A note to our rental property owners
Oak City Property has your back
At Oak City Properties, we understand the uncertainty and fear that comes with the current coronavirus situation. As a rental property owner, we know that many of you have valid and pressing questions about how Oak City Properties is handling COVID-19…wondering how this virus could potentially affect your investment or your home?
The Good News
North Carolina has issued a “stay-at-home” order with only essential personnel allowed out and continuing to do business. The good news is that Oak City Properties has been given “Essential Status,” and so have many of our vendors! While our management team has been required to work from home, we are still available to manage your rental property needs. Through our latest technology and online portal, we are able to work remotely, while remaining in constant contact with you and your tenants. From submitting maintenance requests to making payments online, our management team will not miss a beat and keep things running as normal as possible.
What are the changes?
While our office is closed to the public, Oak City Properties Realty and Management is operating much as it did before the discovery of COVID-19. We are available by phone, email, and have the ability to address any of your concerns as we continue to look after your rental property. If there is a need to see us in person to address a concern, a meeting can be arranged in our conference room where all parties involved can be at least 6 feet apart.
We can assure you that maintenance, accounting, and general services have not been interrupted. Our management team is in constant communication with our vendors who have taken their own necessary steps to keep everyone safe, and practice as much “social distancing” as possible. Many of our vendors are taking the necessary step to keep you and your tenants protected by checking for fevers daily and sending home any employee that shows any signs of illness. To summarize, during this time, everything is about as normal as it can be other than the “social distancing” aspects, and some precautionary measures to keep everyone safe.
What about my tenants?
Your tenants have not experienced any disruption to their services during this time. At Oak City Properties, we are still able to dispatch vendors when necessary and communicate through electronic means like phone, email, and our online portal. Our 24/7 Online Portal, allows your tenants to submit maintenance requests, ask questions through our chat boards, and make monthly rent payments. We also have an after-hours emergency phone line where tenants can contact us if a problem were to arise after office hours.
Let’s get real about collecting rent payments
At Oak City Properties, we can’t predict the future, but we understand that you may be experiencing some unease when it comes to receiving your monthly rent payment for your tenants. Please know that we have policies and practices in play to handle a late rent payment.
First off, if a tenant is going to be late with a rent payment, they must contact us prior to the end of the month. Whether there is a pandemic occurring or not, we have set this precedence from the beginning. This month we have only had three individuals reach out to us regarding losing their income and needing to work out a payment plan for next month.
Unemployment benefits, the option to work from home, and the Federal Stimulus Deal are all indicators that your tenants should still have the means and ability to pay rent each month. While these criteria may give us hope, we understand that it does not guarantee that your tenant will pay the rent. To combat these fears, Oak City Properties, we will continue to operate as normal, and all rent is due on the first of the month. We will assess late payments as normal after the 5th (5% -the maximum allowable in the state of NC), and tenants will be notified as usual. Should the tenant become delinquent, we will make contact with them on an individual basis through both email, phone calls, and regular mail.
Under typical circumstances, should the tenant fail in their obligation to pay their rent by the 15th, we could begin the eviction process. At this time, however, the NC Supreme Court has mandated that small claims court cases, of which evictions are specifically named, to be postponed. What does that mean for your rental property and current tenant? Unfortunately, this means that while we still have the ability to file evictions, the courts will not be hearing cases until further notice. While we may have legal right to evict, there is no way at this time to enforce such actions.
Should your tenant not be able to pay rent, we will be reaching out to you on an individual basis to discuss, and we will keep you updated with any/all information. It is our hope that most of you will not be affected negatively by non-payments, and that business, at least for your income property, can move forward as usual.
Oak City Properties Realty and Management, LLC, we are determined to stay calm, flexible, and manage your rental property effectively and efficiently. Please know that we are doing everything in our power to ensure that things stay as “normal” as possible in this time. We are always here to serve and will continue to do so. We also want to take the time to thank you again for your trust and confidence to manage your rental property. We look forward to beating this virus and getting things back to normal. Stay safe, stay healthy, and thank you for your business.
If you are interested in learning more, give us a call at (919)-232-9222 or check out our website: http://oakcityproperties.com
Want to read more about how our property management services are dealing with COVID-19? Here are a few blogs that may interest you: