What is Georgetown, DC offering this spring in terms of the 2017 rental market?
As the weather in Georgetown begins to clear up, and the warm temperatures approach the spring market for rentals and sales will come forth. With many property owners now calling to start the process of renting their property I am going through step by step the with them the potential pricing, rennovations, and what to do in order to get the best lease rates possible.
Georetown faces some challenges as they are filled with older row homes that can need a good amount of work for DC to approve their business license. What some call "old world charm" DC calls violations. Some of these items include railings on all stair wells, overflow tanks on water heaters, flip locks on gates leading to a patio in the back. Although DC has a list of basic requirements remember that these are housing enforcement specialists. Each specialist tends to have their own specialty that they look for.
As for marketing it is best to have your property always in the best showing condition as possible. I always stress to owners to make sure their property has a "home model" like feel to it. No clutter is very important. Prospective tenants should be able to go from room to room very easily. Our standard protocol of painting, fixing up as needed, appliances working, and full cleaning are always recommended.
Georgetown offers a wide variety of pricing. A small interior row home can start around $3000 a month. As you get into the mid size row homes that number will move quickly into the $4000 range. End units, and row homes with parking will sit nicely in the $5000+ market. Those typically have large outdoor space, covered parking, and 3-4 bedrooms.
A question I get asked by owners in Georgetown is regarding students. Georgeotown University is located inside of the city/town of Georgetown so students often start their search for the summer in January. To date I have about 15 calls/emails already for housing for the summer months leading into September 2017. So what can an owner do about students. Technically not a whole lot. If a student can provide source of income meaning through a trust fund, a legal guardian, friend, or bank account there is no reason to deny them. Although they may not produce a credit score due to lack of credit that can not be used to deny a student or anyone else. So how does one handle students in property management?
With my online systems parents are able to pay directly online so there is no issue with payments. Years ago we would have to collect checks from each student which was a nightmare. Our software allows each parent to have their own access and make their contribution monthly. So financailly things are easier. Addendums to the lease are very helpful as well. I have addendums for everything from parties, drinking, and some others that owners have had me draft over the years. Fortunately Georgetown University has ties to landlords making the school involved in student behaivor. Any reports from property management, and or the police are also sent to the school. Overall there have been very few times that I personally had major issues with students.
In an upcoming blog I will talk about some points that tenants should ask their landlord or property manager prior to signing a lease. DC has very specific rules and laws regarding tenancy. It is always best that a tenant understand what they are prior to moving in.
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