When you're looking for a property management company you should research experience, reputation and customer service. Before you schedule an interview its best to get a good idea of where they work, what kind of properties they manage and what people are saying about them.
Once you've narrowed your search to a few property management companies, schedule some interviews. You'll want to have a conversation about your specific property or properties and the specific services you need, as well as any questions you may have.
The leasing process covers everything from pricing your rental property correctly, marketing the home online, screening tenants, to signing the lease. You'll want to know what the property managers process is, and how they guarantee a high quality tenant will quickly be placed in your investment for the most amount of rent.
A company without a good leasing process often has a high vacany rate and settles for medicore tenants. Always ask about the steps that are taken to find a tenant for your vacant rental property.
Communication should be responsive, transparent, and reliable.
Make sure you understand how your property management company prefers to communicate and discuss whether it matches the way you prefer to communicate. If you're an out of state investor in another time zone, online or email commmunication may be best for you. If you like in-person meetings and phone calls, make sure your property management company is willing to provide that to you.
Discuss your expectations. Communication is an important part of your relationship and you need to know how often you'll hear from your property manager and in what format information will be shared and questions will be answered.
Earning consistent rent is important for your cash flow and your long term ROI. Ask how rent will be collected from residents and how it will find its way to you. Find out when rent is due, how tenants are expected to pay the rent, and whether there is a grace period or any late fees if/when rent is not paid on time.
You should also ask when you can expect to be paid. It's important that you recieve a statement every month, either online or by mail. You want to see and understand the income and expenses assoicated with your rental property.
It's important to know that your property management company has a process for routine maintence and repair requests. Hopefully, they collect the tenants request, judge what needs to be done, and send appropriate vendors or contractors to take care of the work. You want them to respond quickly and also do what is most cost effective. A well maintained home is worth more and retains tenants better, so you want them to be responsive and timely.
Emergencies will happen from time to time so it's important to ask if they are available 24 hours a day for tenant maintence calls.
There is more technology available to property managers than ever before. Automated systems allow us to work more efficently. With online portals we can respond quickly and electronically. You should be able to see accounting statements and maintence invoices online and you should have access to reports and leasing documents. Communication should be easily facilitated and your property manager should be available and accessible to you and your tenants.
There are some questions you should ask; for example, does the property manager stay up to date with Texas Property Code and assorted laws and requirements? How much do services cost and are any guarantees offered? Find out if there is an easy way to cancel the management contract if you are not happy with your services.
The focus should be on the services they provide and the value they offer. If you have any questions on how to approach potential property managers, please do not hesitate to Contact Us at Perpetual Property Management.