Blue Ribbon Homes works to achieve the highest professionalism in Property Management Services.
Our mission is to provide quality service in property management and real estate in the Knoxville area and surrounding communities, demonstrating integrity and professionalism. Our company has been operating since the year 2000 and is actively involved in the Knoxville area and surrounding communities. We take pride in our industry, and we further implement guidelines and policies of several organizations. We are active members of the National Association of Residential Property Managers, NARPM, the National Association of Realtors, NAR®, the Knoxville Area Association of Realtors®, the Apartment Association of Greater Knoxville, the Tennessee Apartment Association and the National Apartment Association.
Blue Ribbon Homes staff/personnel
We have an experienced & professional staff to assist you. What Blue Ribbon Homes has found effective for servicing tenants is “Teamwork.” Together Everyone Achieves More.
Management/Office Team: Blue Ribbon Homes will assign a management team to your account, consisting of a Property Manager and Assistant Property Manager. They focus on showing your property, processing applications, renting, managing all the facets of tenancy, and handling the details when the tenant vacates the property.
They also handle the everyday business of telephones, taking messages, accepting applications, office details, preparing documents, and coordinating repairs.
Maintenance Staff: Blue Ribbon Homes will assign an experienced maintenance supervisor to access, repair and/or oversee any work that may be necessary for your property at an additional hourly rate. He/She works closely with the management team to assure communication and cost are followed through in the best interest of the property, the owner and the tenant.
Answers Regarding Funds
When you enter into a management agreement, Blue Ribbon Homes establishes an account for you and your property. Blue Ribbon Homes recognizes the importance of accurately collecting and disbursing funds. The bookkeeping program used by Blue Ribbon Homes is specialized software designed to handle the many facets of property management and accurate record keeping, and complies with the requirements of the Tennessee Department of Real Estate.
Blue Ribbon Homes holds your account in a trust fund mandated by the state of Tennessee. Blue Ribbon Homes accounts for each owner’s funds separately in the designated Third Party Account and does not co-mingle funds with broker monies, following the State of Tennessee requirements.
Blue Ribbon Homes sends monthly statements directly to owners. This statement outlines all income and expenses on your account. If you have difficulty reading your monthly statement, please contact your management team. We are happy to assist you and answer your questions.
Disbursement of monthly funds
Blue Ribbon Homes disburses available funds to owners on the 15th day of each month. If this day falls on the weekend, Blue Ribbon Homes issues funds on the next business day. A company check is then disbursed directly to the owner accompanying their monthly statement. It is vital to accurately post rents, pay vendors, and disburse funds for your account. Therefore, it is vital that Blue Ribbon Homes adhere to this schedule to ensure servicing every owner’s account.
Renting Your Property
Preparing to rent the property
When prospective tenants view your vacancy, Blue Ribbon Homes wants the property to look its best and compete with area rentals. A property maintenance report will be conducted and the Blue Ribbon Homes management team will contact you to discuss the details of your vacant property and any necessary maintenance.
Setting the rent
Supply and demand determines rent. If there are multiple rentals available around your property, it is necessary to be very competitive. If very few are “for rent” in the same area, it can make it easier to rent the property. Markets change and Blue Ribbon Homes advises owners on the “current rental market.” How long will the property be vacant? This is the most commonly asked question Blue Ribbon Homes receives from owners. Unfortunately, there is no way to predict how long a property will remain on the market, even in the best market conditions. However, Blue Ribbon Homes works diligently to rent the property as quickly as possible. What is important to remember is that the most important objective is to have “a quality tenant.”
Blue Ribbon Homes, or any other property management company, can rent properties “quickly” if they do not have standards for obtaining good tenancy. However, bad tenants will only create more expense and another unwanted vacancy; therefore, waiting for the “right tenant” is worth the additional time it can take to rent the property.
To find good tenants quickly, Blue Ribbon Homes wants the greatest exposure for your property. Daily newspapers and other publications used to be the dominant method of advertising several years ago, and although they are still used occasionally, their value has greatly diminished.
Blue Ribbon Homes advertises on over 15 different internet sites in addition to the Blue Ribbon Homes website. The speed of advertising on the internet and ease of access by prospective tenants helps your property receive tremendous exposure.
Depending on the location of your property, Blue Ribbon Homes will display “For Rent” signs prominently. Signs can promote calls but they also notify thieves the house is vacant.
Showings and applications
The Blue Ribbon Homes leasing professional conducts showings for each vacant unit. We arrange showing times for your property in advance when a prospective tenant contacts our office to arrange an appointment. When prospective tenants see the property, the leasing professional answers any questions and distributes applications. Applications are available in the Blue Ribbon Homes office, at the property showings, and on the Blue Ribbon Homes website.
Processing Tenant Applications
Thorough screening is crucial to successful Property Management. Blue Ribbon Homes requires all applicants to fill out a detailed application and submit it for processing/approval. A credit check is NOT enough! Our company conducts a careful review of their credit, income, and tenant history or ownership.
All applicants must submit verifiable information on their income to show they can support the property. Rental history or previous home ownership is carefully checked. Cross-referencing all three areas – credit, tenant history, and income - provides the answers to qualify or disqualify prospective applicants.
The Tenant Move In
Rent and security deposits
Once approved, all applicants must pay in full, the first month’s rent, and a security deposit equal to one months rent. Blue Ribbon Homes does not allow “payments” on security deposits – we require all funds paid in full prior to renting the property. This eliminates prospective tenants who do NOT have the necessary funds for renting.
Once Blue Ribbon Homes receives funds, a thorough rental/lease agreement with the applicant is completed. The Blue Ribbon Homes maintenance addendum and all necessary addendums are included with this documentation.
All persons 18 and over, including adult children, are required to read and sign all rental/lease agreements. If the accepted applicants are a foreign nationality and cannot read and understand the documentation, they must supply an interpreter of legal age for signing the rental/lease agreements.
A vital part of the rental agreement is a detailed walk-though addendum performed with the tenant, documenting the condition of the property when they move in. Unless extenuating circumstances prevail, the Blue Ribbon Homes team completes the walkthrough with the tenant before the tenant takes possession of the property.
The walk-through documents the condition of the property. When the tenant moves out of the property, there is a sound basis for the security deposit refund. Blue Ribbon Homes also documents any irreversible damages with digital photos during the walkthrough with the tenants.
The best approach to maintenance is “preventative maintenance,” and this is the Blue Ribbon Homes policy. Before we rent your property, we look for ways to reduce future expenses by implementing some basic cost saving items. Often the minor expenditures on routine items save the most money. For example, using doorstops to prevent wall damage, replace hvac filters, checking appliances, testing smoke alarms, adjusting doors, window latches, deadbolts, tree trimming, gutter cleaning and more.
Prospective tenants appreciate knowing that from the beginning of their tenancy, the Blue Ribbon Homes/Owner expectations are to “care for the property.” This approach reduces tenant turnover, helps insure on-time rental payments and can prevent costly emergency maintenance issues. It is proven to increase the long term value of your asset.
Often people think no news is good news; this can be just the opposite. Instead, “delayed news can become very bad news.”
Therefore, in our tenant instructions, we require them to report all maintenance issues. For example, what is worse than finding out dry rot and ruined floor covering could have been prevented if the tenant had reported the leaking toilet in the bathroom? Avoiding major maintenance costs are certainly more favorable in such cases.
Consider the cost of repairs like holes behind doors, clogged heaters and airconditioners, appliance problems, dry rot, safety issues and more. Then of course, there are the major issues in a home such as the roof, the exterior condition of the building, carpeting, interior, and exterior paint, etc. When left to deteriorate, it usually means the owner must spend more in the future.
The Blue Ribbon Homes management team will contact owners regarding maintenance above the $250.00 minimum that is listed in the Blue Ribbon Homes Management contract, unless the situation is an emergency
When The Tenant Vacates
Tenant move out
Blue Ribbon Homes conducts a walk-through like the one performed when the tenant moved into the property. Blue Ribbon Homes records any maintenance required and discloses a list of damages to the vacating tenant. Digital photographs are taken when the tenant moves out to document the condition of the property and support any deductions from the security deposit.
After assessment of the tenant move out, Blue Ribbon Homes advises owners of any tenant damages or any maintenance required to re-rent the property.
Security deposit refunds
Proper handling of the security deposit refund is crucial. Any tenant deductions are determined in a timely manner, and a security deposit transmittal is prepared in accordance with state laws. Owners receive a copy of the transmittal with their monthly statement, showing any deductions and monies refunded.
A successful business relationship works both ways. Blue Ribbon Homes takes their management responsibilities seriously, and requests owners to do the same.
Owner responsibilities are:
Notify Blue Ribbon Homes of any ownership change or eminent owner change for the managed property.
Supply Blue Ribbon Homes with accurate information so we can service the management account properly.
Review statements monthly and notify Blue Ribbon Homes of any discrepancies found as soon as possible.
Support Fair Housing Laws and guidelines, as well as all necessary legislation.
Maintain a current insurance policy for their property.
Review their property insurance yearly and update as needed.
Exercise responsibility for required maintenance and the safety of their tenants.
Visit the property periodically and if an owner cannot perform this function, we request the owner assign a third party to represent them in this capacity.