Hiring a property manager is a decision that you may or may not make. Property managers aren’t required when dealing with rentals, however they can make some aspects of being a landlord much easier if you choose to hire one. Being a landlord entails multiple aspects and for some people it may make life easier being able to delegate some of those responsibilities. Before making the decision to hire one, you should know what can be expected from a property manager.
Taking Care of the Property
There are many tasks that a property manager can be expected to perform. As the title states, one of the main responsibilities is the property itself. They can be charged with the task of dealing with any inspections the rental may need as well as determining if any repairs or updates need completed before renting.
Property managers are often responsible for continued upkeep of each premises as well. Landscaping, preventative maintenance, and emergency repairs are just a few of the tasks that can be performed. Whether they complete these projects on their own or contract them out to another party, they are responsible for ensuring that it is completed, correct and done in a timely manner.
Taking Care of the Tenants
If you aren’t necessarily a great people person, a property manager may be helpful when dealing with tenants. A good property manager can handle advertising your rental to the right people, taking care of the showing and application process, properly screening each tenant, as well as lease signing.
Handling the routine tenant interactions can also be done by the individual or company that you hire. Any kind of tenant complaints or service requests can be taken care of through this service. If you prefer monthly inspections of the property, this is something that can be done by the property manager as well.
If a tenant decides to move out when their lease is completed, the move out procedures can also be the responsibility of the manager. They should do an inspection of the property to determine if their are any damages, and if so how much of the deposit should be returned. They can also be responsible for ensuring the rental is cleaned up and in proper condition to begin looking for a new tenant. They should also be up to date on eviction laws and processes. They can be charged with the task of handling evictions if or when the process is needed.
Taking Care of the Finances
Finances are a very important part of being a landlord. Knowing what to charge, collecting rent, and keeping records are critical aspects in order to become profitable and stay profitable. A property manager should know how to determine the amount of rent to be charged based on the area, property condition, lease terms and other factors. They can also determine if and when rent should be adjusted.
Rent collections can also be difficult for a single person at times. Especially if you acquire multiple properties. Rent collection can be expected from a property manager or management company. Having someone enforcing policy and lease terms when it comes to payments and late fees can help keep your profitability at a maximum. They can also pay bills related to each property or any utilities included in the rent.
A good property management company should also be prepared to keep records of your business. Rent collection receipts should be made available to you. Maintenance and materials costs should also be filed and available. Monthly reports for each of your properties incoming money, outgoing money and any fees, should be on file for you to view at any time. They should also be able to reasonably stay within a set budget. This can be made up by you or they can create a budget on your behalf.
Some other tasks that a property manager should be able to perform or assist with include but are not limited to….
-Maintaining vacant properties. They can be given the task of making sure your vacant property is secured and not tampered with while it’s vacant. They can ensure that the proper work and preventative maintenance is being done as it should be.
-Assisting with and being knowledgeable of state and federal laws. They can assist with lease terms and wording to ensure you are protected. They should know the laws pertaining to evictions, tenant and landlord rights and responsibilities, as well as structure safety compliance.
-Assisting with taxes. Taxes can be difficult when you have multiple properties and earnings. A property manager should be familiar with tax deductions and may assist with or actually complete the tax filing process.
These are just some of the tasks that a property manager can perform. If you choose to hire a property manager, keep in mind that you are still in charge. You do not have to hand over full control or all of the responsibility if you don’t want. You can continue to oversee the aspects that you are more comfortable with and delegate the rest to someone else, or you can hand it all over to open up more time for other projects you may have. Regardless of how you choose to use this service, be sure that you do your research and are clear on what you expect and what is expected of you. If you ultimately decide that you aren’t comfortable handing these tasks over, you always have the option of doing it yourself.