Love in the City.....With 3 Kids and a Dog???

According to the latest U.S. Census data; 80.7 percent of Americans live in urban areas, more than the 79 percent a decade ago. The population of urban areas has also increased by more than 12 percent, faster than the rest of the country's 9.7 percent growth rate from 2000 to 2010. The twentieth century brought rapid suburban development due to loans for purchase and highways that made it easier for the American family to migrate to the suburbs and abandon the cities, however, today more and more Americans are returning to bustling city. For hundreds of years cities have always been the epicenter of culture, in other countries such as Japan, families live in these massive urban centers, with young children taking public transportation to get to school and growing up with the energy of the city. Suburbs tend to encourage this disconnect between its residents, getting in the car to drive and get groceries doesn't allow you to communicate and engage your fellow neighbors, it creates an isolated, monogamous existence. When I read the above statistics I automatically think, young, single, childless, professionals, or students. Most home prices in cities do not allow large families to live comfortably. A lower end price range that can buy you a 4 bedroom house in the outer Houston "suburbs" will get you a loft condo or a 2 bedroom town home in an up and coming part of "urban" Houston. Personally, the larger space and school districts are the only reason I don't move to the city. I hope that this can change and housing developers will start to build not just for the single masses but for families, as well. I have no problem down sizing in order to be near the museums, parks, SIDEWALKS, etc; but the floorplans must be designed to accommodate multiple family members, ie; kids rooms and lots of storage. One of my favorite shows on the Bravo network that they really should have renewed was 9 By Design: 2 parents plus SEVEN kids!! The Novogratz family lives in New York City in a fabulous million dollar town home with plenty of rooms for their kids including a basketball court and elevator. Now it's clear to see why city living is both functional and practical when you have that kind of money as purchasing power but for the average family who doesn't have that kind of money there is a VERY limited inventory.

 Contemporary Style 3 Bedroom 2 Bath Home low $200's

Traditional Single Family, 3 Story Home, 3 Beds and 2 1/2 baths $300's

 Goregeous, Single Family Home, New Co nstruction, 4 bed, 2 1/2 bath low $400's

Property Leasing for Additional Income!

 

1. What does the process of leasing your home involve?

Well, that can depend on your needs. If you just want to do it all yourself, you can! You go get a “for lease” sign, you market your home in the newspaper, online ads, etc; screen your own possible tenants,  write up your own standard lease, that you can probably download from a reputable site and if you’re a handy person you can be in charge of repairs (depending on the terms of your lease agreement). For some homeowners, however, there just isn’t enough time in the day. The ability to utilize the knowledge of a realtor is much more desirable. A realtor can do all of the above for you, including referring you to a company equipped to handle any necessary repairs. 

2. How can I ensure quality tenants will lease my home?

You can’t, life happens, people that would otherwise be extremely responsible, sometimes are forced to do what is economically best for their own families. However, you can increase the probability that you will lease to a quality tenant by performing proper screening, consisting of: employment length; income and rental verification, as well as a credit report. A home is a very personal investment and it is very important that when you are leasing your own home that you or your realtor utilizes an efficient screening method.

3. How much will leasing my home cost me?

Again, that depends, if you decide to do this all yourself or utilize the services of a Realtor. If you handle everything on your own, you’ll be saving the payment to a realtor, which typically can consist of first month’s rent, or percentage of total monthly rent to be received, however; this will all depend on your home’s price, location, agreement between you and the realtor etc. You also have the property management fee, if you decide to go that route. However, there is always the risk that if you don’t follow the right procedures; lease agreement, proper screening, leasing your home could cost you much more.