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Real Estate News Articles

Updated: Sunday, August 09, 2020

What Should You Know About Virtual Home Tours?

The pandemic is still going on, despite most states being in some phase of their reopening plan, and people are doing more things virtually than ever before. nbsp;

For example, some employers are saying theyll keep their employees working remotely for the foreseeable future.

A Changing Real Estate Market?

Inevitably, these changes have impacted the real estate market. The market has been surprisingly strong through this, with mortgage rates historically low, but that doesnt mean buyers and sellers arent doing things differently.

The virtual tour is one example. Increasingly homebuyers are going through the entire process online, meaning realtors are showing them homes virtually.

A survey that came out in January, before the pandemic affected America, found that prospective homebuyers preferred to work with agents offering virtual tours. The National Association of Realtors 2019 report called Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends, found that 48 of buyers between the ages of 39 and 63 said they found virtual tours very useful as they searched for homes.

The following are things buyers, sellers, and real estate agents should know about virtual home tours.

Agents Can Go in the Home to Do the Tour

The term virtual tour is somewhat generalized, and it can refer to a few different scenarios.

In one scenario, theres a virtual tour thats prerecorded, and then anyone can look at it on demand.

There are also instances, particularly now, where real estate agents representing buyers will go into the home and then walk them through it live, but still virtually using something like Zoom or FaceTime.

For some buyers, this represents a better option because their agent can help them understand the nuanced details of the home that they wouldnt have access to otherwise. If you have a real estate agent whos doing a tour for you, its a much more dynamic experience.

You can ask your agent to show you closets, or provide different angles. You can also ask them to look in the backyard or to examine certain components of the house like the foundation.

What are the Pros of Virtual Tours?

Since were still dealing with the effects of the pandemic, one of the perks of virtual tours for buyers is that it provides them with inherent social distancing.

Some people who might be planning a move far from their current location may not even have the option to travel right now, so virtual tours are the only way for them to conduct their search.

Its also convenient, and theres a lot to be said for that.

When you take a virtual tour, you dont want to spend time traveling to the property if its something youre not interested in.

Even if you dont buy your home completely sight unseen, virtual tours can save you time in the overall process.

Virtual tours can help you get a handle on what you like and dont like as well.

What Are the Cons of Virtual Tours?

There are downsides to virtual tours. First, you dont get the full sensory experience of a home. It sounds silly, but homes have a vibe and you may feel one way or another about a space when youre there in person. You dont feel what the ceiling heights are as an example, or what the finishes feel like.

Youre also not getting a feel for the location if you buy a home without seeing it first. You can ask your real estate agent to provide you with information and perhaps even a virtual tour of the neighborhood, but still, its not the same as seeing it for yourself.

Tips for Virtual Tours

If youre a buyer, there are some things to know going into virtual tours.

First, know what to ask your real estate agent if youre doing a live tour. For example, remember to ask about the fundamentals like the laundry room, the garage, and the storage spaces. Have your agent show you the roof and the foundation, as well as the less glamorous parts of the house like the water heater and the furnace.

If possible, even if you arent going to go to the home, but you live >

Finally if at all possible think of virtual tours as one part of your home buying process rather than a complete replacement. They can supplement your experience and save you time, but if you have the chance to go into the home it can help you visualize yourself there.


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Tips To Make Your HOA Newsletter Pure Gold

Focus on Building Community. Get HOA members to become participants rather than observers. Offer opportunities to do that on committees and social events.

Understand Your Audience. How old are they? What is their financial status? How do they like to spend their time? Find out by getting feedback from your readers with a questionnaire.

Inspire Your Readers. Make sure events, activities and volunteer opportunities are well publicized. Create headlines to grab the readers attention.

Be Consistent in Layout and Content. If you have a "Rules amp; Regs Corner" which highlights a particular HOA rule or policy, publish it in every issue. Always include current board and management contact information mail, email and phone.

Dash the Draft. Write the rough draft as quickly as possible and then go back to polish and flesh out the details.

Archive Your Newsletters and Articles. Many articles bear repeating and as time passes will have new eyes that see them for the first time. Repeat seasonal reminders. Create folders on your computer for the months you publish your newsletter and put article files in the months they fit best. In time, you can build a reservoir of content to draw upon that will make newsletter writing much simpler and quicker.

Lead With Your Strong Suit. Put the most important information up front. Organize the strongest points of an article before you write it.

Keep Articles Short. If an article is long or complicated, readers will move on. If there is simply too much good content to abbreviate, break the article into several articles.

Give Credit amp; Contact Information. Include the newsletter committee, writer and editor names and contact information. This rewards volunteers and encourages others to step up.

Be Positive amp; Uplifting. While criticism has its place, too much of it is a downer and chases most readers away. Strive for the positive. Be upbeat.

Proofread. Editing is a rewording experience. Carefully review your work for grammatical and spelling mistakes or get a detailed oriented person to do it for you. Make sure your facts are straight.

Reprint with Permission. Search the internet for content that would be of interest to your readers. If you find an article that includes author and contact information, be sure to get permission before reprinting and give credit where credit is due.

Have Fun With It. Give them a giggle or two. The internet is full of jokes, puns and cartoons.

Publish Pictures. Folks love to see themselves in the paper. Share event pictures, photos of board members, the manager, committee members and other volunteers.

PDF It. Programs like Adobe Acrobat make it possible to convert word processing and newsletter programs into Portable Document Format PDF which can be posted on the HOA website or emailed to those that do email. PDF was designed with HOAs in mind. Using it can save thousands of dollars in printing, supplies and postage each year plus countless processing hours each year required of paper newsletters. Get Advertisers. If your HOA is large enough and newsletter regular, it may attract advertisers like real estate agents, insurance agents, painters and remodelers and help pay for itself.

Newsletters are a wonderful way to bind your community together in a custom way. Keep your homeowner association in the know with timely and >
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Tips for Landlords During COVID-19

The CARES Act also established a federal eviction moratorium, but now thats come to an end, for the time being, leaving around 40 of renters in America at risk of losing their homes.

Eviction notices can now legally go forward, but as a landlord, you probably realize the situation isnt cut and dry.

What can you do as a landlord to help your renters, even if youre worried about how to pay your own bills?

Know Local Regulations

If youre a landlord, you may already be aware of what your local regulations are under normal circumstances as far as evictions, but theyve likely changed in recent months.

In California, for example, more than 80 local governments have put temporary holds on evictions beyond what the federal government had in place.

Your state or city should have information on their website.

With that being said, even if you can evict a tenant that doesnt necessarily mean you should for a variety of reasons. One of those reasons is the fact that it could be nearly impossible to find a new renter right now.

Regardless of the specifics of your situation, empower yourself with knowledge as a landlord during this time.

Communicate Transparently with Tenants

Many tenants are facing serious stress and uncertainty right now, and the idea of being evicted is only going to add to that.

Of course, they may not be thinking that as a landlord, youre facing the same things.

Try to communicate as much as you can with your tenants now and as long as were in the pandemic.

Let your tenants know what youre thinking, what your plans are, and also let them know they arent alone during this time.

If you have several tenants or more, consider communicating by setting up an online portal.

Verify

If a tenant is telling you they cant pay your rent, you may need to verify what theyre saying. This can be uncomfortable, but if a tenant is simply nervous about the future but still has their job, then they have a responsibility to pay their rent.

By verifying information, you will send a message to your tenants that while youre willing to work with them, you also take rent collection seriously. There has to be a balance between compassion and potentially being taken advantage of.

There may be local laws dictating what you can and cant ask of tenants right now, so again, youll need to check in on local laws and regulations.

Work with Your Tenants

If your tenants truly are facing financial challenges, the best thing you can do is work with them.

You might talk to them about partial payments, for example. One option would be to prorate how much they owe over a certain period and then add that to their monthly rent when things normalize.

If your city allows it, you may be able to work out some other type of payment plan as well. In some cities in the U.S., you can ask tenants to sign payment plans, so youll have to check that first.

Talk to Your Lender

Finally, if your tenants are having financial problems, then you as a landlord may be as well. Just as there has been >

Contact your lender, and when you do, be prepared to show them how much rent youre losing and also outline your monthly expenses.

If youre honest and proactive, theyre more likely to work with you to lower monthly payments or help you find another solution to avoid default.


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Can You Use Unemployment Income to Help Qualify?

Fortunately, most unemployed are covered by unemployment insurance. While the unemployment insurance is certainly a welcome amount, its typically much less than regular pay. Still however, its there. That said, for those thinking of buying a home while being recently laid off, what to do with that unemployment income? Can it help someone qualify? Can a lender use that income to boost overall monthly income?

In short, no. At least in most cases. Why not? Primarily because its how lenders calculate and verify income. First, lenders ask for a two year history of receiving income from a job. When lenders begin documenting a loan file, borrowers can expect to provide the last two years of W2 forms or if self-employed, the last two years of income tax returns. These two years fulfill a lending requirement of having at least two years of verifiable income from a steady source. Second, the lender must make the determination that the income is likely to continue into the future, sometimes as long as three years.

For those newly unemployed, that two year history wont be there. Thats a good thing, though. Consumers would rather be working and earning. At the same time, a lender wont be able to make the determination that someone will be unemployed well into the future for as much as three years. In most states, the maximum number of weeks people can be eligible for unemployment benefits is 26 weeks. Thats six months, not three years. For these two main reasons, unemployment income can be used for everyday expenses but not counted when qualifying for a new mortgage.

On the other hand, some jobs are seasonal, and a business can have a history of hire/fire cycles. Construction workers come to mind. They can work a job, the job is completed and theyre laid off. When a new project comes up, theyre rehired. Unemployment income can be used in this instance but again it must adhere to the two year history rule. Being able to verify a two year history of working seasonal jobs can help contribute to overall monthly income in order to help qualify for a mortgage. In fact, unemployment income from consistent, seasonal work is much the same for any seasonal or part time job. Show a two year history of receiving seasonal income and it can typically be used to help qualify.

If youre not sure if you can use your unemployment income in order to qualify for a mortgage, have a phone call with your loan officer and get your questions answered to fit your individual scenario.


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Building A Backyard Studio To Expand Living Space

Everybody I know rich and not so rich are climbing over each other at home. They need space to decompress, the homeowner says. Everyone I talk to says, I need a studio right now.

The homeowner, who lives in a semi-detached home, says he and his wife began thinking about studios when their son took up drumming. They wanted to respect their neighbours, so their thoughts turned to creating a stylish but practical, fully sound-proofed studio. It maxes out the template of the lot but we werent using the backyard, he says.

They knew exactly what they wanted space to accommodate the equipment needed by a full band, interior walls finished with drywall, good lighting, insulation and soundproofing.nbsp; The homeowners had seen elegant studios in design magazines and wanted something that was also esthetically pleasing, specifically mid-century modern, cool, >

But they didnt know who could do the job. A Google search led them to Sebastian Kellner and Backyard Escape Studios. The London, Ont.-based company creates fully insulated studios that are comfortable enough for year-round use.

After eliminating other contractors and opting for Kellner, design work on the 12x20-foot studio began. It was a fairly quick process because the homeowners knew what they wanted everything from the layout to where the switches and plugs would go and even where a table and drum kit would be placed.

Dealing with noise was their No. 1 consideration, and Kellner solved the problem. The homeowner says you can go in and scream your head off but not be heard, or enjoy doing yoga in peace and quiet.

Large windows on two sides, and a glass door, ensure the space is bright.nbsp;

The design took a couple of weeks to perfect all done virtually, then Kellner prepared a package for the homeowners to take to the building department for a permit. It was a simple process, the homeowner says.

The studio was prefabricated in London and transported to Toronto to be installed on a concrete pad the homeowner hired a separate company to install.nbsp;

The homeowners chose a clear cedar exterior, an expensive but pretty option, and chose high-end finishes, including pot lights and a combination heating/air conditioning system. For someone on a budget, the homeowner says a properly insulated and built studio could use a simple space heater and fan to heat and cool.

For someone looking for a work pod, an eight-by-eight-foot unit would suffice, says Kellner, who builds studios and sheds throughout Ontario. The beauty of keeping it under 108 square feet is that in most municipalities, no building permit is required. There are regional differences so check with your local municipality.nbsp;

He says its important to think about how you will use your studio. Will it be for summer use only, or will you be enjoying it 24/7 year-round?

Proper insulation is key for a four-season experience. Although a prefab unit such as Kellners may seem expensive starting at around 15,000, avoid the temptation to simply add insulation to a home improvement store garden shed. Its not a solution you will end up using because it will be cold in winter and hot in summer. It will be a waste of money, says Kellner.

He suggests R-20 insulation, the same level that is code for a house. Anything less, he says, and its considered a two or three-season building.

Also consider how many people will use the space at once. The 108-square-foot unit is plenty for one.

Think about where you will place the structure on the property. If its too close, the building department may see it as an extension to the house. However, placing it too far from the main power source will add to the cost because running electricity between the buildings can be expensive.

Consider the type of foundation. Concrete is becoming more expensive, so ask about other options, such as earth screws, Kellner says.

The size, type and placement of windows and doors is another consideration.nbsp; Windows add natural light, visually expand the space and offer a view outside.

Another consideration is interior and exterior finishes. For this studio, the homeowner chose wood instead of metal for its warm look.

Also factor in the cost to hire someone to finish the interior. The homeowner says it could be a DIY project for a handy person. To ensure the job goes smoothly, its important to have everyone electrician, drywall installer, painter lined up so theres no delay between jobs.

Get quotes, and more importantly check references for the studio builder, as well as the other trades. Make sure you know what things cost so you dont get ripped off, the homeowner says. One company quoted 20,000 for a concrete pad, but when the homeowner asked Kellner and other professionals, they told him the job should only cost around 3,000.

Think about timing. The design can take a month or two, depending on whether the homeowners know what they want. Add another four to six weeks for prefab construction and another three or four days to erect the building plus the time for interior finishing.

As people tire of working at the kitchen table and long for a quiet place to call their own, the solution could be as close as their own backyard.


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How Deferment of Mortgage Payments May Affect Borrowers in the Long Run

According to Mark Hanf, president of Pacific Private Money, Section 4021 of the CARES Act contained a regulation that loan servicers shall report the credit obligation or account for those participating in forbearance as current.nbsp; In other words, those participating in a forbearance program should not see their credit scores drop. However, there is a loophole that allows lenders to discover whether or not a borrower is actually making payments. It is the comments section of a credit report. nbsp;The CARES Act does not mention the comments section of credit reports, and thats where forbearance notations are going.nbsp; What borrowers are not being told is that any reference in a credit report to forbearance can be a Scarlet Letter for an applicant seeking a new mortgage, according to Kathleen Howley in an article she wrote in early May 2020.

According to Hanf, within a week of Howleys article, his company received a loan request from a home buyer who was denied credit from a major bank for just this very situation. Although the bank sees the existing mortgage as current the forbearance has let the world know via the comment section that this borrower has requested a deferment. The major bank involved would most likely not deny the loan on its face due to the deferment, as this would violate the law; however, banks are notorious for coming up with a myriad of reasons for denying a loan and still stay within the guidelines set out for them.

Conventional lenders desire to have plain vanilla borrowers who pay back loans in a timely manner. When a borrower changes terms of the loan by requesting principal forgiveness or other aspects of thenbsp;

loan, the lenders generally do not usually extend credit again to these borrowers and can negatively affect the borrowers ability to borrow again from un>

In one case, back in 2009, during the heart of the Greta Recession, one banker tells a story of how a wealthy borrower first asked for a principal loan reduction of 500,000 because his collateralized real estate had decreased and his request was granted. But, when this borrower was faced with the prospects of having this reduction reported on his credit report or the fact that he would have to inform any new lender that he requested a principal reduction [as this question is usually on bank applications], he voluntarily requested that the 500,000 abatement be reinstated. He decided his ability to borrow in the future was worth more than the 500,000 principal reduction.

Borrowers will have to decide if requesting deferments is worth the risk of potential future lending restrictions based upon the lender desire to lend to borrowers who choose to defer mortgage payments when the opportunity arises. Whoever said, theres no free lunch must have been talking about these very situations.


Edwardnbsp;Brownnbsp;is in the Investor >
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Different Types of Pet Doors and What Is Right for Your Home

Installed-in type

An installed pet door is usually installed in a wall in a homes exterior door leading to where your pet needs to go. The door allows your pet to get in and out of your house. It can either be a flap, frame or a tunnel if the wall is very deep. The flapped pet door comprises either an aluminum or plastic frame with one, two or even three flaps that your pet can pass through. But, when using one made of plastic frames, understand that plastic can break easily. Aluminum, on the other hand, can expand and contract when the temperatures change and can even get warped.nbsp;

But, you can buy the replacement flaps. Some companies even sell pet doors with pass-throughs that are already built-in. The installation, friendly cost, and adaptability of this pet door making it ideal. Its also a great door type if you live in a rental house. nbsp;

If you want the tunnel type, use the services of a carpenter or handyman to drill the door tunnel into your wall to avoid damaging anything packed into the walls like plumbing or electricals. Its a better option if you need to limit your pets access to some of the rooms or are a permanent homeowner who doesnt mind drilling holes into your walls.nbsp;nbsp;

Custom-made type

This pet door is one of the best standard types. Its the best pet door whenever you want to make changes in the near future as your pet grows.nbsp;If you have a pet, you can choose one with a shorter door which helps to prevent any injuries.

Patio panel type

A patio panel door has a pre-cut opening and is a good option if you live in a rental or an area with harsh weather conditions. Unlike the installed in tunnel type, patio panel pet door doesnt cause any damage to the walls since you dont have to drill your walls.nbsp;

Electronic type

Electronic or magnetic pet doors have sensor tags connecting to your pets collar that allow an automatic entry or exit. Only a pet with a sensor tag can enter or exit through them. Others can even be programmed to open during certain times of the day. Although expensive, an electric pet door, especially one with sensors protects your pet from unwanted animals like raccoons from entering through it. But, you will need to train your pet before they get used to it.

Getting the right type of pet door will prevent you from having to regularly get up to let your pet out every time they need to go outside. Simply determine which is the best and where you would like to install it.nbsp;


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Cost-Saving Tips For Your Bathroom Renovation

But, it can be extremely expensive. According to HomeAdvisor, The averagenbsp;bathroom remodel costs 10,528. Most homeowners spend between 6,016 and 15,044. On a large or master bath, you could spendnbsp;25,000nbsp;or more.

But you can do it on a budget. Heres how.

Watch your footprint

You may be envisioning a large, lavish bathroom, but do you have as large, lavish budget? You can keep costs down by going with a smaller footprint. Less square footage means less materials to purchase means less money going out the door. A larger bathroom will likely need a larger vanity, which can be pricier. Additional boxed of flooring, tile, and any other materials you need will also cost you more. Keeping it small may also mean you can find leftover materials at a steep discount.nbsp;

Buy whats on sale

When youre trying to do your bathroom on a budget, an open mind is your best tool. The Carrera marble you have your heart set on might be a huge budget-buster, but you can approximate the look with the Carrera-look porcelain tile thats on sale.nbsp;

Or, maybe, you end up with something else altogether because you didnt anticipate that great subway tile on clearance. Material costs can cause your bottom line to swell, but you can keep your budget in line by making smart purchases.

Keep your plumbing where it is

If you can renovate your bathroom without moving the toilet, shower/bath, or sink, youll save a lot of monyand hassle. The cost to move a toilet or sinks can be 2,500-3,500 per fixture, said Torrance, CA-based Bay Cities Construction. Plumbing can be a significant cost factor in a remodel when a bathroom floor plan is altered. The toilet is the most expensive to move. Connecting the toilet to the existing sewer line can be a bit tricky for your plumber. The sewer-line depends on a slope. The sewer line pipes keep a specific slope to drain well. Another layer of complexity exists if the house is built on a concrete slab versus a raised foundation. Houses with a concrete slab foundation require concrete cutting to >

Go prefab

If you need a custom vanity, your costs can climb into the thousands. But with so many prefab options available, you may not need to consider that type of expense.nbsp;

Check the big box stores

Holiday sales several times a year can mean tremendous savings on everything from vanities to bathtubs to faucets.

Dont be afraid to DIY

When it comes to bathroom vanities, one of the best deals youll find will likely be on unfinished products. We found this unfinished, 60-inch double, shaker->

Be on the lookout in your neighborhood

There have been workmen at the house around the corner that just sold. And theres a trash bin in the driveway of the one across the street. That might mean people around you are renovating. And its also possible that theyre getting rid of some stuff youd be happy to have in your home. You know what they say about one mans trash

Check Amazonnbsp;

Yes, the same place you buy your underwear and your light bulbs may also be a great source for bathroom items. We found this Delta tub and faucet marked down from 124 to 48 and this Westinghouse brushed nickel, three-light fixture on sale from 78 to 53.nbsp;

Think outside of the box

That antique dresser thats collecting dust in the garage or attic might make a gorgeous vanity, and it may even be something you can do yourself.nbsp;

Craigslistnbsp;

Go ahead and enter vanity or clawfoot tub into the search field of your local Craigslist. You may find nothing, or you may find all manner of cool stuff. Just be sure to abide by some Craigslist best practices to keep yourself, and your money, safe.nbsp;nbsp;

Check surplus stores

If you dont know where one is, Google is your friend. These warehouses have some great bulk deals as well as small-scale bargains you wont find elsewhere.nbsp;


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Doctoring The HOA Budget

Financial statements can be prepared according to three methods: Cash, Accrual, or Modified Cash. You must know and understand which method is being used in order to understand the financial statement. Which method is used has a huge impact on the numbers that appear in the financial report. The methods differ as follows:

Cash

Cash method accounting is like a personal checkbook which tracks when cash is received or paid out. Income is recorded when a deposit is made. Expenses are recorded when a check is written. Cash method financial statements are easy to understand and to prepare. However, they dont give the full picture since they omit information on unpaid bills or uncollected assessments.

Accrualnbsp;

Accrual accounting tracks all transactions, even if cash is not received or paid out. Income is recorded when the assessments are due instead of when collected. The same is true for expenses. Expenses are recorded when they are incurred. For example, if the HOA buys new equipment, the purchase is recorded even if the bill has not been paid. Because it tracks all income and expenses, accrual method accounting more accurately records the financial activity of a particular time period.

Modified Cash

Most HOAs use modified cash method for record keeping. It is a blend of cash and accrual methods. With this method, most transactions are recorded on the cash method, but some are logged on an accrual method. For example, accounts receivable amounts owners owe the HOA are recorded as they are billed accrual method. Expenses are recorded as the bills are paid cash method. Other accrual adjustments, such as prepaid expenses and income tax accruals, are not made. The modified cash method is less complex than accrual method but during an audit, a CPA often must convert the financial statements to accrual method since it more accurately groups income and expenses in the fiscal year to which they apply.

There are two basic types of financial statements: the Balance Sheet and Income amp; Expense Statement. A Balance Sheet is sometimes called an Assets amp; Liabilities Statement. The Board should receive both statements usually monthly, or at least quarterly, shortly after the end of the reporting period. Reviewing the financial status will inform the Board of needed corrections early.

Income amp; Expense Statement

The purpose of this report is to keep you abreast of income and expense status over a period of time; for example, "for eight months ended August 31, 2003." The income statement generally shows the current period - either the month or quarter - as well as a year to date totals. At the end of each fiscal accounting year, this statement "closes out" and starts again with the beginning of the new fiscal year.

An important feature of the Income amp; Expense statement is the Budget to Actual comparison which shows if a particular budget item is over or under budget. If there is a significant variance, it will easier to spot. The accounting method used, cash or accrual, impacts the report. If cash method is used, income is recorded as assessments are paid and deposited. With accrual method, the income is recorded as it is "earned." For this reason, an accrual report will typically show a much greater income figure than a cash report unless all assessments have been paid on time. Same scenario for paying bills. With accrual accounting, that electricity bill which applies to December but not received until January, is still reflected in the December report. Not so with a cash method report. These differences can greatly distort an HOAs financial position if the Board is not aware of them.

Balance Sheet

The balance sheet takes a "picture" of the HOAs financial status on a particular date. It is comprised of Assets, Liabilities, and Equity.

Assets

These are items the HOA owns. Cash method financial statements generally list only cash as an asset. An accrual method financial statement may list cash, assessments receivable, prepaid expenses, and deposits money held by the HOA, which will be returned.

Capital assets like furniture, vehicles, tools, equipment and depreciation may appear on either a cash method or accrual method financial statement. Capital assets can also be items that the HOA holds title to and generate considerable cash flow like a golf course or parking garage. However, most common area property is not included on an HOAs balance sheet.

Liabilities

These are amounts owed by the HOA, whether for products, services, or taxes. Cash method financial statements generally do not contain liabilities. Liabilities may appear on a modified cash method statement, but they are only updated at the end of the year, since the expenses are not accrued monthly or quarterly.

Equity

This is also known as Retained Earnings and generally states the current balance in the reserve and operating funds. However, some accountants prefer to list reserves as a liability item. The sum of the Assets must equal the sum of the Liabilities and Equity. Thus, the term "balance" sheet.

Reserves is money budgeted for future repairs and replacements of the common areas. It is often the amount of cash the HOA has set aside but may also be the amount the HOA projects it will have in its replacement fund by a particular date. The presentation of amounts allocated to reserves varies greatly. The HOA should discuss this with a CPA knowledgeable in HOA operations and the financial statements should be adjusted at year end to show the amounts budgeted for reserves, spent from reserves, and any transfers between operating and reserve funds.

Interpreting Financial Statements

The board is responsible for the HOAs financial stability. It is a fiduciary duty to understand them. Some questions the board should ask:

Is there enough cash to cover operating expenses?

Is operating cash increasing or decreasing since the previous report?
If it is increasing, should the excess is transferred to reserves?
Are reserves being properly invested at the highest rate with the lowest risk?
Are the HOAs reserves on target with projections?
Are reserve expenditures being paid out of reserves?
Has the HOA borrowed from reserves to meet monthly expenses? If so, is there a plan to repay the amount?
Are the amounts members owe the HOA increasing or decreasing? If increasing, does the board needs to increase its collection actions? Does it need to "write off" bad debts or set up allowances for them?
Are there miscellaneous income items? If so, do you know what they represent?
Are collections keeping up with the budget?
Are you over or under budget? If the HOA is seve>

There, that wasnt so bad was it? Didnt hurt a bit. Now review the article one more time. The>
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How To Choose The Right Home For You…and Your Dog

Sometimes, people are awesome.nbsp;

If youre one of those people that are looking to move in order to create a welcoming home environment for your dog, or a dog you plan to bring in, here are a few things to look for.

A workable floorplan

Do you have an older dog? Getting up and down the stairs might not be so easy. Perhaps a ranch->

A safe yard

When youre looking at houses, youre going to want to pay close attention to the outdoor space. Is there enough room for your pooch to run? Is the yard fenced? Is the fence in decent shape?nbsp;

Other doggie friends

While you may not be keen to meet up with other humans and their pets during this time of social distancing, this too shall passright? And, when it does, you may want to make sure youre positioned in an area thats dog friendly.nbsp;

Barking dogs

Then again, the neighbors dogs might be nightmares. Having mega-barkers around you is never fun, but it can be especially painful if that barking also gets your dogs going.

A park nearby

Even if you dont have acres for your dog to explore, having a park nearby can be a great substitute.nbsp;

The wildlife situation

Are you looking at areas where there are coyotes or other predators? You not only have to think about the danger factor but also what life will be like if you cant put in as doggie door and have to leave your dog alone while youre gone for large stretches of time.nbsp;

Is it a busy street?

Dogs get out. It happens. Being in a high-traffic area could increase the possibility that your dog will be injured or worse by a car. Said Homes.com: You may always have your dog on a leash, but what about those times they escape out the front door when youre distracted or when a child or visitor or service man leaves the door open? Will they rush into a quiet cul-de-sac or a busy street?

Nooks and crannies

If you do buy a two-story home, that unused space under the stairs would make a great dog hangout area

Community rules

If you have or are considering a breed like a pit bull or German shepherd, youll want to make sure there are no restrictions in the communities youre considering. Some condo and townhome communities may also have size restrictions, and there also may be limitations on how many pets you can have.

Even if you own a piece of property, its not guaranteed that your pets will be welcome there, said the American Kennel Club AKC. Depending on the number and the breed, there can be restrictions within an Homeowners Association HOA,nbsp;condonbsp;development, or even the city or state, at large.

The right flooring

If youre buying new construction or plan to renovate, you may also want to think carefully about dog-friendly-materials. One of todays most popular options is luxury vinyl tile, which gives you the look of wood but with a much easier-to-care-for, pet-friendly material. Luxury vinyl tilenbsp;is an excellent choice for homes with furry companions, said Armstrong Flooring, for its long-lasting durability, easy cleaning and 100 waterproof planks.


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What Exactly is a ‘Drive-by’ Appraisal?

Lenders establish a required loan to value or LTV for each loan program, even loans that do not require a down payment. The property is the lenders collateral in the transaction and an independent appraisal will help support the value of the subject property. Private mortgage insurance, or PMI, can be waived if the loan amount reaches a certain LTV. For instance, a conventional loan might require PMI with a 10 down payment but waive the requirement with a down payment of 20 or more. Value is determined by an appraisal.

There are different levels of a property appraisal. A standard, or full appraisal is one where the licensed appraiser does some initial in-office research to identify recent sales of similar properties in the neighborhood. The appraiser will first identify similar properties and record the sales price of each home. After performing this initial research, the appraiser will then make a physical inspection of the home, both on the outside, or the exterior, and the inside of the home. The selected loan amount may set the guidelines for the type of appraisal required or the type of appraisal required will be identified in the results of an automated approval.

A full appraisal will require photos of the outside and inside of the home and include these in the report. The appraiser will also take exterior photos of the similar homes chosen by the appraiser. The photos will support the final value of the home. An interior inspection can also impact the final value. Both the interior and exterior of the home must be in good condition and the photos will support that.nbsp;

On the interior however, two homes that look very similar from the outside might look very different on the inside. One home might have an upgraded kitchen with granite countertops and high end appliances while the other does not. These adjustments will be noted in the report. The home with the high end kitchen will have its value adjusted upward due to these improvements.

Another type of appraisal is a desk review. A desk review computes the value of the home by online research only. No physical visit to the property is necessary and all research is done in-house. A desk review typically is the result of a high-equity transaction. For instance, the loan amount requested is 200,000 and recent home sales in the area suggest a 500,000 value. When a loan application is run through an automated underwriting system, the results, or findings will indicate the level of an appraisal needed.

A drive-by appraisal includes in-house research as a starting point and then a physical visit to the subject property. A drive-by means the appraiser visits the home, makes note of the condition of the property and takes exterior photos. The appraiser can also take photos of the comparable sales used in the report.

When the findings indicate the type of appraisal needed, an individual lender can make its own guidelines. For instance, even though the findings ask for only a drive-by appraisal, the lender might override that decision and request a full appraisal. On the other hand, a lender cant do the reverse and only do a drive-by or desk review when the findings ask for a full appraisal. And finally, because there is less work performed with a drive-by, the appraisal fee will be lower than a full appraisal.


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July Real Estate Roundup

Freddie Macs results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey shows that "Rates continue to remain near historic lows, driving purchase demand over 20 percent above a year ago. Real estate is one of the bright spots in the economy, with strong demand and modest slowdown in home prices heading into the late summer. Home sales should remain strong the next few months into the early fall."

30-year fixed-rate mortgage FRM averaged 2.99 percent with an average 0.8 points for the week ending July 30, 2020, down from last month when it averaged 3.13 percent. A year ago, at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.20 percent.

15-year FRM this week averaged 2.51 percent with an average 0.7 points, down from last month when it averaged 2.59 percent. A year ago, at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 3.16 percent.

5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage ARM averaged 2.94 percent this week with an average 0.4 points, down from last month when it averaged 3.08 percent. A year ago, at this time, the 5-year ARM averaged 3.46 percent.


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Four Actionable Steps to Recover Your Financial Future

The less you have, the more expensive ignorance, financial mistakes, and poor choices become. Higher fees, higher interest rates, overlooked discounts, and missed supportive measures reduce what you get for your money and the amount of your income that you keep.

Your bank balance and credit card debt may be whats on your mind, but the financial world wants the convenience of one number that tells them a lot more than that about you. Lenders, financial organizations, and retailers want to know about your financial behavior which they apply as a predictor of your future actions.

Their chief concern? How likely are you to repay debt? That is, make them hassle-free profit.

The financial world uses a three-digit credit score which encapsulates a borrowers potential credit risk to the lender, based on past financial behavior, and indicates the borrowers ability to repay debt. Credit scores range from 300 to 800; higher is better. Each consumer has more than one score.

Credit scores were not created for you, just about you and your financial behavior, so they are not meant to be simple to understand or manipulate. However, to attract good interest rates and terms, credit scores can and should be raised by managing your financial behavior according to lender criteria.

At least one-quarter of low-income consumers lack the knowledge to help them raise low credit scores, said the Consumer Federation of Americas CFA Stephen Brobeck, a CFA Senior Fellow. This lack of awareness could limit their access to credit or subject them to higher costs. Low income households can least afford to pay higher interest rates and fees associated with low credit scores.

The good news is you dont have to tackle this credit quicksand alone. In fact, dont waste time figuring this out alone when smart people like those at CFA and its grassroots network want to help you get free of financial disadvantages.

As you dig in, youll learn about the two credit scoring systemsFICO and VantageScoreand which of your financial patterns cause problems and which could help you raise your score. Each system calculates credit scores differently, even though they use similar data like repayment and debt history. The three credit reporting companies CRCsExperian, Equifax and Transunioncollect financial data, including your spending data, and >

VantageScore, a predictive generic credit scoring model created by the three CRCs, now allows lenders to score 40 million more Americans, including many African- and Hispanic-Americans and credit-invisible Millennials and GenZers, who were previously considered unscorable. This has enabled millions to join the ranks of creditworthy borrowers. VantageScore and other credit score model developers may now have an opportunity to bring more predictive and inclusive credit scores to the mortgage marketplace.

The financial services, retail, and service industries drive consumers using >

A low credit score identifies you as a target to be taken advantage of because of your lack of financial knowledge. Learn more and youll save more.

The Consumer Federation of America CFA; consumerfed.org concentrates on sharing behind-the-scenes insight on how money works so that consumers, especially low-income individuals and families, will not be taken advantage of. CFA is an association of more than 250 non-profit consumer groups that, since 1968, has sought to advance the consumer interest through research, education, and advocacy.

For example, CFA reports that only 22 percent of low income participants in their recent credit survey knew that on a 20,000, 60-month auto loan, a borrower with a low credit score would likely pay more than 5,000 extra in interest than a high-credit-score borrower. Low scores may only qualify borrowers for subprime auto loans with annual interest rates frequently exceeding 20 percent

These observations involve many complexities beyond the scope of this article, but they do demonstrate that spending patterns require attention when income is the issue.

To launch yourself onto solid financial footing, follow thesenbsp;

Four Actionable Steps to Recover Your Financial Future:

Step 1. Take a few minutes and complete the Credit Score Quiz

What you dont know you dont know could cost you a lotperhaps everything. CFA and VantageScore Solutions developed and co-sponsor the interactive website, CreditScoreQuiz.org, that consumers can use to test their knowledge of credit scores using a 12-question quiz, available in English and Spanish.

Step 2. Pace yourself and become >

Do you think that instant gratification takes too long? If you want to make dramatic or lasting transformational change in your life, be prepared for an evolving life>

1. Heres a credit-score overview for those who want to see how all the parts are in play before they dig into details: VantageScore amp; CNBC What is a good credit score and how to get onenbsp;
2. Then, unravel the credit details at Your.VantageScore.com for clarity:

nbsp;Explore credit scoring
nbsp;Understand your score
nbsp;Learn tips about credit
nbsp;Free score providers
nbsp;About VantageScore

>

Step 3. >

The grassroots network of Consumer Action [ https://www.consumer-action.org/ ] CA, another CFA partner, is a good starting point to learn how you can find help with your learning adventure. CA concentrates on consumer credit, and the >

The Consumer Services Guide is a searchable directory of resources which can help you with consumer problems and questions. The multiple Guide editions deal with specific issues such as housing or credit. The full directory, the Consumer Service Guide Edition, provides access to all the resources collected by Consumer Action.
The Take Action Center provides advocacy tools that make it easier for you to reach out about issues that matter.

Step 4. Replace FOMO with POMO

Dont let Fear Of Missing Out FOMO and keeping up with the Jones->

Redefine your wealth and status in non-monetary terms like experiences, family, friendships, pursuit of passions, contributing to community etc. Emphasize must-haves that are free or nearly so to create a rich life full of variety and adventure. This will leave your income and spending free to concentrate on housing, feeding, and keeping you secure now and into the years ahead.


Additional Articles by PJ Wade...

nbsp;Confident Decisions in Uncertain Timesnbsp;
nbsp;When Youre Forced to Move...nbsp;nbsp;


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Do You Have A Zoom Room? If You’re Getting Ready To Sell Your Home, You Better Make Sure You Do

A bougienbsp;4.9 million listingnbsp;tucked behind San Franciscos Buena Vista Park has a lot to offer, but the "impressive Zoom Room" gets a higher billing than the wine cellar and hot tub in the realtors blurb, said SFGate. Anothernbsp;recent listing in Oaklandnbsp;suggests that a third unfinished bedroom would be "perfect for a private home office, zoom room or au-pair suite."

The trend isnt limited to single-family homes. According to the Montreal Gazette, The next big thing in the condo market might well be the Zoom room. Many believe that one of the potential long-term impacts of the pandemic is there are going to be more people working from home, and folks in the condo business in Montreal say it means people are going to need some extra space in their condo for a home office.

Now, if were being honest, a Zoom room is really a home office, right? But while you might concern yourself with your surroundings in a home office for your own peace of mind and productivity, Zoom calls make your space on public. Thankfully, the trend has spawned at least one online business that provides design services for those who need some help with that.

When quarantine began, Kiera Kushlan and Jessica Centella, founders of DC interior design firmnbsp;Residents Understood, started hearing from past clients with an only-in-2020 kind of problem: They needed help making their home workspaces more efficient, but they also wanted to know how to make them look better on camera, said Washingtonian. The inquiries were frequent enough that Kushlan and Centella were inspired to launch a whole new service: a virtual design package wherein, for 350, theyll take a video tour of your home, give you a 30- to 60-minute consultation, and follow up with a checklist of ways you can improve your space. People who want even more help can opt for a next-level package that costs 1,500, and comes with a much more comprehensive design plan, plus a Pinterest board full of products and furnishings selected just for you.

According to the pair, you can easily make your background look more interesting by adding wallpaper or artwork. These tips will also help you create a visually appealing and functional space:

Take advantage of natural light"The most ideal setup is facing a window.
Paint the walls. Painting is the quickest and most budget-friendly way to instantly change the way a room looks and feels.
Declutter Having less stuff around you will make you feel better, and also make you look much more professional and put-together on camera.
Layer, layer, layer Not only do layered interiors look more finished, but adding items like area rugs, throw pillows, or window treatments can also help dampen sound.nbsp;


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Selling Your House? Here are the Renovations that Pay Off (and The Ones that Don’t)

Homeownership is great in a lot of waysyou get your own space that you can customize as you please, you can have as many people over as you want, you can have pets without paying extra fees, you get space to fit more belongings, etc. But homeownership can also be a big burdenyou are responsible for any and all necessary repairs, you have to buy tools and equipment to help with maintenance for things like the lawn, you have to pay the cost of all utilities, and so on.

Owning a home has both its pros and cons but even despite the pros, after a while, many people find themselves needing to move. Whether it be because the home is too small, its time for an upgrade, theres a new job is in another location, its not worth the cost of maintaining, or its simply a good market and the right time to sell, there are a number of reasons that homeowners part ways with their houses. No matter the reason, though, many want to get the most out of it that they can, and that often means making updates and/or doing renovations to boost the value of their home before it goes on the market.

If youre getting ready to sell your own home and are deciding which renovation projects to take on, you may be having a hard time figuring out whats worth it and whats not some renovations are worth more than others, but it can be hard to tell since the potential buyers personal preference will come into play as well.

Luckily, there are a few renovations that will generally pay off, and a few that generally dont. If youre considering renovations for your house, here are the ones you should move forward with and the ones you should avoid:

Renos That Will Make You Money

Kitchen

If youre considering remodeling your kitchen before listing your home for sale, stop considering and start doing. While you dont need to do a full-on kitchen remodel, doing minor upgrades and updates to make it look current and fresh will have a positive impact on your homes overall value, helping you get more bang for your buck.

Energy Savings

Doing renovations or upgrades that result in energy savings is a good idea when youre planning to sell your home. Things like replacing insulation, upgrading windows, replacing appliances, etc. will add value to your home and help you get more money out of it when you go to sell it to new owners.

Siding

Curb appeal is big for many buyers, and if you have old, outdated, faded siding that youre considering replacing, you should. New siding can give your house a totally fresh new look and will attract more buyers than you might think.

Front Door

Again, curb appeal has a big impact on buyers and the front door plays a big role in that for such a seemingly small aspect of the house. Replacing the front door is >

Basement

If you have an unfinished basement or a basement that needs some upgrades, then doing those before you list your house on the market is a great way to go. While some people love the potential of unfinished space, many would prefer a space that has potential but is finished so that they can move in, customize it, and start using it right away.

Renos That Arent Worth What They Cost

Bathroom

You might want to consider adding a fresh coat of paint, but in general, a full bathroom remodel or the addition of a bathroom isnt worth what it costs. The average ROI for a bathroom addition is only about 56 percent, meaning that you wont be able to recoup much at the time of resell.

Deck

Having a deck is great and gives you the chance to get outside and enjoy the summer evenings. Its not something buyers are really looking for, though, so if youre considering adding a deck as a way to add value, you may want to think twice about it. The money you would spend on the deck could be put towards a more valuable renovation instead.

Master Suite

Everyone seems to think that everyone wants a luxurious master suite, and while that may be true to a degree, when it comes down to it, people would rather pay a good price for a house they like than pay a lot more for just a master suite. On average, adding a master suite costs over 100,000 and only results in a 64 percent ROI, so its not a renovation thats worth it if you want to add resell value to your home.

In Conclusionnbsp;

When it comes time to sell your home, there are a number of renovations that you might want to consider doing in order to increase its value and get more money when its time to close. Not all renovations are worth the cost, though, so although you may want to remodel the kitchen a bit, adding a bathroom or deck wont add the same value and isnt worth the money or time.

Which renovations are you considering doing before you sell your home?


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Working From Home? Why Not Move to Barbados?

But theres one more importantand brand-newreason to move to Barbados: You can now get a 12-month visa to work in a place thats just SLIGHTLY more inviting than your hastily-thrown-together home office.nbsp;

Yes, now you can trade cramped city apartments for the islands white sandy beaches, blue sea and year-round sunshine, as NBC News puts it. Let us explain.

But even as the pandemic continues to rage, the government of Barbados, a country in the eastern Caribbean, is sending a very different message: Come here, not just for a holiday, but for up to a year. Bring your laptop, said the Washington Post. Soak up the sun, the sea, the sand and forget about thenbsp;coronavirus.

Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley made the announcement during a recent event, introducing the 12-month Barbados Welcome Stamp to allow visitors the option to work remotely from Barbados for a year at a time, said Government Information Service.nbsp; The stamp concept, now being refined for promotion, would allow persons to come and work from here overseas, digitally so, so that persons dont need to remain in the countries in which they are.

Speaking during the official reopening of Primo Bar and Bistro, St. Lawrence Gap, Christ Church, last night, the Prime Minister said one of the things the pandemic has shown is that it made short-term travel more difficult because of the testing and the requirements for rapid testing, which were not >

According to NBCDFW, the Barbados Welcome Stamp, is set to launch in August and will be open to anyone earning more than 50,000. The scheme is designed to provide a much-needed boost to the islands tourist-dependent economy, while capitalizing on the shift in work patterns driven by the coronavirus pandemic.

The aim is to attract remote workers, with a bill to be introduced in Parliament by the government that will remove the local income taxes that normally kick in after six months.

The program has unsurprisingly sparked global interest. Considered from a cramped apartment in London or New York, working remotely on a beach has an appeal even to those who know little about Barbados.

Though the coronavirus has disrupted many aspects of our work lives, it may accelerate some trends. Gallupnbsp;polling of Americansnbsp;conducted this spring found that 62 percent said they had worked remotely at some point by April, an increase from 31 percent in mid-March.

Between 2005 to 2017, there was a 159 increase in remote work. In 2015,nbsp;3.9 millionnbsp;U.S. workers were working remotely. Today that number is at 4.7 million, or 3.4 of the population.

More than two-thirds of people around the world work away from the office at least once every week, according to researchers.

A study >

The ability to work from home and the emergence of digital office rental services has led to changing attitudes around where people should work and whether they should stick to the traditional nine-to-five working hours.

For instance, WeWork a competitor of IWG, which owns Regus and Spaces provides shared workspaces for companies and freelancers.

IWG said the study >

The biggest driver is digital changing every industry in the world, Dixon told CNBC in a phone interview. On the one hand, its changing how real estate needs to be offered, but its also companies wanting something different in the digital world.

Dixon said that firms are less inclined to invest in real estate and were looking to digital services instead to hire out office spaces. He added that the idea of remote working allowed employees to be more flexible.

If you offer workers the chance to work where they need to be, and not where they are told to go to, it completely transforms their view of the company, they are more productive, Dixon said. If they can work at an office near to where they live or near to where they need to be, its totally transformational.

IWG surveyed 18,000 business professionals across 96 international companies for the study. Dixon said established corporates were leading the charge into remote working, to boost productivity and job satisfaction.

HSBC, for example,nbsp;rented out more than 300 hot desksnbsp;in a space run by WeWork in Hong Kong last year. WeWork,nbsp;reportedly worth 20 billionnbsp;after an investment led by Japans SoftBank, counts Microsoft, Salesforce and Spotify among its enterprise clients.

Last year, anbsp;reportnbsp;by U.S. market research firm Gallup found that the number of American employees working remotely rose to 43 percent in 2016 from 39 percent in 2012. Anothernbsp;study, by telecommuting research firm Global Workplace Analytics and recruitment firm FlexJobs, found that 3.9 million American workers said they telecommuted at least half of the time in 2015, representing an increase of 115 percent from the 1.8 million U.S. employees that said the same in 2005.


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Ask The HOA Expert: Pool Accessibility To The Handicapped?

Answer: Homeowner associations are not required to provide handicap access, however, they must make "reasonable accommodations" for those residents that require such. That means if a resident requires a ramp to a unit entry, the board should approve the installation with the resident paying for it. The board can require reasonable aesthetic considerations be included with such installations. Reassigning HOA owned parking places to allow a disabled resident to be closer to their unit is another reasonable accommodation.

But considering that you are a seniors only community, it might make sense to install handicap access to the pool as it is likely that many of the members could benefit. Gather support from members who are in favor of spending the money. If the required majority endorse the idea, why not do it?

Question: Our HOA is trying to get on track after years of self management and neglect. Lots of people were well intended but hadnt a clue of what being a board member really meant. Any advice on getting pointed in the right direction?

Answer: Seriously consider hiring a management company that specializes in homeowner associations to handle your business. There is simply too much going for unpaid and untrained volunteers, even if they have the best of intentions. And no one should have to enforce rules on or collect money from their neighbors.

Above all, be patient but persistent. Change comes slowly to some. Years of management by neglect is a hard mind set to change. Encourage more flexible minds to run for the board.

Question: We have a homeowner that has boxes and papers stacked against the patio door and windows. They are very unsightly from the outside and mildewed which is a health concern for the neighbors. It also poses a possible fire hazard. Can the board require the homeowner to clean up the inside of their unit?

Answer: The board indeed can require clean up of a unit or home that is a health, fire or safety hazard. Ask the adjacent neighbors to first broach the subject with the offender. If this doesnt prompt action, ask them to write the board a letter describing the problem and what they tried to do about it.

With those letters, the board can turn up the heat by giving the offender a ten day deadline to clean up. After ten days, say "other legal remedies will be explored if necessary". This usually will do the trick. If all else fails, get the HOAs lawyer involved. One way or another, the easy or the hard way, the job will get done.

For more innovative homeowner association management strategies, subscribe to www.Regenesis.net.


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Creative Ways To Carve Out A Home Office In Your Place

Closet conversion

Have a closet thats filled with off-season clothes, giveaway stuff, and ra>

In a closet office, well, theres not a plethora of space even for your must-have items, said FlexJobs.nbsp;Youll have to be creative about storage. Running shelves up the back of the closet is an easy and obvious solution. While youre at it, though, consider adding a rail for hooks so you can hang pencil holders, pictures, or other items up and off your desk. Pegboards are another fun and creative way to create more space. You can add these boards on walls and doors to create flexible storage space for whatever you need.

Backyard bonanza

Homeowners who want to stay put are turning to their backyard to make space, said REALTOR Magazine. Several companies are touting backyard solutions, like Kanga Room Systems units start at about 5,000 for an 80-square-foot kit the buyer can assemble and Modern Shed. These companies can ship standalone structures that can be assembled by homeowners to keep their home offices separated from their living spaces. Studio Shed officials say theyve doubled their sales over the last year. In April alone, their sales were four times it was a year prior. The companys units start at 10,000.

Double duty

You dont need to lose your guest room to incorporate a home office. You just need to be creative. We love these Murphy beds that give you both a decked-out desk and a comfortable overnight space for visitors, without the typically cluttered look of a double-duty room.

Hideaway

You dont even have to have an entire room to dedicate to a home office. In fact, its not even necessary to have enough room for a desk. If youre tight on space, consider a wall-mounted desk that folds down when you need it and disappears when you dont.

A new zip code

If your current space just cant accommodate your work-from-home needs, maybe its time to move. Space-constrained homeowners are looking for solutions for a workspace, said Realtor. For some, its even been motivation to move.nbsp;A recent survey of real estate agents conducted by HomeLightnbsp;says that a designated home office will likely be the most desirable or important feature to home buyers in a post-pandemic era.


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