Looking Ahead: 2023 Trends

Looking Ahead: 2023 Trends

2022 has come to an end, and potential homeowners and investors alike are already looking forward to the real estate market of 2023. There’s a fair amount of data to be gleaned, even this early in the year, as experts look at past trends and make predictions for the calendar year ahead. For those looking to invest in the rental property market, especially here in Charlotte, things are looking up.

According to Zillow, Charlotte will be the site of 2023’s hottest housing market across the entire country. This prediction is based on a number of factors, including the projected increase in home value and the job-construction ratio. Charlotte has consistently ranked among the nation’s best places to live, considering factors such as economy, growth, and job potential. The housing market has always done very well in rankings, and this year is no exception.

2022 saw a very hot, fast-paced market, in which houses were snatched up and under contract within days of going up for sale. The national trend for this year is a slower, cooler, more stable real estate market. Demand for houses and property is still high, however. Charlotte is one of the fastest-growing cities in the country, and the Queen City is on pace to reach a population of almost 2.75 million in the next 20 years.

The increase in mortgage rates and the overall cost of owning and maintaining homes has pushed many families to consider renting as a viable alternative. With higher home values, investors are able to successfully dictate higher rental prices without scaring away potential clients. Investors who own rental property in Charlotte will see a significant return on investment in the upcoming year. If you’re looking to purchase property, now is the time to get in the game.

Maybe you have your eye on some property, or perhaps you’re already a landlord but don’t know how to get a good return on your investment. Rental properties require a fair bit of time, effort, and knowledge before they can become profitable. Not to mention, your duties as a landlord include tenant screening, rent collection, and regular maintenance and repairs.

2023 is shaping up to be a fantastic year for the real estate market, so don’t let lack of knowledge or experience get you down. Let Talley Properties help you out! As Charlotte’s top property management agency with 40 years of experience, we can do all the heavy lifting for you. Contact us today to learn more!

Boomtown: Why Charlotte is One of the Fastest Growing Cities in America

Boomtown: Why Charlotte is One of the Fastest Growing Cities in America

Charlotte, also known as the Queen City, is growing and expanding at a rapid pace. People flock to the city and its surrounding suburbs to settle down, find jobs, and take part in everything the area has to offer. And Charlotte has plenty. From job positions in prominent international businesses to world-class cultural and culinary offerings, there’s no shortage of opportunities in the Queen City. But is there more to it? Let’s take a look at some of the reasons behind Charlotte’s staggering growth.

First, and perhaps most importantly for many people, is Charlotte’s relatively low cost of living. Experts have declared Charlotte to be 5-10% cheaper than the national average in any given year. This number includes factors such as housing, rent, utilities, and groceries. For those looking for a way to save money and spend less without sacrificing quality of living, the Queen City is an obvious choice.

Second, Charlotte is known as a center for banking and financial investments. In fact, it’s the largest and most successful in the entire nation, behind only New York. Not only does this stimulate the economy, but the constant growth of such prominent firms means an increase in jobs. Charlotte is responsible for creating almost 20,000 jobs in the second quarter of 2022 alone.

Third, the constant influx of people means that the Queen City is always expanding to accommodate the growing numbers. Charlotte has often been referred to as many smaller cities within one large whole. The various districts spread around and through the city center are under constant construction and revitalization. With construction comes additional architecture, cultural activities, and city life to explore. This attracts even more people, leading to more construction and expansion. It’s a positive feedback loop that has led to exponential growth in the past several years.

Finally, Charlotte is situated in a perfect geographical location. The fair weather has attracted many people who are tired of harsh winters and excruciating summers. Charlotte has been called a four-seasons city, meaning that its weather is relatively mild all year round. For those who love the outdoors and enjoy exploring a city on foot, this is the place for you!

The Queen City has experienced tremendous growth, and it doesn’t look to be slowing any time soon. If you’re looking to move to the area, there’s never been a better time to get on board. Start your search today! For more information and tips, follow the Talley Properties blog.

How to Clean and Protect your Pool During Winter

How to Clean and Protect Your Pool

Backyard swimming pools are a great way to beat the intense summer heat, and are assets of rental properties that increase value. However, as the weather turns chilly and the days get shorter, the pool sits empty and it’s time to do some winter maintenance. As a property owner, you must understand how and when to begin cleaning and protecting your investment from the harsh winter weather. This will ensure that your swimming pool is kept up well into the future. Here are a few tips and tricks to keep in mind during winter.

  • Clean the Pool. Whether it’s an automatic underwater vacuum or a manual water skimmer, make sure that your pool is free of debris. Leaves, sticks, and bugs will clutter the surface over time. Before closing up for the winter, be sure that the water is sparkling clean. The clearer the water, the quicker you’ll be able to use your pool when the weather warms up again.
  • Use a Pool Cover. Investing in a quality cover will ensure that your swimming pool is protected from animals, debris, and harsh weather conditions. Periodically throughout the winter, you may need to go outside and tidy up a bit. Leaves, twigs, and other debris can get caught in the middle. Use a vacuum to get rid of unsightly messes that accumulate on the cover. If you live in an area with lots of snow or rain, be sure to stay on top of the weather. The risk of freezing precipitation tearing the cover can sneak up on property owners if they’re not careful.
  • Maintenance & Chemistry. Although your pool will be covered for the winter, it may still be exposed to temperatures below freezing. It’s vital to maintain a correct chemical balance in the water to discourage freezing. Furthermore, the sophisticated pumps and machinery that keep your pool running in tip-top condition need to be monitored every other month. Ask your pool maintenance technician how best to care for the machinery and what products to use in and around your pool.

Talley Properties is dedicated to making sure you get the most out of your rental property and its amenities. Take good care of your property, and you will enjoy it's returns for many years to come. Follow the Talley Properties blog for more tips, tricks, and advice.

Protecting Your Rental Property from Sudden Temperature Drops

Protecting Your Rental Property from Sudden Temperature Drops

Late winter is in full swing, and temperatures are becoming more sparatic. When these temperatures get below freezing and properties are subject to more severe weather and precipitation, there are certain steps to take ahead of time to prepare for these harsh conditions. Talley Properties is here to guide rental property owners through the process of protecting their property and tenants from the cold. Read on for some valuable tips and tricks as you begin winter-proofing.

  • Seal the Edges of Openings. Windows and outside doors are particularly susceptible to drafts. It’s highly unlikely that the seal around the edges of these openings is entirely weatherproof. As winter approaches and the weather grows cold, go around your home with a fine-tooth comb and seal any gaps or cracks that may have appeared along the edges. Not only will this keep the heat inside in the winter, but it will keep the cool air inside in the summer.
  • Add Insulation. Insulation is crucial for regulating the temperature of your home. From drafty spaces like the attic to fragile parts like the water pipes, there are plenty of ways to shut out the cold. Once the temperature drops in one part of your house, it’s much more likely that the cold will spread to other rooms and floors. Save money on heating by investing in quality insulation.
  • Clean the Gutters. Gutters have a tendency to become clogged with leaves, dirt, and other gunk. Before the temperature dips below freezing, ensure that your gutters are clear of anything that may inhibit the flow of water. Otherwise, you may find icicles forming on your roofline.
  • Let the Water Flow. Stagnant water freezes much easier than water that is allowed to keep moving. To prevent frozen water and busted pipes, allow your faucets a slow drip. This will keep the water moving and flowing through the pipes.
  • Consult a Professional. Occasionally, it’s best to let the professionals handle matters. Consider consulting someone who will perform an evaluation of your home. The result will show you how energy efficient your house is and what you can do to improve your rating.

Stay safe this winter, and protect your property from the bitter weather. It could save you time and money in the long run! Stay up to date on Talley Properties blog for more tips and valuable insight, and get in touch to see how we can take care of your rental property.

How to Get a Jump-Start on Lawn Care in Late Winter

How to Get a Jump-Start on Lawn Care in Late Winter

Here at Talley Properties, we help you get a head start on making your property look stunning. That all starts with great landscaping. Around the holiday season, lawn care is likely the furthest thing from your mind. There’s so much to do and so little time to do it, not to mention the weather is cold and the plants are in hibernation. But the truth is there’s no better time to begin. As you enter the new year, set aside some time to plan for the growing season ahead. It will be here before you know it! Without further ado, let’s get into some tips and techniques to kickstart your lawn care routine.

  • Aerate & Fertilize. Ideally, this should be done before the grass goes dormant for the winter, around the time of your first frost. Aeration is the process of puncturing the earth to allow your lawn to breathe and relieve pressure. Follow up this process with some fertilizer to ensure that your grass has all the nutrients it needs before its long winter sleep.
  • Clear the Lawn. Grass is particularly brittle during the winter time. Sometimes the harsh weather can take a toll on your lawn in the form of leaves, twigs, mulch, and snow cluttering the surface. Be sure to keep an eye on your yard and remove anything that may damage the grass or prevent breathability. This includes lawn furniture, decorations, and any buildup of organic material.
  • Minimize Traffic. In a similar vein, too much traffic can lead to wear and tear on your lawn. If you or your guests must regularly walk across the grass, avoid repeatedly taking the same route.
  • As winter comes to an end and the weather begins warming up again, it’s time to aerate and overseed. Overseeding is the process of spreading grass seed over and between existing patches of grass. By aerating your lawn and spreading seed before spring arrives in full force, you’ll be setting your lawn up for success.

To summarize, as winter melts into spring, the most important things you can do for your lawn are aeration, fertilization, and protection. As grass comes out of hibernation for the season, it may look pretty rough. But with a little hard work and some TLC, your lawn will be thriving in no time.

Follow the Talley Properties blog for more tips and tricks when it comes to landscaping and property management.

NC Entry Rights for Rental Properties

Roommates

Entry rights can be a tricky topic. For the most part, paying tenants should be entitled to privacy, security, and a quiet place to make a living. There are times, however, when the landlord will have to exercise their right to enter the living space. After all, they own the property and everything on it. This does NOT mean that a landlord can come crashing through the door unannounced, any time of day, on any day of the week. There are laws in place that protect both parties, but each side has a few caveats and conditions. Let’s go over some of these laws now.

First, it’s important to note that we will be discussing the laws in North Carolina. Each state has set its own precedent, and the regulations may differ from state to state. If you’re outside of NC, be sure to double-check your local laws. Generally speaking, if your state does not have any statutes in place explicitly protecting the privacy of tenants, then it can be negotiated into the rental agreement paperwork. With that in mind, let’s look at some of the reasons a landlord might be permitted to enter a tenant’s private space:

  1. Emergency Situations. Whether it’s a fire or a flood or a medical emergency, I’m sure we can all agree that these types of situations effectively nullify most agreements or regulations in place. Circumstances play a major role in entry laws. If lives are in immediate danger, swift action must be taken and the landlord may enter the living space to assist as needed.
  2. Maintenance Operations. With proper notice, a tenant will be asked to allow the landlord to perform regular inspections on the property. During this time, the landlord will have free rein as they thoroughly check the living space, appliances, utilities, and overall structural integrity.
  3. Potential Tenant Walkthrough. If a tenant is moving out, then the landlord may want to show the space to potential future clients, even while the current tenant is still living there. This is perfectly legal and acceptable as long as the landlord gives notice and receives permission from the tenant.
  4. Although not a common occurrence, a landlord may have reason to believe that the space has been abandoned. Under these unusual circumstances, the landlord would be permitted entry to evaluate, clean, and prepare the space for re-leasing.

Many state laws also stipulate that landlords may only request entry during “reasonable hours.” This typically signifies normal business hours, and weekends are left to the digression of the tenant. Laws and regulations aside, both parties should communicate their needs clearly and treat one another with dignity and respect. That’s all there is to it!

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When is a Rental Property Uninhabitable?

Roommates

As the landlord of a rental property, it is your duty to provide a safe and comfortable living space for your tenants. What your tenants do with the interior is up to them (as long as it abides by the terms of the contract). But your responsibility lies in the structural integrity of the building itself: Is it up to code? Are the utilities functioning in a safe and non-lethal way? Are there any hazardous substances present in the building? These are the types of questions you should be asking yourself before, during, and after a tenant moves in. Otherwise, your space may be deemed “uninhabitable” and you could find yourself caught up in a tangle of legal red tape.

So, let’s dive into the basics: What exactly makes a space “uninhabitable,” whether by law or common decency? Well, let’s take a look at some examples.

  • Building Codes. There are certain laws that dictate how large a space must be and what features must be present to be considered livable: windows, doors, fire exits, etc. But beyond architectural standards, the landlord must also maintain the integrity of the building. A living space may be deemed unsafe if the walls are in bad condition, the floors are overloaded with weight, there is rot or decay that threatens the structural integrity, or the electrical wiring or heating systems are faulty. Any of these issues could pose a threat to potential occupants and would render the space uninhabitable.
  • Appliances & Utilities. Faulty wiring and malfunctioning appliances can lead to an uninhabitable space. Not only are the occupants at risk of a potential electrical fire, but appliances and utilities can be dangerous when they cease to function at all. Consider the plumbing, which carries water to the kitchen and bathroom. Consider electricity, which powers our kitchen appliances and safety monitors. Without these, a living space is very much uninhabitable.
  • Health Hazards. Last, but certainly not least, landlords must complete a thorough evaluation of their home for any outbreaks or infestations. Mold, mildew, pests, and even water damage can have adverse health effects on any occupants. The health and safety of your tenants must be top priority, so it’s important that you have this done by a professional. If you do have one of the issues listed above, your space will be considered uninhabitable until it is resolved.

These may seem like basic necessities, and that’s true. Every landlord should strive to make their space as safe and comfortable as possible. But this isn’t a fix-it-and-forget-it situation. Maintenance is an ongoing job, one that will continue throughout a tenant’s residency. Be sure that you are keeping up with the needs of your tenant and conducting regular inspections to ensure their health and safety at all times!

Which Property Management Fees are Tax-Deductible?

Property Management Fees

As a landlord, you operate and maintain numerous properties for commercial profit. This makes you a small-business owner according to the law. As such, you will be required to file taxes associated with the income of your business. Fortunately, there are several tax-deductible expenses that you are likely to come across during your time as a landlord. To save you from paying a higher annual fee than you have to, let’s take a look at some maintenance and travel expenses that come with a tax break.

  1.  Repairs. While the landlord is typically held responsible for fixing anything that’s broken or operating incorrectly, the good news is that you’re entitled to a tax deduction for the cost of repairs.
  2. Maintenance. Maintenance is different from repairs in that the goal is to avoid the expense of repairs as much as possible. This includes safety inspections, updating appliances and amenities, and landscaping.
  3. Utilities. Paying for the electricity and water in your own home is one thing, but paying for these same utilities in a rental property is another thing entirely. Oftentimes, tenant rental fees will at least partially offset the cost of utilities. But the added bonus of a tax deduction makes your business much more lucrative.
  4. Travel. Now, this doesn’t mean a discounted vacation to just anywhere in the country or the world at large. But a landlord will occasionally need to make a trip to check in on their properties and their tenants. Whether traveling nearby or halfway across the country, these trips cost money, and the costs can add up very quickly.
  5. Insurance. Once again, this applies specifically to the insurance plans tangential to your rental property or properties. Most landlords take out coverage for natural disasters (flood, fire, etc.) and loss (burglary, theft, etc.) While these insurance plans can be expensive, they can bring significant peace of mind, and a tax deduction will lower the cost considerably.
  6. Legal Fees. This is particularly useful if you should ever be forced to hire an attorney. For example, you may need to evict a tenant on legal grounds, and an attorney can offer valuable advice. Fortunately, the expense is offset by tax a tax break.

When considering all the costs that go into owning and managing property, it may seem overwhelming. Surely your wallet can’t handle the financial strain? But luckily, as a small business owner, you are entitled to several tax deductions. Begin with the list above and research ways to save money when it comes to everyday expenses.

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