Because managing properties is difficult and stressful, few property management companies get it right when it comes to taking care of rental units. They may do an acceptable job but “acceptable” doesn’t quite cut it when you want things to operate well without a hitch. So when shopping around for a property management company, look for one that can promise you the following:
Successful resolution of maintenance issues: the right property management company keeps a rolodex of reliable independent contractors that undertake good, solid work quickly and at a suitable rate.
Collecting rent: the ideal property management company collects rents on the first of every month, no exceptions. If there is a delay in payments, then late fees are in order. The firm will also not hesitate to take legal action in the event of non-payment.
Leasing: the right property management company will ascertain the best market rents by conducting rent surveys and effectively market a property vacancy in order to find the ideal tenant. Typical marketing methods range from print media to classified ads to eye-catching signs and banners on the property itself.
Reporting: a good property management company sends out monthly management reports with up-to-date leasing information every month.
Recordkeeping: A competent property management company tracks financial in-flows and out-flows in a computerized system that records all the information for tax compliance. Rents are recorded in detail and all requested expenses are disbursed in a timely manner.
Other: The ideal property management company understands that your income property is more than just a simple investment. The company should be there to serve you whether your income properties range from single family homes, offices, buildings, commercial properties, shopping plazas, condominiums to large multi-unit apartment complexes.
A good firm looks on property management as a business that creates a reliable income. Its aim should be to keep your income high and your expenses low while taking care of your property in the best way. Yet, despite the interests of the property management company being in alignment with those of the property owner – that is, to collect rent and keep the tenants happy – this sometimes isn’t enough to secure the best service. For your own peace of mind, look for a property management company that seeks to maintain a high standard of reliability and accountability always.