Friday, April 18, 2008

Video Blogging is Back!

Finally, we are beginning to produce our (417) Dwellings! video podcast series again. Yea!
We've been busy doing what we do best and that is real estate and property management. Things have been great, but with all of the ice storms, flooding, and wind damage it's been a pretty crazy year so far. But we have learned a lot and we're back to share it with you.

So how do you make property management an easier job? You set a policy and you abide by it. Therefore, if rents are due on the 1st day of each month and you charge late fees beginning the 5th day, you stick to it. That way a Tenant can't come in to pay late armed with their excuses of de-clawed cats (you have to see the video to get it). They know the rules up front and you stick by them. If you let it slide once, they will continue to try to take advantage of you and possibly try it again next month.


Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Which Direction Are We Going?

So...have you been wondering where we have been? Obviously, things have been a little crazy with Dizmang Properties therefore the obvious lack of blog posts and videos. However, we hope that you've been keeping up with Paul's personal blog and/or Jessica's personal blog.

In all honesty, we are struggling to determine which way we should take our business. For the last 20 years, Paul has been the Broker/Owner the real estate firm Dizmang Properties. In the last 15 years, Paul has worked with a very tight, core group of investors that have purchased investment rentals properties ultimately becoming the essence of our business. Property management isn't really the direction we had originally intended to go, but over the last several years, it has become that way.

We are your Investment Specialists. Call it what you want..."managers of your wealth"..."congress of your rental empire"...or just "the people that spend your money on wise real estate investments". Whatever you call it, the bottom line is that we're good at it. We're not arrogant, just confident. We've made our Investors a lot of money over the last several years. We've built subdivisions, purchased lucrative duplexes and and advised our Owners to refinance when the rates were at their best. We have unclogged backed up toilets, hauled tons of trash, and replaced leaking hot water tanks at 2 o'clock in the morning. We have found an appropriate Tenant for each property, collected their monthly rents, and deal with ridiculous complaints. We've even pursued the dead-beat Tenants that refused to pay and got the judgment to collect the money. Each month, we have paid the mortgage payments on these properties, the taxes, the insurance and other bills that are due. And most of our Investors haven't even stepped foot inside any of their rental properties in years. They love this part...they just collect a check at the end of the month, glance at the reports and go about their business.

What other kind of REALTOR would do this for you? There aren't many of us around that do that. Now, we continue to list and sell homes, but our expertise and experience lies within real estate investments. So when you're ready to take the plunge into rental real estate, get Paul. He does it all.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Destructive Missouri Street Tenants: It's Time to Grow Up

We have one street where we manage 28 new houses, close to campus, and popular with college students. You remember the fire right? In my experience with this street I have found out the simple math equation of: College Students = Parties All Of The Time.

Now before I start my rant about these immature, destructive partying students, I have to state that there are a few individuals that live on the street that are actually good, reliable and decent college student Tenants. And to those Tenants, I highly commend you, call me and I will give you a GREAT reference both business and rental-wise. And with that of the decent ones called my voicemail anonymously this morning and left a message about the vandalism mess that was made by an overnight Missouri Street party. So I go over there this morning and find the many many beer cans, trash and property damage of the parties on the street, but I find that someone took a can of red spray paint and left their obscene messages on our signs and stuff. couldn't be the same group of people that had a party a month ago and spray-painted one of our brand new white sided houses with the red spray paint, could it?!

These were some pretty obscene spray-painted messages, clearly vandalism and a cheap shot at our family. That doesn't set too well with us and yep, we called the cops. Now they are watching the street, we've got some great leads and once it all comes out...the person(s) that did this, well let's just say they won't stand a chance.

It's really too bad that the people that did this are so immature. It's really sad that the Tenant's that live on this street feel the need to socialize with such losers like the vandals. And what's even more sad is that once they are caught, this is going to be on their record for a long time. How embarrasing for that person(s).

Friday, September 07, 2007

Dizmang Raises Money for JDRF Type 1 Diabetes Research

The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) chapter in St. Louis is having their annual, "Walk to Cure Diabetes" on September 30, 2007 and we're all getting involved. When I say all of us, I mean 18 of us coming from both Springfield, MO and Omaha, NE. Now that you're familiar with this blog, you would probably expect nothing less than a video from us on raising money for Type 1 diabetes research. Our goal is to raise $1,000 by September 30th and I'd love your help! You can donate securely online thru the JDRF site.

In addition to participating in the walk, we are also actively pursuing bringing a chapter of the JDRF here to Springfield. There are only 2 chapters in the state of Missouri and we have chosen the St. Louis chapter for assistance in helping to bring it locally. If you, or someone you know, is either affected by Type 1 diabetes or is looking for a job in a non-profit organization, please contact us as we are in the beginning stages of pulling together a support team for those of us who are affected by this pain-in-the-fingertips disease.


If you don't know much about Type 1 diabetes, then I encourage you to read this article. It is very detailed (including pictures for those who don't like to read!) but easy reading. By the end of the article you will have a thorough knowledge of the disease and maybe you'll feel more inclined to help us raise money for research to find a cure.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Investment Loan Types for Rental Investments

This is a complex topic and takes a lot of explanation. That’s probably why my video podcast on this top ended up being over 5 minutes long! I truly don’t intend to lose any of you, but I have been sent e-mails requesting information about the different types of loans for investment properties. Of course, please feel free to e-mail me if you need further explanation.

There are 2 Types of Non-Owner Occupied Investment Loans:
  1. Secondary Market Loans.
    This is a 15, 20, or 30 year fixed rate loan for up to 10 loans. We only recommend sticking with a 15 or 20 year loan, reason being is that if you get a 30-year loan, you can only depreciate for 27 ½ years.
  2. In-House Loans.
    Banks will do in-house loans and loan money to Investors with great credit and history from their own personal portfolio. These type of loans are the types that you'll get once you go beyond the 10 loans mentioned above or if you purchase commercial (Land or Apartment Complexes). These loans usually require 20% down payment.

    Of course there are pros & cons to these types of loans. Some of the advantages of in-house loans are that they are typically less paperwork and smaller closing costs. However, the downside of these loans are that the interest rates are only locked for 3-5 years then they balloon. Oftentimes, the bank will renew the loan once it balloons and that is where most people prefer an adjustable rate mortgage (ARM).

I hope this gives you a little insight into the world of investments loans. I, of course, would be more than happy to discuss this further, just shoot me and e-mail or comment below.

The biggest piece of advice I can give you is be sure that you shop around for lenders!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

9 Tips to Repair Your Credit to Purchase a Home

In our latest video podcast, Paul shares 9 tips to cleaning up and repairing your credit so that you can purchase a home either as your primary residence or investment (rental) property.

Usually, when you purchase an investment home, most lenders require a credit score of 680 or higher. We break down the credit scores in our own opinion of what is good and not so good as follows:

Below 620 = Not So Great
620-700 = Okay, Room for Improvement
700+ = Excellent Credit

Now, if you're trying to improve your credit score, here are the 9 tips that we give:

1) Pay all of your bills on time.
The most obvious but can be the hardest to do. You want to pay all of them on time but if you had to choose-- always pay the revolving debts first and on time; i.e. credit cards, car loans, rent or mortgage payment, etc. These can affect your credit score the most.

2) Avoid companies that offer assistance for a fee.
They are not all bad, but usually you'll find yourself paying a fee for someone to tell them to pay their bills on time. Many of these change-your-credit-overnight gimmicks are just that. Use the fee that you would pay them to pay down on a credit card; you will be way ahead.

3) Have your monthly payments auto-deducted from your bank account.
Out of sight, out of mind. Having auto-deduct makes sure you are never late and you learn to live off of what is left over. Besides, it will save you a stamp.

4) Consolidate your high interest credit cards to one with a lower rate.
High interest rate loans will be the death of us all. Try to lump balances together and look hard for a lower rate. Sometimes you have to dig a little, but it can save you a ton of money.

5) Watch your credit lines on your current cards.
The higher available credit limit you have, it could result in a lower score. If other areas of your credit are weak, just the fact that you have the ability to pull thousands off of a credit card can weaken your score. So, have your limit lowered to only what you really need. It can always be increased later.

6) Establish new credit.
A gas card. A department store card. Some of these types of cards are easier to obtain and have modest credit limits, like $250 or so. However, these types will help your score as long as you pay on time.

7) Avoid a lot of credit inquiries.
Trying to apply for any type credit puts an "inquiry" on your credit report even if you are not approved. Too many of these inquiries gives the impression that you may be trying to borrow more than you can afford. Therefore, this can hurt your score. An occasional inquiry is no big deal, but applying for 10 credit cards in a month will hurt.

8) Use your head and stay focused.
Cancel any unused credit cards. Pay off lower balances and use the additional money to put towards higher loans. If you stay the course and keep everything current, your score will improve. It will take time and there is no quick fix, but you can do it!

9) Check your credit again in 6-12 months to see signs of improvement.
About every 6 months, credit scores seem to be updated. Partly due to when the credit companies report about your activity. However, if you are late, they are quick to report and it will destroy you immediately. So, you will probably begin to see improvement in about 6 months but it could take at least a year depending on how low your score is. It will take time, but clearly worth the effort.

Then when you are ready to purchase a home, then contact us and we'll get you on the right track. If you have questions, don't hesitate to e-mail!

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

What are Tenants looking for?

According to an article that I read in REALTOR Magazine online, conducted a survey and there is a list of what Tenants are mainly looking for when renting property. (Among the many other lists and demands that they already have...yes I said that with sarcasm).

First, if a Tenant was comparing equal properties side-by-side, over 52% said that location would drive their decision.

The other items were as follows in the Tenant's lists of "wants":

Air conditioning: 81%
Parking: 81%
Washer and dryer in unit: 54%
High-speed Internet in unit: 47%
Dishwasher: 46%
Elevator: 24%
Pool: 21%
Hardwood floors: 13%
Fireplace: 5%

We can't guarantee that we've got all of these things that Tenants are looking for in renting property, but we sure get close. You can see what rental properties that Dizmang Properties has available by checking out our web site.