Call us: 951 784-0999 "You Talk We Listen"

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Blog - JLA Real Estate Group - Real Estate Investment & Property Management

EMERGENCY|PREPAREDNESS

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Summer is perfect for relaxing by the pool, taking beach trips or spending time around the bbq with family and friends. Unfortunately, this also tends to be the season for earthquakes and fires. Ensure you, your residents and homeowers are prepared for potential emergencies by utilizing these quick emergency preparedness tips:

Stock Up On Water

The general rule is to have one gallon of water on hand, per person, per day, with the minimum being a three-day supply. This will be helpful if water is not running or the supply becomes contaminated.

Food Supply

Pack food that will not spoil such as canned goods (don’t forget a manual can opener or purchase pop-top cans), energy bars and dried goods that will last up to one year. Set a calendar reminder to replace these items and your water supply annualy – or at the very least, check the expiration dates. Be sure to store in a cool, dry place.

General Supplies

It’s important to keep a flashlight, batteries, back-up batteries and a first-aid kit on hand. A battery powered radio would be useful if cell service is not accesible.

Want to take your customer service skills to the next level?

Consider putting together a mini-emergency kit for new residents, homeowners or tenants that have just moved in to your neighborhood. This is a great way to build community and show that you really care!

Would you like a copy of our HOA Diagnostic which will help us understand how to manage your Homeowner’s Association? Please contact us at help@jlareg.com or visit www.jlareg.com.

SUMMER|HOME|MAINTENANCE

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Renters, home owners and property managers all share the same desire to keep things in “tip-top” shape. Here are a few of our favorite tips for summer maintenance!

  • Repair or replace damaged screens. You will likely keep the windows closed during summer and the air conditioning on. This makes summer the ideal time to replace or repair screens. Come fall, when the weather is nice, you’ll be ready to open the windows without worrying about pesky insects flying in.
  • Clean the windows. If you skipped this step in the Spring, now is a great time to tackle this project. 
  • Clear your rain gutters to prevent standing water which can become a breeding ground for mosquitoes.
  • Inspect the exterior paint on your home and repair as needed. A little work now will prevent excessive damage in the fall.
  • Clear any brush, weeds or other piles from around your home. These areas attract rodents and other pests that you don’t want calling your home….”home”.
  • Clean your grill – it’s cookout season! Liquid grill cleaner or vinegar and a wire brush will make your bbq grates shine.
  • Repair driveway cracks and holes with a concrete caulk or asphalt crack sealer. If the problem seems a bit more complicated, contact us for a reliable referral!
  • Clear 18″ of area around your AC unit to keep it running top notch.

Do you have a question about summer maintenance that we did not cover? Call us at 951-784-0999 or email us at help@jlareg. We would be happy to give you our best tips or provide a referral!

ENERGY|MONEY|SAVINGS

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Summer is quickly approaching which inevitably means an increase in energy usage. Here are a few helpful energy and money saving tips from Energy Upgrade California that you can share with your Board, tenants and homeowners.

Lighting
Switch to Energy Star certified LED bulbs throughout your home for long-lasting savings. For an even bigger boost in savings, get your entire household in the habit of turning off lights when they leave a room. It will add up!

Power Strips
Do you have electronics that are plugged in throughout the day but not in use? Power strips make it easy to turn off several at once and also help with “vampire energy”. This is energy your electronics consume even when turned off.

Water
Did you know that showering accounts for almost 17% of a homes water usage? Install a low-flow showerhead, cut back to 10 minute showers, only run your dishwasher when 100% full and turn off the water when brushing your teeth. All of these simple steps can lead to significant savings over the course of a year.

Laundry
Did you know that cold water gets your clothes just as clean as hot water and uses less energy? (Don’t worry, we didn’t either!) Heating the hot water for laundry accounts for 90% of the energy your machine uses.

Air Filters
Help your air conditioner run efficiently by changing the filter once per month in the summer. The harder it has to work, the higher the bill.

For more tips like these, visit Energy Upgrade California. Saving energy and money is just a few simple steps away!

Would you like a copy of our HOA Diagnostic which will help us understand how to manage your Homeowner’s Association? Please contact us at help@jlareg.com or visit www.jlareg.com.

PROPERTY MANAGEMENT | SOLUTIONS

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The property management industry is meant to take away your “pain” – not add to it. Here are just a few ways we here at JLA Real Estate Group can help.

Safety Concerns

Have you experienced electrical issues, fire hazards or general issues related to living “safely”? These are items that are high priority and should be dealt with immediately. Postponing them will only lead to larger problems. We offer 24 hour emergency maintenance from a responsive team. Contact us anytime – day or night.

Tenant Issues

Many property management companies fail to properly screen tenants, or worse, don’t screen at all. This lack of attention can lead to issues with public safety and create a hazard for all parties involved. We pride ourselves on thorough screening to help prevent the “worst case scenario” from occurring.

Maintenance Calls

Unresponsive management companies lead to larger problems between you and your tenants. We believe in being accessible and responsive and that starts with having a staff member dedicated to quickly fufilling maintenance requests.

Financial Matters

Your financial matters are as important as our own at JLA. We can help you prepare an annual operating budget, complete financial statements, get ready for audits and provide you with documentation to help alleviate “tax time pain”.

Customer Service

Your satisfaction is top-of-mind for us and we want your tenants to feel the same. Our friendly and knowledgeable staff work as a team to ensure nothing slips through the cracks. We strive every day to achieve uncommon results.

If you would like to learn more about how we can help take away some of your property management pain, contact us. We’re here to help!

Would you like a copy of our HOA Diagnostic which will help us understand how to manage your Homeowner’s Association? Please contact us at help@jlareg.com or visit www.jlareg.com.

FINANCIAL CONTROLS | HOA TIPS

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Here are a few tips to help you put systems in place that will keep your Board on the same page when it comes to the financial health of your HOA:

  • Distribute responsibilities to various board members based on each financial transaction. For example, one board member might be responsible for approving a financial transaction, while another may have the responsibility of actually recording them.
  • Ensure your financial institution has signatures on file should a discrepancy be reported. This makes the research process much easier.
  • Managers are a great tool to have in your system of “checks and balances”. They should be actively involved and aware of financial transactions and provided an “open door policy” to question any area as needed.
  • It is a great idea to give managers the responsibility of locating reputable vendors, presenting them to your board and staying actively involved in the contract process.
  • Select a manager that is certified by the California Association of Community Managers (CACM). Managers that hold the designation of Certified Community Association Manager (CCAM), like we do here at JLA, will have been trained to help establish guidelines that promote professionalism, ethical values and best business practices.
  • Encourage your board and managers to work together on the selection process of a qualified accounting professional or CPA.

To learn more about the importance of having financial controls in place, contact us. We’re here to help!

If you would like a copy of our HOA Diagnostic which will help us understand how to manage your Homeowner’s Association please contact us at help@jlareg.com or visit www.jlareg.com

SWIMMING POOL | MAINTENANCE

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Swimming pools present a huge liability risk for property managers and owners.

With summer just around the corner, this is a great time to review maintenance, safety and general upkeep to help reduce risk. Here are a few tips to help you get started:

• Maintain permanent barriers to pool entry (check local ordinances)
• Require adult supervision when used by children
• Prohibit alcohol in the pool area
• Maintain proper rescue equipment (e.g., ring buoys, reaching poles, first aid kits)
• Remove pool covers completely before allowing use
• Keep emergency telephone numbers near the pool
• Ensure there is no missing signage or warning information
• Store (and use) pool chemicals safely, and away from children and pets
• Repair any broken rails or pool ladders
• Place safety covers over pool drains

To learn more about how you can protect yourself, your properties, tenants and staff, you can read the complete article here or contact us. We’re here to help!

If you would like a copy of our HOA Diagnostic which will help us understand how to manage your Homeowner’s Association please contact us at help@jlareg.com or visit www.jlareg.com

DROUGHT | ELIMINATED

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California Governor Jerry Brown officially declared an end to the “Drought State Of Emergency” which reinstates the ability for California community associations to impose fines or otherwise enforce their governing documents related to an owner’s decision to not water grass or other vegetation.

Communication with your homeowners will be key. Here are a few suggestions to help you announce the good news:

  • Update your community landscaping guidelines.
  • ​Prepare a memo or letter notifying homeowners that the executive orders have been eliminated and they are now welcome to water vegetation and lawns, as needed, to ensure a green and dense lawn.
  • Include the change in your upcoming community or board meeting agenda.

Certain activities are still prohibited. These include:

  • Hosing of hardscape, including driveways and sidewalks.
  • Washing vehicles with a hose that is not equipped with a shut-off nozzle.
  • Using non-circulated water in a fountain, or similar decorative water feature.
  • Causing water run-off from watering lawns within 48 hours of measurable precipitation.
  • Irrigating ornamental turf on public street medians.

To learn more about this recent update, you can read the complete executive order here or contact us. We believe in “building community” and are here to help!

If you would like a copy of our HOA Diagnostic which will help us understand how to manage your Homeowner’s Association please contact us at help@jlareg.com or visit www.jlareg.com

BEDBUGS |DISCLOSURE

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Recently, Assembly Bill No. 551 was passed.

Here is a summary of what you need to know:

  • On and after July 1, 2017, prior to creating a new tenancy for a dwelling unit, a landlord must provide a written notice to a prospective tenant about bedbugs.
  • This notice must be provided to all other tenants by January 1, 2018.
  • The law also prohibits a landlord from retaliating against a tenant because the tenant reports or has a bedbug infestation.
  • A landlord is prohibited to show, rent or lease to a prospetive tenant any vacant dwelling unit that the landlord knows has a current bedbug infestation.
  • A landlord must notify the specific tenants in units inspected by a pest control operator of the pest control operator’s findings.
  • The notification must be in writing and made within two business days of receipt of the pest control operator’s findings.
  • For confirmed infestations in common areas, all tenants must be provided notice of the pest control operator’s findings.

This is simply a summary of AB 551. To learn more please visit California Legislative Information or contact us with questions. We’re here to help!

If you would like a copy of our HOA Diagnostic which will help us understand how to manage your Homeowner’s Association please contact us at help@jlareg.com or visit www.jlareg.com

SPRING | MAINTENANCE

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Spring has officially “sprung”!

Spring is an ideal time to assess winter damage to your property and prepare for summer. Here is an easy checklist to help:

  • Inspect all buildings being careful to look for sagging gutters, water damage, roof damage or other deterioration.
  • Check the caulk around windows and repair as needed.
  • Repaint buildings or other common areas as needed.
  • Inspect the sprinkler systems and repair as needed.
  • Perform annual pool maintenance and prepare for summer fun! Be sure to inspect outdoor furniture, concrete walkways, and other areas surrounding the pool.
  • Does your community have a clubhouse? This is a great time to inspect and do a little “spring cleaning”.
  • Thoroughly clean exterior vents in common laundry areas to prevent lint buildup.
  • Inspect lighting and be sure to swap out with enery efficient bulbs for extra savings.
  • Inspect all asphalt areas, repair as needed.

If you would like a copy of our HOA Diagnostic which will help us understand how to manage your Homeowner’s Association please contact us at help@jlareg.com or visit www.jlareg.com

P E S T | C O N T R O L

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Whether you are new to the property investment market or a seasoned pro, at some point, you will inevitably face the question of whether you should cover pest control in your tenant-occupied unit. As the warm spring weather brings with it tiny tenants seeking residence indoors, we thought it timely to devote some blog space to the topic.

Before your rental home is leased, the gray area is eliminated. After all; you won’t be able to rent property that is teaming with flies, ants, roaches or mice, not to mention your house won’t meet building codes unless you clear the decks of rodents of every size. More complicated is the question of who should handle hiring and paying an exterminator if pests become a problem after your tenants move in. Left unresolved, this pesky problem could potentially cause a rift in the landlord-tenant relationship.

Wherever you live and lease property, here are a few guidelines we think might help:

  • The most important question to answer about pest control is who is responsible. While subtleties exist according to region, in general, the tenant is obligated to keep the living space clean while the landlord is responsible for maintaining the rental property so that it remains fit for human habitation and meets building code standards. Both parties, the landlord and the tenant, are responsible for preventing pest infestations.
  • If a pest problem occurs, the party that didn’t fulfill their duty to keep pests out is generally considered the responsible one. For example, if roaches or rodents show up because of uncovered food items or rotting garbage, this represents negligence on the part of the tenant.
  • When weighing options, property owners should consider the implications of failing to act once pests become an issue, regardless of who is to blame for the infestation. In other words, your ultimate goal should be to protect your investment. If you think your current tenants may be ruining your property, you might consider pursuing eviction instead of refusing to act in a way that will ultimately harm your property.
  • California law recognizes an “implied warranty of habitability” for tenants. So if the property or units become naturally infested with bugs, rodents or bees, etc to the point of (making) the home being inhabitable, the property manager must take action to eliminate pests.
  • In many states, property owners have a responsibility to provide notice to tenants when they contract with a pest exterminator. A new pest control service requires the landlord to provide notice before the first treatment and the use of pesticides. If the pest control company changes pesticides, another notice must be given to the tenant to inform of the new pesticides.

Here at JLA Real Estate Group we help you cover all the bases when renting out your home and most importantly we are licensed to do so. Our company is supported by property management, accounting, maintenance, client services and administrative resources.  We will manage your property and ensure all legal guidelines are met.

If you would like a copy of our Property Management Diagnostic which will help you understand how to manage your property please contact us at help@jlareg.com.

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