Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, Property Management

Owners

 
 
 
 
 
Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC
 
 

"Your... Property Management Resource!"

 
 
 
 
Property Owner’s Hand Book
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Revised 9/2016
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Introduction
 
 
 
Our purpose for the “Property Owner’s Handbook” is to first help you, the property owner, better understand the administrative and management systems of Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC. Second, it is to help provide valuable industry knowledge and insight. It is our pleasure to introduce you to our company and answer questions that involve our company or the industry as a whole. When property owners are provided with industry knowledge and tools, we have found it provides you with a greater understanding of the day-to-day operations of property management. This enables you to hold a property management company accountable for its performance, putting both parties on the same page and allowing for a greater working relationship.
 
 
 
Our business relationship is formed in writing between you, the property owner, and Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC, through a document called the “Management Agreement”. All procedures, terms, services, and conditions spelled out in this “Property Owner’s Manual” are subject to change, withdrawal or modification at any time and could take place without notice. You should look solely to your individual “Management Agreement” for actual services rendered.
 
 
 
Our team, in advance, thanks you for taking the time to understand our business. We look forward to serving you!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC IS AN EQUAL HOUSING PROVIDER.
Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC does business in accordance with the Fair Housing Act and does not discriminate based on race, creed, religion, age sex, familial status, marital status, disability, color, national origin, sexual orientation or any other protected classes.
P.O. Box 2175 Goose Creek, SC 29445
 
Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC Makes Investing & Owning Rental Property Easy
 

How?

 
 
 
A big part of success in real estate, and in business in general, means forming the right types of alliances. Alliances increase strategic positioning and are used as a method to increase strengths, helping those parties involved reach their goals more efficiently and at a much quicker pace. At Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC we are committed to this philosophy. In fact, we built our name on it.
 

Ø  Comprehensive tenant screening & qualification.

One of the most powerful ways to reduce late rent, problem tenants, and evictions is through proactive tenant screening. All prospective tenants will be screened using a qualified tenant screening program. Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC screening process is very comprehensive to include eviction, criminal, rental, credit, work history and more.
 

Ø  Efficiency through property management software.

Property management software is a cost saving tool for a rental investor owner. It provides accurate, efficient tracking of rents collected, late rents, vacancies, maintenance costs, and more. Our management software combines modern accounting and property management features to provide our team, and you, with an all-inclusive solution. Which enables the owner to log in to an owner portal and run a wide range of detailed reports that enables you to track the performance of your investment.
 

Ø  Easy communication.

Available by telephone, fax, mail, email, or personal appointments (Mon – Fri/9am -5pm) our team is always ready to assist you.
 

Ø  Detailed property inspections.

We can provide, as a special service, written comprehensive inspection reports including photos or video of your property during tenancies and after.
 

Ø  Owner Friendly Management Agreement

No restrictive clauses, no hidden fees for services, no difficult termination clauses. Just an easy to read and understandable Management Agreement.
 
Frequently asked questions about
Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC
 
What makes Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC different than any other?
This is a very common question and we provide a very easy answer. Our team is well trained. We pride ourselves on operating with the highest degree of integrity, ethics and professionalism while providing outstanding property management.
 
Our company is a “full service" real estate and management services firm. We offer management (residential & commercial), maintenance, construction/rehab plus real estate leasing and sales all under one roof. We are designed to manage your investment from the moment of purchase, making the property rent ready, finding a qualified tenant, and managing your investment.
The company is owned and operated by Corwyn J. Melette who has over 11 years of experience working with clients buying, remodeling, leasing, and selling homes. Corwyn came from a family that owned and managed rental properties. He grew up with a Carpenter as his Grandparent and was formerly a partner in a local home restoration business. This experience along with an extensive and award winning service record in various areas of the real estate industry gives Corwyn a proven track record of being "thee" respected resource for things real estate. Corwyn is dedicated to providing you with his knowledge and expertise and looks forward to accommodating all of your property management needs.
 
What are the office hours of Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC?
We are open for business from 9:00am to 5:00pm, Mon -Fir. For after-hours care please call 843- 225-3739.
 
How does Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC handle emergencies?
A big part of good landlord-tenant relations is availability and a timely response. Our company provides 24- hour assistance for emergencies. We have designated members of our team who respond promptly to all emergencies.
How does Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC perform bookkeeping and reporting to property owners?
 
With our specially designed property management software (Rent Manager), owners can log in and download detailed property reports. Such as: detailed profit and loss statement, fiscal year budget reports, detailed income and expense reports and 1099’s.
 
How much does Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC charge the rental owner. We have several services available to fit the needs of any rental owner. You can pick and choose which services you need us to handle for you. Our fees are competitive in the market place; we charge a small percentage of the monthly rent as a management fee. Our leasing program’s fee to find and place a qualified tenant is up to one month's rent. (Contact us for a specific quote). There are a lot of property management companies that will advertise lower fees, but offer inferior services and often have hidden costs.
 

 
 
 

One More Thing That is Unique About

Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC

 
Sometimes property owners will commit to obligations they later regret because they are unfamiliar with evaluating Management Agreements or they have not taken sufficient time to review the document. Our practice has been to provide a copy of the Management Agreement to you for review before setting up a consultation. There are several ways our Agreement is unique and provides confidence and flexibility to you, the owner.
 

Management fees apply only when rent is collected.

-We do not charge management fees when your property is vacant ($35.00 Vacant Property Fee may apply).
-We do not charge management fees on uncollected rent.
-We do not charge owners or tenants administrative fees to oversee routine maintenance repairs. Your success is important to us.  Therefore, we only get paid when you get paid.
 

Easy termination policy.

Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC is about as easy and flexible as you will find anywhere. You may terminate our Management Agreement in writing, with thirty (30) days written notice. (when not in an active lease term)
 

Frequently Asked Questions About Qualifying Tenants & Marketing the Rental Unit
 

►How long will it take to rent a property?

There are several factors that influence the rental market, such as location, condition and rental price. Typically, the time frame to rent a unit should take no more than 30-60 days.
 
How will Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC market your rental unit?
Getting your property rented as soon as possible to a qualified tenant is one of our highest priorities. Lost rent because of unnecessary vacancies is cash flow typically never recovered. Therefore, we use many methods of advertising to give your property the widest possible exposure. These include, but are not limited to:
 

ü  Yard signs

One of our Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC "For Rent" yard signs will be placed on the property (if permitted) between two and four weeks prior to a vacancy, or immediately if your property is just being placed on the rental market with our company. This service is provided at no additional charge by our Leasing Team.
 

ü  Internet

MLS, Realtor.com, craigslist, Zillow, Trulia and Hot Pads Photos and a full description of your property will be placed on our website www.cjmpropertymanagement.com.
Prospective renters can access this site and search by area to find exactly what they want.
 

ü  Rental spotlight list

Your property description will be added to our rental list. This list of available or upcoming rentals is updated daily and available free of charge to all who come into our office. This service is provided at no additional charge by our Leasing Team. We market with other real estate offices. Your rental information will be shared with other real estate offices looking to locate rentals for their clients.
 
How does Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC qualify prospective tenants? Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC uses one of the most comprehensive tenant screening services in the nation. This screening program/process will evaluate the following areas of a prospect tenant’s background:
  • Rental records
  • Employment verifications
  • Court evictions
  • Driving record
  • Criminal background check
  • Retail credit files
  • Rental debt collection records
 

How long will it take to qualify an applicant?

Depending on the level of screening required and response times, the process could take as little as 20- 30 minutes or it could take as long as two business days.
 

What happens if the tenant doesn’t pay the rent?

This is one of the most frequently asked questions by owners and the subject of greatest concern. The answer is that when a tenant fails to pay the rent (by the 6th) and remains in the rental unit, we begin the process to quickly having the tenant removed. Our trained team knows how to file the South Carolina required legal notices to prepare for an eviction process. We work to not only make sure you receive fast, excellent service but also to limit lost rents and unnecessary fees. Once the eviction is completed in the court system, the tenant is required to physically move from your property. We coordinate the required performance of the writ of ejectment by a local constable which puts our management company back in possession of the rental unit.
Our trained team handles any abandoned property as required by South Carolina Law. (Left behind property is one of the costliest areas of land lording and where many law suits arise if not handled appropriately.) After that we quickly make the rental unit ready to show and lease again. In fact, at the time of the initial filing we would have begun to advertise and find a new tenant. The eviction process usually takes four to six weeks, “not months” as many would believe.
However, the more relevant question is….
 

How likely is it that an eviction will occur?

Although we can never be 100% certain, the training that our staff receives, coupled with our experience and tenant screening programs, has shown that evictions will be experiences significantly less often than by owner’s self-managing their property or using other management services who do not provide the services we offer.
 
 

Who is Responsible? Owner or Tenant?

 

***The amount of owner vs. tenant responsibility is impacted by the number of rental units

i.e. single family rental or multi-family rental. ***
 
What happens if the tenant damages the property?
If tenant caused damages are discovered at the time the tenant vacates the premises, a claim is made against the security deposit to cover the damage. This is a legal process that must be followed precisely to allow deduction of a security deposit. If not handled correctly and within the allowed time frame, the entire security deposit can be required to be returned to the tenant, regardless of damages.
 

Who is responsible for the heating/ air conditioning system?

This is a shared responsibility. The owner is responsible for the major operations of the system when things go wrong that are beyond the control of the tenant. However, the tenant is responsible for changing the filters regularly. System maintenance or repair resulting from tenant abuse, misuse or neglect is the responsibility of the tenant.  (Corwyn J. Melette and
Associates, LLC advises owners have a home warranty to assist in limiting unexpected costs from system repairs.)

Who is responsible for plumbing repairs?

Once again, this is a shared responsibility. Owners are responsible for circumstances beyond the tenant’s control, i.e. water heater failure, tree roots in the sewer line or worn out fixtures. (We strongly suggest a home warranty plan). However, the tenant is responsible for clogged toilets or drains: jammed garbage disposals: and any problems resulting from abuse, misuse or neglect. If the premise has a septic tank system, owners are customarily responsible for septic tank pump outs, sump pump failure and clogged drain fields.
 

Who is responsible for windows and screens?

The owner is responsible through the property manager to ensure that these are in good condition when the tenant takes possession. After that, the tenant is responsible for the repair or replacement of broken glass or damage screens, including screen doors and sliding doors. One exception would be if damage occurred because of a natural disaster such as a major storm.
 

Who is responsible for pest control?

Our Lease Agreement makes this a tenant responsibility for single family homes and duplexes after a three
(3) day "discovery" period, except for problems beyond the tenant’s control, i.e. termites and rodents. South Carolina Statues stipulate that for multi-family buildings larger than a duplex, pest control must be an owner’s responsibility.
 

Who takes care of the yard?

Our single-family Lease Agreement makes this a tenant responsibility and requires the tenant to maintain the yard and shrubs in the same condition the yard was in during move in, unless the owner chooses to provide complete lawn care for the property.
 

Who is responsible for the swimming pool, spa or hot tub?

It has been our experience that it is best for this service to be provided by the owner to make sure that the pool is maintained properly.  We contract with a pool service company to provide weekly pool services.  The cost of this service would be the responsibility of the owner.
 

What is your policy on animals?

Whether or not to accept animals is always the owner’s decision. Some owners allow animals, others do not. A non-refundable deposit of $300 for the first animal and an additional $150 deposit per animal must be paid by the tenant in order to have an animal in the rental unit.
Where animals are permitted, only small to medium sized, non-violent, common domesticated animals should be considered. Certain breeds of dogs are not accepted because of liability considerations. Farm animals are not permitted. (Due to Fair Housing Laws persons with disabilities will be allowed a therapy pet without being charged a pet fee.)
 
 
What does Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC do when the rental becomes vacant?
We promptly conduct a move out inspection of the rental premises. This allows us to make any appropriate claims against the security deposit for damages made by the tenant and then disburse the deposit accordingly. We immediately prepare the property for a new tenant. This typically includes cleaning the carpet, painting the walls, etc. As soon as we are notified the unit will become vacant, we begin advertising for a new tenant. This is often the best time to address major repairs, improvements or upgrades to the rental unit if needed.
 

What kind of liability insurance should a property owner have?

If you are converting your personal residence to a rental property, you should change your policy from a homeowner’s policy to a landlord’s policy (sometimes called a rental dwelling or dwelling fire policy). If your property is already a rental unit, you probably have the right policy, but please check just to be sure. The limits should be in an amount not less than
$100,000 per person and $300,000 per occurrence.
 
If your rental property is in a condominium or two home communities, please do not assume that the condo association policy for the community will adequately cover you or your property. “It will not!” You should have your own liability policy (separate from the association’s policy) to make sure that both you and your rental property are adequately protected.
If you do not know an insurance agent, we can recommend local independent insurance agents who will be glad to recommend the appropriate policy for you.
 
It is the policy of Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC that you, the owner, request your insurance company add Corwyn J. Melette and Associates as an “additional insured” to your policy. Most companies make this addition at no additional charge.
 
What is Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC Rental Inspection Program?
In addition to overseeing all maintenance, repairs and handling all tenant relations as part of our regular management responsibilities, we also conduct semiannual inspections of the visual interior and exterior of a rental property, complete an inspection report and provide a copy of the report to you the owner. We also advise an annual complete "home" inspection including systems, crawl space (if applicable), roof, attic, etc. Due to the thoroughness of this type of inspection the complete "home" inspection is not a part of our normal management services and is only performed upon owner request.
 
 
 
How to Prepare Your
Rental Investment Property for Rent
 
 
  • Carpet should be professionally cleaned and in good condition with no pet odor.
  • Premises, interior, and exterior should be “Move-In” Clean
  • All Windows & Sliding glass doors should operate and lock properly with screens in good condition on all windows and sliding glass doors.
  • All appliances and other systems related to the premises should be clean and in food condition and repair: stove, refrigerator, dishwasher, microwave, garbage disposal, air conditioner (s), heater (s), central heat/air system, automatic garage door opener, etc.
  • All plumbing and plumbing fixtures should be in good condition and working properly.
  • All Bathroom tiles should be in good condition with no lose tiles. All cracks, corners etc. properly caulked or grouted.
  • Kitchen and bath counter tops and back-splash boards should be in good condition and seams properly caulked.
  • Window treatments, drapes, horizontal blinds, vertical blinds, shades should be clean and in good working order.
  • All electrical outlets and switches should be in good condition and have cover plates.
  • Interior paint should be newly applied or at least in good condition.
  • Smoke alarms properly installed in bedroom areas and in proper working order.
  • Household rated fire extinguisher on the premises and properly serviced.
  • All light fixtures should have lightbulbs and be in proper working order. Ceiling fans, if any, should be clean and in proper working order.
  • Lawn should be clean, grass cut, edged & trimmed, shrubs trimmed, & irrigation system (if applicable) in good working order. (This is essential to the “Curb Appeal” of the property which directly impacts the speed of leasing)
  • House numbers three inches high should be properly displayed on the front of the house or apartment unit.
  • Roof should be in good condition with no leaks.
  • All debris, trash and/or other discards should be removed from the rental premises, including attics & sheds.
  • Exterior paint should have a good appearance with no significant fading, chalking, weathering or peeling.
  • Copies of all warranties, service contacts, & termite and/or pest control contracts should be provided to

Corwyn J. Melette & Associates, LLC.

 

 
The Property Owners Expectations - “Inspect What You Expect”
 
Marketing and leasing.
 
 
  • Placing one of our Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC For Rent” signs on your property (if permitted) as soon as a vacancy is recorded, usually 30-60 days earlier.
 
  • We will share information to interested renters by using real estate, locater services, website full photo and description advertisement, and curb advertisement.
 
  • We will have our trained leasing staff show your property to prospective tenants.
 
  • When a prospect decides that they are ready to move forward with leasing we will immediately ask the prospect to fill out our prospect packet which includes our application. Our Team then begins the efficient, but comprehensive, applicant qualification process. This will ensure we have a qualified tenant and that the security deposit is received.
 
  • Not renting your property for an amount lower than what you have agreed to without first receiving your permission.
 
  • We will conduct the move in meeting with the tenant and complete a Move in Inspection with the tenant. This will ensure the tenant and property manager agree on the condition of the rental unit before the tenant receives the keys.
 
 

Property inspection program.

 
 
 
  • Our team will conduct our “Inspect What We Expect Check List” which consists of walking the whole rental unit with the “Move in Inspection” to detect any damage caused by the tenant that previously moved out.  If damages are found
 
caused by the previous tenant then we will follow our system to properly impose a claim against the security deposit.
 
  • When authorized by the owner in writing, conduct of an annual "home" inspection of the rental property. After completing the inspection report, a copy will be place in the property file and made available to the owner. There is an additional charge for these services.
 

Why we are the top in our industry.

 
  • Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC will follow a very innovative system model. This system model enables us to provide very dependable and predictable services to our clients.
 

Day to day operations.

 
  • Our team will make owning rental property as an investment not only smart but easy. We will make every reasonable effort to collect the rent in a timely fashion.
 
  • Through our experienced staff and our state of the art property management software we make responding to all tenant concerns and emergencies quick and efficient.
 
 
 

What if a tenant does not comply with the Lease Agreement?

 
 
  • Our team will serve any applicable legal notice under South Carolina Landlord Tenant Act to ensure compliance with the Lease Agreement.
 
  • Our team will make a follow-up visit to the rental property to determine whether or not the tenant has complied in a timely manner to any and all legal notice or letters, delivered by us.
 
  • Our team personally handles the delivery of all notices and letters including the 3-day notice (South Carolina's legal notice required before an eviction for a non-payment of rent can be filed is included in our rental agreements, so this is an extra notification we provide.)
  • Our team also works with the local South Carolina Magistrate's offices to file necessary eviction and/or other claims against the tenant. They will assist in any eviction action taken against a delinquent or non-complying tenant. This procedure will always be done in a timely fashion, unless directed by the owner to allow a delay.
 

Reporting to owners.

 
 
  • Our state of the art property management software allows for many useful, detailed reports which can access through your "Owners Portal". (Anything more detailed is available upon request for a fee.)
  • Our team will also send 1099 income Form and Profit & Loss statement at the end of each calendar year to assist you in your tax preparation ($50 Annually)
 
 
 

What about maintenance and upgrades?

 
 
  • Our team will consult with you, the property owner/investor, in advance regarding any expenditure to the property that would exceed the amount mutually agreed upon ($500) in your management agreement, unless it is an emergency affecting the safety and/or health of the tenant, or the integrity of the property.
 
  • Arranging and authorizing services, necessary to maximize the property’s appeal to prospective tenants, thus expediting leasing and minimizing vacancy time. Examples would include: utilities, maid service, carpet cleaning, lawn service, pool services, painting and minor repairs.
 
  • We will draw from any available forfeited security deposit funds to address expenses that were the previous tenant’s responsibility.
 
  • We will change the locks between tenant’s residency to decrease owner’s liability.
 

We comply with local state and governmental regulations.

 
 
  • We comply with local, state and federal FAIR HOUSING laws and ordinances.
 
  • We comply with South Carolina's LANDLORD TENANT ACT.
 
  • We also comply with U.S. EPA requirements regarding lead based paint disclosure.
 
  • We also comply with all other applicable laws and ordinances, whether local, state or federal, that may affect the management of residential rental property.
 

 

Brief Closing

 
Thank you for allowing us this time to introduce our revolutionary property management company to you. We hope this Property Owner Hand Book has helped you better understand how to evaluate a property management company, as well as provide you very important industry knowledge. At Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC our main focus is to maximize your income and minimize your expenses through a strategic alliance between you and our team.
 
We would consider it a privilege to help you continue to grow your real estate portfolio.
 
 
 

Let’s get started!

 
To move forward:
 
Please contact us at: 843-225-3739 or rentals @corwynmelette.com
Begin completing the Get Started Checklist on the next page.
 

 
 
 
 

Get Started Checklist!

The following is a list of items we will need to begin management of your rental property:
 
 
  • A signed Management Agreement by all owners of the property.
 
  • If applicable a completed Lead Based Paint Hazard Disclosure form. This form only applies to homes built before 1978.  Disregard this form if your property was built after 1978.
 
  • All Keys pertaining to the rental property, i.e. house keys, pool keys, garage door opener remotes, and gate entry cards and /or remotes to the community. Four (4) sets of keys are ideal. If you don’t have that many keys available, we can make duplicates. For liability and security reasons, if the rental property has been occupied either by the owner or a tenant all locks should be re-keyed before a new prospect tenant moves in.  Please do not duplicate keys unnecessarily.
 
  • A copy of the home owner association or Condo Association Rules and Regulations where your property is located, along with the name and address of the governing association will be needed. (Disregard if your property is an apartment complex.)
 
  • If applicable, a copy of any current Lease Agreement and Assignment from previous landlord to our company. Tenant names, and contact information.
 
  • If applicable, security deposits for any existing tenants or written information on where this deposit is being held.
 
  • A completed and signed W-9 form providing your Social Security Number or Taxpayer Identification Number, or other applicable taxpayer form (i.e. W-8, 4224) for non-U.S. citizens.
 
  • A copy of the Insurance Policy naming Corwyn J. Melette and Associates as an additional insured.
 
  • A check to cover the file set up fee and to fund the owners reserve account. Please make check payable to Corwyn J. Melette and Associates, LLC
 
 
 

Thank you, we look forward to developing a successful strategic alliance with you!


 
Rental Management Pricing
 
  • Management Sign on Fee - $125
  • Annual Professional Home Inspection - pricing varies based on home size
  • Utility Activation Fee - $15 per activation
  • Check stop payment/re-issue fee -$25
  • Miscellaneous (owner requested) property trip fee - $20
  • Paper checks/statements - $3ea
  • Change of ownership - $25 Administration Fee
  • Annual Acct $50 for 1099 (Income & expense report)
 
  • Monthly management fee - 10% of gross rent
  • Leasing fee 25% of first month’s rent (not applicable to lease renewals)
  • Third party payments (i.e. mortgage, HOA, or etc.) - $3
  • Property escrow for minor repairs - $500 (taken within first 3 months of rent
or payable upfront at sign on)
  • Oversight of repairs over $2500.00 - 5% of project cost
  • Print advertising (i.e. newspaper, magazine etc.) - quoted upon request
  • Semiannual interior inspections of properties - Free
  • Online maintenance requests for tenants and dashboard for owners - Free
  • Electronic payments for rents - Free (when using bank info)
  • End of Year Financial disclosure -$125 (Tax Purposes)
    • Rent roll packet
    • Invoices (if applicable)
    • Canceled checks (if applicable)
    • Statements
  • GL Income (specified)
  • Expenses (if applicable)