Working in a Real Estate office that has property management is always interesting.  You know the old “the dog ate my homework”, well property management gets that in spades almost daily.  Everyone has a story, some are so out landish it’s hard to believe that it could be anything but the truth.  Here in Jacksonville NC we are the proud home of Camp Lejeune Marine Corps Base, MCAS New River, Camp Geiger and Camp Johnson, so the majority of our renters are military either directly or indirectly.  And many of our young renters have never lived anywhere other than home with mom and dad, so obviously there is a learning curve for these tenants, and for the most part they are good tenants, they pay their rent on time, sometimes early!! (what a novel idea!) But, some are so clueless because they have never had to cook, clean or do laundry before.  We have had tenants afraid to turn the water off to the house, even though the yard is flooding.  Or not know that they need to change the air filter for the air handler in the house.  Basic maintenance for occupying a property; i.e. mowing the grass, cleaning regularly, etc. seem to be a hard thing.  But as most people know, a few bad apples spoil the whole barrel.  As a tenant you need to know that if there is a property maintenance issue, you need to inform the property management office so that it can be taken care of. Ignoring a problem until it becomes much worse is bad for the property owner and you the tenant.  It can result in you having higher water or electric bills because you ignored the problem.  And if that is the case, it is on you to deal with the higher bill.  Property management cannot fix an issue that is has no knowledge of.  You should be observant of things around your property, if you find your yard is very wet and it hasn’t rained in a while, you should probably inspect that, odds are there is a water leak somewhere.  Blaming the property owner for this, when they are not even in the state, is wrong! And it’s not the property managers fault either, they can’t drive by every single property all the time.  If your garbage disposal stops working, and it is discovered that you were putting things down the disposal that have no business being in the disposal, that is going to be your cost, not the owners.  They, again, are not here.  One of the weirdest stories I have heard so far is of some raccoons that “got in” a property and did some damage. Now how they actually came to be in the property is unclear but it seems that they were being fed by a tenant and she thought it would be a good idea to close the back door so they could not get out….turned out to not be such a good idea.

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Ellen Hough, Jacksonville NC Real Estate , specializing in First-time home buyers, sellers and renters.   Working with EXIT Independence Realty, 910-330-6103 (Cell)