Posts Tagged ‘Boston Rentals’

Reasons to Consider January 1st Rentals

Tuesday, December 10th, 2013

2014 is upon us, and with it comes numerous lease openings in the Boston area. While people may find many reasons not to rent, but in today’s day and age renting is something that should considered for the New Year. Below the Newbury Rentals team has come up with some reasons to consider rentals on January 1st.

More financially safe than owning a home

The economy has greatly influenced the housing market, and now is a better time than ever to rent. One of the largest costs avoided when renting is the mortgage. Not only is the cost of a mortgage avoided, but also the stress of large payments or having to remortgage. Other big costs avoided are property taxes, Homeowners Associate fees (doesn’t apply to all), and homeowners insurance.

In addition, when renting you avoid the responsibilities of buying or selling a home. Another upside to renting is that it allows for people to save up money, pay off loans, and spend money elsewhere. In some cases renters today are renting more than one home allowing for them to have a vacation spot.

Access to urban conveniences

The majority of rentals are found in urban areas, which usually means everything is in a mile. Many necessities are within walking distances in urban areas. Not only are there numerous stores within a close proximity, but also many stores in cities cannot be found in suburban areas.

Some rentals have luxuries

Many luxury buildings and apartment complexes offer a pool, gym, and other amenities. It can come in handy especially in the cold winter months when any imaginable luxury is accessible right in your own building.

Less upkeep

There is far less upkeep involved when renting. Someone else does all the repairs when renting, a landlord or someone they hire will take care of repairs and replacements. When something breaks and it’s in the contract that the landlord will fix it, then they are required to do so.

Social scene

When more than one tenant are living under the same roof, rentals themselves become great places for a social life. Rentals in urban areas are also close to some of the best nightlife spots, including bars, clubs, and restaurants.

For more information on rentals, feel free to message our Rental Agents directly at our new rentals Facebook page, Newbury Rentals or check out our site!

Sources:

10 Reasons To…

Top 10 Reasons to Rent Rather Than Own

6 Reasons to Rent

21 Walker Street- Unit 3 for Rent!

Wednesday, March 27th, 2013

A new luxury property for rent in the Charlestown area! 21 Walker Street is now available at $2,350 a month. This sunlit one-bedroom apartment comes with many luxury accommodations. Hardwood floors and a marble bath make this home radiant throughout. The kitchen is fully equipped with Energy Star appliances and cherry cabinets as well as granite countertops. In addition, the home has cathedral ceilings and many convenient extras such as a full washer and dryer and a built-in ironing board. For safety and ease, the apartment has a video entry system that will record images of callers to your home when you’re gone. With easy roof deck access and central A/C and heat, this home is the complete package. Not to mention the great location in charming Charlestown, with access to the highway, shopping and public transportation.

21 Walker Bedroom

Just bought a place? And thinking of renting it?

Wednesday, December 19th, 2012

For investors or those that are just taking their first steps into the world of investing, there is great opportunity in Boston and the Greater Boston Area. Right now Boston is dying for more rentals, there’s even been articles circulating as of late that real estate experts are concerned about a shortage of apartments in the city, and there isn’t anything being done about it in the immediate future. For those considering making an investment here in Boston this really is the time.

While inventory for buyers is low, there are still certainly opportunities out there to buy, and there are those gems that make perfect investment buildings. Here at The Charles Realty, Annette just sold 12 Bay State Road, a multi-family home, and it went very quickly, just one sign that the market is hungry for investments, and potential rental buildings.

So if you’re interested in buying and renting out your unit or several units, we can help make this transition and help with this whole process. Please to not hesitate to contact The Charles Realty and ask questions! (617) 236-0353

What you can and can’t do to your apartment

Friday, November 16th, 2012

Want to dress up your white walls?

Chances are if you’ve been renting in Boston, then your lease started September 1st.  By now you’ve settled in and your apartment feels like home, as it should. But there’s also a chance you’re feeling a bit bored with the white walls and the overall plainness of your space, which is understandable. Unfortunately you’re afraid to decorate because you’re not sure what you’re allowed to alter, can you paint the walls, can you hang up family photos, use thumbtacks, or nails?

You may not be sure what things would be considered “damages” in the eyes of your landlord… but you just can’t deal with the dull undecorated apartment.  So the first thing to do to solve your boredom is check your lease. See what you’re not allowed to do, and if any of the language is confusing, speak with your landlord and don’t be afraid to ask questions. This is one of those cases where it is much better to be safe the sorry.  The last thing you need is to start nailing pictures to the wall and realize when your lease is up that your landlord won’t refund your security deposit.

After you’ve learned what is allowed and what is not allowed, proceed with caution. Don’t do anything that would seem excessive. If you can paint your walls then go for it, but it’s probably best to not also paint your cabinets. Do exactly what is permitted and nothing more. You just need to be careful.

If you find yourself in the situation where you’re not allowed to paint or hang things up, there are alternatives. You can purchase some very affordable adhesive strips that can hold up almost anything if you can’t nail, screw, or thumbtack it.  Also don’t be afraid of purchasing wall decals. While some decals look like they belong in a dorm room or a children’s bedroom other decals can be just what you need to dress up a space.

So if you’re beginning to get the decorating itch do some research and then decorate to your heart’s content!

Fall in Boston

Tuesday, September 4th, 2012

Boston foliage is on its way!

As we head into the fall in Boston there are some different things going on. Just to recap a little bit and refresh ourselves I wanted to highlight some of the things we have to look forward to this fall.

Of course to begin with, for those that are renting, September 1st was the big day in Boston. A majority of the city leases on a September 1st to August 31st cycle. This means that on the last day of August those that did not renew their lease need to move out of their current homes, packing everything up and handing in their keys. Then when September 1st rolls around the keys are given to the new tenants and it’s move in day! As many of you may already know, move in day can be utter chaos in Boston. It also doesn’t have to be. There may be cars parked in the middle of streets and moving trucks outnumbering taxis for a day, but as long as you’re organized and methodical and you put a little bit of time aside, you should be ok.

At The Charles Realty we got all our keys and move in packets ready to go and everything ran very smoothly. If you still have questions regarding your move in we’re happy to help you answer anything. We know it’s been a stressful few days, but we want to help in any way possible and make the transition easier for you.

In other news football season is starting up soon, and the Patriots look like their prepped for a great season. We’d love to hear about ways you celebrate NFL Sundays in your home. Whether you have a home theatre or if you plan parties for your friends, please share your stories!

And of course we still have a bit of time, but as we head in to fall we can look forward to seeing the foliage as the leaves change into their beautiful oranges, yellows, and reds. Places like the Boston Commons and the Public Garden will look gorgeous within the next month.  We can only imagine what the view will look like from places like Le Jardin or Heritage on the Garden.

It’s been a spectacular season, we were happy to see the market pick up and enjoyed working with our clients. Thank you to everyone who helped make this a great summer!

Don’t be Afraid of Renting, We Want to Make it Easy

Tuesday, August 7th, 2012

We’ve recently been posting both on here and on the website about how September 1st is growing closer and closer. For anyone that has ever lived in Boston you know that it is a big moving day. August 31st everyone needs to get out of their old place and then into their new place on the 1st.  A majority of leases start in September and everyone is excited to move right in to their new place but some people are still looking. The Charles Realty wants to help you find the right place and we’re working hard to present you with the tools to find the right apartment.

We have search tools on our website that are extremely helpful in finding exactly what you want in a home. You can select the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, the location, and your price range and have a whole list of homes presented to you in your search. There are many other search engines from larger website that have similar searches but more often they do not offer the options to even narrow down your search to specific neighborhoods. Of course we understand Boston and we know there is a big difference between wanting to live in the North End or Beacon Hill, something that those larger websites don’t recognize. So don’t hesitate to give our rental search tools a try. We also use similar search tools for any sales, not just rentals.

We also offer a brief renter’s guide along with all the information to access our rental team. Naturally our rental team is our greatest tool, with a team of 6 experienced agents who all live in the Boston area themselves, they understand the need to find just the right place. Each agent truly listens to what their clients want and need in a home and work tirelessly to match them to exactly the right place.

September First is Beckoning

Monday, July 23rd, 2012

Your immediate thoughts when reading the words “September First” are probably “Whoa hold up! It’s still July” but honestly as scary and dreadful as it might sound, September 1st is not all that far away. If you’re looking to rent, you now have about a month to find a place. Of course the infamous date is the beginning of a majority of the leases in this city, and the big move-in day for everyone. So right now you’re either shopping for apartments or shopping for furnishings for your apartment, either way September 1st is your big day! Here are some tips for those of you that are counting down or dreading the big day!

1) Find out about parking at your new pad- You can’t bring that mattress, couch, or table on the T, so you’re going to need to find a car. Whether you already have your own ride, a friend’s car, or you’re renting a zip car or U-haul for the day, you’ll still need to find a convenient place to park. On any other day you might not care how far away you park but when you’re hauling everything from your car to your apartment you’re going to want to make sure you’re parked close. Find out from your landlord or management company about the way parking works, especially for move-in and move out. Are there spaces for you behind your place, parking spaces you can book for the day, meter parking? These are things to know before you show up with all your stuff.

2)Book your movers now- You certainly can’t book movers last minute if you plan to move on the first, so book them as early as possible. Make sure to also pack for your movers, they’re not there to do the packing for you and chances are you won’t like the way they pack away your four old iPods and your grandmother’s quilt. So be ready for the movers and book them ASAP, maybe even now. There’s nothing like being prepared.

4) Pack clothing in trash bags- Trash bags are a lot easier to carry than boxes and eliminate some of the awkward bulk. You don’t need to worry about dropping your bag of clothes because it will just gracefully bounce down your stairs when you’re hauling them up your walk-up building. There will be no harm done to anything and you can just toss the trash bags out when your done, or better yet put them aside and use them for their original use, as trash bags!

5) Downsizing- Even if your new apartment is bigger than your last place you should really go through as you pack and eliminate anything you don’t want. Donate it to charity, put it on eBay, or find a friend that wants whatever it may be. The chances are you will want new furniture and knick-knacks for your apartment anyway, so don’t be afraid to part with things. The last thing you want to do is move it all out and move it all back in to your new place just to throw it out.

If you’re still looking to find a place for September 1st, it’s not too late! You can always check our rental page for tips on renting and to search all the Boston listings!

Thinking of Renting out your Condo Instead of Selling?

Friday, October 14th, 2011

“If I can’t get the price I want for my condo…… I’ll just rent it.”

We can’t tell you how often we have heard this statement over the past few years. With the housing market in Boston in a bit of a holding pattern, many condominium owners feel that the best thing to do right now is rent and wait it out.

There are many advantages to this strategy: the potential of market increase, tax deductions, and many other positive aspects to becoming a landlord. But, experience tells us, it may not be as simple as you think.

As Realtors, it is our job to inform condominium owners of all aspects of all their options. With that in mind, we ask people to consider these Seven Considerations Before You Rent Your Home:

1. Tenant occupied properties tend to sell for less

If you decide to rent your property with the intention of selling next spring or the year after, you need to consider that marketing a property with tenants in place can put you at a disadvantage. Tenanted properties tend to not show as well and create challenges for showing availability.

2. Renting your unit could pose a disadvantage to your condo association

One of the largest obstacles we face in the current mortgage market is owner occupancy. A building with more than 30% of the units rented could lower the value of all condominiums in the association.

3. Damage to the property

Keep in mind that if you have recently renovated or improved your property, having a tenant may place wear and tear on these “new” items. Additionally, despite proper screening and best intentions, a tenant almost never takes as good of care of a home as the owner does.

4. What if you get the Tenant From Hell

Even with a complete, professional screening, there is always a chance your tenant could “go bad”. A landlord needs to think through if they can afford the monthly expense if the tenant does not pay rent, especially in a down economy without the readiness of available new jobs, should your tenant lose theirs. Are the financial advantages worth the potential cost of renovating after a tenant destroys your property or the cost of an eviction?

5. Monthly Nut

The most important first step in deciding to rent your property is to determine the cost of ownership verses the potential rent. Even if the rent can cover your mortgage, taxes and condo fees, you need to consider maintenance, vacancies, building assessments and other potential expenses of ownership.

6. What if the market goes down instead of up?

As Realtors, we are currently very optimistic about the future of our current real estate market. However, we do not have a crystal ball and there is always the chance that over the next year, two years or beyond, the market in Boston will decrease rather than grow. If you rent with the intention of selling for more “next year”, you could end up being a landlord much longer than you planned for.

7. Tenant Issues and Maintenance Problems

Unlike a stock certificate that sits quietly, tenants need things! Are you prepared to get a locksmith at 2am? Do you know good plumbers, electricians? Are you ready to liaise with your condo association if the tenant violates the Rules and Regulations of your association? These are questions any potential landlord needs to ask themselves.

As Real Estate Professionals with a combined 30 years of experience in The Boston Market, we are here to answer your questions, help you weigh your options, and always give you honest advice. Please feel free to contact us anytime for a free real estate consultation or to answer your questions. The knowledge is free! We are here to help and serve.

By, Betsy Herald

Thinking of Renting your Home?

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011

We all know the current state of the real estate market. If you have been following this blog, or if you have been following Boston Real Estate anywhere, then you are aware that the Boston rental market is through the roof, and people just aren’t buying (and therefore people aren’t selling). The sales are tricky right now.

People who are thinking of up-sizing their home due to a growing family are hanging on to their property with hopes of it commanding a higher price in a year or two. Also, so that enough money is made on the property so that they can comfortably invest in something larger. Because these people aren’t selling, they’re not buying. The other group of people not buying, who previously did, is newly weds (and other young, potential first time home buyers). With job insecurity, huge student loans left to pay, and the high expense of things such as gas and food, this category is more and more opting to rent.

[I will insert here, that we do have real, serious buyers in all the categories, and I don't mean to generalize in a way that is inappropriate. I am just describing a trend that I have seen, and it is my opinion]

With the realization that sometimes selling at a price you’re comfortable with is out of reach, some sellers today are turning into landlords. The rental market is healthy, and sometimes deciding to rent your old home is a viable option. In order for it to be so, however, here are some things to consider: (source)

1. Crunch the numbers. There are a lot of financial ups and downs to being a landlord. The general rule of thumb is that if you cannot get 125% of your mortgage payment in rent, then it isn’t worth your time. Bare in mind that rental units come with a lot of unexpected expenses as well. Also, when you’re thinking about renting, remember that if you’re using a rental agent there is a fee of one month’s rent. Sometimes this fee is payed by the tenant, but it is always good to be aware that it exists. Additionally, budget the cost of about one month’s rent for clean up at the end of your tenants stay. Not that they did anything wrong, but general wear and tear means that at the end of their lease you will probably need to repaint and freshen up a bit before being able to attract a new tenant.

2. Speaking of money, it is vitally important to price your unit right and competitively. Just like if you were to sell it, look at similiar places in your area and see what they are bringing in in rent. From there, if you’re not working with an agent, you can decide what price sounds reasonable. Remember to think rationally and not emotionally about pricing.

3. Finding the right tenant is crucial to a successful experience as a landlord.  A rental agent can help you a lot with this task. If you are choosing to work alone, remember to check the tenants credit score, their references, their job, past rental experiences, etc. Be sure to get all confirmations in writing. Treat the situation like a business deal. Even if they make a good impression, or you really like talking to them, be sure to diligently check their background. People can be deceiving. (However, it is totally a plus if you do get along with them)!

4. Be aware that being a landlord means significant changes in your taxes in addition to your insurance. “While you probably know that rental income is taxable (Rent for 15 days or more, and you must report this income on Schedule E), and that there are numerous deductions on expenses and depreciation, here’s something you might not know: If you rent your place out for three years or more and then sell, you forfeit a valuable tax break ($500,000 in capital gains tax-free to married couples filing jointly; $250,000 in tax-free gains for singles). Rent your house for a year or two and you’ll still be eligible for this exemption, providing  you’ve lived there — in your primary residence — for at least two of the past five years.” (source) Remember also that you will need landlord insurance. This will cover the home and the potential loss of rental income if there is damage to the home. Additionally, it covers you if the tenent gets hurt. Due to all the coverage, landlord insurance usually costs about 25% more than normal homeowner’s insurance.

5. The last major point is that being a landlord comes with a lot of responsibility and accountability for a lot of unexpected expenses. You need to have the proper temperament to deal with crisises in a timely fashion. There is a lot of room for error here, but remember you can always hire a management company.

Hopefully, this answers some of your questions about how well you would do as a landlord. There is definitely a way to make money and thrive at it, but you also put yourself in the line of fire for headaches, large expenses, repairs, and lawsuits.

Navagating Boston’s Rental Market

Wednesday, July 27th, 2011

The vacancy rate in rental units is down lower than it has been in the Boston area since the end of 2002.

“Boston-area rents are hitting new heights – with the median price recently reaching $1,665 a month” (source). Perspective-tenants are scrambling to find affordable places for September 1st. We hear stories of some landlords taking advantage of the desperation and hiking up rents, and of others requiring extreme items from possible renters in order to consider them.

Here are some tips to navigating this tough rental market:

1. Work with a rental agent.

While it means sometimes paying a fee (typically one month’s rent), working with one agent who can scour MLS and exclusive rental listings that are not on Craigslist will very  be helpful to you. Plus good rental agents have relationships with landlords, and if you have them to back you up as a good fit for the unit, then you stand a much better chance of getting it! A good rental agent can also help you understand your lease, etc. and walk you through the complicated process of renting an apartment in Boston.

2. If you do want to do it on your own…

Search the listings by owner on Craigslist. If you can get a floor in a single family, you could save a lot of money, and a lot of headaches if your landlord shares a wall with you. If Craigslist comes up short, go to the area you’re wanting to live in and look for “for rent” signs in the windows. Just because it’s not online, doesn’t necessarily mean it doesn’t exist.

It’s hard out there, but perseverance and sacrifices are necessary if you want to find the perfect rental unit for September! Good Luck!