Did you know that having a Bilingual employee not only benefits your clients and customers but enhances the workplace for others, as these individuals are often skilled multitaskers with impressive communication skills.
As a Professional Management company, Desert Wide Properties recognizes this and we are happy to lend a helping hand to any of our valued owners or residents needing assistance with translation.
Please contact our front office to be connected with someone who can offer exceptional customer service!
~ Lorrie Baker – Desert Wide Properties
Bilingual employees offer innumerable benefits to your business. Many scientific studies have found that people who can speak more than one language enhance the workplace for others, as these individuals are often skilled multitaskers with impressive communication skills.
Companies looking to hone their business globalization efforts should hire employees with diverse language skills, as these workers can not only assist with picking the best localization services to adapt website content, but they can also make the workplace much more productive for others in the company.
“70 percent of employers believe Spanish-speaking skills will be highly sought after in the next decade.”
A recent study conducted by researchers from the University of Phoenix Research Institute found that demand for bilingual employees is expected to rise over the next ten years, with 70 percent of employers predicting Spanish-speaking skills will be highly sought after and 42 percent believing Chinese-speaking skills will be popular among job candidates.
But bilingual employees offer a wealth of benefits that extend beyond mere language acquisition. Consider the following next time you are assessing the skills of potential bilingual workers.
1. He or she can help you reach international consumers
Bilingual employees can be a valuable resource, whether they speak the language of the region you’re targeting or not. Those who have grown up speaking two or more languages understand how complicated communication between two cultures can be, including knowing which areas require sensitivity and which call for being stern.
When it comes to generating content that is consumer-facing, bilingual individuals can help pinpoint which regions are more likely to interact with geotargeted posts and graphics. For example, after posting to social networks set up in a different language, your bilingual workers can read comments to assess how people are reacting to certain posts and help your business examine how to best move forward. This presents an exciting opportunity for your business, as researchers at the Nieman Journalism Lab found that geotargeted posts are six times more successful than regular ones.
2. Localization becomes a breeze
The same can be said about how well your website and social networks are localized to individual regions. Using localization services allows you to translate longform content or website pages in a different language, all while keeping regional preferences and buying behaviors in mind. Your bilingual staff member can act as the liaison for your company, assessing how well the localization process went and if there are any additional site features that should be adapted for particular regions.
In addition, employees who speak the language of the region you’re hoping to target can help with the more specific facets of localizing your website, such as working with a team to develop a regional search engine optimization plan and providing firsthand feedback regarding features on the site.
3. You have a multilingual proofreader on staff
Unless you have hired a bilingual staff member specifically to write and translate content across several languages, he or she likely will not have the time to create all new website copy while also performing the responsibilities of his or her position. However, after investing in professional translation services to accurately adapt your content, you may be able to set aside time for your bilingual employee to review the company’s work. This individual can view the copy through the eyes of a local, spotting grammatical or factual errors that may impede a global consumer from trusting your brand.
The same sentiment extends far beyond mere website copy. Having a second pair of eyes to review legal documents, contracts or packaging that any international consumer would view is a great way to ensure your copy is error-free, helping your brand establish itself as both trustworthy and reputable in the eyes of international buyers.
4. Bilingual employees are better multitaskers
Comprehending the intricacies of two separate languages requires a significant amount of brainpower and as a result, many bilingual individuals are excellent multitaskers. According to a study funded by the National Institutes of Health, people who speak more than one language have a much easier time switching between two tasks than those who only speak one. Researchers asked bilingual and monolingual children to complete a series of computer tasks that assessed their ability to juggle moving between different questions. They found that multilingual children could change more quickly than those who only spoke one language, a clear indication of their superior multitasking skills, suggested Peggy McCardle, Ph.D., chief of the Child Development and Behavior Branch at the NIH National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.
“In simplest terms, the switching task is an indicator of the ability to multi-task,” McCardle explained. “Bilinguals have two sets of language rules in mind, and their brains apparently are wired to toggle back and forth between them depending on the circumstances.”
The ability to multitask is often highly sought after in the workplace, as corporate environments are constantly in flux. Employees who can both perform their duties while assisting with foreign language translation efforts can have a profound impact on how well your business functions each day.
“Bilingual employees may conduct tasks quickly and more efficiently than other workers.”
5. These workers have excellent communication and listening skills
Northwestern University conducted a study that yielded similar results, discovering the cognitive benefits of bilingual individuals extended beyond multitasking. Researchers found that people who spoke several languages could process information more quickly and efficiently than those who only knew one. Viorica Marian, lead author of the study and professor in the university’s School of Communication, noted that the cognitive benefits stemmed from the fact that bilingual individuals have become accustomed to working the muscles of their brains.
“Bilinguals are always giving the green light to one language and red to another,” Marian said. “When you have to do that all the time, you get really good at inhibiting the words you don’t need.”
This ability to distinguish between relevant and irrelevant information allows these individuals to hone their internal processing skills, making them ideal workers for any company.
June 1, 2016 Get Ready!! Here comes the season of triple digits. Make sure to change your air filters every time you pay your rent. A clean system not only runs more efficiently but can save $$ on your monthly bills and costly repair fees.
Thank you to all of our wonderful residents who come in each month with smiling faces. We strive to provide excellent customer service and your voice is important to us!! If you ever have any concerns, please feel free to contact our office to see if we can help resolve any issues you may be having.
Come on, let’s face it. We all think it, we all know it: We’re perfect. We put ourselves on a pedestal because our brains are wired to do so, so it’s not always easy to see when we’re in the wrong.
And when it comes to being a tenant you are, of course, the definition of perfection. That’s why it is so annoying that your landlord is constantly bugging you. Why is he giving you notice after notice when you’re already the ideal tenant? You signed his lease, pay your rent on time and take care of the property. What more does he want?
Hey, I’m up here with you, too. So let me level with you. What we think is “right” isn’t always reality. Down there — down where everyone else lives in the real world — they have these things called rules. And in order to live in harmony with the rest of humanity, we must learn their rules and play their game. That is how you should think of your landlord-tenant relationship: It’s like a game. Learn the rules, play the game fair and everyone wins!
Lucky for us, it’s not that difficult:
Read your lease. Really. Really. Read it. Paragraph by paragraph, word by word. Your lease is a binding legal contract. It creates a symbiotic relationship between you and your landlord. What are you agreeing to? Read what it says, “get” it and don’t forget it.
•Don’t arbitrarily change the rules. You want to paint? You want a little furry friend? You want to wallpaper your hallway? You’ve got good taste, so clearly you’re making an improvement to the place. Get the landlord’s written permission first. If the lease says “DON’T,” you must get the exception in writing (not a verbal, not a handshake — in writing) to make it a “DO.” Save the signed letter and keep it in a file. You’ll need it later when you move out and your landlord has forgotten.
•Submit all maintenance requests in writing. If you have a non-emergency request such as a leaky faucet, submit the maintenance request to the landlord in writing. You can also follow up with a phone call. You can write a note to the landlord and submit it with your rent check. Or, you can fax or email the request as well. While landlords appreciate being notified of maintenance issues right away, keep in mind there are some small issues you need to take care of yourself. For example, if a light bulb goes out or the smoke detector needs a replacement battery — grab a step stool and swap it out on your own. No need to bother the landlord.
•Do unto others as you would have done to you. Be a respectful and courteous neighbor and tenant. Landlords often find themselves mediating arguments between tenants. Many of these issues can be resolved without involving the landlord. If you have problems with a neighbor, don’t be passive-aggressive. Address the problem directly with the offending neighbor. The goal is not to argue or prove your point, but to create an environment where both parties can live peacefully.
•Respect your home. Keep your house in clean and sanitary condition. If you have pets, pick up after them.
•Pay your rent on time. Many tenants believe they have a “grace” period. Most leases will not charge a late fee until three to five days after the due date. Though this appears to create a grace period, it does not. If you pay rent three days late every month, you may never incur a late fee. However, when you move out and you need your landlord’s reference, he can state you were late every month on rent. Make sure to get your rent in on time.
If you can follow these rules, then you really can say, “I am the perfect tenant!”
Often we are asked by our owners and investors “Are Home Warranties a good idea?” Please review this interesting article just published by MoneyTalks News , Marilyn Lewis on May 5, 2016
In the article, Marilyn describes the pros and cons of Home Warranty Policies. If you are interested in having a home warranty on your property please contact our office and we will be glad to provide you a variety of policy brochures from some of the Valleys providers!
~Lorrie Baker, Desert Wide Properties
A home warranty can help you repair or replace home appliances and systems. But don’t enter into a contract before asking these key questions.
If you’ve bought a home recently, you may have purchased or received a home warranty.
However, consumers frequently expect more from these plans than they deliver.
Home warranties aren’t insurance policies. They’re service contracts. Like a service contract that covers repairs to your computer, a home warranty is a company’s agreement to pay for fixing — and, if necessary, replacing — specified home components.
A home insurance policy, in comparison, covers losses if your home and its contents are damaged or lost to theft, fire or other causes.
A basic home warranty costs about $350 to $500 a year or more. A warranty typically covers kitchen appliances, plumbing, water heater, furnace, sump pump, whirlpool tub, and ceiling and exhaust fans, Angie’s List says.
“Enhanced” plans, purchased for another $100 to $300, provide added coverage for such things as a washer and dryer, air conditioning, refrigerator and garage door opener. Optional items can be added, including pools and septic systems.
You may be covered already
If someone gives you a home warranty, accept it — at least while it’s free. But understand that, even with someone else paying the premiums, you’ll likely pay a service fee — typically $50 or $75 — each time you need a repair, according to Angie’s List.
Before buying a home warranty, learn what coverage you may already have. For example, if you’re buying a newly built home:
The home appliances and systems typically have one-year warranties.
Most states require builders to warranty the home’s structural elements for up to 10 years.
Also, when you buy new furnishings and appliances, use a credit card that extends the product’s warranty. That can add as much as an extra year of protection.
Is a home warranty right for you?
Sellers may offer a year’s coverage as an incentive to home shoppers. Owners of new homes frequently pay the premiums after their free year expires.
Real estate agents sometimes give home warranties to clients as a thank you gift for purchasing a home. Some buyers of older homes find that a warranty gives them confidence.
Other homeowners decide they’re better off setting aside savings to cover home repairs and replacements.
With expensive components near or past their life expectancy, a home warranty might be a good idea. Components that have pre-existing problems, however, typically are excluded from protection.
Buyers who purchase a previously owned home inherit used appliances and home systems with wear and tear. A home warranty can help cover the cost if things break down.
New Jersey real estate agent Lorraine Labonne-Storch told HSH.com that a few days after closing on a home she purchased, the boiler caught fire. It cost her $12,000 to replace.
A home warranty would have covered a portion of the cost, she said. She’d had the option to purchase a warranty when she bought the house, but declined it.
However, home warranties top the list of complaints received by Angie’s List. One reason, the site says, is the difference between customers’ expectations and what the plans actually deliver. Homeowners also complain about the quality of service from warranty companies.
Before buying a home warranty, read the contract and understand exactly what it does and does not cover. For example, some contracts will not provide coverage if:
You didn’t maintain the appliance.
The appliance was installed incorrectly.
The appliance had too much wear and tear.
If you haven’t read it carefully, be prepared for surprises. Don’t assume:
Your policy will replace a faulty component. The warranty company may insist on repairing it instead.
You can call your favorite service provider. Home warranties usually require you to use a contracted servicer.
The warranty will cover the entire cost. Although she would have been happy to have it, Labonne-Storch said the home warranty she declined would have paid only up to $1,600 to repair or replace the $12,000 boiler.
Find out what’s covered, and what the warranty provides. There may be exclusions and limitations. Perhaps the refrigerator is covered, but the ice maker is excluded. Claims may be rejected because of pre-existing problems or insufficient maintenance.
Learn who will perform the repair work. Also, find out if you can cancel the policy. Most contracts allow a 30-day “free look” that allows a buyer to cancel within 30 days and get a full refund, says the Service Contract Industry Council.
Vet the company
Research a company using these sources:
Better Business Bureau: Type in your city’s name. On the next page type the company’s name. Or type “home warranty.” You’ll see if a company is BBB accredited. That means a company agrees to resolve complaints with the BBB and pays an accreditation fee of anywhere from $400 to several thousand dollars. See company ratings, if any, and a summary of complaints to the BBB.
Your state insurance commissioner: Locate yours with this National Association of Insurance Commissioners map. Although home warranties aren’t insurance policies, 32 states require companies offering warranties to register or be licensed by the state’s department of insurance.
An effective Property Management team will likely lead owners to make the best decisions when it comes to keeping turnover costs to a minimum but as an owner, be advised that no matter how good a departing tenant cleans and prepares for move out, there will always be items that need to be addressed BEFORE your new tenant will move in.
We thought you might find this article published by LandlordStation.com interesting and helpful as a property owner or investor.
“The best way to keep good renters around for the long haul is to ensure that they’re happy, because an unhappy tenant is far more likely to leave at the first opportunity. Make sure to respond to tenants’ requests in a timely manner. ” Our valued tenants are required to put all requests in writing so when we reach out to you our owners for approvals, timely responses will lead to greater returns! Help us, help you.
~ Lorrie Baker, Desert Wide Properties
Every landlord wants to avoid high rental turnover rates, and it’s easy to understand why. After all, there’s quite often a period of time when a unit remains unoccupied. When this is happening frequently, a landlord can lose out on substantial amounts of rent money. Unfortunately, lost rent payments aren’t the only costs related to having high turnover in rental properties.
1. Marketing the Property
Some people live in markets where advertising a rental property is as simple as posting an ad on Craigslist. For most, though, this simply isn’t the case. In order to get a home rented out quickly, it’s often necessary to place classified ads, hold an open house, and post vacancy signs. These costs are all the more substantive because there is no rental income to offset the cost during this period.
2. Rental Application Costs
It’d be amazing if all potential tenants were stellar candidates and could be fully trusted to divulge all requested information. Unfortunately, that’s not how the world works. There are costs related to every potential renter, such as doing criminal and credit background checks and verifying income and employment information.
3. Repair and Cleanup
Regardless of how great a tenant has been, it’s still very likely that there’s going to be some costs shouldered by a landlord to prepare a property for its next inhabitant. Sometimes costs can be as basic as the charges for getting the carpet cleaned. Other times, hundreds or even thousands of dollars in repair work might be necessary. Even the smallest repair costs can start to build up if the repairs are keeping the property from being rented.
4. Processing Tenants
Many landlords neglect to account for the attention and energy that goes into taking care of a rental turnover. It detracts from your bottom line when you have to take the time to do things such as paperwork to process departing tenants and to bring on new ones. Using property management software can help reduce the hassle involved in this process, but it’s important to still seek out the underlying issue leading to high turnover rates.
5. Showing the Property
There are few potential tenants out there desperate enough to rent a property sight-unseen. This means that extra hours will need to be spent by the landlord to show their property, and if they don’t have time to do this on their own, they’ll actually have to pay someone to do so. Add this to the necessary time spent setting up appointments and dealing with emails and phone calls, and this can turn into a huge hidden cost.
Reducing Tenant Turnover Rates
Fortunately, there are things that can greatly reduce the likelihood of high turnover rates.
Pay Attention to Previous Rental History
Some people simply can’t stay in one place. If a person’s rental history shows them moving once a year, even if they fully abide by their lease agreements, it may be smart to move on to the next candidate.
Make Life Easy For Tenants
The best way to keep good renters around for the long haul is to ensure that they’re happy, because an unhappy tenant is far more likely to leave at the first opportunity. Make sure to respond to tenants’ requests in a timely manner. Offer conveniences like the ability for tenants to pay their rent online.
Reconsider Rent Increases
Pay attention to the market in an area. It’s not necessary to always raise rents, and if rent increases are causing the loss of tenants, they are hardly an economical decision. By engaging in these tasks to reduce turnover rates, a landlord can keep good tenants in their properties.
When it comes to the tax deductions you can take as a rental property owner, are you keeping good records and taking advantage of all the deductions available to you? Did you know that owning a rental property often offers larger deductions and tax benefits than most other investments?
I thought you might be interested in a recent article we posted on our blog on this important topic, “Rental Property deductions you can take at tax time” which highlights a few tips to help you maximize your NOI and deduct expenses on your Real Estate investments.
“You see people moving out of town or state to go to a better job. If they can’t sell their house, they rent is.” –David Ayoub, CPA in Syracuse, N.Y.
Remember, having an experienced team of professionals like Desert Wide Properties will lead to increased revenue and greater returns. We will consistently update you on the market, offer comprehensive analysis reports of your rental homes and develop a mutually beneficial business relationship with you our client. Our expertise in the business and knowledge of the Real Estate market keeps us as a trendsetter in the business.
~ Lorrie Baker, Desert Wide Properties
Courtesy by Turbo Tax
Rental property often offers larger deductions and tax benefits than most investments. Many of these are overlooked by landlords at tax time. This can make a difference in making a profit or losing money on your real estate venture.
If you own a rental property, the IRS allows you to deduct expenses you pay for the upkeep and maintenance of the property, conserving and managing the property, and other expenses deemed necessary and associated with property rental.
Employees and independent contractors
Landlords can deduct wages and salaries for employees, such as for residential managers and staff grounds maintenance workers. Other tax-deductible services that can be used as deductions are independent contractors, such as:
Carpenters, electricians and plumbers;
Architects, landscapers and gardeners;
Roofers, carpet-layers and painters.
Keep each contractor’s tax ID number, especially if they are unincorporated, and submit the amount you paid them on IRS Form 1099-MISC. If you paid the contractor less than $600 over the course of the year, this form is not required. However, you are still allowed to deduct the expense.
Deductible expenses for rental property
A landlord is allowed to deduct any reasonable expenses used in the conduct, maintenance and managing of her rental properties. That includes:
Necessary and reasonable repairs to the property
Travel costs incurred while doing business
Expenses that are sometimes overlooked, according to David Ayoub, CPA in Syracuse, N.Y., are meal and entertainment expenses for employees. “You can only deduct 50 percent of meal and entertainment expenses incurred while doing business with potential clients or business associates. However, if you throw a Christmas party or a summer picnic for your staff, it’s 100 percent deductible.”
It’s not unusual for someone to become a landlord out of circumstantial necessity.
“You see people moving out of town or state to go to a better job. If they can’t sell their house, they rent it,” Ayoub notes. “If you rent your home for three years out of five, and then sell it, the capital gain is taxable.
However, if you sell it within two years, you don’t have to claim capital gain. You’re also entitled to the same deductions as any other landlords. As with any rental property, make sure you have landlord insurance on your home. It’s deductible as an expense, too.”