Do you know how well your investment property is being managed? You have to know because the quality of service you’re getting from your property manager (PM) can hugely affect your investment journey.
Some of the signs of a badly managed investment property include difficult tenants, low return on investment, lack of support and property deterioration.
So, how do you find a property manager that will care about your investment as much as you do? Here are some important questions to ask your property manager to make sure your investment is in good hands.
- Does your property management team get good and sufficient support?
Managing too many properties means your manager is less likely to be proactive in servicing your investment. Property managers overseeing a large portfolio can feel overwhelmed, fail to communicate and commit costly mistakes.
A professional property manager in a large franchise can often be responsible for between 100 and 200 properties. Consider a boutique agency or a property manager who is responsible for less than 100 properties and experience the difference immediately.
- How do you handle late rental payments?
Choose an agency that follows a proactive process when dealing with late payments.
An agent that is committed to reaching your investment objectives is one who never misses a phone call to you as the owner, along with sending written notifications. A good PM will follow up any late rent with tenants straightaway, send payment reminders and in extreme situations deliver a notice to vacate if payment is 14 days overdue.
- How often do you do inspections?
Find out how often the property management team conducts property inspections. Inspections are important because they ensure your property remains in good condition and help detect any problems that may need to be fixed.
Tenants must be notified of an upcoming inspection with a written notice sent 14 days prior. When you choose a PM, learn about their inspection process, including their reporting, to make sure they fit your requirements.
- How do you deal with property damage, repairs and maintenance?
PM’s must act fast to resolve a damage caused by tenants. Through regular inspections, your PM should be able to identify and resolve any problems sooner rather than later.
PM’s who care about your investment can categorise ‘nice to have’ maintenance or ‘future’ maintenance from necessary or urgent repairs. As the owner, it is your responsibility to care for and pay for basic property maintenance. However, it is the responsibility of your tenants and PM to make sure the requests are sensible, timely and managed well.
- Do you give advice on how to maximise rental returns?
You pay your property manager to deal with the important things, but what often proves helpful in steering you on your investment path is the additional advice and recommendations from them.
Talk to your PM about whether they can provide information on how to increase your rental returns. Your PM should have the property and rental market knowledge to give added value to your present investments and prospective investment ventures.
- Where do I look for testimonials?
The best agencies have their client testimonials on their websites and social media pages. Other are with sites like “Rate My Agent”.
References and testimonials help ensure the PM fulfils their promises. Request for references from both renters and landlords to help you make the right decision in your choice of PM. If there aren’t testimonials online, you can always request the agency to give you some.
- Do you give end of the month statements?
The right PM will keep you up to date with how your rental property is performing through regular reports like end of month statements.
These reports allow you to keep track of monthly rental income, make calculations and monitor the performance of your investment property.
It is important to choose a PM who has good attention to details. And regular communication is essential to ensuring you are updated with costs and important developments that will impact your investment income.
The right PM can make a huge difference in your investment journey. Do your homework and look for the agent that meets all your requirements. Above all, the PM you pick should be as committed as you are in making sure your investments perform well.