Uniform Property Management
Uniform Property Management offers property management services near Springfield. Specializing in the residential and affordable housing sector, the company handles single-family and multifamily residences. Team members fill vacancies with screened tenants, taking care of everything from tenant applications and background checks to lease signings and move-ins. The company collects rents and fields tenant inquiries and is available 24/7 for maintenance requests. Should eviction become necessary, Uniform Property Management oversees the process and covers the costs of a simple uncontested eviction. Clients have access to online financial reporting tools, with portal access that permits them to view statements. Tenants can access an online portal for paying rent and submitting maintenance requests.
Baker-Polito Administration Announces Targeted Measures To Curb Rising COVID-19 Cases, Hospitalizati...
BOSTON — Today, the Baker-Polito Administration announced a series of targeted measures to disrupt the increasing trend of new COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations. Governor Charlie Baker announced these changes at a time where public health data has indicated that cases are rising, with cases up by 278% and hospitalizations up by 145% since Labor Day. These measures are meant to disrupt rising trends now, so the Commonwealth can keep the economy and schools open for residents and to prevent the need to roll back to Phase I or Phase II of the reopening plan.
All orders and advisories will be effective Friday, November 6th at 12:01 AM.
New Orders & Advisories:
Stay At Home Advisory: The Administration issued a revised Stay At Home Advisory to ensure residents avoid unnecessary activities that can lead to increased COVID-19 transmission. The revised Stay At Home Advisory instructs residents to stay home between 10 PM and 5 AM. The Advisory allows for activities such as going to work, running critical errands to get groceries and address health needs, and taking a walk.
Click here to read the revised Stay At Home Advisory: www.mass.gov/stayhome.
Early Closure of Businesses and Activities: Governor Baker issued a new executive order that requires the early closure of certain businesses and activities each night at 9:30 PM. The 9:30 PM closure requirement is aligned with the Stay At Home Advisory and together the two new initiatives are designed to further limit activities that could lead to COVID-19 transmission.
Effective November 6, the following businesses and activities must close to the public each day between the hours of 9:30 PM and 5:00 AM.
- Restaurants (in-person dining must cease at 9:30 PM, although takeout and delivery may continue for food and non-alcoholic beverages, but not alcohol)
- Liquor stores and other retail establishments that sell alcohol must cease alcohol sales at 9:30 PM (but may continue to sell other products)
- Adult-use marijuana sales must cease at 9:30 PM (not including medical marijuana)
- Indoor & outdoor events
- Theaters/movie theaters (including drive-in movie theaters), and performance venues (indoor and outdoor)
- Youth and adult amateur sports activities
- Golf facilities
- Recreational boating and boating businesses
- Outdoor recreational experiences
- Casinos and horse tracks/simulcast facilities
- Driving and flight schools
- Zoos, botanical gardens, wildlife reserves, nature centers
- Close contact personal services (such as hair and nail salons)
- Gyms, Fitness Centers and Health Clubs
- Indoor and outdoor pools
- Museums/cultural & historical facilities/guided tours
Click here to read the new executive order (including full list of businesses required to close at 9:30 PM).
Face Covering Order: Governor Baker also signed an updated order related to face-coverings. The revised order requires all persons to wear face-coverings in all public places, even where they are able to maintain 6 feet of distance from others. The revised order still allows for an exception for residents who cannot wear a face-covering due to a medical or disabling condition, but it allows employers to require employees to provide proof of such a condition. It also allows schools to require that students participating in in-person learning provide proof of such a medical or disabling condition.
Gatherings Order: Governor Baker also signed an updated order restricting gatherings. The new gatherings order reduces the gathering size limit for gatherings at private residences: indoor gatherings at private residences are limited to 10 people and outdoor gatherings at private residences are limited to 25 people. The limit on gatherings held in public spaces and at event venues (e.g. wedding venues) remains the same. The new order also requires that all gatherings (regardless of size or location) must end and disperse by 9:30 PM.
The new gatherings order also requires that organizers of gatherings report known positive COVID-19 cases to the local health department in that community and requires organizers to cooperate with contact tracing. The gatherings order authorizes continued enforcement by local health and police departments and specifies that fines for violating the gathering order will be $500 for each person above the limit at a particular gathering.
Baker-Polito Administration Announces Comprehensive Eviction Diversion Initiative To Keep People Saf...
BOSTON — Today, the Baker-Polito Administration announced a comprehensive set of resources, known as the Eviction Diversion Initiative, to support tenants and landlords during the financial challenges caused by the pandemic. The goal of this initiative is to keep tenants safely in their homes and to support the ongoing expenses of landlords once the Commonwealth’s pause of evictions and foreclosures expires on Saturday, October 17th. This strategy was developed by a cross-agency team assembled by the Administration in coordination with the Massachusetts Trial Court to manage the end of the moratorium on October 17th and reflects input from a broad range of stakeholders.
“The pandemic has created financial challenges for many individuals and families who are struggling with rent payments, and today we are pleased to announce a $171 million initiative to promote household stability, and provide more support for tenants and small landlords,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “This strategy has been designed to be user friendly and easily accessible for tenants and landlords in need, and is comprised of new or expanded programs to help people stay in their homes. This would not be possible without the Legislature’s foresight in granting flexibility for the RAFT authorization. I am grateful to the Court System and all stakeholders for their partnership in this effort in keeping all families and households stable throughout this pandemic.”
“We are pleased to provide new options for tenants and landlords to come together prior to an eviction and to quickly find a new home if a resolution is not reached,” said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito. “These new and expanded resources will meet residents where they are and provide enhanced assistance in navigating a complex process, which has been made even more difficult by this pandemic.”
“The Trial Court has modified its procedures to provide for a two tier process that will enable tenants and landlords to access resources and mediate their disputes in order to preserve tenancies,” said Trial Court Chief Justice Paula Carey. “The Trial Court has worked to increase its technological capacity to handle these cases safely when parties come into court and to provide those without assistance with information and access to technology where needed.”
The Administration is making a $171 million total commitment this fiscal year, with $112 million of new funding to support new and expanded housing stability programs during the remainder of the fiscal year, including:
- $100 million commitment this fiscal year to expand the capacity of the Residential Assistance for Families in Transition (RAFT) program to provide relief to renters and landlords impacted by COVID-19;
- $48.7 million to HomeBASE and other rapid rehousing programs for when tenants are evicted and are at risk of homelessness;
- $12.3 million to provide tenants and landlords with access to legal representation and related services prior to and during the eviction process, as well as community mediation to help tenants and landlords resolve cases outside of court;
- $6.5 million for Housing Consumer Education Centers (HCECs), the “front door” for those facing a housing emergency; and
- $3.8 million for the Tenancy Preservation Program (TPP), to provide case management support and to act as a neutral party to help tenants and landlords come to agreement.
New investments will expand the capacity of the RAFT program and increase the maximum benefit available through RAFT from $4,000 to $10,000 per household, with a goal of helping more families stabilize their housing for six months, or until the end of June if there are school-age children in the household, on their path to recovery.
New funding will also expand capacity at the nine regional Housing Consumer Education Centers (HCECs) to provide housing counseling and coordinate with community mediators, legal services, and caseworkers. Income eligible tenants and landlords will also be able to access legal representation and related services as they navigate the eviction process.
The Administration is also updating the RAFT program to improve turnaround time on applications, while maintaining program integrity, by:
- streamlining the application process for both the RAFT and Emergency Rental and Mortgage Assistance (ERMA) programs for low to moderate income households;
- verifying applicant eligibility with data collected through MassHealth, the Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA), Department of Unemployment Assistance (DUA), and the Department of Revenue (DOR);
- referring applicants to MassHIRE Career Centers; and
- allowing landlords who own fewer than 20 units to apply directly for RAFT and ERMA, with consent from tenants.
“It is important that we support both our tenants and landlords who are struggling due to COVID-19, and changes to the RAFT program, as well as increased resources, will deliver relief more efficiently,” said Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Mike Kennealy. “To keep people in their homes and help property owners with expenses, we are streamlining the RAFT application process, expanding the capacity at the ‘front doors’ where tenants access assistance, and allowing small landlords to apply directly for available funding.”
"We are beyond proud of the collaborative approach that led to the Eviction Diversion Initiative, and are thankful for our partners at the Massachusetts Trial Court Division and Chief Justice Paula Carey, and our vital housing agencies, including CEDAC, MassHousing, and MHP,” said Housing and Community Development Undersecretary Jennifer Maddox. “This package of new and expanded resources will help us reach thousands more households in need to prevent evictions and ensure stability for families with children through the end of the school year.”
With the goal of bringing landlords and tenants together to avoid an eviction, the Administration will invest in expanding access to mediation services. In coordination with the Trial Court, the Administration is working to launch a new Community Mediation program that will be available prior to a court filing, and supplement court-provided mediation that is generally available after a filing has been made. The Administration will also provide funding to the Trial Courts to support bringing back recall judges to help handle caseload once the moratorium ends and to add additional housing specialists to help mediate agreements. Additionally, the existing Tenancy Preservation Program (TPP) will be expanded to serve a broader population of vulnerable households.
Massachusetts will also provide additional funding for post-eviction diversion, helping households to find new housing quickly and prevent a longer period of homelessness. HomeBASE, the Commonwealth’s rapid rehousing benefit, and the Strategic Prevention Initiative (SPI) will be expanded and continue to offer financial assistance and stabilization case management services to families as they are in the process of securing stable housing. A new temporary emergency program will also provide funds to households for periods of up to 12 months to assist with moving expenses, rent, including first or last month’s, or security deposit, while transitioning into a stable housing situation.
When the state moratorium expires, a moratorium established by the Center for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC) will become effective in Massachusetts. Through December, the CDC moratorium will prevent evictions for non-payment for qualified tenants who submit a written declaration to their landlord. Courts will accept filings and process cases, and may enter judgments but will not issue an order of execution (the court order that allows a landlord to evict a tenant) until after the expiration of the CDC order. Protection is limited to households who meet certain income and vulnerability criteria. Declaration may be found at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/downloads/declaration-form.pdf
In order to ensure tenants are aware of available resources, the Administration has kicked off a public information campaign, including a new option available to call the Massachusetts 2-1-1 information hotline, effective Tuesday, October 13. Operators for 2-1-1 are trained to answer questions and connect residents to the agencies that administer RAFT and ERMA. An easier path to important information has also been launched on the state’s website: mass.gov/CovidHousingHelp. This effort also includes outreach through social media, videos, webinars, and other mediums. All materials and messaging will be made available in multiple languages.
"Housing is a human right and, in the middle of this pandemic due to COVID-19, it is both a concern for public health and economic stability. We applaud the Baker Administration's commitment to launching this important initiative,” said Annette Duke, Senior Housing Attorney, Massachusetts Law Reform Institute. “A broad coalition has come together to support access to legal assistance in eviction actions in Massachusetts because such access will avert unnecessary evictions, displacement, and homelessness - and will prevent human and economic devastation. This initiative creates a path to housing stability that will strengthen all our communities."
“Community mediation is uniquely suited to be of service during this pandemic. It increases access to justice and builds capacity for conflict resolution and social capital within communities,” said Susan Jeghelian, Executive Director, Massachusetts Office of Public Collaboration. “The Baker-Polito Administration’s plan to deploy community mediation as a tool for eviction diversion to promote housing stability is a smart, strategic use of local dispute resolution resources.”
"The Baker-Polito Administration recognizes the threat an eviction crisis poses to our existing housing and public health crises and is taking important steps today,” Stefanie Coxe, Executive Director, Regional Housing Network of Massachusetts. “There's a long road ahead and those who need help should get in line now."
“As the public health emergency persists, renters and property owners continue to struggle in keeping up with mounting bills. The Governor’s commitment for RAFT will help thousands of people catch up and pay their rent for the next several months, helping renters, property owners, and neighborhoods stay stable through these turbulent times. Legal assistance for tenants and owners with low incomes and outreach about available resources are also key components to preventing evictions, and we thank the Administration for including these provisions,” said Rachel Heller, CEO, CHAPA. “However, more funding from the federal government will be critical in the months ahead to prevent people from losing their homes during and after the pandemic."
"A lot of us, renters and landlords alike, have been badly impacted by the events of the last seven months. Now that small owners can apply for RAFT on behalf of our renters, it's clearer than ever that we're all in this together and we can get through this together,” said Doug Quattrochi, Executive Director, Mass Landlords.
These resources and programs will help thousands of families remain in their housing during this critical time. It is essential that tenants understand their rights and the resources available to them, and all of us can help spread the word,” said Joe Kriesberg, President and CEO, MACDC. “Now we need the federal government to come to the table and pass meaningful relief! CDCs remain committed to keeping their tenants stable and safe, and we urge all landlords to partner with their tenants to find equitable solutions.”
Together, the Administration estimates resources will help thousands of households with varying levels of needs; up to 50,000 households will have access to services at their local Housing and Consumer Education Centers, up to 25,000 households will have access to legal support or community mediation, and up to 18,000 households will have direct financial support. These investments reflect the Administration’s strong commitment to stable housing for families.
For people in need of assistance, please call 211, visit the frequently asked questions website here, and see the fact sheet here. Please be aware all offices are closed for the holiday on Monday, October 12, 2020.
Why Hiring a Property Management Company Will Put More Money in Your Pocket and Save you the Cost of...
Are you a just starting on your rental property journey? OR Are you a seasoned investor? If your answer to both questions is YES, more likely your goal is to maximize your profits and expand your portfolio. If this is your primary focus, then managing your own investment properties would not be very practical, even if you feel capable.
Let us learn more about having your rental properties professionally managed to maximize your revenue stream.
Increase Your Profits by Hiring a Property Management Company Maintaining a rental property comes with a significant amount of time-consuming responsibilities. In addition to this, it also requires having extensive knowledge of the subject (Landlord-tenant laws, fair housing laws, local/state laws, building/sanitary codes, etc.) to ensure that all your bases are covered. For instance, advertising and marketing, tenant screening, and property upkeep, are just a few of the elements that, if done properly and efficiently, will boost your profits.
If you are eager to learn more, look at these 7 reasons why hiring a property manager for your real estate investments will increase your profits and keep more money in your pockets:
1.Avoid Financially Draining Vacancies with Proper Marketing Strategies
An experienced property management team can literally save you thousands of dollars with their proven marketing strategies. Their advertising efforts can pull in a huge pool of candidates very quickly. This can certainly fill your rental property vacancy within a timeframe that prevents you from losing money. Also, a property management company will have the necessary experience and skills for writing compelling rental ads and creating professional photos. In addition to this, they are set up to be able to negotiate advertising rates; cutting your costs even more.
2. Escape Financial Risks by Weeding Out Bad Tenants
Even if you have the time to sit and interview all your applicants, do you have the experience to spot the red flags for problem tenants? A lousy tenant or two can cost you more than you realize. From lawsuits to property damage, an undesirable tenant can certainly lower your profit margin. Hiring a real estate property management company will ensure that all the proper steps are taken when searching for the perfect tenant. This would include verifying employment, checking credit and criminal reports, contacting previous landlords, and much more.
Experienced and trained property managers have an eye for spotting troublemakers. Additionally, they have a good sense as to which individuals are more likely to be reliable renters who will take care of your property. In sum, a good management property team can successfully preserve your revenue stream by placing qualified tenants in your rental properties.
3. Efficient Rent Collection Ensures a Consistent Cash Flow
Let us face it, rent is expensive these days and tough times happen. You can expect to have some issues with rent collection. Time is money, and if you must spend your time chasing down rent payments, as well as taking the proper steps when a tenant just can’t make that payment, it’s going to affect your bottom line. Hiring a real estate property management team that is equipped to handle all situations pertaining to monthly rent collection, will allow you to maintain a consistent cash flow. It is their job to ensure that your tenants follow the lease agreement down to the fine print, which includes payment guidelines and late fees.
4.Boost Your Revenue by Achieving Higher Tenant Retention Rates
Maintaining a high tenant retention rate – keeping your current tenants from moving out, can easily be accomplished by property managers who know how to keep your tenants happy. Rental management teams have the experience to maintain good relationships with your renters. This includes such things as taking care of maintenance issues in a timely manner, conflicts with other residents, as well as keeping the property looking well maintained and attractive. Additionally, providing a rental portal for easily making payments and submitting repair requests is a bonus for your renters.
Basically, when property managers take your tenant’s needs seriously and make them feel well taken care of, it will go a long way. This can keep your current tenants from moving elsewhere. In the long run, it will decrease expensive tenant turnovers, and keep more money in your pockets.
5.Save Thousands by Letting a Management Company Handle Property Repairs
By hiring a real estate property management company, you will, without a doubt, save a considerable amount of money on maintenance and property repairs. By doing so, you will be able to utilize the management company’s professional and experienced maintenance staff. Plus, property management companies have access to bonded, insured, and licensed contractors who provide discounts for consistent workloads. This will not only add up to significant savings but also increase your property value.
6.Build Great Wealth by Investing in the Best Rental Markets
When you manage your own real estate investments, you may be limiting yourself to investing in convenient locations, as opposed to the best markets for profit gain. If you simply hire a property management company to maintain your real estate investments, you can set up rental properties in just about any location you feel is profitable. They can manage your rental to make life easy for you, as well as increase your cash flow. For instance, let us say you live in NYC, and there is a prime rental property situated in California. It could be very difficult to manage the property yourself long distance. How would you effectively screen tenants, deal with emergencies, or periodically check on your property from 3,000 miles away? It only makes sense to hire a professional property management team in the area to attend to the needs of your property and your tenants. It would cost more to maintain it yourself due to travel and lodging costs, and well as possible high tenant turnover losses if you are not able to keep up with their needs.
7.Grow Your Portfolio by Seeking Out Other Profitable Real Estate Investments
Hiring a good property management company to handle all aspects of your property will free up the necessary time for you to seek out other profitable investments. When a property manager deals with the day-to -day tasks of your rental property, that means you will not have to. Therefore, you can invest time into growing your portfolio.
In a nutshell, your job is not to service properties; you are an investor. So, let the professional property management companies service your rental properties for you. That is what they are there for. If you manage your own properties, you can only grow your portfolio up to a certain point, and this will cap your revenue. Are you starting to see the big picture now?
As you can see, managing your own properties can end up being a full-time job that is better left to the professionals. Hiring a rental property management company will keep your tenants happy, ensure your property is well maintained, and increase your profit margin. Furthermore, letting a professional team manage your investments will not only put more money in your pockets, it will also allow you the freedom of making passive income and enable you to enjoy more time with your friends and family, which is priceless.
With the humidity of summer hitting, here are 5 steps to check to detect mold problems in your rental property, the weekly maintenance tip from Keepe.
Mold can not only lead to structural damage to your property, but also cause serious health risks to you and your tenants if not caught and treated in a timely manner in your rental property.
Because of the severe and broad effects that mold can have, responsible ways to detect mold problems and evaluated them will require both physical examinations of your property as well as open communication with your tenants and/or on-site building manager.
Here are some tips to check during the summer humidity season:
No. 1 – Mold spores or dark spots
Let’s start with the most severe. If you can see mold, you likely have a significant problem on your hands. Visible mold usually indicates just a small portion of a problem that lies underneath.
No. 2 -Water or moisture collection
Mold needs moisture and dampness to settle and grow. Elevated moisture levels in building materials can be another sign of possible mold. A common complaint, for instance, may be a water stain on the ceiling. Official assessment will require a professional with the appropriate materials to confirm whether it’s just a leak to be fixed, or mold.
No. 3 – Musty or damp smell
Not all mold has the same scent, so this may be hard to pinpoint. Generally, the scent of mold is unpleasant and as though something is moist in the area. Some compare the smell to rotten wood or wet socks. Bottom line—if it is not a common scent in the building or apartment, it should be investigated.
No. 4 – Flooding
If your building or any apartment within it has a history of flooding, you should keep a watchful eye on that space. If the flood was not handled by an appropriate professional, you stand the risk of growing mold on both a short- and long-term basis.
No. 5 – Health symptoms
There are several symptoms that could mean exposure to mold. These can be tricky, because the symptoms alone cannot prove a mold problem. However, if you are evaluating all of the above factors on a periodic basis, any additional health reactions can help you determine whether you have a problem. Signs of health symptoms from residents (or others who spend significant time on your property) that may be problematic:
- A lingering cold or flu-like symptoms;
- Frequent headaches that perpetuate and/or get worse;
- Difficulty breathing or other respiratory issues;
- Irritated eyes, skin, throat or nose.
Mold detection should be part of your regularly scheduled property inspections.
Keep in mind that problem areas can include places that have the most exposure to moisture and little access to light, such as basements, bathroom ceilings and ductwork of your HVAC systems.
However, if you notice (or your residents report) any of the listed red flags in the interim and detect mold problems, don’t wait to take action. A mold problem will only get worse and cannot be solved by a simple cleaning in your rental property.
If you stay proactive, you will be better positioned to minimize your mold risks, keep costs down and keep your tenants happy.
Keepe is an on-demand maintenance solution for property managers and independent landlords. The company makes a network of hundreds of independent contractors and handymen available for maintenance projects at rental properties. Keepe is available in the Greater Seattle area, Greater Phoenix area, San Francisco Bay area, Portland, San Diego and is coming soon to an area near you. Learn more about Keepe at https://www.keepe.com