How to Know You Need a Property Manager for Your Apartment Complex

property manager

Investing in commercial or residential rental properties can be a profitable venture. However, deciding whether to handle its day-to-day operations yourself or seek out a rental property manager can be a tough decision.

There are a lot of elements to consider, including profit margins, expenses, benefits, and time. Before you sign the check to purchase your next rental investment, you need to have a plan in place as to how you intend to manage it.

In this blog, we present the questions you’ll need to ask in order to make the best choice for your property.

Determining Whether You Need a Property Manager

One of the biggest misconceptions is that managing a large rental property such as condos, apartment buildings, and townhouses is easy. Once you get the tenants, all you have to do is reap the monthly rental profits, right?

Wrong.

There is a lot that goes into managing a property. From day one, you have to market vacancies and fill your empty units with tenants–a process you’ll repeat each time someone moves out.

You don’t want to accept every potential tenant, either. Thorough screening processes are essential to the overall health and maintenance of your rental property. If you end up housing bad tenants, you run a higher risk of incurring unit damages, eviction cases, and more.

Choosing the right tenants requires application processes and background checks to help vet your candidates.

Then you have to maintain the needs of those good tenants for the duration of their lease. This includes maintenance calls and repairs.

If you are considering doing this on your own, make sure you have the time to:

  • Create and manage listings and open houses for your vacant units
  • Create and manage the application process for new tenants
  • Keep track of monthly rental payments and follow up on late dues
  • Manage any legal processes should a tenant fail to comply with their contractual agreement
  • Respond to any maintenance needs your tenants may have
  • Manage the bookkeeping and day-to-day operations of your rental properties

Sound like a full-time job? That’s because for most large rental properties it is.

Property managers are capable of doing all of the above, which is why so many rental property owners opt into hiring one.

The general cost for property management services varies greatly depending upon your needs. If you’re on a budget or want to be more involved in the management of your property, you may be able to negotiate better pricing by splitting the responsibilities between yourself and your property management company.

For example, you may hire them to handle your tenants, but you may choose to do all of the marketing and filling vacancies yourself.

To determine the best route for your investment property, discuss your budget with a real estate agency that offers these services, then weigh the net profit of your rental property’s units per month with these expenses factored in.

This will help you determine if you should hire a property manager or self-manage.

Find a Property Manager Today

Have you decided to invest in a property manager for your commercial or residential real estate? If so, let us help you choose the best company for the job.

Get in contact with us and let the experts at eFind Agent narrow down the best options based on your property and budget.

The Benefits of Property Management for Rentals

property management for rentals

There are two types of landlords: the hands-on type who wants to be personally involved in every single thing, or the hands-off type whose primary goal is to avoid those pesky 2 a.m. maintenance calls like the plague.

If you lean towards the former, hiring a property management company to manage your residential or commercial property or properties could be the “right choice for you.” Sure, that means you won’t take home as much money, but you also won’t have to take another maintenance call again.

When you’re considering property management for rentals, it’s important to research a few different companies and interview each of them. Deciding on a property management company isn’t something to take lightly, as they will be managing many different aspects of your business for you.

Find a company that does it right, and you may never feel the need to go back to managing your properties on your own again.

High-Quality Tenants

Working with a rental or house management company decreases your chances of renting to bad tenants.

An experienced property manager has seen hundreds if not thousands of applications throughout their career, so it’s easy for them to spot potential red flags on applications and identify trustworthy candidates than it may be for you.

If you let them manage the process for you, you’ll be more likely to have a higher number of reliable tenants than if you manage entire tenant screening process on your own.

Increased Tenant Retention

Having a high turnover rate at your rental property is costly.

Not just in terms of rent payments that you miss out on, but there are other fees to account for, too, like painting the walls, cleaning, and changing the locks, to name a few.

Property managers know how to keep tenants happy, so they’ll stay on long-term and you’ll have fewer costly vacancies to deal with. These programs do require consistent effort, however, and this is where a good property manager or team will really add value.

Fewer Legal Problems and Financial Issues

Experienced landlords know that all it takes to incite both legal and financial issues is one bad tenant.

However, a qualified property manager will be familiar with the latest laws regarding landlords and tenants, so they can ensure that you’re not caught up in something which could result in a lawsuit.

Additionally, evicting tenants is expensive. If you can find and retain high-quality tenants, you won’t face as many financial issues as a result of evictions, and a property manager can help with that.

Final Words on Property Management for Rentals

The right property management for rentals company or team will make your job as a landlord considerably easier. They’ll help you find better tenants, keep them happy, and ensure that you face as few lawsuits and financial issues as possible.

If you have any questions about finding the right manager or team for you, reach out to us anytime.

We’re here to help and will happily answer any questions you have.

4 Tips On Successfully Showing A Vacant Property

vacant property

In 2017, more than 5.1 million existing homes were sold in the U.S. By 2019, that number is expected to rise to more than 5.67 million.

The high number of existing home sales means that in many markets, competition is fierce.

Where buyers may be wowed by the home itself when they’re shopping new builds, a vacant property is a much tougher sell. Without furniture and decor to distract them, buyers may struggle to visualize the property as a home, and may instead end up focusing too heavily on any flaws.

Luckily, there are several things you can do to make vacant premises more inviting. Keep reading to learn a few of the best tactics for making empty houses feel more like home to buyers or renters.

1. Make it Spotless

When you’re dealing with a vacant property that you need to show to potential buyers or renters, the simplest, and perhaps the most important thing that you can do is to ensure that it’s spotless.

While it may be easier to overlook a little bit of dirt when the space is filled with furniture and other items. But when its empty and potential buyers or tenants have little besides the property itself to look at, dirt on the walls, dust on the windowsills, or stains on the carpet will stand out.

Keeping up with regular maintenance is also important. Otherwise, every minor issue will stand out even more than it would in a furnished property.

2. Don’t Neglect the Lighting

If a vacant house doesn’t have lighting installed directly into the ceilings, you’ll want to make sure to properly light the space before showing it.

The last thing you want to do is show potential buyers around a vacant dwelling with a flashlight.

Add a few lamps, or if you’re looking to invest in the property, add some recessed lighting to illuminate the space for home tours.

3. Show Buyers that it Could be Home

When a home or apartment is empty, it can be tough to imagine what the space will look like once you add furniture, appliances, and decorations.

If you can, consider staging the property with furniture, rugs, and some decor. But even if you can’t fully stage the home, adding a few key pieces can go a long way towards helping buyers imagine themselves in the space.

4. Focus on the Value Rather than the Look

Whether you’re showing a vacant house or a vacant lot for rent, your best chance of winning over buyers or tenants is to put your emphasis on the value of a home or property, rather than the look.

Showing buyers why a property is a good value will help them see beyond empty rooms or minor flaws.

Showing a Vacant Property

Still struggling to sell or rent a vacant property? It may be time to get professional help.

A real estate agent can not only help you prepare a property for showings but also has the experience necessary to sell even the toughest property. They know what to say to potential renters or buyers to set their minds at ease and help them imagine an empty property as their future home.

If you need help selling or renting your vacant home, let us help you find the right real estate agent today.

What Does a Property Manager Do?

what does a property manager do

Homeownership rates are at a 50 year low. While that might seem like a scary statistic, for the landlord that means that the rental market is on the rise. You could attempt to face this market on your own, or you could hire a property manager. Now, you might be asking yourself: what does a property manager do?

Between 2005 and 2015, renter households increased by 9 million.

Along with the increase in rentals comes an increase in rental issues. Are you prepared to deal with high turnover rates, late rent payments, legal trouble, the excessive stress, frequent evictions, and the immense organization required to own a rental property on your own? At the least, you can expect to spend four hours a week maintaining a rental property, but that’s a bare minimum on a property with an ideal tenant.

If this all sounds a little daunting to you, finding a property manager should be your next step.

What is a Property Manager?

A property manager is an agency in charge of operating a real estate property for a fee. This could be a single person or a group of people who act on a homeowner’s behalf.

Maybe you’re a long distance homeowner and you can’t be there personally to oversee the many time and sanity consuming jobs that your rental properties need. Or, maybe you just aren’t interested in managing the whole thing on your own.

Either way, finding the perfect property manager can be a wonderful resource and can provide peace of mind.

What Does a Property Manager Do?

A property manager does a wide scope of things. They do the obvious, like advertise for tenants. They vet the various candidates to increase the chances that your property goes to the right people. They also organize maintenance and deal with the everyday problems tenants face.

But that’s not all they do.

They handle leases and move-outs. They inspect the unit and figure out what portion of the security deposit to return when a tenant leaves. They also clean and repair the unit.

Property managers deal with issues between tenants, they enforce the lease, and they aren’t afraid to be the ‘bad guy’ when necessary.

One of the most useful things property managers do is handle the legal side of things. The eviction process is lengthy and expensive, often leaving a property without a tenant for a minimum of four months. A property manager is there to handle that process and make it easier on the homeowner.

Property managers also supervise. Being an employer is difficult, and they’re not afraid to take this on themselves. The property manager handles any personnel required for your property.

Property managers deal with the recordkeeping. They manage the budget and all records. They also deal with taxes and are great tools to help you file taxes the right way.

Closing the Door

What does a property manager do? Everything. A lot of new investment property owners think they can save themselves the money it costs to hire a property manager, but this can be a losing game.

Property managers are invaluable resources. They make a property owner’s life easier and are absolutely worth the investment.

But finding one can be a difficult process. Contact us by phone or email and we will happily help you find the right person for you. We’re here to help!

 

3 Things to Look for When Hiring a Property Manager

property manager

Is it time to hire a property manager?

The percentage of households that rent has risen to 43.3 million in 2016. That number is expected to climb since home prices continue to increase. That, combined with tightening credit by banks, will lead more families to choose to rent their home.

If you own one or a dozen rental properties, hiring a manager can help you save time, and enjoy the fruits of your investment, rather than dealing with tenant issues.

Keep reading to learn the top tips to hire the best manager for your rental properties.

Do You Need a Property Manager?

Are you on the fence about hiring a manager?

There are many benefits to hiring a manager. Yes, their fees can be between 7-10% of your rental income, but it can be worth it in the long run.

A manager already has a network of contractors and handymen who can take care of repairs. They are well-versed on fair housing laws, too.

You’ll need to weigh how much time you currently spend on your properties. Your budget and rental income need to be considered as well.

If you find that you don’t like to deal with tenant issues or you have cash flow and vacancy problems, a good rental manager can help you resolve them.

Tip #1: Hire an Experienced Manager

The first step to hiring the right rental manager is to make sure they have the experience to handle your property.

You can start by asking around for referrals. Then check to see if a manager has housing certifications, such as training for fair housing compliance.

Do some research online to see if there are reviews on Google or Yelp. The Better Business Bureau is a good place to go to see if there are negative reviews or complaints against the manager.

Tip #2: Ask the Right Questions

You should make it a point to interview several candidates to handle your properties. When you do, these are some of the questions you should ask.

  • How long have you been a property manager?
  • What types of properties do you manage?
  • How many properties do you manage?
  • Do you have referrals I can contact?
  • What type of fees do you charge? Are there service fees on top of that?
  • How are payments handled?
  • What is your procedure for maintenance & emergency issues?

These questions are a starting point to determine if a manager is a good fit for you.

Tip #3: Read the Management Agreement

You’ll need to carefully review the rental management agreement with a fine-tooth comb.

The agreement should clearly outline the manager’s fees and what they are responsible for. Beyond that, look for extra fees. If a manager has to call someone for repairs, do they charge a service fee on top of that? Many managers do.

Be sure the agreement stipulates how much the manager is authorized to spend on repairs before contacting you. In most cases, it’s between $250-$500. Take the opportunity to set a number that you’re comfortable with.

Save Time When You Hire a Property Manager

Hiring someone to manage your rental properties can help you increase your rental income, as long as you hire a good manager.

They’ll make sure that your property is occupied and is profitable. That gives you the time to focus on other projects.

If you’re ready to hire a property manager, contact us today. We’re happy to answer any questions you have.