will be the applicable law in almost every case.  The FHAA makes it illegal to discriminate against a person with a disability by refusing to make reasonable accommodations in rules, policies, practices, or services when it may be necessary to afford an equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling. Making an exception to a no pets policy for an Assistance Animal as defined in the Act has been held to be a reasonable accommodation, and “dwelling” has been very broadly defined and includes most types of housing, with a few very limited exceptions.

So when Jasper’s owner makes her request, you must consider two threshold questions before deciding whether or not you are required under the FHAA to make an exception to the no- pets policy: 1) does the woman have a disability? and 2) does the woman have a need related to her disability for the animal? If the answer to either of those questions is no, then you are not required to make an exception to the no- pets policy. But if the answer to both of those questions is yes, then you and the landlord/owner are required to make an exception to the no-pets policy.

 

But what exactly can you ask the potential renter? If the person’s disability is readily apparent and it is clear what function the Assistance Animal is providing, you may not ask for any more details and you should accommodate the request as your no-pets policy doesn’t apply. For instance, if the person appears to be blind and the Assistance Animal is a seeing-eye dog, you must allow the dog, no questions asked.

If the person’s disability is not readily apparent and the need for the Assistance Animal is not clear, you may ask the person to submit reliable documentation showing that they have a disability and that they have a disability-related need for the assistance animal. So, back to Jasper and her owner, since the woman has no apparent disability and it is not clear what assistance Jasper is providing, it would be acceptable to ask her to provide a letter from a medical professional stating that she has a disability and Jasper alleviates one or more of the effects of the disability. But you may not ask for details about the person’s disability, including what the disability is, nor require the person to provide detailed medical records. A note from a medical professional is all you should ask for. Likewise, if the disability is apparent, but the need for the Assistance Animal is not, you may ask for documentation showing the need for the Assistance Animal. But, again, you may not ask for details regarding the disability. You also may not ask how or if the Assistance Animal has been specially trained because no special training is needed for an animal to qualify as an Assistance Animal.

Therefore, if the woman provides you the requested letter, you will be required to make an exception to the no-pet policy, unless doing so somehow poses an undue nancial or administrative burden (not likely), the animal poses a direct threat to the safety and health of others (possibily if it’s a kangaroo), or the animal would cause substantial physical damage to the property. And, because under the FHAA Assistance Animals are not considered pets, you may not charge the woman a pet fee or deposit. But keep in mind that you may still charge the woman at the end of the tenancy for any actual damage caused by Jasper. 

Charlotte among top metros for rental housing growth

Clipped from the Charlotte Business Journal

http://www.bizjournals.com/charlotte/news/2016/03/16/charlotte-among-top-metros-for-rental-housing.html


To rank the metros, HomeUnion looked at 44 single-family rental-housing markets nationwide. San Jose, Calif., topped the list, and Charlotte came in at No. 7. Rents in the Queen City are forecasted to grow 5.3% over the year and end 2016 at $1,133.

 

 Here are the top 10 metros, their forecast year-end 2016 rents and 2016 rent growth forecast:

  1. San Jose, Calif., $3,459 7.3%
  2. Orlando, Fla. $1,348, 6.1%
  3. Seattle, $4,191, 5.9%
  4. San Diego, $2,307, 5.7%
  5. San Francisco, $4,451, 5.4%
  6. Denver, $1,834, 5.4%
  7. Charlotte, N.C., $1,133, 5.3%
  8. Austin, Texas, $1,787, 5%
  9. San Antonio, Texas, $1,165, 4.8%
  10. Portland, Ore., $1,879, 4.8%

Contact one of our professionals to discuss investment opportunities in this growing market.

That was fast - Ref: Investment Opportunity

Under contract in 48 hours.  Well done Tera Walton.


  

Investment Opportunity

Directly above this post is a link to a PDF flyer for a potential investment property that will be coming on the market very soon.  If you would like to look at this listing prior to it going live on MLS please contact Tera Walton at 704-778-2068.


Modern three bedroom, two bath homes under $150,000 are becoming harder to find in this growing Charlotte metro market.

Rebecca Jane


AppFolio and Axiometrics Trends Report


  1. Demand for apartments has grown—not just because of job gains, but also because more people are choosing to rent instead of own. From millennials choosing to delay marriage and families, to empty-nest baby boomers seeking a maintenance-free, urban-center lifestyle, “renting by choice” is a hot phrase in the real-estate industry.
  2. Nationally rents are up 4.1% in the last year.  The seven year average is 2.6%
  3. Axiometrics is predicting a 3.2% increase in rents over the next 12 months.
  4. Approximately 350,000 new apartments will enter the market in 2016. 

At Hecht Property Management we have seen the Charlotte metro area follow a similar trend with rents increasing across all sectors and locations of our inventory.



 

Denver Days Coming Soon - Hecht Realty Sponsoring the Entertainment


Denver Days is a community festival in Denver, NC started in 2003 by a group of local leaders who wanted to build a community park in Denver. While it has been a four day festival in the past, this year will see some exciting changes.

Denver Days, Inc. is a non-profit, tax-exempt organization whose members come from the membership of the local Denver/Lake Norman Rotary Club. The Rotary Club provides the man power for the successful annual event and all proceeds are used to support and expand Rescue Park.

Denver Days is now going to be located at the Rescue Squad Park (across from Lincoln Charter School) located just off Highway 16 in Denver, NC. 

The festival will open at 5 PM on Friday, September 23rd and run through Saturday night September 24th. There will be something for nearly everyone. Gates will open on Saturday morning at 11:00AM and the Corn Hole Tournament will begin at 1:00PM.

Come ride the rides, have some thrills, walk the midway and play some games of chance.  Visit the craft and jewelry vendors and the all the local businesses who will be on hand to showcase their goods or services.  A variety of great festival food will be on hand and we will have music both nights!  


Hecht Realty and Hecht Property Management will have a booth at the event both with free family photos.  Please stop by and say hello


A $2 off ride coupon can be found at the bottom of this page.

Verandas at Oakhurst Progress Update

Now targeting October 1st for occupancy.  The elevator is arriving today.  Contact property managers Kim Freeman 704-578-2332 or Elizabeth Hurd 704-451-8223 to schedule a walk through.  The Verandas are upscale one bedroom apartments within easy walking distance of 131 Main complex.