How to Find the Right Property Manager
Real estate investment requires active and professional management to make it more lucrative. After all, your property is a valuable asset and needs to be protected. Therefore, finding the right property manager who is responsible and transparent is essential.
Finding the right property manager for you can be overwhelming if you don’t have any experience. There are several factors to consider before you make this choice. You need to assess whether the manager is qualified and experienced enough to provide you with the best services in an affordable budget.
Here are some important tips that you should keep in mind before hiring a property manager:
Find Managers Who Have Specialized Experience
It is no secret that real estate is a complicated industry with intricate laws and regulations to keep track of. Hence, it is vital that your property manager is well versed in these requirements and has a proven record of investment property handling.
Try to look for those managers who have previously managed your particular investment type. For example, some property managers are more experienced with commercial properties and would not be ideal candidates for a residential property. You should also avoid real estate agents who manage properties on the side as they do not have the required training and experience to do the job well. They are also less likely to be familiar with all laws and code regulations.
Make sure that you ask how long the manager has been involved with rental properties and how many homes they currently manage to get a better idea of their capabilities and workload.
Check Licenses and Professional Certifications
For property managers and associated companies, there is often a legal requirement to have a real estate broker or property management license. Property managers who are competent are usually licensed and have the technical expertise to perform their job effectively. They may also have professional certificates which are obtained after rigorous training programs. In Alberta, a person who manages property on behalf of the property’s owner and receives compensation for doing so requires a licence from the Real Estate Council of Alberta (RECA). Property management is one of the industry sectors in which real estate professionals can complete education and become licensed
You should always check with the real estate commission to see if the candidate meets the legal qualifications to work as a property manager. Moreover, managers who have certifications are more adept to the standards and practices of the profession. They will be better candidates for you.
Check Reviews and References
If you are meeting with a property management company, it is always helpful to do a bit of background research. The simplest way to do so is by checking their online reviews. They can be a good first-line resource for checking the quality of their services. Similarly, you can also check other references to see whether their customers are generally satisfied or not.
You should always ask the candidate about their current clients and tenant references and their details. Interacting with them can help you decide whether more people have had positive or negative experiences with them.
Property Management Systems and Operating Procedures:
You should ask them questions about their property management style, such as:
- how they respond to their tenants’ complaints
- are their fees structures transparent
- do they take proactive measures for maintenance and repair issues
Tenants can also provide you with firsthand encounters about how happy they are with their manager. You can also request on-site visits to the properties they handle to evaluate further how competent they are.
Carefully Review the Property Management Agreement
Before hiring the property manager, it is crucial that you thoroughly review the management agreement that they are offering. This agreement would explain the business relationship you will have with the manager.
The property management agreement contains details about the services that the manager will provide and the fees they charge for them. It is better to consult with a few managers before you select one to ensure that you don’t get ripped off.
Be mindful of what responsibilities the manager will have and how he will go about fulfilling them. The agreement also covers the owner’s responsibilities. If you do not want to perform some tasks, you can ask the manager to do them.
You should also ensure that you cover all aspects of tenant requests, house maintenance, advertising, and payment activities in the contract. Ask questions regarding the tenant screening process and how do they collect rent from them.
The agreement should also have a clear termination date and clear guidelines regarding contract violations. If you are not happy with the contract, you also can make changes to it.
It is important to realize that property management is not an easy task. Therefore, you’re your time to do the research before making this decision.