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Considering Buying a Rental Property? Here’s What You Need to Know About Property Managers

If you’re considering purchasing a rental property, here’s the good news: they can be a great investment. But they can also be a lot of work, and some homeowners don’t have the skills or desire to put in the work necessary to both take care of their property and ensure it brings in steady income.

That’s where property managers come in.

A good property manager can bring a ton of value to rental property owners, so if you’re considering buying a rental property, you may also want to consider hiring an experienced, trustworthy property manager.

But what, exactly, do property managers do—and how does that help the property owner?

recent article from realtor.com outlines some of their main responsibilities, and the value they can deliver to property owners, including:

  • Market your property. Finding new renters can be a hassle. Property managers leverage a variety of channels (including social media, paid ads, and the MLS) to get your property in front of qualified potential tenants.
  • Vet potential tenants. Once they’ve marketed your property and generated interest, property managers will vet all potential tenants (including running a credit check, checking for past criminal history, verifying employment and income, and calling former landlords for references) to ensure you rent your property to qualified, responsible tenants.
  • Perform property checks. If you live in a different area than your rental property, it can be hard to stay on top of the home’s maintenance and condition. Most property managers do regular home checks (typically, once per quarter or twice per year) to ensure the tenants are taking good care of the property—and will report back if any major repairs or maintenance tasks are necessary to keep the property in good condition.

Break These Kitchen Design Rules in 2023

It’s a new year, and with it comes the opportunity to rethink your approach to design and break the design rules that no longer make sense.

And that includes kitchen design.

So the question is, in 2023, what kitchen trends should you embrace—and what design rules should you break?

recent article from realtor.com outlined the kitchen design rules you should consider breaking in 2023, including:

  • Neutrals are the best choice for the kitchen. White, neutral-toned kitchens will never go out of style. But in 2023, expect there to be a definite shift to more color in the kitchen, particularly in the warm and/or dark tones. To embrace this trend, try painting the cabinets in a warm green or add a pop of color with a navy blue accent wall.
  • Microwaves belong over the range. Many homeowners install a microwave over the range to save space. But to be on trend in 2023, the real estate above the range would be better suited for a more eye-catching design feature, like a modern range hood. (The good news? You can embrace this trend without losing precious counter space; there are lots of space-saving options for storing your microwave, like installing a microwave drawer with your lower cabinets.)
  • You can go cheap with floors and countertops. Renovating a kitchen is expensive. As such, it makes sense to look for any opportunity to save money. In 2022, many homeowners opted for cheaper flooring and countertop materials as a cost-saving measure—but in 2023, experts predict a return to more high-end, sustainable materials like quartz, hardwood, and natural stone.

100 Potomac Place, Winchester, VA 22602

Detached home for rent in Winchester! Great location, backs to Frederick-Heights Park, easy access to grocery stores and Winchester City. 

Four bedrooms, two full baths. Spacious fenced backyard features in-ground pool (opening/closing) included in rent. Offered for $2000/month

Pets considered case by case with deposit. Listed by Meghan Pachas 

Avoid These Yard Maintenance Mistakes This Fall

Fall is in full swing. And while how you take care of your yard will certainly shift during the fall, many homeowners are in the dark about what needs to be done to maintain their outdoor space—and can make some serious mistakes as a result. (Mistakes that can come back to haunt you come spring!)

So what, exactly, are those mistakes?

recent article from realtor.com outlined some of the most common yard maintenance mistakes homeowners make during the fall season, including:

  • Letting debris build up in the gutters. During fall, there’s a ton of debris that can accumulate in your gutters—from twigs to leaves to trash that gets caught in the wind. And if you let that debris accumulate—and don’t clean your gutters regularly, it could cause water to build up, causing damage to your roof.
  • Not watering your lawn. Many homeowners are vigilant about watering their lawn during the hot summer months, but then let their regular watering schedule slip when the temperatures drop. But your lawn still needs water during the fall (in general, 1 to 1.5 inches per week), so unless you live in an extremely rainy climate, it’s important to keep watering your lawn through autumn.
  • Letting weeds get out of control. There are a lot of weeds that take root in the fall months (like fall dandelions), and ignoring them could damage your other plants. Don’t let your weeds get out of control; instead, regularly remove any weeds from your lawn, either by hand or with an herbicide. (Your plants will thank you come spring!)

13 of the Scariest Haunted Houses in America

As Halloween season quickly approaches, thoughts turn to the supernatural, the undead, and the downright creepy. But, really, regardless of the season, is there anything scarier than a haunted house?

From coast to coast, homes that boast a little paranormal activity abound, attracting curious ghost-hunters who hope to catch a glimpse of someone or something from the great beyond.

There’s still time to plan a spooktacular road trip. Let’s take a look at some of the most legendary haunted houses you may want to check out this season. Read on if you dare.

1. Amityville Horror House

 

What took place inside this Long Island estate is so chilling, it inspired a book and multiple films. In 1974, six members of the DeFeo family were found shot to death inside this stately home. Ronald DeFeo Jr., 23 at the time of the brutal killings, was later convicted of murdering his parents and four siblings.

Though the home sold a year after the grisly killings, the new owners quickly moved out citing unusual odors, sudden, unexplainable cold drafts, and a ghost that appeared to be half-demon-half pig.

But despite all that bloody history, the five-bedroom waterfront home has had numerous owners since. It was back on the market in 2016, listed at $850, but sold in February of 2017 for $605,000.

2. Myrtles Plantation

 

This otherwise-attractive plantation in St. Francisville, Louisiana is considered to be “one of the most haunted houses in America.” Since it was built in 1797, the sprawling southern estate has been home to multiple owners as well as countless deaths and murders.

Today, visitors have an opportunity to take a day or evening tour, or even stay over at the bed and breakfast for a chance to sample a side of the occult with their coffee and pastries. Legend has it that in addition to ghost sightings, a grand piano has been known to play sans musician, and furniture has rearranged itself. Definitely intriguing.

3. The Joshua Ward House

 

Located in Salem, Massachusetts, one of the most haunted locales in the United States, the Joshua Ward House has earned a reputation for inhabiting the spirit of none other than George Corwin, the High Sheriff during the Salem Witch Trials. Corwin, aka “the Strangler,” is said to be responsible for the gruesome killings of more than a dozen men and women he suspected of practicing witchcraft. Legend has it, Corwin’s body was buried in the basement of the three-story Federal style brick house.

Visitors say Corwin and the ghost of one of the warlocks he killed at this location haunt this home.

4. The LaLaurie House

 

New Orleans’ French Quarter is home to the LaLaurie Mansion, where a socially prominent couple, Dr. Louis and Delphine LaLaurie, lived with their daughters during the 1830s. It was inside this three-story Creole mansion that Delphine reportedly tortured slaves, causing one to jump to her death.

The house, which was owned by actor Nicolas Cage from 2007 to 2009, is said to be haunted by screams of terror emanating from the ghosts of Delphine’s slaves.

If this tale sounds familiar it may be because it was popularized in the TV show “American Horror Story: Coven.”

5. The Lemp Mansion

 

Life magazine named the St. Louis-based Lemp Mansion one of the America’s most haunted houses in 1980. Built in the 1860s, it was the home of brewing magnates who had a history of suicide in the family. In fact, three are said to have died inside the home, which currently houses a restaurant where murder mystery dinner theater takes place. Paranormal tours are offered as well.

6. Franklin Castle

 

This Queen Anne-style Victorian is known as the most haunted home in Ohio. While he lived there, Hans Tiedermann, a German immigrant, lost multiple children under mysterious circumstances. Despite the charm of the exterior, the Cleveland-based home is said to be filled with spirits.

7. The Lizzie Borden House

 

Located in Falls River, Massachusetts, the Lizzie Borden house is where, in 1892, Borden was believed to have murdered her father and step-mother with an axe in their home. Though she was acquitted, Borden was never able to shake her reputation as a cold-blooded killer.

Those who are brave enough can visit this home, now a bed and breakfast, and stay in the room where the couple slept or the room where Borden’s step-mother was found after the grisly murder.

8. The Kreischer Mansion

By Thomas Altfather Good (Original Work) [GFDL or CC BY-SA 4.0-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0], via Wikimedia Commons

This Staten Island, New York home has been the site of multiple deaths, including a suicide and a murder. The otherwise-charming Victorian is said to be haunted by the spirits of those who died within its confines. Despite its history, the home, set on five acres, was listed at $9.5 million in 2016. Ghosts included.

9. The Logan Inn

 

This Bucks County, Pennsylvania inn reportedly receives frequent visits from its most famous ghost, Emily, the daughter of a previous owner, who lived in room 6 and died in that very room as well.

Capitalizing on its haunted history, the inn hosts monthly dinners featuring a medium who delivers messages from beyond. Intrepid guests can spend the weekend and even sleep in room 6 where visitors have noted the scent of smoke, which could be attributed to the military men who once stayed there during the 1700s, and flowers, a favorite decoration of Emily’s.

10. Winchester Mystery House

 

Filled with dark passages and spider web windows, this home in San Jose, California has had millions of visitors pass through its spooky hallways. Guests can take part in a Friday the 13th flashlight tour or a Halloween candlelight tour and see if they discover any of the phenomenons that have made the house infamous with mystery lovers and fans of unique architecture alike.

11. The Whaley House

 

This Old Town San Diego-based home is said to be among the most haunted in the U.S. as it’s the site where a northern criminal named Jim Robinson was hanged. To this day, he’s said to haunt the home, which you can tour — if you’re feeling brave.

12. The Octagon Museum

 

Known for its innovative architecture and beautiful but haunted spiral staircase, the Octagon Museum in Washington D.C. is said to be haunted by at least two ghosts. One is believed to be Dolly Madison, while the other is the daughter of a colonel who fought with her father about her love for a British soldier and fell to her death in that famous staircase.

13. Culbertson Mansion

 

Located in New Albany, Indiana, this stunning mansion will have you swooning over that Mansard roof, but what lurks inside? Well, for starters, there’s occupied coffin in the cellar. Creeped out yet? Even scarier, lightening struck the property’s carriage house in the 1880s, killing everyone inside. Those who lost their lives are said to haunt the place ever since.

Brave souls who aren’t frightened by ghosts can rent the space for balls or even tea parties. Or, simply take a tour and revel in the architecture and perhaps the supernatural.