Paying Utilities For REO Properties

I Want to List REO’s, but How Much will it Cost?I’ve written in the past about how to list REO’s for banks, but what many agents overlook are the related expenses that go along with carrying many REO listings.Listing REO’s can be very rewarding, but many agents neglect to plan ahead and understand that they will be paying utilities for REO properties that they have listed.This HUB will detail exactly what you can expect and give you some tricks and tips on how to not get in over your head as you start paying utilities for REO properties.What Types of Bills WIll I have to Pay for My REO Listings?Read this twice: It’s not just utilities and its not just while you have the REO property listed!It is incredibly important to understand the lifestyle of a REO listing as you start to budget paying utilities for REO properties. Most REO listings start out as “an assignment.” This means that the bank or asset manager have decided that you will list the property. However, many times the property is in no condition to be listed.To get the assignment ready to be put on the market, you may have to have one or more of the following services performed:
Trash Out (all debris, junk and left over belongings removed and hauled away)
Cleaning
Water shut off / Winterization
Pipe Repair
Lawn / Snow MaintenanceObviously these services are not free. What many agents fail to realize is that the banks expect you to pay for these services up front. Yes they will reimburse you, but it can take anywhere from 30 to 120 days.Once the REO Property Becomes a Listing…Once your REO assignment becomes a listing, most of the major costs have been paid for (trash outs, pipe repair, etc). Hopefully your client will reimburse you quickly.Now is when you need to make sure you are current on the REO listing’s gas, water and electric bill. In colder climates, If the heat gets turned off, the pipes will freeze and your home will never sell. If you have no electricity, buyers can’t view the home.Also, don’t forget that if you don’t stay current paying utilities for REO properties, they can become a lien on the home. If there is a lien on a REO listing that you are trying to sell, it can delay a closing substantially. That means you’re waiting even longer for your money.Tips for Paying Utilities for REO PropertiesNow that I’ve scared you out of the business, let me try and give you some tips for paying utilities for REO properties. This could save you thousands of dollars and help you avoid the huge cash drain that getting into the REO business can create.

Know Your Contractors: I can not stress this enough. If you have a good relationship with your services you can save a substantial amount of money for the services. If your contractors know they will get all of your business, their rates will be lower. If their rates are lower, you have less money that you are waiting to be reimbursed for.

Negotiate with Your Contractors: As you get into this business, you’ll be contacted by many service providers in every industry trying to earn your business. That’s great for your cash flow situation! Set up agreements with them that you will pay them immediately AFTER THE BANK SENDS YOU A CHECK. Even if its only $100, once you get up to 30 or 40 listings, that money adds up. If they won’t wait for the bank to pay you, offer to pay them half up front and half once you are reimbursed. As you get started listing REO’s and paying utilities for REO properties, don’t make the mistake of thinking you can carry the costs because “it’s only one listing.” Take a long term approach and think about every transaction multiplied by 40 listings.

Talk to your local bank: Many banks will be more apt to make a small business loan if you explain that the money will only be used for paying utilities for REO properties. If you can show them your client list, many banks will take that into consideration when factoring in risks. When they are lending against big name lending institutions and know that you will be reimbursed, its much easier for them to justify loaning you the money than if you were using it for marketing or business expansion.
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Boomer Generation Fitness Tips

A generation of baby boomers is now entering their 60′s with high expectations of themselves when it comes to how they will spend their retirement years.  The boomer generation has always thought of lifestyle as a key factor in determining how successful they are at living and the key to that living is health.  Many boomers plan to travel the world and see all of the things that they have read about over the years, but without good health and a reasonable level of fitness, those dreams are often shattered.

Most of us dread the thought of spending long tedious hours in a gym grunting and groaning on machines that are dripping with someone else’s sweat and germs in order to restart some sort of muscle activity.  This process is usually spurred on by looking in a mirror and realizing that it will be difficult to view all of the sight seeing locations, let alone getting on and off the bus, without some minimum level of strength and agility. What is the easiest and most effective way to approach better health through fitness? We need to concentrate on three main body areas, mainly upper body, core and lower body.  There is no point in trying to work on minor muscles when what we really need to do is make sure that the major groups are strong enough to do the job.  The smaller ones will follow along as we become more active.  Let’s look at 3 specific calisthenics you can do at home in about 10 minutes per day:

  1. UPPER BODY   push ups are the obvious choice to make the most difference in the least amount of time.  If you can’t use your toes to sustain the full body push up, then use your knees and keep your back straight as you lower your upper body to the floor and raise back up.  It is very important to maintain correct form but just as important to do as many push ups as possible in 90 seconds.  I realize that might be only one, but to get the most benefit requires pushing yourself slightly beyond what you thought you could do.  Spend an honest minute and a half working at your pushups and record the number so that you can do an extra one next time.  When finished, rest for 2 minutes.
  2. CORE   you know what’s coming, situps, of course.  Two ways to do this, first crunches.  Lie on your back, raise your knees to a 45 degree angle with your feet firmly on the ground and cross your hands over your chest – never place your hands behind yur neck.  Now, spend 90 seconds lifting your upper body as high as possible (this might be only a few inches) and lowering back to the floor.  Try to move your head up and down vertically as opposed to bending it forward and straining your neck.  Count again and add more each day to increase your core strentgth.  The second method requires bending your knees in the same way but hooking your feet under a chair or something sturdy so that they won’t lift off the ground.  Now, keeping your hands crossed on your chest, lift your entire upper body to a sitting position and return to the floor slowly.  Count again and record the total number you do in 90 seconds.  You will do fewer of these but they are much more effective. Rest for another full two minutes.
  3. LOWER BODY   squats are a great choice and once again 90 seconds and do as many as possible.  Standing with your arms stretched straight out in front of you, palms down, move your arms back and keep them at shoulder height then lower them to your sides while you lower your body to squat position keeping your back straight. Lift your self back up, using your legs, thighs and hips in a smooth motion to your original position. 

The key to the success of this program is the natural process of your own body which continues to benefit from this brief activity for hours afterward.  Dr. Al Sears, in his program called PACE, shows how our bodies increase the capacity of our heart and lungs without creating more fat stores by the use of a short duration but high intensity workout.  This is especially important for a boomer generation trying to become healthy and fit in the most efficient way possible.

Search For Office Space in Dallas

Dallas has long been one of the premier locations for office space and running any type of company. The downtown skyline is one of the most easily recognized among American cities, and the city has a history of erecting architecturally interesting skyscrapers. At the moment, it is also one of the most best and secure times to lease office space in Dallas due to the bad economy. Rates in the Central Business District are down, hovering around $21 per square foot. A major factor in the low rents is the high vacancy rate of approximately 25% in the CBD. As a result, and coupled with the scarcity of available financing, there is almost no current construction activity, with the little progress happening in the outlying areas, such as the Park Lane Project, a 33.5 acre, $750 million mixed use development that will include 750,000 square feet of office space and approximately 700,000 square feet of retail commercial property. The project is opening in phases, beginning in late 2009 and continuing until 2011.

Dallas Commercial Downtown Real Estate News:

One project in the CBD is the new Convention Center Hotel, a one-thousand room hotel scheduled to open in 2011. Part of the city’s plan to revitalize downtown, it is hoped that the hotel will initiate additional construction in the areas of dining and entertainment. There are, however, many projects that are still either in the planning stages or on hold until financing improves. These include a 57-story residential tower (1900 Pacific), a 30 story office building on McKinnon, and a 20 story office building on McKinney. Park Seventeen, a 19 story office building, is scheduled for completion in late 2009 or early 2010. In addition, there are several residential and mixed use towers proposed for the area. Overall the local economy has been decent compared to the rest of America, and by the way executive suites are another option to save some $. To find some pricing on office spaces in Dallas check our listings. We also have commercial properties for rent or lease in the following areas: Arlington, Beltline, Benbrook, Carrolton, Duncanville, Decatur, District, Ellum, Grand Prairie, Irving, Frisco, Garland, Keller, Mckinney, Mesquite, Metro, Northwest, Preston, and Richardson.

Dallas Population, Stats, and Office Space:

Dallas has a population of 1.28 million, and has seen a 7.7% increase since 2000. Residents enjoy a cost of living rate of 91.8, slightly below the national average and other Texas cities like Houston, Austin, and San Antonio. Current unemployment rates are at the 7.3% level, while job growth is a negative 3.7%. The crime rate has decreased steadily from 857 in 2000 to its current level of 696. Attractions in downtown Dallas include the West End Historic District, a renovated area that is home to numerous clubs, shops, and restaurants and is a great area to rent an office space or suite in Dallas. These nearby locations will include amenities and even furnished options, along with great monthly or 12 month lease options. Many special events are scheduled annually in the West End, such as the Taste of Dallas festival each July. Deep Ellum (along Elm Street) is yet another historical district that is home to several restaurants and clubs. The State Fairgrounds are on the fringes of downtown, and feature several museums and exhibits that are open year-round, such as the Aquarium and the Hall of State. The buildings represent some of the finest examples of Art Deco still in existence. If you are looking for news on other major cities then check out our commercial real estate articles.

Other Dallas Economic News and Society:

Professional sports are represented in the area by the NFC’s Dallas Cowboys, the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks, Major League Baseball’s Texas Rangers, and the National Hockey League’s Dallas Stars. Six Flags over Texas is located in nearby Arlington, about halfway between Dallas and Fort Worth, with Hurricane Harbor (a water park) situated just across the street. For more details and history on office space and Dallas in general go here.