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 Welcome to MW Real Estate Solutions and Olivia Homes!

 

Welcome to Midwest Real Estate Solutions and Olivia Homes, where we are not your typical real estate company.  What makes us different is simple.  We are committed to helping you, and your family in a very timely manner.  We work with homeowners that may be up against strict timelines, and may need to sell their property quickly.

 

Best of all, there are no surprises, just sound advice and professional service, backed by our commitment to excellence.  On top of that you will receive personal attention at each step of the process.

 

The biggest mistake we see homeowners make is that they do not explore all of their options and simply run out of time due to pressure and stress.  Pick up the phone and call us immediately to set up an information only appointment.

 

Call Midwest Real Estate Solutions and Olivia Homes at 1-800-HOPE-DAY

 

Our Mission

To better lives and communities through real estate education and proven real estate solutions.

 


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Recent Posts

Landscaping New Construction

Posted by on Mar 27, 2017 in Blog | 0 comments

Landscaping New Construction

One of the first reactions that many people have when they buy a home is to make it their own by redoing the landscape. However, that green grass is hiding many issues such as the wires, conduits, and pipes that crisscross the property. Therefore, landscaping new construction will need to be planned properly so that you don’t risk making a terrible mistake which might cost you plenty. Here are five tips that will help you landscape properly so that you get what you want without doing something you don’t want. Inspect the Land First You’ll need to get the lay of your landscape first before making any changes. This means if you plan on having a garden, choosing the sunny side of the property is a must along with proper drainage. You start by drawing out what you want and looking over the property at different times during the day to see where is the best location for your garden. What Do You Want? Once you know what you have, the next step is planning what you want. You’ll want to picture yourself five years from now looking over the landscape new construction and seeing what you want it to be. This means prioritizing what you want and adding changes every so often so that it meets your needs. Keep in mind that turning your entire backyard into party place may seem groovy now, but 10, 20, or 30 years from now you may want something else. Also, consider its sale value as part of your calculations. Ditch Unwanted Building Planting Builder plantings are one of those items that look great when you put them in, but not so great when you see someone else has done the same. Once you rid your property of the unwanted ones, you should only add new ones for trees that need root support or when set further away from the home. If you can avoid using them, do so. However, you may want to have one or two if they are well-suited to the task. Adding New Topsoil Naturally, you’ll want to improve the soil that you have by making more rich and fertile. The obvious solution is adding more compost, but you may not have the clippings, chips, weed rot, or leftover produce to create enough of what you need. You’ll probably have to purchase some bagged cow manure or if you live near the zoo, if they have some composted manure available. Cover & Mulch One of the best ways to get rid of weeds is to cover the area in mulch or groundcovers. Mulch is best because it keeps the soil underneath from drying out. However, after a couple of years mulch starts to work against the soil by pulling away the nutrients. So, you’ll want to switch to groundcovers which are less expensive and work against insidious weeds such as Japanese forest grass, mondo grass, and creeping phlox. A little planning and preparation means that your yard can look the way you want thanks to landscaping new construction in the right...

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Pros and Cons of Student Housing

Posted by on Mar 20, 2017 in Blog | 0 comments

Pros and Cons of Student Housing

For those interested in cash flow properties that are located near universities, student housing offers the possibilities of making a considerable amount of money on a reliable basis. However, as a rental property goes, there are many pros and cons of student housing that you will need to be aware before pushing ahead. You will need to know if offering student housing is right for your needs and worth the effort. Pros New Tenants: A good property will have plenty of potential tenants, especially if it is within walking distance of the campus. If you can develop a good word of mouth about your property, you will only need to do some basic advertising such as planting a sign in the front yard and you’ll get plenty of interest. Simple Accommodations: Because students will bring a considerable number of furnishings from home, you do not need to go overboard in preparing the property. Just make sure it is clean, repaired, and have some basic furnishings and appliances. By reducing the maintenance costs, you can use the extra money to update the furnishing and appliances when needed. Raising Rents: Arguably the biggest advantage that student housing offers for you is the ability to raise the rent on a frequent basis. This is especially true for properties that are within easy walking distance of campus. Such properties mean that you can raise the rent for new tenants from 10% to 25% or more on an annual basis. Because many colleges have encouragements, if not outright requirements that the underclass must be housed on-campus, you can still get juniors who may stay on your property for two years. Parents Often Back the Lease: If for some reason the students back out of the lease, you should be able to track down their parents who often back it with little issue. Cons Noise: If you’ve ever been to college, you understand that noise is a big issue. While the noise itself does no damage to your property, it can really annoy the neighbors and that spells trouble for keeping your property licensed in the city. Of the many pros and cons of student housing, noise is the one that can prevent you from renting your property again. Property Damage: Let’s face it, your rental property will be filled with 19 and 20-year-old kids which means that damage is going to happen. You will most likely need a property manager who can deal with what has happened and take the replacement money out of their security deposit. Plus, instruct your tenants that if anything happens, call the property manager quickly so it can be taken care of ASAP. Hidden Damage: In addition to the obvious damage, there is also the hidden damage that students may not be aware of or fully understand that can cost you money. A running toilet for example can cost you hundreds of dollars in utility bills, yet get overlooked by teenage students who don’t fully understand what a running toilet means. Damp basements where mold might grow or the early signs of parts wearing out on the washing machine or air conditioner that get overlooked may cost you hundreds of dollars as well. So, you must decide if student housing is the right option for...

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Getting a Great Deal on a Mortgage

Posted by on Mar 13, 2017 in Blog | 0 comments

Getting a Great Deal on a Mortgage

A mortgage is probably the biggest payment that you will make during your lifetime. So, getting a great deal on a mortgage should be a paramount concern so that you save money in the long run. The good news is that there are mortgage deals to be found if you know where to look. However, the bad news is that because of the housing crisis in 2008, the process has become far more complex. Here are a few tips that will help you secure the best mortgage deal. Take Advantage of Opportunities You will need to be ready to take advantage of opportunities because if you don’t, someone else will. This means getting your house in order so you are ready when a good deal comes along. Start with the basics that include your tax returns, social security card, driver’s license, and business license if necessary and keep them in one easy-to-find place. Things that are updated monthly such as your bank account, income documents, rent checks, and the like need to be kept up to date. So, when a good deal comes along, you can act quickly by submitting all the necessary information. Look for Options You will need to know about the options that are available before you start your search. Most mortgages are 30-year fixed loans that do not work for everyone. You may find that an adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) over the short term is a better deal for you. The key is understanding what loan options are available and what works best for your situation. Go to Several Lenders Apart from those who work with a lender on a regular basis, you will probably have to shop around for one. Getting a great deal on a mortgage means having to search through several lenders to find the one that offers the best mortgage deals for your needs. You may need to spend a little to get a lot, such as offering more money to use a broker who has access to a program that will save you considerably more. So, be sure that you look around to find the one that works best for you. Keep Asking Questions Remember, you are going to live with your decision for a long time, so be sure you know what is required before making any commitment. This means asking questions so that you remain in control of the process. Quite often people get better deals when they ask a seemingly simple question that results in having fees or other costs shaved off the payments. In fact, using the right attorney can help you save money, so whenever you see something that you don’t understand, ask. Interest Rates Keep in mind that interest rates can change at a moment’s notice, so your goal should be to lock up a deal that is good as soon as you can. A quarter-point change in the interest means hundreds, if not thousands of dollars’ difference in what you pay. So, lock in the best rate when you can so that you are not forced to pay a higher one because you waited too...

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Invest in Real Estate

Posted by on Mar 6, 2017 in Blog | 0 comments

Invest in Real Estate

The benefits you may receive when investing in real estate can be considerable. Over the years, real estate investing has proven to be one of the more profitable means of earning money. There are good reasons why you should invest in real estate. Anyone Can Do It There are no education, degree, or special qualifications needed to invest in real estate. All you need to be is of legal age and have the money available to invest in properties. This means that anyone can purchase property as they see fit and fix it up for rent and early a healthy monthly cash flow or flip the home and sell it for a quick profit. Be Your Own Boss You can work as much or as little as you want. You have no schedule when it comes to being a real estate investor. This means that you can work on making several deals for smaller profits or a few larger deals for bigger profits. It also means that you are not expected to keep standard office house. However, you should expect to work hard, especially in your first few years as you learn about what it takes to be a successful investor. Being your own boss means not having to work for anyone else which can be quite attractive for those who tire of the 9 to 5 workweek. It is true that real estate carries more risk and may not appear to have the same job security, but the good news is that there is always a good deal somewhere and you just need to find it. Excellent Returns You do not need to be a math major to see the type of returns that can be earned investing in real estate. From purchasing distressed properties that can be fixed up and sold quickly for a fast profit to cash flow properties that earn you a monthly income, you can enjoy considerable returns that can add up in a short time. Because of this, you can make some big profit depending on the types of property that you choose. Plus, you can work alone or with others to help balance out your portfolio. Unlimited Potential You can make as much money as you want, there is no limit to the income potential when it comes to investing in real estate. This means that you do not have to climb the corporate ladder or rest your fate on the will of others for you to succeed. While you may not enjoy instant success, the average real estate investor earns a considerable amount of money and is in control of their financial future which makes this one of the best ways to earn big money. In the end, when you invest in real estate, you are taking part in a long, successful tradition of earning money while providing property for those in need. For investors who are willing to learn and take a few risks, real estate investing can be quite profitable and enjoyable.   Enter your email address below to join our newsletter which has real estate insider tips and tricks Name * Email *...

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Mistakes Investors Make

Posted by on Feb 27, 2017 in Blog | 0 comments

Mistakes Investors Make

As an investor, it is sometimes far better to know what not to do rather than taking advice on what worked before. By understanding the common mistakes investors make, you can avoid many of the pitfalls that create big issues with your money. What follows are some of the more typical mistakes that can be avoided which will help keep you on the right path to success. Doing Too Much When you consider just how many things there are to do when creating a new business or investing in real estate, it’s pretty easy to do too much. Your focus should be on getting what needs to be accomplished out of the way in a timely manner, but one that does not put too much pressure on you to get everything done at once. It helps if you surround yourself with the right people to help you get started the right way. Not Utilizing Your Time Correctly One issue that many investors have is not getting enough done during the day because of poor time management. Your biggest regret will often be not getting enough done during the day which leads to even worse performances in following days. So, avoid this by planning your time to get everything you can out of what is available. Going Against Your Instincts Not trusting your instincts in one of the most common mistakes investors make. Your instincts are really a combination of the information you have with your experience that will help you make the right decision. This will often manifest itself in feelings of being uncomfortable or not right when looking over the decision-making process. That is your brain activating areas of your body that create feelings of doubt or even fear. While you shouldn’t place too much stock in fear, you should trust your instincts more and go with the decision that you feel is the best. Let Your Business Grow Naturally Believe it or not, many businesses fail because of their success. The growth of the business becomes such that the owners start to push it beyond its limits. You really need to let the business grow at its own pace without interference so it will become stronger and you will not get overstretched in keeping it above water. Many investors start to pour too much money into trying to expand it faster which results in expectations that are not met and often the company crashing under the weight. So, keep things running normally so that your business can grow correctly. In addition, you will want to learn from your own mistakes so that they are not repeated. Everyone makes mistakes and you will not be an exception, so keep that in mind when running your business. Also, take advantage of good opportunities when they present themselves. If you can get something that provides a long-term advantage which does not press you too much in the short-term, take it. If you can avoid these common mistakes investors make, you greatly improve your chances for long-term success when it comes to your business ventures. Enter your email address below to join our newsletter which has real estate insider tips and tricks Name * Email *...

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Removing Stress from Selling

Posted by on Feb 20, 2017 in Blog | 0 comments

Removing Stress from Selling

For the real estate investor who purchases properties that need fixing up before flipping can be very stressful work. This is because even your best efforts may not flip the home in a timely manner or get the profit you desire. However, there are ways to remove stress from selling properties by taking the appropriate actions that put you more in control. Keep Emotions in Check Admittedly, it can be quite difficult to keep your emotions under control when you have invested a considerable amount into a property. This means that when buyers make offers that are well below your asking price, you will need to keep your cool. You will need to be reasonable when it comes to the sale of the property, so getting it appraised and making the proper calculations before putting it up for sale are crucial to getting what you want and making the process as stress-free as you can. Get a Good Real Estate Agent Selling on your own will increase the stress many-fold, so you will want the services of a good, reputable real estate agent to do the work. This means doing good research and finding an agent who has worked similar sales before. However, the most important aspect is that they can do the job and find you the right buyers for your home. Let the Real Estate Agent Sell Your Home While it is tempting to look over the shoulder of the agent to see if you are getting the best reputation, you really need to back off and let them to their job. You will need to listen to their advice, let them guide you as to a good selling price for your property, and provide them with enough space so they can contact you on a regular basis. Remember, if they have any questions or concerns, they are going to call you because they have a stake in selling your home as well. This also means letting the agent show your home while you are not present. Let them do the work and if they need you, they’ll call. Create a Plan B One of the best ways when it comes to removing stress from selling is having a Plan B in case your original plan to sell the home is not working. A Plan B usually consists of the minimal amount you will accept as a purchase price and keeping that as a backup in case your original price proves to be far too much. In fact, you should have several backup plans to deal with all reasonable contingencies that are based on the market your property is selling. Changes in interest rates, crime statistics, and general interests from buyers means that what you thought might sell your home is now out the window. So, be sure to have a backup plan or two or three just in case your original effort is not successful. You can talk this over with your real estate agent who can help you come up with different ways of selling the home. Removing stress from selling can be done if you take as many things into account before you put your home on the market. Selling is never easy, but it doesn’t have to be all that stressful.   Enter...

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Identifying Good Real Estate Brokers

Posted by on Feb 13, 2017 in Blog | 0 comments

Identifying Good Real Estate Brokers

For investors, the most important step that you should take is finding the right people who can help you succeed. At the top of the list are real estate agents or brokers who can help you find the best deals. While there might not be the perfect real estate broker, there are those who provide the resources you need to succeed. That’s why identifying good real estate brokers may be the most important step you take in your investing career. Knowledge A good real estate agent understands the investing business which means that they will know essentially what you are looking for and where to find it. They may not know everything, but the point is that the real estate agent you want will have a good understanding of investing and the criteria it demands compared to standard real estate investing. This is perhaps the most important aspect of what you want from an agent, so do not settle for one who does not understand the investment side of real estate. Calls Back Quickly Of course, any good real estate agent will be able to answer your call or respond to your email quickly. This is because you may see a deal in the morning that might be gone in a few hours, so having a real estate agent who can move quickly to your needs will be most important. Of course, you’ll have to keep in mind that real estate agents have lives just like everyone else, so your expectations should be limited to the hours in which they work. Accepts Smaller Deals On average, the amount of commission a real estate agent gets when working with investors is smaller than standard residential sales. However, an agent experienced with investors will know that they can expect more deals, sometimes bigger deals, and often less work is required at least in terms of the financial aspect. So, if a real estate agent you contact balks at the idea of lower commissions, then you might want to search somewhere else because this is a part of real estate investing. Good Negotiator Part of identifying good real estate brokers is their ability to negotiate good deals. Your real estate investor should be a good fighter for your team so that you can get the best deals possible. Every dollar they can shave off the deal means more profit for you, so be sure that you have a proven negotiator that will fight for you on deal after deal. Good Patience This is an important aspect that you want from your real estate agent because they are by nature managers who want to control every aspect of the deal. When they are working for you, they will need to exude patience because there are some aspects they cannot control. A patient real estate agent will be most helpful when it comes to landing the right deal and letting you and your team get everything ready. By identifying good real estate brokers who can work with you and your team, you can take advantage of great deals in a timely fashion.   Enter your email address below to join our newsletter which has real estate insider tips and tricks Name * Email *...

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Tenant Screening Tips

Posted by on Feb 6, 2017 in Blog | 0 comments

Tenant Screening Tips

For landlords, getting the right tenants is arguably the most important aspect of running your property. This means that you will need to do everything reasonable to find the right tenants from the start and eliminate those who have troubling issues. Here are a few tenant screening tips that will help you find the best ones for your property. While no screening process is perfect, the tips will help you minimize the potential for getting undesirable tenants which will only cause more headaches. Start Early You need to start the process of looking for new tenants in the months before the lease from your old tenants runs out. If you do not plan to re-sign them or if they have indicated that they will move out, you will need to start looking for new tenants as soon as possible so that you are not facing a time-crunch. You will start with the phone call with a potential new tenant that you get from their inquiry which is usually through an email. When you talk to them, be sure to answer the questions they have about your property, but have a few questions of your own for them to answer. You need not be too specific as it is the tone and tenor of their answers, not so much the substance that you will be honing in on to see if they are right for your property. Application & Follow-Up When they apply to be on your property, they will need to fill out an application form. You will need the basic information from their work status, rental history, information about their income, criminal history, and more. If the tenant is reluctant to provide such information, you can stop the process right there. Once the application is filled out, you can start the follow-up process which consists of verifying the past information. You will want to talk to their previous landlords that are listed, make a general search online for any criminal record, and check their employment history and even their credit report if necessary. Naturally, any large red flags such as their previous behavior or bad credit score should be investigated further or you can eliminate them if you wish. However, keep in mind that many good tenants have a blemish or two on their past, so keep that in mind. The Walk-Through One of the most important tenant screening tips happens when you show the property to the prospective tenant. You should look for signs of whether they are really interested in your property. If they have seen enough after a few minutes and want to leave, that is a good indication that they are not really that interested. However, if they are interested, they might offer to sign a lease quickly and provide a security deposit. Tenants willing to set firm dates and willing to pay are interested in staying on your property, so those are the ones you want to have. By following a few tenant screening tips, you can find the best people for your property. You also may want to consider that good tenants come with different personalities and backgrounds, so it is important for you to know their background and their demeanor when looking over your property. This will provide you with good...

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How to Keep Your Tenants Happy

Posted by on Jan 30, 2017 in Blog | 0 comments

How to Keep Your Tenants Happy

A happy tenant is the best tenant, so as their landlord you should strive to make the conditions in which they live as comfortable as you can. While you cannot please all your tenants, there are ways to keep tenants happy on your rental property. Here are just four methods you can employ that will create the best conditions to keep your tenants pleased which will make it easier for you to run your property. Answer Your Tenants Quickly When you receive an email, message, or phone call, it is your job to answer it and respond to your tenants in a prompt, professional manner. Remember to keep their concerns in their perspective so you can address them properly. While you cannot be perfect, what tenants appreciate is that they are being listened to and a proper response is forthcoming. Taking a few moments to listen and provide a proper response means the world to tenants. Expedite Repairs & Maintenance A common complaint from tenants is that repairs are slow in coming once something breaks down. What may seem like a small thing to you may be of major importance to your tenant, so have in place a system where repairs can be performed quickly. This means having a maintenance person on site and a backup in case they are unavailable. Be sure to quickly respond when your tenant tells you of the needed maintenance or repair and set a schedule for it to be addressed. Provide Ample Notice before Entering a Tenant’s Space Landlords are most appreciated when they are close enough to be contacted quickly and far enough away so the tenant can enjoy living on the property. It’s a tough balance to be sure, but the most successful landlords manage to strike it by providing ample notice before they enter their property. While there are times when you will need to be there unannounced, such as noticing something wrong when driving by. However, a good tenant does not need frequent intrusions on your part. So, when there is scheduled maintenance or pest control to be done, let them know well in advance. Make Rent Collection Simple Many landlords use the old-fashioned mail system which is efficient, but also has some drawbacks as tenants must sign checks, get money orders, and pay for postage. Still, it may be preferable to other methods depending on how often you can be on the rental property itself. Whatever option is the easiest for your tenants to do each month is the one you should choose. Being a landlord is not an easy job, but it is one that provides many benefits if you can keep your tenants happy. This means being close enough so you can respond to their questions and requests, yet far enough away so they can think of the rental property as their own. It helps to be clear and consistent in your approach so that everyone is treated equally. Remember, there will always be bad tenants or situations that you cannot control. However, you can reduce such occurrences to a minimum if you strive to keep your tenants pleased. Enter your email address below to join our newsletter which has real estate insider tips and tricks Name * Email *...

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Financing Multifamily Property

Posted by on Jan 23, 2017 in Blog | 0 comments

Financing Multifamily Property

When it comes to financing multifamily property investments, you’ll find that not all lending is the same. The difference of one unit can be significant in terms of getting the type of program that fits your budget. Your down payment may be significantly higher and your credit score even more important when the investment property you want contains more units. Here are a few tips when searching for the right financing to purchase a rental property. The more you search beforehand, the better the chances of finding the right deal that meets your needs. Large Down Payment One significant difference between financing a single-family home and a multiple family property is the down payment. Thanks to government programs, you can find down payment opportunities for as little as 1% on single family homes. However, they do not cover multifamily properties as they are considered investments. Regardless of your credit score, you can expect to pay at least 20% down for the purchase. For larger properties, 25% down payment is not uncommon, so be prepared to put down some significant cash to get the property. Good Credit Score A good credit score helps with lots of things, but today it is more important than ever when it comes to investment properties. Because of the Housing Crisis of 2008, getting a loan is now more difficult than ever and your credit score will need to be at least 700 to 720 if you want consideration from banks and lenders. Your credit score will also need to be clean of any mortgage defaults and any issue that might cause a lender to think twice. The 75% Rule Keep in mind that lenders will loan you the necessary money based on a 75% occupancy rate, not 100%. Very few properties are fully occupied and lenders are not going to take a risk based on 100% occupancy. So, be sure that your calculations are made at 75% which is low, but one that provides a more realistic measure. Fewer Borrowing Opportunities Because there are not as many financing options for multifamily properties, you will need to careful about looking over what is available. You can increase your options with a larger down payment as that makes it easier for banks and lenders to provide you with the needed money for purchase. Focus on gaining as much money as you can with a large down payment and then shop at lenders who network with other lenders for the best deal. Interest Rates and Insurance You’ll need to know all the monthly payments you are going to make before purchasing the property. That includes the interest rates, insurance coverage, and all fees that must be paid regularly so you can calculate the cash flow. Too many investors overlook calculating all the fees which may mean some nasty surprises when it comes to how much money you are making. The good news about investment property is that there is still a big market that you can take advantage. Keep in mind that financing multifamily property opportunities may be more difficult today than a decade ago, they still provide the type of rental income that makes them a great way to earn money month by month. Enter your email address below to join our newsletter which has real...

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