Many new rental property owners don’t realize how much work a landlord is. They believe they’ll just collect rent checks every month but don’t consider the extra work it takes to handle home repairs and tenant issues.
That’s why the majority of property owners use management companies to handle things.
However, with so many property managers available, it pays to learn more about how to choose a property manager. Below are six tips to help you find the best property manager for your needs.
1. Look for Professional Licenses
A company that offers property management services may say they can handle the job, but that isn’t always the case. That’s why it’s critical to verify that a company has property management expertise by checking its certifications and licenses.
There are several opportunities for management companies to prove they can manage rentals. One way to do this is with professional certifications and organizations. Here are a few for you to consider:
- National Association of Residential Property Managers
- Residential Management Professional
- Master Property Manager
- Preferred Residential Management Company
You also need to make sure their workers are certified in their roles. For instance, home repair workers need the proper licenses for the work.
2. Find an Insured Company
You have a lot on the line when you manage rental companies. You have the safety of your tenants to consider and the health of your property. While your insurance will cover many damages when they occur, it won’t cover everything if you use a third-party company for management.
That’s why it’s critical to verify the insurance information for any property management company you use. It doesn’t matter if you only use a company for a small selection of tasks or work with a full-service company.
Get the insurance documents from your manager before you sign any contracts. If you work with a property manager who isn’t insured, you may be on the hook for accidents and pay money out of pocket for damages.
3. Look at Pricing Terms
Not every property management company handles pricing the same way. Some companies have a monthly fee for their services. Others charge their fee based on a percentage of the rent payments they collect.
This can lead to different pricing for the same level of service. Get as many quotes as possible to ensure you find the best deal. Hiring the first company you find means you can miss someone that offers better service for a lower price.
It also pays to see what services are included in the price. Make sure you get a contract that details everything a company does.
The last thing to consider when looking at pricing is material upcharges. Not every company does pass through pricing when they need to purchase material for home repairs. They add extra charges to material costs to earn extra money for the company.
4. Get Someone Local
There are a few property management companies that have a national presence. They have offices all over the place and cover a lot of ground. However, they may not have a local presence in the areas they claim to serve.
This is a problem if a property management company isn’t familiar with the rental rules in your area. These rules change based on where you live. The last thing you want is your property management company to handle things the wrong way and cause legal issues.
Working with a local company solves this problem. They’re familiar with all the local laws, so you can rest easy at night knowing you aren’t likely to experience problems.
5. Check the Number of Services
There isn’t always a one-size-fits-all solution for property management services. When you learn what a property manager does, you’ll probably see that many full-service companies take on all the work of managing properties. However, that isn’t your only option.
If you don’t want to pay a property management company to handle all the work, you can work with one that only offers a subset of those services. You can find customer support people to take tenant calls and work with repair companies to tackle home repairs.
You can also learn more about the landlord vs property manager debate to see the difference between the two roles. Think of all your needs and find a company that can meet your service demands.
6. Get References From Past Clients
One step to finding a property management company you shouldn’t skip is learning about the experiences of current and past clients. You can’t learn all there is to know about talking to a property manager by talking to them directly. You need to get an unfiltered perspective from people who aren’t trying to sell you a service.
Ask for references from a property manager before you commit to working with them. You can use your time talking with other clients to learn about the downsides of working with a property company.
You can also check online to look at customer reviews. They’re available with a quick search on Google or the BBB website.
Now You Can Find the Best Property Manager
You have a lot to consider when hiring a property manager, so you can’t afford to go into the process without a plan. The above tips are a great way to determine who offers the best property manager services in your area. Keep them in mind during your search to find the best property manager company for the job.
Of course, you’ll need to know more about home repairs and finding excellent properties if you want to see success in real estate. Learn more about the real estate process by heading back to the blog.