What Assets to Look For in Property Management Companies
Property Managers are all too used to hearing the laments of real estate investment buyers who realized they didn’t have the time, expertise, patience, or background to properly run their investment property. That’s why Property Mangers exist, to make it easier to maintain your investment property in good condition with long-term tenants. This is particularly true if you purchase real estate investment property that is far from where you live, making it even more difficult to be an effective and responsive property manager. It’s important not to rush the process of finding a good property management company, however. Take the time to do your homework before making a decision. An unbiased view of property management companies in Orlando, or elsewhere, that you should consider before letting them manage your property, are the same.
Good property managers know how to develop positive relationships with tenants that foster long-term renters. They generally offer a variety of services that include everything from handling fees (such as security deposit or first and last) and rent with tenants to responding to emergency and other maintenance requests. Bad property managers are untrustworthy, don’t respond to requests in a timely manner, and poor communicators.
Before you begin doing research to get an unbiased view of property management companies in Orlando, it’s a good idea to talk to fellow investment property owners, tenants, or anyone else you know who may come into contact with property managers. Be sure and have some hard questions ready to ask them about their experiences and why they feel the way they do about the company. Both the Better Business Bureau and the Real Estate Commission also rank property management companies.
Arrange to meet with at least two property management companies. Note your own first impressions. Remember, these people will be representing your home, and all of these things are important in order to get reliable, long-term tenants who will take care of your property.
Have prepared a list of questions for the property manager so that the interview will be concise, but effective:
After you’ve reviewed your prospective property managers, it’s time to negotiate. Understand how you will communicate with them and what turnaround time you can expect. Be sure all fees are documented. Agree to a time-frame if either of you wants to discontinue your relationship. Note when you can expect to receive rent each month and how deposits will be handled. Ensure you have an agreed upon plan for handling maintenance. Finally, outline the process for handling delinquent tenants.
While this may seem like a lot of work, the homework you do ahead of time will give you peace-of-mind and allow you to enjoy the rewards of your investment property.