5 Thing to Consider Before Listing Your Home as a Short Term Rental

As the march into winter gets underway, a lot of people are already starting to plan their spring and summer vacations. Oh, they’ll go somewhere sunny, or to a fantastic resort or maybe, if you’re lucky, your house.

They might as well, you’re going to be going on that fantastic cruise after all. Besides, you’ve heard such good things about being an AirBnB host. Your guests will end up paying for most of your trip, it’s totally win-win.

Isn’t it?

Short Term Rentals and You: The Tip of the Iceberg

Using your personal home, in whole or in part, as a short-term rental can certainly help pay the bills, but the truth is that short-term rentals also have huge issues you have to consider. It’s not as easy as listing on AirBnB and hoping for the best. You’ll need to do considerable legwork before getting started, otherwise you may find yourself in a lot of trouble and with expensive problems that eat all your profit.

Still, it can be a solution for some homeowners. Before you list, make sure you’ve considered these five things that might complicate your situation:

Does your mortgage allow you to rent the property without penalty? Many loan programs that help people buy with a low downpayments have restrictions on renting the building. If the short-term rental you’re offering was purchased with you as an owner-occupant, there is likely language in your agreement that spells out what constitutes a breach by turning your house into an “investment property.” Generally, if you rent your property for more than 14 days in a year, you risk having to face the music.

Despite what many websites may say about a lack of punishment for using your home as a rental when it goes against your mortgage agreement, breaching this agreement is serious business. Your mortgage likely has an acceleration clause that explains under what conditions your loan will essentially be revoked, with the entire balance due immediately. If you can’t cough up those hundreds of thousands of dollars, your bank will foreclose.

Find this paperwork, then scour it (and have a friend or three take a look, too) before you move any further. You should have gotten a copy at closing, check the packet the closing company sent you home with.

Do you have the right Insurance coverage? Even if your mortgage lender is ok with your using your place as a vacation rental, you’re still going to need the blessing of your insurance company. Although places like AirBnB claim to offer insurance, the word on the street is that it’s very hard to convince to pay out on claims.

Don’t risk it, talk to your agent about the best way to cover your home and property. You may want to add a comprehensive insurance policy that will cover pretty much anything, including slips and falls, or your agent may advise you simply increase your current coverage.

What do your neighbors think? The number of articles that have been written about neighbors pushed beyond the brink by AirBnB and other short-term rental guests is staggering. Even if your homeowners association and zoning allows for short-term rentals (check with your HOA and planning and zoning), if your neighbors are becoming perturbed because your guests are real jerks, you may have bigger problems on your hands.

Check your zoning, then talk to your neighbors about your goals with the short-term rental, including the timeframe in which you intend to have guests and for how long they’re likely to stay. Starting a conversation with your neighbors about your vacation rental plans before things turn into a dumpster fire can make having an AirBnB-listed property less of a dramatic situation.

It’s also important to check with your municipality about how long a guest can stay before they become a bonafide renter. In many areas, a “guest” automatically turns into a renter if they occupy the property for 30 consecutive days. You’re then assumed to have a month-to-month rental agreement, which means that you will have to actually evict them if they refuse to go quietly.

Can you refinance your property? This is a tricky question, especially with rates on the rise. Still, you may need to refinance at some point, even if it’s not today. The bad news is that many lenders won’t count the AirBnB income you’ve generated when calculating your debt to income ratios.

Luckily, there are a few banks that are capable of dealing with AirBnB income properties. Even if your lender is open to a refinance, you may be forced into a commercial loan because you rent your property out too often, effectively making it an investment property in the eyes of the bank. If you purchased using a loan eligible for a streamline refinance, you may not have to explain the AirBnB stuff at all.

Do you really want a rental? There are so many people out there that believe owning investment property is key to a better retirement, increased wealth and easy peasy income.

Owning rentals, especially short-term rentals, is a lot of hard work. From stocking consumables like soap and toilet paper to keeping things in good repair, doing background checks on applicants and keeping your taxes straight, it’s not a low-stress investment. This is why so many property owners rely on property managers to handle the day-to-day stuff.

At the end of the day, even if your PM is doing everything right, you’ll have a decent work load of your own. If you’re not all in on owning a rental, don’t do it.

AirBnB Team, Assemble!

Getting all your AirBnB ducks in a row should also include finding home pros to help in case there’s an emergency. Don’t stress, you can assemble your whole team, from a commercial insurance agent to plumbers and property management, in just a few clicks. Log into your HomeKeepr community to find the very best, most recommended experts in your area. They’ll help you ensure that your short-term vacation rental experience goes smoothly.

Our Newest Tehaleh Listings!

If you have been waiting for the perfect move in ready  home in Tehaleh we have several that are just gorgeous and NEW on the market.

MLS #1390727
 4 Bedroom / 2.25 Bathroom / 2,310 sqft / 4,500 sqft lot

This light filled home with a modern touch features an enormous kitchen with quartz counter tops, gas range & overlooks the great room w/ gas fireplace & back yard.

Also on the main level is an office / den. Upstairs you’ll find the huge master suite with walk in closet, laundry room with sink & cabinets and 3 more bedrooms. Back yard is fully fenced and features a patio to enjoy nice days.

For More info on this home please visit:   http://18451138thste.ihousenet.com/mlsmax/home.html

MLS # 1394681
 4 Bedroom / 3.5 Bathroom / 3,128 sqft / 5,265 sqft lot

This exquisite home features a mini-master suite on the main, fully appointed kitchen with double ovens, gas range and undercabinet lighting.

Master suite is a dream come true with a closet that is big enough to be a bedroom, fireplace and 5 piece bath. Upstairs you’ll also find a huge media room, balcony to enjoy the views and 2 more beds. A/C, Surround sound & Hunter Douglas Duet shades throughout entire home. Level back yard with covered patio and gas fireplace.

For More info on this home please visit: http://13610193rdavenueeast.ihousenet.com/mlsmax/home.htm

MLS # 1386209
 4 Bedroom / 2.75 Bathroom / 2,896 sqft / 7,380 sqft lot

Meticulously kept resale in Tehaleh! This stunning 4 bedroom, 2.75 bathroom home on green belt will wow you! Enormous kitchen features double ovens, oversized island, pantry and loads of counter & cabinet space!

Rich wood floors grace the main floor except for main floor den (currently used as a guest bed). Huge loft provides extra wiggle room. Large covered patio with gas fireplace is the perfect spot to enjoy the natural forest in your fenced back yard. Quiet dead end street close to trails, parks and more!

For More info on this home please visit: http://13517193rdavenueeast.ihousenet.com/mlsmax/home.htm

7 Things to Consider When Choosing New Windows

The first few years of owning your home mean discovering lots of things about it. Every house is different and some almost seem like they have a personality of their own — which isn’t too surprising since they have literally thousands of individual parts that can combine their own quirks in nearly endless ways. Although plenty of these combos create something beautiful, it’s never a guarantee.

Take your windows, for example. As your home shifts and ages, your windows can end up being a huge source of drafts and thermal loss. Sure, you can weatherstrip them and recapture some of that warmth, but ultimately, window technology will leave you behind if you put off replacing those windows for too long.

Windows: Here’s What You Need to Know

Shopping for windows is kind of like shopping for a car. It’s a big investment, you may not know a whole lot about what you’re buying, but you absolutely know that you need to replace your old one(s). You don’t have to go it alone, though. You can take this list of seven things to consider and consult it before pulling out your Visa or Mastercard.

  1. Window configuration and features. Not only do windows come in a huge variety of shapes and sizes, they also come with lots of different features. Simply matching the new windows to those of your existing ones is generally a good bet, but features that newer windows offer, like double hung windows with tilt-in glass sections, can give you added functionality inside the original framework.
  2. Frame materials. Depending on your window budget, you may have a pretty wide selection of materials to choose between. Vinyl and composite windows tend to be popular choices since they neither sweat nor require a lot of maintenance throughout their lifetimes, but other materials like aluminum and wood are commonly used in frames, too.
  3. U-Factor: The U-Factor tells you just how well the window insulates by reducing the rate of heat transfer. You’ll find windows with U-Factors from about 0.25 to 1.25 Btu/h-ft²-°F.. Choose the lowest value that fits reasonably into your budget because the lower the value, the better it’ll insulate.
  4. Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC): Like the U-Factor, the SHGC is a measurement of how well a window insulates. But this time, we’re talking about how hot the sun makes the window and then how much of that transfers into your home. SHGC, in short, is how well the window blocks incoming heat. Interestingly enough, both ends of this figure can be of use to different kinds of homeowners. If you own a house that uses passive solar heat, you’re going to want to take advantage of this property and go for the highest number you can find (on a scale of 0 to 1). Homeowners with more traditional setups will want the lowest number their money will buy.
  5. Air Leakage (AL). Those drafty drafts are often caused by a property known as air leakage. Windows are tested for just how much air passes through the joints while in the factory. The less air leakage, the better, obviously. Industry standards require an AL at or below 0.3 cf-m/ft².
  6. Visible Transmittance (VT). Because windows are full of neat and precise measures these days, it’s possible to have a window that blocks outside heat without blocking all that precious light. The visible transmittance is the figure that tells you just how bright your room will be after this window goes in. A higher number (on a 0 to 1 scale) means more light.
  7. Condensation Resistance. Although it’s a much smaller concern than the four performance ratings above, condensation resistance should be taken into consideration before you pony up the window dough. Measured on a scale of 0 to 100, the highest figures resist condensation better than those lower down.

What Do Windows Cost?

Of all the possible non-answers to this question there could be, this might be the worst. Windows cost varies widely by size, material, insulating factor and number needed for your home. As aggravating an answer as that may be, a quick flip through your favorite home improvement store catalog will back it up.

A joint report from the National Association of Realtors and the National Association of the Remodeling Industry estimates that replacing old windows with new vinyl windows will run a homeowner around $18,975 or about $35,000 for wood windows.

Since this report is more about return on investment, though, the additional data provided indicates that your money is well-spent: 79 percent of the cost is recovered at the sale for vinyl windows and 57 percent of the cost of wooden windows comes back to your pocket.

Need Help Choosing and Installing Those New Windows?

Don’t worry, your HomeKeepr family has it covered. Just log in and check out the window installers that your Real Estate Pro has recommended for you! You know you can trust them because your Real Estate Pro has already built a solid relationship on your behalf. They’ll even help you pick your new windows if you can’t decide which to buy.

7 Tips to Make Your Relocation Easier

You just found out that you’re being relocated by your job, or maybe you were offered a job that was too good to be true in another state. Either way, you’ve got a big move ahead of you and there’s a lot to think about before you even start. Moving far away from home can ultimately be a hugely positive experience, even if it is a bit of a hectic process.

You can do this, though. Roll up your sleeves, grab a box and get to it.

There’s Plenty to Consider When Relocating

Your big move is a big deal, don’t think it’s not. You’re going to need all the help you can get, so before you do anything else, contact a Realtor with a relocation specialty in the city where you’ll be landing. You’re going to need someone who knows the lay of the land and can help you find the kind of home you really need, as well as helping you arrange financing and ensuring that everything closes on schedule.

Of course, housing is only a small part of a bigger relocation picture. It’s a stressful time for man and beast alike, but these seven tips will help you survive the experience:

#1. Have plenty of money available. Of course, you know you’ll have to pay something for housing and put down a deposit to turn on the utilities at your new place, but there are often additional expenses that you might not be thinking about right now. For example, will you need help with childcare while you’re packing? Is it likely that you’ll need to stop on the trip to spend the night in a hotel?

Plan for your expenses, then add as much as you can to the pool. The more money you have to work with, the less you can stress if an emergency were to occur.

On this same note, be sure to ask your employer how any moving or signing bonuses will be handled. If you’re counting on that money to make the move possible, you could be in a sad state if your company waits until after you’ve started the job to pay this bonus out.

#2. Get everybody on the same page. Moving to a new place can give the average person plenty of room to let their imagination run wild. It’s important that you and your family get on the same page with respect to the details of your move and stay focused on it.

Have a family meeting, or a chat over dinner, and write down what everybody hopes to get out of the move. Then have a sober discussion about how many of those things are realistic.

Once all of that is knocked out, draw up a plan and give everyone a copy of it so there are no misunderstandings. This can be a time when emotions run high and exhaustion makes people do or say things they might not otherwise, having a neutral document to refer back to during arguments can help cooler heads prevail.

#3. Prepare kids for stressors. Even the most hardy of children is likely to have some kind of serious emotional reaction to moving from your current home. When they’re old enough to understand that you’re also moving far, far from their hometown it can get downright ugly.

Your child is going to understandably need to mourn the loss of their friends and nearby family members. But you can make moving easier for children of every age by trying to maintain some kind of routine during the run-up to moving day and maintain it as best you can until everyone is settled in.

#4. Give yourself twice as much time as you think it’ll take for pre-moving tasks. If you’re not planning on hiring a mover, or even if you’re doing your own packing to help the cost of the move, it’s important that you give yourself plenty of time. Decluttering, especially, can be difficult when you’re trying to figure out just what will fit on the moving truck. Depending on how quickly you have to get to your new job, you can get help from charities with thrift stores by asking them to pick up your used, but clean, furniture, excess dishes and pans and even fun bric-a-brac to save you trips back and forth. Plan your time and stick to the plan.

#5. Visit your family doctor one more time. Having a final visit with your doctor gives you an opportunity to discuss anything that has been problematic for you, as well as getting your medicine refilled so you’ll not run out before you find a new PCP. This is a great time to ask about getting copies of your records, too! Make sure to do the same for your children and pets.

#6. Stop by the shop. While you’re getting your own check up, don’t forget about the vehicle or vehicles that you’re taking with you. Drop in at your local mechanic, the one you use for everything and trust to do the job right, and have them inspect and repair anything that looks like it needs to be addressed. Ask if you need new tires, spark plugs or a tune-up. There’s nothing as stressful as getting into a car that’s fully packed and full of kids or pets only to discover that your car has a bunch of symbols on the dash lit up that were never lit up before.

#7. Keep your eye on the prize. Preparing for a move when you have to do it all in one go can be amazingly stressful on body and soul, which is why it’s ultra important that you remember the why of all of it. You’re moving for a better opportunity, good schools, a chance to use your degree for once — whatever your reason, it’s yours and it’ll help if you keep that front and center.

Need Help Packing, Unpacking or Transporting Your Treasures?

Just log in to the HomeKeepr community, where you’ll find all kinds of home pros, from movers to Realtors with relocation specialties. No more digging around the web for reviews on individual companies, HomeKeepr runs on recommendations — and if your future mover is highly recommended by your current Realtor, that’s one less thing to worry about.

Exciting News!

We thought this was such a great idea, the Point Defiance Zoo is always doing such great things with our community!

Have any old or burned-out holiday lights? Point Defiance Zoo take them Nov. 23 – Jan. 12! They are teaming up with Girl Scouts of Western Washington again this year to keep thousands of strings of lights out of the landfill. Learn how to get your lights recycle-ready at www.pdza.org/zoolights. ♻️ #AmericaRecyclesDay


In other SUPER exciting news….

Celebrating our 100th, I mean 103rd, home sold and family served here in Tehaleh!

We got so focused on what it is we do that we didn’t realize we missed our 100th closing! No one knows Tehaleh real estate like we do! We are so thankful that we have been able to help so many people find their dream homes in this beautiful community.

New Tehaleh Homes Available!!

We have two brand new listings in Tehaleh, both are beautiful homes!!

18613 138th Street East

Welcome home to this beautiful, move-in ready house in the gorgeous community of Tehaleh! There is SO much storage through out this incredibly well thought out floor plan it would blow your mind.




 It has a bedroom on the main floor, huge bonus room upstairs, HUGE master bedroom with a closet that is to die for! You can enjoy the cool evenings on the covered porch with a fireplace or in the family room snuggling in front of the fire.


19213 134th street east

Beautiful landscaping welcomes you to the front doors of this meticulously maintained home. With nearly 3,000 sq ft it includes something for everyone – 4 bedrooms upstairs, huge bonus room, a bedroom on the main floor with a 3/4 bath.









Expansive concrete patio with covered porch and fireplace, 3 car garage, A/C, & all situated on a greenbelt in the gorgeous community of Tehaleh! Very close to Sprouts Holler park, a trail head where you can enjoy 10+ miles of walking trails & a short walk to the community Cafe.

Tehaleh Homes This Week

Check out our newest listing in Tehaleh, it’s GORGEOUS!! 🏡 Talk about move-in ready


18445 Village Parkway E

Nothing says welcome home like the beautiful front porch of this four bedroom home!





Once you make your way through the front doors the open floor plan greets you with a large dining room, main floor office, large family room, GORGEOUS kitchen & even a mud room at the back door.

This home also offers outdoor living with a gas fireplace. And when the days are too warm enjoy the tranquility inside with the cool AC and expansive natural light from all of the windows!!


Community Clean Up and Garage Sale

National Trails Day

Summer weather has officially arrived and that means it’s time to get outside and enjoy the beautiful trails of Tehaleh.

There is no better way to spend a lazy afternoon than walking the scenic nature paths around our community. But in order to keep those trails beautiful and clean we must all lend a helping hand.

That’s why Tehaleh is promoting National Trails Day next weekend, encouraging residents to explore the trails armed with garbage bag and grabber so that we can kick the summer off with clean, cared for trails.

To participate, all you have to do is stop by The Post where you can grab a list of trails and a courtesy garbage clean-up kit, provided by Friends of the Tehaleh Trails. Fill up the bag with family and friends then drop it back off at The Post when you’re done.

This is a great way to get outside and give back to the community we all love to call home.  A full list of trails and parks can be found here.

Another event coming up next weekend is the Tehaleh Community Garage Sale.
Friday 1st-Sunday 3rd, 9:00am-5:00pm daily.

Tehaleh Homeowners are welcome to post signs or balloons on your street corners directing traffic to your homes the weekend of the sale.

Advertising will go out to the nearby communities of Bonney Lake, Sumner, Orting and Tacoma (Tacoma News Tribune and online) and on Craig’s List, as well as on all of the major garage sale websites and posters will be up at local business and signs placed on the roads.

That means there will be a lot of foot traffic making it a great opportunity to easily get rid of unused items sitting around your home (and make a little cash on the side too!)

A Quick Reminder!

The Tehaleh Annual Membership Meeting is coming up fast. The meeting is on June 27th and will be held at 6:00pm at the Donald Eismann Elementary School.

We hope to see you there!

Crush at Tehaleh is Nearly Here

Crush at Tehaleh

Saturday, May 19th at 4-9pm

Crush at Tehaleh is a beer and wine tasting event with a twist.

The event is designed to promote local vendors and model homes while providing a night of fun and drinks for the participants. Hosted at several different locations all within the Tehaleh community, you and your friends can enjoy a night out without ever leaving the neighborhood.

A shuttle service will ferry you between business locations and model homes, each offering samples of wine and beer while you browse.

Every pour location will have a vendor on site with their products ready for purchase, participating vendors include:

Amy’s Plunder Design Jewelry
Shea Homes (Trilogy)
HC Homes
MainVue Homes
Optimal HVAC
Liz Keeps It Real Estate
LuLaRoe Cindy Cagle
Cruise Planners Tahoma Travel
Posh & Pine
My Closet Envy
Makeup My Darlings
Arxegoz Eats
The Marketing Desk

Crush at Tehaleh is exclusive to residents making it the perfect event for a fun night out while meeting new people. Tickets can be purchased online before the 19th for $20 through Chamber Collective, or on the day of the event for $25.

Ticket holders will receive a commemorative glass, 6 drink tickets (good for a 2oz pour of wine or beer) and a take home event guide highlighting the participating businesses and sponsors.

Announcing the Tehaleh Online Store!

You and your family can finally represent your love for your community through branded clothing and accessories–now available at the Tehaleh Online Store.

Merchandise is provided by a local Seattle company and includes shirts, hats, sweaters and more, all with the official Tehaleh logo design.

Check out the new Tehaleh Online Store today!

Beautiful Home On Corner Lot!

Beautiful open concept home on corner lot located in the desirable community of Tehaleh.

The entry leads you to the cozy family room with fireplace and expansive windows allow for an abundance of natural light.


The main floor features an office, gourmet kitchen, mud-room with bench/coat rack, tech-space & a dining room with a view of the greenbelt.

Upper level has a loft, large utility room with sink, & 4 bedrooms. Large master with tiled bathroom, large walk in closet & linen closet. CENTRAL- A/C.


mls #1288031