Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Home Owner Frequently Asked Questions of Homes In Transition (Part 4)

Continuing on with our series of frequently asked questions from home owners.  Click for Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3.  Let's move on to our final part of this series.

Can I choose who is placed in my house?

Because we are responsible for the placement and the successful performance of the Caretaker, we like to have control over who gets placed where. You can be sure that while we are not perfect, we have years of experience and a feel for our Caretakers and an understanding of their needs and the experience in creating the kind of relationship that is vital to a successful process. Our goal is to not create a long term relationship for you but to get your house sold and move on to the next. Nobody has the level of skill at performing this task like our very experienced Staff.

What about Utilities, Home Owner Association fees and the like?

Association fees, utilities, refuse service and other required “public service” expenses are costs that get paid for any home in our program that is occupied by a HIT Caretaker. Pest control, window cleaning, lawn maintenance, pool cleaning services, septic tank pumping, and services required to get the property in its best possible selling condition are typical of optional services that are not covered by our program without agreement to do so written into the Property Lease and Services Agreement.

In General, Utilities will be transfer from the Property Owner to the Caretaker upon the Caretakers occupancy of the property. This process is verified by the fact you will not get further bills once the property is occupied and the fact that we record the confirmation number of the service switch. When the property becomes vacant the utilities will revert back to the Property Owner. If the utility is lienable, like the water in Albuquerque, it will be paid monthly by Homes In Transition and billed to the Caretaker thus avoiding any liens at closing.

Unfortunately, some neighborhood associations charge their fee on a quarterly or even an annual basis, along with delinquency charges, if the entire bill is not paid in full and on time. HIT pays these fees on a monthly basis to the Property Owner, not the association. HIT occupies vacant houses until they sell, it is impossible to tell how long this term might be. Because we are not represented at the closing table there is no way for HIT to recover any monies paid in advance for association fees and the like. As a result, HIT does not pay any of these fees in advance of our occupancy. Rather, we pay all these types of fees in arrears much like one does for the public services that are delivered to the house.

Utility Providers have become very strict about providing service to vacant houses and in many cases are pulling meters from these houses. If the meter is pulled, there is considerable cost involved in getting new inspections and service restored. We encourage you to check with your utility provider to understand these costs if you plan on leaving your house vacant.

For more information, click here.


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