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A SOUTHWEST FLORIDA GUIDE TO SEASONAL RENTALS

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Have you always dreamed of living in paradise for the winter but need a little guidance and assistance to help find a great place to call home?   Let us be the first to welcome you!  We are here to help and give you a little bit of information as you begin searching for a great seasonal rental property here in lovely Lee and Collier Counties. Do you know what the process is to apply and to rent a property?  What kind of restrictions for pets or vehicles does each property have?  We get asked these questions daily and so much more so we figured it would make it easy and break it down for you.  Enjoy!

Seasonal Rental:

These are properties located throughout southwest Florida that are rented for 6 months or less.  The most in demand time period for these rentals are for January-March which is considered “high season”.  However these homes can be offered “off season” usually for a discounted rate during our slower summer months from May- December.  These homes are offered turnkey which means they are fully furnished and have all the linens, kitchen ware, etc.  All you have to do is bring your suitcase and clothes!  Owner paid electricity, cable and water are included in the rental of these homes.  Sometimes an owner will have a certain electrical budget allowance and the tenant is responsible for anything over and beyond that (very common in single family homes that have a pool with an electric pool heater).

The Process to Rent a Seasonal Rental:

First, call the Mike Z Team at 239-325-6490 and we will connect with you right away!  We are the southwest Florida area experts in helping you find the perfect rental property for you!  Actually there is a little more to it than that! We use the same process with all of our perspective tenants each and every time to make it easy for you and so we can quickly assess your needs/wants.  We will go over and gather the following information from you:

Contact information: We will gather your name, phone number and email address to best help you.

Move in Date: As mentioned, many of the owners are looking for a 3 month commitment on a lease but we can also help you search for monthly rentals as well.

Price Range: We ask what the price range you are looking in.  In rentals, we stay within your price range and don’t go outside of it as your budget is important.

Bedrooms and Bathrooms: We will ask how many bedrooms and bathrooms you need.

Condo or a Single Family Home: We will also refine this to see if you need a garage or a pool or certain features that you must have in your rental.

Preferred Location and Community Amenities: We offer many different styles of living in southwest Florida from luxury beachfront, to country club living and high rise condos and single family homes on tree lined streets to just name a few.  Knowing what you want will help us narrow down the search as well.  We can also make suggestions based on your budget and lifestyle. We also have customer’s that request to live in a specific school zone or to live within a certain number of miles from work or the beach, etc.  We can quickly set parameters in our MLS system, that is only available to Realtors, that allows us to be very specific.

Pets: We will also ask you about the type of pet(s) you own and how many pounds each weigh and what type of breed, if you own a dog.  The governing documents in many of our HOA communities in southwest Florida have restrictions for size, type, number or breeds or do not allow pets altogether.  Even if the community does allow pets, the owner of the home you are renting can prohibit or place restrictions as well.  We will be able to find out quickly what the rules are for you as many of these are not posted online. Most rentals that do allow pets will require pre-approval from the owner and a non refundable pet deposit.

Sign our Tenant and Realtor Loyalty Agreement: We are here to help you and as such we will search for any and all property’s that would be a fit for you whether it is on the MLS, through our own Mike Z listings or other agent’s pocket listings.  When you work with multiple different sales associates from multiple companies, this does not enhance or increase the chances of finding a property.  Our promise is to stay in communication with you and to return calls/emails promptly.  That’s why you are working with the Mike Z Team and reading this blog because of our excellent customer service.  We are simply protecting our relationship together and asking you not to directly call other agent’s and let us do that for you which greatly increases your chances of getting the right property for you.  We have a quick and easy form that we will send over for you and one of our agent’s to sign and then we will be on our way!

Look at Properties Online:  After your agent from the Mike Z Team was gone over all of the information above and has a signed copy of our loyalty agreement, you begin the most fun and important part – looking at properties!  Our agent will do the best to identify properties within all of your parameters and will send over suitable listings for you to consider.  They are all subject to availability so we can not guarantee every property we send to you is available.  Our goal is to vet the properties for you the best we can and we ask for you to communicate back to us which properties are of interest.  Our job is to call the other agent (if it is not a Mike Z Team listing) and find out the exact availability and terms of the rental property.

The Paperwork and fees!   If you are satisfied with the terms and price, we will get you an application to lease the property.  This may or may not have an application fee.  Upon acceptance, the lease will be written and signed by you and the owner and usually requires a deposit.  As many of our homes in southwest Florida are located within homeowners associations (HOA’s) they too require that you fill out an application.  Most seasonal rental properties will be paid in full 30 days prior to taking occupancy of the home.  Some other fees generally associated with renting a seasonal property include: HOA application fee, pet deposit fee if applicable, transfer fee, rental office application fee, credit/background check fee, departure and cleaning fee, Mike Z Rental fee ($150), and golf and social membership transfer fee, if applicable.  The price varies from property to property and association to association but your agent on the Mike Z Team being an expert will quickly tell you exactly what you can expect to pay for fees.

Taxes: Any property that is rented for a period of 6 months or less will be subject to 10% sales tax if in Collier County (Naples area) and 11% in Lee County (Bonita Springs, Estero, Ft. Myers area).

The finish Line! After all of this, we know it sounds like a lot but we really make it simple for you, you get the keys, and move in!  Congratulations and welcome to your new winter home!  And don’t worry, we won’t forget about you. We will be in touch to see how we can help you whether you are planning to rent again next season or if you would like to purchase a home, we at Mike Z Team are here to help!

 

 

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A Southwest Florida Guide for Annual Rentals

Have you always dreamed of living in paradise but need a little guidance and assistance to help find a great place to call home?   Let us be the first to welcome you!  We are here to help and give you a little bit of information as you begin searching for a great rental property here in lovely Lee and Collier Counties. Do you know what the process is to apply and to rent a property?  What kind of restrictions for pets or vehicles does each property have?  We get asked these questions daily and so much more so we figured it would make it easy and break it down for you.  Enjoy!

Annual Rental:

These are rental properties that are rented for 6 months and a day or more but are generally for a term for 12 months.  If you plan on living, working and renting full time in southwest Florida, this is the type of rental for you. Annual rentals generally are rented as unfurnished which means you bring all of your own furniture when you move in and take it all with you when you move out.  Sometimes you will see a furnished annual rental where furniture is included with the home but generally this is not the case.

The Process to Rent an Annual Rental:

OK great, you’ve found a couple of homes that you really, really like and they are within your budget, now what?  Call us!  Actually there is a little more to it than that.  We use the same process with all of our perspective tenants each and every time to make it easy for you and so we can quickly assess your needs/wants.  We will go over the following with you:

Contact information: We will gather your name, phone number and email address to best help you.

Move in Date: Each property will be different when the owner is looking to have it rented by.  As a general rule when looking for an annual rental, you should start searching about 1-2 months prior to needing to move in but no earlier than that as inventory comes and goes very quickly.

Price Range: We ask what the price range you are looking in.  In rentals, we stay within your price range and don’t go outside of it as your budget is important.

Bedrooms and Bathrooms: We will ask how many bedrooms and bathrooms you need.

Condo or a Single Family Home: We will also refine this to see if you need a garage or a pool or certain features that you must have in your rental.

Preferred Location and Community Amenities: We offer many different styles of living in southwest Florida from luxury beachfront, to country club living and high rise condos and single family homes on tree lined streets to just name a few.  Knowing what you want will help us narrow down the search as well.  We can also make suggestions based on your budget and lifestyle. We also have customer’s that request to live in a specific school zone or to live within a certain number of miles from work or the beach, etc.  We can quickly set parameters in our MLS system, that is only available to Realtors, that allows us to be very specific.

Vehicles: We will also ask how many and what kind of vehicles you own.  Some work vehicles are prohibited to be parked in deed restricted communities and there can be rules about overnight parking depending on location.  Agents on our team will be able to quickly find out this information which most of the time is not posted online.

Pets: We will also ask you about the type of pet(s) you own and how many pounds each weigh and what type of breed, if you own a dog.  The governing documents in many of our HOA communities in southwest Florida have restrictions for size, type, number or breeds or do not allow pets altogether.  Even if the community does allow pets, the owner of the home you are renting can prohibit or place restrictions as well.  We will be able to find out quickly what the rules are for you as many of these are not posted online. Most rentals that do allow pets will require pre-approval from the owner and a non refundable pet deposit.

Credit and Background Check: We will ask if you know what your credit score is and if not you will more than likely be required to have one done when you apply for a rental.  The same goes for a background check.  We are here to help and if you have a credit problem but can show us great work history, personal and rental references they sometimes carry more weight depending on the situation and home.

Sign our Tenant and Realtor Loyalty Agreement: We are here to help you and as such we will search for any and all property’s that would be a fit for you whether it is on the MLS, through our own Mike Z listings or other agent’s pocket listings.  When you work with multiple different sales associates from multiple companies, this does not enhance or increase the chances of finding a property.  Our promise is to stay in communication with you and to return calls/emails promptly.  That’s why you are working with the Mike Z Team and reading this blog because of our excellent customer service.  We are simply protecting our relationship together and asking you not to directly call other agent’s and let us do that for you which greatly increases your chances of getting the right property for you.  We have a quick and easy form that we will send over for you and one of our agent’s to sign and then we will be on our way!

The Next Step, Seeing the Property.  We will then schedule showings of this and/or other properties where we meet you there to look at them so you can find out if it is a good fit for you. After you select the property, we will help with all the necessary paperwork to make this home yours.  Well, for a year at least!

The Paperwork!  Your favorite thing to do!  Well, it’s all part of life and an integral part of the process of renting a home.  And guess what?  If the home is a Mike Z Team rental listing, you simply go online to complete all the paper work!  If not, here is what you can expect to do.  You will fill out an application to rent the home that includes a background and credit check usually for each applicant.  A fee will apply for this.  You will include your references here and all the good stuff such as who will be living with you (spouse, kids, etc), your income and employer etc.  After the owner has looked this over and approved the application then they will send over the lease.  We will review it to make sure all the terms we discussed are in there before you sign.  After this, if the home is located in a homeowners association (HOA) you will fill out an application to live within the HOA, a fee will be required for this.  There could be a few other fees such as a transfer fee, or an amenities transfer fee (such as if golf membership can be transferred).  After each check is written than you will pay the security deposit and first and last months rent (if applicable).  After all of this, we know it sounds like a lot but we really make it simple for you, you get the keys, and move in!  Congratulations and welcome to your new home!  And don’t worry, we won’t forget about you.  We will be in touch to see how we can help you whether you are planning to renew your lease in a year or would like to purchase a home, we at Mike Z Team are here to help!

 

 

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