Storm Advice

The Atlantic Hurricane Season is June 1st until November 30th and we want you to be prepared for what happens when severe weather hits.

PRE-STORM

A young man stares at a bulletin board pinned with many papers and reports, much like Hoffman Realty clients seeking storm advice.

Have a Plan

Our first piece of storm advice is to make sure you have a plan for a safe place to evacuate if necessary, amble time to prepare and secure the property and to extra time for travel to the evacuation site – given added traffic flow.

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If you decide to shelter in place, make sure you have adequate non-perishable supplies for several days or more without power. Do you have a plan for your pet? If it is not safe for you outside, it is not safe for your pets either! If you are leaving the property, do not leave your pets behind. Gather and secure your important papers – renter’s insurance policies, identification, and your irreplaceable pictures, etc.

Build a storm supply kit

Shutter Installation or Board-Up Service

Hoffman Realty is not able to offer Hurricane Shutter installation and Board-Up service through our company. However, we have provided your landlord a list of local contractors should they want Hurricane

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Shutter installation and Board-Up. Some of landlords will make use of this service, most will not. If you aren’t contacted by one of these contractors assume the property will not be boarded up by your landlord. If your home has shutters available and you would like help installing them, please contact our office. Unfortunately we cannot authorize you to add hurricane shutters or board-up the property if they are not already available for installation on site, as your lease requires all modifications or additions to a property be first approved in writing by your landlord. Any hurricane shutters added to a property must be landlord approved AND professionally installed. However, should you decide to add hurricane shutters or board-up the property without approval, you should be prepared to return the property to it’s original condition after the storm. If you would like a list of local contractors that can add hurricane shutters or board-up the property, click the button below.

Local Contractors

Ensure you bookmark our Facebook Page

In 2004 when Hurricane Charlie threatened the Tampa Bay area our offices were subject to a mandatory evacuation orders well before the storm made landfall. It was chaotic with half our staff on the highways trying to leave

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Tampa and the other half making preparations to protect their families in place. Please don’t call us to get updates on the storm, or storm advice. Property managers in Houston recently found Facebook very helpful, so we will post general updates on our company Facebook Page as the situation allows.

Make sure you use the link below as there is a fake Hoffman Realty Facebook Page.

Our Facebook page

A hammer puts a nail into a piece of wood, an example of maintenance Hoffman Realty clients could do as they follow our storm advice.

Securing the Property

Secure all outside items. Bring in swings sets, play houses, small planters, trash can, anything that could turn into a flying object during high winds.

Secure house against damage.

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Follow all recommendations by the local news and the emergency preparedness teams for your area.

Do not put tape on the windows!If you evacuate the property or there is extensive property damage:

  • Turn off main breaker to property.
  • Turn off main gas line to the property. (Call Gas Company for instructions)
  • Turn off main water supply to the property.

A pair of hands looks at a map on a smart phone, an example of following Hoffman Realty's storm advice regarding staying up to date.

Monitor the Storm

Stay up to date on the storm and its path. My Fox Hurricane is a good resource.

Update your contact information
Make sure Hoffman Realty has all your latest contact information. Please login to your Renters Portal to update it, or email us.

A young woman cools off her cup of coffee while she sits on her bed and logs into her Hoffman Renters Portal, seeking storm advice.

Ensure you have access to your Renters Portal

A huge part of our storm advice is to strongly recommend that you have access to your Renters Portal. This and email will be the primary means for contacting us after the storm.

AFTER THE STORM

Be Careful

Check for damage to your home. Use caution. More people die after a hurricane than during one. Be particularly aware of downed power lines or driving on flooded roads.

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Power will likely be out so use food in the refrigerator before it spoils. Discard any food that may have come in contact with floodwaters. If you cook with a grill, keep it outdoors. Conserve battery life on your flashlights. Limit use of cell phones to emergencies. We will also post general information through Our Facebook page.

A young woman creates a presentation of ideas on her laptop, an example of a Hoffman Realty client seeking ideas around storm advice

Let us know how you fared

As you are able, please let us know how you and the property faired. If you have Internet service you can use your Renters Portal to report to us. You can upload photos with a maintenance request. You can also complete a maintenance request on our website and email us.

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If you don’t have Internet service you can call our office at (813) 875-7474 or our maintenance line at (855) 559-5525. Please be patient and wait for us to respond back to you.

When we do contact you – please respond timely

Please monitor your voicemail and email regularly and check your Renters Portal. Respond timely to us and our vendors.

A grey cat lying down looks out a window next to a vase of sunflowers, an example of good weather before a storm hits, prompting Hoffman Realty clients to seek storm advice

Please be Patient

After one storm in 2004 we had hundreds of calls a day and our voicemail filled with messages faster than we could respond back to them. The volume of call traffic seriously impacted our ability to assess and respond to storm damage.

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It will take longer than any of us would like to get properties permanently repaired. Resources and skilled labor are in short supply. In fact in 2004 materials and resources were in such short supply after a storm, that many of our vendors were unable to repair storm damage. We had roofers that could not get roofing materials; handymen that could not get plywood or tarps; tree service contractors that could not rent cranes (to lift trees off houses); drying vendors that could not get fans, dehumidifiers and generators. Insurance companies were overwhelmed and it took weeks to get a claim approved.

Many of our staff will be working long hours and also dealing with their own storm damages affecting their families and their lives. In 2004 our office was without power for 10 days which really impacted our ability to communicate and respond. Power outages are likely to happen again, so we ask for your patience with us and our staff after the storm.

REVIEWS

4.9 /5
407 Reviews

Aug 22, 2019
Google Hoffman Realty Grace
Hoffman Realty managed a Property we had in Tampa. They did an excellent job. Any concerns I had were addressed promptly. Their statements were always timely and easy to access on line. Their on line service is very good. When it came time to sell the property, it was sold in a short time. Many thanks to all the Hoffman Realty team.
Aug 21, 2019
Google Hoffman Realty Che
I don't regret my choice to go with Hoffman Realty to manage my property. They were very professional and made sure my house was well maintained. After 5 years as my property manager, my house was so well maintained that when it came time to sell I didn't have to repair anything. Thank you for taking such great care of our house and us as customers.
Jul 27, 2019
Google Hoffman Realty Tammy
I highly recommended Hoffman Realty. They were my property managers for almost 3 years and it was a good experience from beginning to end. MaryAnn, Amanda and Pamela were fantastic to work with-very professional, helpful and courteous. This is a great company to work with!
Hoffman Realty replied on Jul 28, 2019:
Hi Tammy, Thank you very much. We enjoyed working for you over the last 3 years, MaryAnn
Jul 21, 2019
Google Hoffman Realty J
If you want your rental properties in safe hands, I recommend Hoffman Realty LLC. Hoffman Realty LLC has managed my property for 4 years. The staffs are there ready to help their customers, and you can feel a great team work there. I am so pleased to choose Hoffman Reality.
Hoffman Realty replied on Jul 22, 2019:
Hi Jingtao, Thank you for your kind words. We really appreciate it, MaryAnn
Jul 12, 2019
Google Hoffman Realty Nichole
MaryAnn and her team made my transition from young homeowner to landlord so easy. I was incredibly nervous about the process, but she and her team handled everything and gave me peace of mind. When I decided I wanted to sell my place, she and her team handled everything seamlessly as well. Being out of state now, I was concerned about the distance, but it proved to be no problem for them. Her team is always professional and responsive. Thanks, Hoffman Realty!
Hoffman Realty replied on Jul 13, 2019:
Hi Nichole, We are so glad that we could could help you through the process. Thank you for the nice words about the Hoffman Realty team! MaryAnn
Jul 6, 2019
Google Hoffman Realty Anita
Excellent work all very kind efficient especially victor Olvera always willing to help very kind people are great blessing from heaven that there are people like that I am very happy and grateful with this agency and all it’s staff GOD blessings
Hoffman Realty replied on Jul 9, 2019:
Hi Anita, Thank you for your feedback about us and especially Victor. It is important to us to treat people the way we would want to be treated. Thanks again, Andrew
Jul 4, 2019
Google Hoffman Realty Linda
Hoffman Realty went above and beyond to see to it we got the house we wanted. We are so appreciative for all your help. They have been there for anything we needed. What a great team they have.
Hoffman Realty replied on Jul 5, 2019:
Hi Linda, Thank you very much. We are looking forward to working with you. Andrew
Jun 21, 2019
Google Hoffman Realty Anthony
I wanted to let everyone know how happy I am with Hoffman Realty. They have been really great in taking care of my property and tenants. Pamela Pagel is extremely helpful whenever i have questions about my statements. What a wonderful team to work with!
Hoffman Realty replied on Jun 15, 2019:
Hi Anthony, Thank you for the kind words about us and especially Pamela. Andrew
Jun 20, 2019
Google Hoffman Realty Ron
Got a call from Hoffman last Friday, the 14th, early evening. Expected to hear the usual--tenant was complaining of...…. Turned out to be something new. Tenant's rent check bounced, though this had never happened in 4 years. The call had come from Pam Pagel, my Hoffman accountant, who just wanted to let me know why the monthly owner's draw would be late. I've had late draws before, but this was the first time I ever received a call pre-empting my concern. Thank you, Pamela Pagel!!!!!
Hoffman Realty replied on Jun 5, 2019:
Hi Ron, Thank you for the kind feedback on Pam. Andrew
Jun 19, 2019
Google Hoffman Realty Jennifer
We have been a tenant in a home managed by Hoffman Realty going on our 3rd year. Our main contact is Amanda Coffman and what a great experience it has been! Amanda responds immediately to any requests, arranges for items to be addressed immediately and follows up to see if we were satisfied with the results. She goes above and beyond for tenants and if I were an owner would feel like my property is in the best hands. Additionally, anyone we come into contact with from Hoffman Realty both in the office and out are professional, pleasant and make sure all issues are resolved to everyone's satisfaction. It truly makes us feel like home!
Hoffman Realty replied on Jun 9, 2019:
Hi Jennifer, We appreciate your feedback and especially the kind words about Amanda. Thank you, MaryAnn

FAQ

Can a home depreciate in value?
Generally, real property never depreciates in value, or more so, it is not very common for property to depreciate. This is why it’s a great investment. Make sure you carefully consider location and community when choosing a home, it can effect the homes future value greatly.

If you are in a newly developed area, do some research on the construction of the surrounding areas being developed to determine if they may effect your homes value.

Is an older home as good a value as a new home?
This is really just a matter of preference, but both newer and older homes offer distinct advantages, depending upon your unique taste and lifestyle.

Older homes can generally cost less than new homes, however, there are many cases where new homes can also cost less then older homes. Most new homes will not have any backyard landscaping and some don”t include any front landscaping either. With an older home, the landscaping is normally already completed and could have 10”s of thousands of dollars in landscaping done, which is included in the purchase price.

Taxes on some older homes may also be lower. Some people are charmed by the elegance of an older home but shy away because they”re concerned about potential maintenance costs. Consider a home warranty to get the peace of mind you deserve. A good Home Warranty plan protects you against unexpected repairs on many home systems and appliances for a full year or more after you move in.

In a new house, you can pick your own color schemes, flooring, kitchen cabinets, appliances, custom wiring for TV”s, electrical, computers, phones and speakers, etc., as well as have more upgrade options. Modern features like media rooms, extra-large closets and extra-large bathrooms and tubs are also more attainable in ground-up construction. In a used home, you rely largely on the previous resident”s tastes and technological whims, unless you plan to farm thousands into a remodeling and rewiring.

New-home designers can use new building materials such as glazed Energy Star windows, thicker insulation and other technology that will lower future energy costs for the owner. Most states now have minimum energy-efficiency requirements for new construction. Kitchens and laundry areas in new homes are designed to house more efficient energy-saving appliances. Older homes, unless they have undergone an energy retrofit, usually cost much more per square foot to air-condition and heat.

Builders have to follow very strict guidelines in new-homes and additions, especially in the West and Northwest, where earthquake safety standards must be observed. In general, new homes are usually more fire-safe and better accommodating of new security and garage-door systems.

Older homes can be better judged for their quality and timeless beauty. New homes that now possess a smooth veneer might reveal the use of substandard building materials or shoddy workmanship over time.

As you can see there are advantages and dis-advantages to each, but it really comes down to what fits you and what you are looking for in a home.

What is a broker?
An agent who is authorized to open and run his/her own agency. All real estate offices have one principal broker.
How can I avoid private mortgage insurance?
The easiest way to avoid PMI is by putting 20% down payment; however, PMI can also be avoided if you only have 5% or 10% for the down payment. The way to accomplish this is via a first and second mortgage combination commonly referred to as 80/10/10^s or 80/15/5^s.

These two methods combine a first mortgage lien for 80% of the home price with a second mortgage lien for either 10% or 15% of the home price leaving the remaining 5% or 10% as the down payment. Because the first lien is at the magical 80% loan=to-value, there is no PMI required, even though a second mortgage is being |piggybacked| onto the financing thus allowing for the lessor down payment.

While the second lien terms are not as attractive as first lien rates, the second mortgage is still home mortgage interest and thus deductible as such on your federal tax return where PMI is insurance and offers no deduction.

What is the difference between being prequalified and preapproved for a loan?
If you’re prequalified it means that you POTENTIALLY could get a loan for the amount stated to you, assuming that all of the information you provide to the bank is accurate and true. This is not as strong as a preapproval.

If you’re preapproved, it means that you have undergone the extensive financial background check, which includes looking at your credit history, previous tax returns and verifying your employment – and the lender is willing to give you a loan, basically meaning you’re approved!

You will usually be provided an accurate figure which shows the maximum amount that you are approved for. Most sellers prefer buyers that have been preapproved because they know that there will not be any problems with the purchase of their home.

How is interest calculated on a mortgage loan?
Most mortgages originated today calculate interest in arrears, unlike consumer loans which calculate interest to the date of payment receipt. As an example, when borrowers pay their February mortgage payments, they are paying the January interest. This method of calculating interest is based on a 360 day year in which each month has 30 days.

If You’re a Landlord with Questions, We’ve Got Answers

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Check out our free eBook, “Landlord Tips: Making the Most of Your Rental Property.” This eBook will help you:

~Understand how to increase your profits
~Learn how to avoid common landlord pitfalls
~Discover the value a Tampa property manager can bring
~How Landlords Must Hold Escrow
~Earning Positive Cash Flow
~Commanding Top Dollar for Your Rental
~Maintenance and Inspections
~Why You Need Landlord Insurance
~Finding Tenants with Hoffman Realty

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