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October 18, 2022

Top 5 Rental Scams Every Landlord in D.C. Should Know

The D.C. housing market is changing, forcing more people to hold onto their properties. If you are one of them, the idea of becoming a landlord and renting out your home might seem attractive. You can generate passive income and move onto the next chapter of your life while waiting for the housing market to improve. 

However, being a landlord isn’t all fun and games. Here are some of the most common tenant scams you’ll want to be aware of as a landlord. This way, you can protect your investment and choose a qualified tenant to rent out your home in D.C.

  1. Fake Checks for Rent and Security  

Typically, written checks that appear to come from a reputable bank don’t raise a red flag. But when the landlord goes to cash them, they realize these funds are invalid. Now, they have to try and collect the money and/or evict the current tenant, both of which are not easy to do. To avoid this, the FDIC and BBB have listed several ways to spot fake checks

  1. Rent Overpayment 

If your soon-to-be tenant offers to pay more than what you asked, this is a red flag. Scammers overpay on purpose and then ask for a refund. On your end, it might look like the funds are available, but it can take a few days for the money to clear. If you refund the balance and then notice that the check didn’t clear, you’re now out the money. The best way to prevent this from happening is by not accepting rent overpayment. 

  1. False Employment Records 

Always do your due diligence when qualifying a tenant. It’s not uncommon for tenants to provide a fraudulent employment history and ask friends or family to act as their employer. Tenants do this because they may not have steady income streams. Don’t just take their word for it – follow up with the employer and ask for other information to verify employment like pay stubs, bank statements and a letter of employment. 

  1. Fake Credit Reports 

Another thing that some tenants will lie about is their credit score. While a good credit score can indicate financial responsibility, it’s still a good idea to dig deeper into the tenant’s payment history. Always conduct your own credit and background checks. Don’t take the tenant’s copy – this could be a fake. 

  1. Renting on Behalf of the Owner 

Subleasing a property to a new third party isn’t illegal, providing it’s allowed within the terms of your lease. However, your tenant must notify you of this. Otherwise, they might collect months of payment upfront from the third party and never transfer the funds to you. By the time you find out and go to collect the money, the new tenant is there and has already paid their rent to the leaseholder. 

Unfortunately, this is not an exhaustive list of scams that happen to landlords. There are many things that can turn your investment strategy into a headache – and a money pit. If you’re on the fence about renting out your D.C. property, contact 4 Brothers Buy Houses. We’ll provide you with a free cash offer, and you can choose which path is right for you! 

January 21, 2022

Tips for Selling a College Park Property with Existing Tenants

Selling a College Park house is a complicated process in itself, and unfortunately, selling a property with existing tenants can add an extra bump in the road. But selling a property where there is a current tenant is possible! 

However, you must remember that tenants have rights through their lease, so you will want to familiarize yourself with the rules you have to follow. In Maryland, it is legal to sell your rental property with the tenants still living there, though you will have to give appropriate notice. 

While marketing a property and holding showings tend to go more smoothly when there is no tenant, there are ways to work around the situation. In fact, depending on the situation, having an existing tenant might actually be a benefit for some buyers. 

Overall, you want to be strategic in selling your property with tenants so that you don’t turn away potential home buyers in College Park. Below we will cover six easy tips for selling a property with existing tenants! 

1.) Make Showings Convenient 

A simple way to make sure a showing goes smoothly with an existing tenant is to let your agent know that your tenant needs a 24-hour notification. Have a conversation with your tenant about their schedule. If there are times that don’t work for them, give these times to your agent. Always keep in mind that a notice for entry is required by the governing lease! 

2.) Ask Tenant to Leave for Showings 

Asking the tenant to depart from the property during a showing will make it less awkward for a potential buyer. This is especially important if your tenant is upset about the impending move. You don’t want negative energy or comments from the tenant to deter a buyer from putting in an offer. If your tenant is grumpy about having to vacate during showings, offer them a gift card to a local coffee shop or restaurant to visit while the showing is taking place.  

3.) Keep Property in Viewing Condition 

Remember that a move is never easy on anyone, so if you are asking your tenant to move out, keeping the property tidy may not be at the top of their to-do list. Offer to hire a cleaning or yard service while the property is on the market. Since your tenant doesn’t have any stakes in the selling of the property, it will be on you, the seller, to take responsibility in keeping it in show-ready condition

4.) Aid in Helping Tenant Find New Residence 

If you are asking your tenant to move out, and it comes down to it, you may need to help them find another place to live. Maybe you own another investment property in Maryland, or you know of someone else who has an opening. Surely there are plenty of other great properties to call home! 

5.) Make Sure Tenant is Caught Up on Rent

A tenant delinquent on their rent payments is not exactly a great selling point. If your tenant is not up to date on their rent, notify them regarding payment as soon as possible. Another option could be to forgive the delinquent payments in exchange for the tenant to move out. Lastly, court action leading to eviction is also an option if the tenant refuses to make the payments. 

6.) Market the Property in Two Ways

If your tenant is definitely planning on living on the property until post-closing, depending on the layout and size of the property, you may want to consider posting it as both a primary residence and a potential investment property. You can then let the buyer decide how they want to use it! 

Get a Cash Offer on Your College Park Rental Property! 

Overall, you want to make sure that your tenant is as happy as possible to avoid the chance of them breaking a sale. If a tenant decides they want to prevent showings from happening, selling your property could be put on hold. 

Try your best to ease the situation by communicating openly and offering financial incentives. Respect that your property is your tenant’s temporary home, and be understanding towards them during the selling process. 

If you’re struggling to sell your College Park rental, contact 4 Brothers Buy Houses. We’ll buy your home AS IS for cash – even with the tenants still there!

October 15, 2021

Tired of Being a Landlord? Sell Your Home for Cash in Anne Arundel County MD

Being a landlord in Anne Arundel County MD might have seemed like a good idea at one point. Maybe you inherited a home or found a great deal on a fixer upper and thought you could make money passively. But now that you’re faced with repairs, maintenance, difficult tenants, rent collection, vacancies and more, you might be done with the landlord gig. 

Below we share some of our best suggestions on what you can do when you have a rental property but no longer care to be a landlord.

Hire a Management Company 

If your rental property in Anne Arundel County is an easy money maker, it might make financial sense to keep it. To take some of the burden off, you can hire a property management company

Property management companies take care of everything while you keep the landlord title and receive checks each month. Of course, you’ll have to pay for this service, which will reduce your monthly income. 

List Your Home with an Agent 

If you don’t care to pay a property management company, you’re probably best off selling your rental. Contact a real estate agent in Anne Arundel to get your home listed on the MLS. 

To sell your home with an agent, it should be in good condition. If the tenants damaged your rental, you’ll need to make the repairs. Buyers prefer move-in ready homes in good condition, so your property will need to meet these demands. 

Sell Your Rental to a Cash Buyer 

What happens if your rental isn’t in good condition? Perhaps you’ve neglected maintenance or maybe your tenants did some damage. In either case, it will need to be addressed. If you don’t have the time or money to make the repairs, you can sell your rental for cash.

Cash buyers in Anne Arundel County will buy your rental in as-is condition. This means that you won’t be responsible for any of the repairs. It’s a good option if your home has suffered damage and will have a hard time selling to a traditional buyer. 

4 Brothers Buy Houses Will Pay Cash for Your Rental 

4 Brothers Buy Houses buys rentals in Anne Arundel County MD. We’ll take them in any condition – and even with the belongings inside! Our buyers use their own cash so they don’t need to apply for financing. We can typically close within the week, which means you can liquidate your assets. Contact us today for your free, no obligation cash offer. 

July 22, 2021

TOPA Policies: Selling a Property with Tenants in DC

Tenant Opportunity to Purchase (TOPA) policies allow tenants to purchase the property they’re living in before it’s put up for sale. This anti-displacement tool is designed to protect renters, preserve affordable rental housing stock and stabilize low-income households. Under this policy, landlords must let their tenants know that they intend to sell the home or building. 

In return, tenants are given a reasonable timeframe to purchase the property. If they don’t want to move forward, they will at least have time to work out other living arrangements. TOPA policies are being proposed in multiple states, but the nation’s oldest and most comprehensive TOPA program is right here in Washington DC. 

If you are looking to sell your rental property in DC but still have tenants living inside, you may have questions about TOPA and what this means for you. Below we provide a breakdown of TOPA and the things to know, but feel free to call 4 Brothers Buy Houses for more personalized information.

What is TOPA in Simple Terms? 

In Washington DC, rental property owners must be aware of their tenants’ special rights before selling their property. In terms of TOPA, it is your obligation to offer your property for sale to your tenants first. This allows your tenants to take advantage of the sale and purchase the home they are living in. 

If you don’t hear anything after 30 days from contacting your tenants, you can move forward with the sale. If a written offer is received, however, the tenants will have 60 days to negotiate a contract and secure financing.

Selling a Rental Property in Washington DC 

As long as your tenants don’t want the property, you can move forward with the sale. You can do a conventional sale, especially if the property is in good condition. But more often than not, rentals need some TLC to get them ready to sell. 

If you’re not in a position to put time and money into selling your rental, a better option may be to sell your home for cash. And, this could work out in your favor because according to TOPA laws, you have to restart the process if you don’t find a buyer within 180 days. This essentially gives the tenants another chance to purchase the home. 

By selling to a cash investor like 4 Brothers Buy Houses, you can sell your property within a week and not have to worry about TOPA laws. 

4 Brothers Buy Houses Will Buy Your Rental Property 

Property owners in other states like Maryland and Virginia are usually in a better position than those in Washington DC. But if you’re in DC, you’ll have to follow TOPA laws before selling. 4 Brothers Buy Houses is familiar with these laws and how to make your sales transaction go quickly and smoothly. Contact us today to learn more! 

May 28, 2021

Holding Onto a Vacant Property in Manassas? Here’s What You Need to Know.

There are many reasons why a home sits vacant. Time in between renters, a major life event or a slow market are just some of the reasons why some homes become vacant. It’s easy for these properties to be forgotten – out of sight, out of mind. However, forgetting about a vacant home can quickly become a problem, and an expensive one at that.

If you have a vacant property in Manassas VA, it’s time to decide what you plan to do with the property. 2021 is a seller’s market so it’s very likely that you’ll get the most for your money if you sell right now. 

What are the Risks of Keeping a Vacant Home in Manassas? 

Every day a home is left empty is another day of increased risks. Even in good neighborhoods, people will seek out empty homes. Here are some of the risks of keeping a vacant home in Manassas: 

  • Theft and vandalism. Vacant homes are more likely to attract criminals and thieves. If you have stuff inside the home, you’ll especially want to be careful.   
  • Trespassing. An easy target for trespassers, vacant homes provide a place to hang out, party and conduct illegal activities. 
  • Squatters. Squatters also pose a risk to an empty home. And, believe it or not, squatters have rights in Virginia so it might not be easy to get them out. 
  • System failures. What happens when a pipe bursts or the fuse box starts a small fire? All of this damage comes at a cost you’ll have to pay for. 
  • Neglecting maintenance. When you’re not living in the home, the “little things” go unnoticed and can spiral into bigger and more expensive problems. 

What Should I Do with My Empty House in Manassas? 

If you have a vacant home that’s just sitting there, it might be in your best interest to sell. It’s a seller’s market right now so you can get top dollar for your Manassas home! This is far better than waiting for trespassers, criminals or squatters to damage the property. And it’s much better than hearing from a neighbor that your home is flooded or needs some type of attention. 

4 Brothers Buy Houses can provide you with a free, no obligation quote in just one day. If you like what you see, we can close in about seven days. Not only will you get money in your pocket, but also you can avoid the expenses associated with taking care of the home or having to list it for sale. 

To get your fast and free cash offer, contact our cash home buyers in Manassas today! 

April 26, 2021

Is it Time to Sell Your Rental Property in Woodbridge, VA?

Being a landlord comes with a lot of responsibilities, but it also comes with a lot of rewards. As long as you invest in the right properties and have money saved up for emergencies, you can make a decent passive income from being a landlord

However, as wonderful as landlord life can be, it’s common to want to step down. If you are feeling this right now but not sure what to do, we can help! 4 Brothers Buy Houses purchases all types of properties in Woodbridge VA. No matter what condition your rental is in, we’ll make you a fair cash offer.

In the meantime, here are some signs that it’s time to sell your rental property in Woodbridge Virginia

Your rental property is worth more than when you bought it. 

It’s a seller’s market right now and buyers are willing to pay more for good homes. If your rental property is worth more than what you bought it for, you can sell it today for a profit. This profit might even be more than what you would collect in rent payments!

Being a landlord is wearing you thin. 

Another sign that it’s time to sell your Woodbridge rental is feeling exhausted in your role as a landlord. This is still your home and it’s your responsibility to maintain it. So, when the dishwasher is leaking or a storm rips through and damages your siding, it’s your problem. 

Not to mention, some tenants are a constant headache. Whether they’re demanding or trouble, you end up paying the price. While you can’t expect your tenants to be perfect, you shouldn’t have to babysit them. If you are, then it’s a sign you need to sell the rental – or at least find new tenants. 

You’re not seeing a positive cash flow. 

It’s not uncommon for rental properties to have a negative cash flow. However, you can’t keep losing money. You need to re-evaluate the situation and find out why this is the case. It’s possible that taxes, utilities and insurance have gone up. Or the home might be old and you’re having to make constant repairs. Once you start losing money, it’s usually time to cut ties. 

You want to spend your weekends traveling. 

Wanting to travel is another motivator for selling a rental property in Woodbridge. Being a landlord is time consuming, and you might feel the need to stay close to the home. Unfortunately, this can stop you from enjoying things like traveling, camping and visiting loved ones. By selling your rental, you’ll have cash for new adventures and the freedom to leave town when you want. 

Get a Cash Offer on Your Woodbridge Rental Home 

These are just some of the signs that it may be time to sell your rental property in Woodbridge. To get a free, no obligation cash offer, contact 4 Brothers Buy Houses today. There is no obligation to continue. We want our customers to be informed on their options so they can make a confident decision. But, if you do decide to sell your rental, we’ll be able to close in just one week! 

January 28, 2021

Here’s What To Expect After Listing Your Property

A lot of sellers don’t fully know what to expect after listing their property online. But not every sale is going to be a smooth one. Most sales take a little bit longer than expected, and this can be frustrating for sellers. But if you know what you should be expecting after listing your home online, you can be a little bit more prepared and ready to speed through the process. Get ready to spend time cleaning, getting criticism, and for spending a little more money than you thought you would. All of these things will help you sell your home in a reasonable amount of time. 

Get Ready To Spend A Lot Of Time Cleaning

One of the things that a lot of people don’t expect after listing their property online is how much time they spend cleaning and decluttering. It takes a lot of time and effort to clean your home so that it is ready for all of those showings and the professional photos that you need to take to garner interest on real estate websites. You might even want to consider hiring a professional cleaning company to make sure that your property is truly in top shape. 

Be Prepared For Criticism

You are going to get criticism about how your property looks. It is probably going to come from prospective buyers. But it may even come from your real estate agent. Understand that most of the criticism is constructive, and listening to it will help you sell the property in the long run. But there is some criticism that is just downright negative that you can willingly ignore. As long as you are mentally prepared for criticism and can handle it, you’ll be fine. 

Get Ready For Additional Expenses

Sellers are often surprised at the amount of money it takes to sell a property. Working with a real estate agent costs money. Doing expensive repairs and maintenance costs money. It costs money to do renovations to compete with other local properties. It costs money to market your property online. It costs money to do showings. If you aren’t prepared to pay these costs, you may not be able to sell your home on the timeline that you wanted. Make sure that you are ready for these expenses. If you can’t afford to sell until you are in a better financial position, it might even make sense to wait. 

Ready to sell your home in the DC, Maryland, and Virginia area? If you don’t want to list your home online and deal with the hassle of going the traditional route, you can sell your property for cash. Our team at 4 Brothers Buy Houses will buy your home for cash. We’ll purchase your property as-is, which means that you don’t have to take out money for expensive repairs or maintenance. Contact us today to get started selling your home.

January 18, 2021

2021 Real Estate Trends

In 2021, important real estate trends include people fleeing cities for the suburbs, virtual real estate walkthroughs continuing, and buying interest and demand increasing in the summer and fall. Make sure that you are up to date on these trends so that you are prepared to sell your property for the value you want.

If you are looking to sell your property any time soon, there are a variety of real estate trends for 2021 that you need to be aware of. By ignoring these trends, you are lowering the probability of being able to sell your property and getting the value that you believe your home is worth. In 2021, the pandemic is likely to end due to the distribution of the Covid-19 vaccine, which will impact demand. Real estate will likely continue to be virtual though, as many prospective buyers have gotten used to doing showings and walkthroughs digitally. Here is what you need to know. 

People Are Fleeing Cities For The Suburbs

More than ever, people are leaving cities for the suburbs. The pandemic helped to increase the speed of this trend, but this is something that has been happening for years. People are leaving expensive markets in places such as New York City, San Francisco, and Los Angeles for cheaper suburban markets outside cities and even in different regions, such as the sun belt. Expect this trend to continue into 2021, especially as the vaccine becomes widely distributed and travel begins to open back up. 

Real Estate Will Continue To Be Virtual

Real estate is going to continue to be virtual, even after the Covid-19 vaccine is widely distributed. This is because so many potential buyers have gotten accustomed to working online and handling communication virtually. If you are a seller, that means that you need to be comfortable handling Zoom sessions and doing walkthroughs and meetings through online video. If you aren’t ready, make sure that you brush up on your skills. 

Demand Is Expected To Pick Up

Market demand in the real estate space is expected to pick up later in the summer and going into the fall. That is because the vaccine is expected to be widely distributed by then, and transmission is lowest in the summer months. Sellers should be prepared for demand to increase and ready to show their properties to prospective buyers. That also means handling repairs and improving curb appeal. 

The process of following the 2021 real estate trends can be pretty difficult for anyone. After all, there has been a pandemic going on for the past 12 months and pretty much everyone is exhausted with managing their personal and professional lives. If you are interested in selling your property, but don’t want to worry about understanding the trends of the coming year, you still have options. 4 Brothers Buy Houses will purchase your home for cash, and you don’t even have to make any expensive repairs or renovations. Give 4 Brothers Buy Houses a call and we’ll provide you with a free, no obligation quote. You should be able to sell your property on your own schedule, on your own terms. Contact us today and get the cash offer that you deserve.

February 15, 2020

How To Get Your Property Ready For Spring

The winter months aren’t only cold when it comes to the weather, they’re also cold when it comes to the real estate market. The fewest sales get completed in the winter months, but the market tends to get warmer as the snow melts. If you want to be prepared to sell your property in the spring, you’ll need to be prepared for competition. There will be plenty of other homeowners who have the same idea. That is why standing out with curb appeal and completing all of the necessary repairs is key to having a successful spring sale. Here’s how you can get started. 

Make Sure Your Yard Is Inviting After The Winter Months

Curb appeal is a huge part of making sure that your property gets enough eyes on it. That means clearing out dead leaves and debris from your front yard. It also means making sure there are no unsightly tree limbs or shrubbery to deal with either. You may want to hire a landscaping company to ensure that your front yard looks inviting. The winter can be tough on your grass. A good idea may be to plant warm colored flowers like tulips.

Utilize A Spring Color Theme Throughout The House

What’s spring without warm pinks, blues, greens, and yellows? Make sure that your home’s interior design is full of rich, warm colors. In the winter months, there is little sunlight, and everything seems to look and feel black or white. You want to project the opposite of that. Think about buying new curtains, blinds, or drapes. When you can, open the windows for maximum sunlight. 

Spring Means More Competition, So Make Sure Your Repairs Are Completed

When you sell your property in the spring months, you should know that you are going to have a lot of competition. If you want to keep up with the competitors, you’ll need to make sure that you’ve already handled all of your repairs and renovations. If you are planning a spring sale, getting those fixes done in the last month or two of winter can be the difference between selling early and selling late. You don’t want to get caught waiting for buyers who expect your property to have certain repairs. Get it done early.

Thinking about selling your home in the spring? If you want to sell your property without having to worry about competition and renovations, then you want to call 4 Brothers Buy Houses. 4 Brothers Buy Houses will purchase your property for cash so that you don’t have to worry about expensive repairs or open houses. You can sell your property on your terms and get the kind of value out of it that you always wanted. Instead of spending months on listings and in meetings with real estate agents, give 4 Brothers Buy Houses a call and get your free, no obligation quote today.

2200 Wilson Blvd, Suite 102-140 Arlington, VA 22201