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Nov 09, 2021 Ashley Page

5 Traits To Look For In A Property Manager

While the past few years have been unpredictable for property owners, some key trends haven’t changed – for instance, the need for a good resident experience. And many residents are expecting property owners to adapt to the changing times. Forbes lists the renter experience as the most important priority in the industry and notes that technological advances have forever changed how people look at, buy, and rent properties. For example, 40% of renters want to have the option of viewing units virtually after the pandemic ends. Moreover, 60% of renters stated that the pandemic has highly impacted their location preference. Real estate investors need to find property managers who can work with this reality and accommodate the new normal. If you're seeking a new property manager, here are 5 things you should look for.

Experience with the type of property you own

Hiring an individual with experience managing the type of property you own assures you that they have enough know-how to make the best decisions. This can be important because residential properties and their residents have specific needs. You want a property manager focused on building community so your residents stay for the long haul and limit your unit turnover and risk of unoccupied units. 

Additionally, Investopedia explains the differences between renting an apartment vs. renting a unit that is part of a condominium association. Apartment fees are often paid to the building owner, while condominium fees must be coursed through unit owners or given to the condominium association. An experienced professional will be able to manage the flow of these fees better and possibly increase your net operating income.

Reliability and trustworthiness

As mentioned by Marcus' article on buying investment properties, there are plenty of responsibilities that come with being a landlord — countless calls, managing late payments and unit turnovers, keeping up with maintenance. You want to hire a property manager who can manage these tasks with the same precision and level of professionalism that you would. Someone who can be a true extension of your team.

Are they dedicated to your residents’ satisfaction? Are they diligent about timely monthly collections and deposits? Nowadays, many property management companies use software or applications that help them streamline rent collection and bill payments. This timeliness can also encourage your residents to plan their dues and pay them on time. You want to partner with a company that makes the resident experience as frictionless as possible.

An effective resident screening process

Screening processes can vary widely between property management companies — but the more comprehensive the methods they use, the better. These are usually comprised of conducting background, credit, and reference checks. Additionally, former landlords should be contacted for resident reputation, and applicant claims should be verified thoroughly.

As previously mentioned, technology plays an important role in finding the ideal resident and screening them, so being tech-savvy is a big plus for property managers. You should ask for a breakdown of the rental application to see if it is custom-tailored and if it is enough to satisfy your standards.

Property management and vacancy fees

There is a significant difference between commercial and residential property management fees, with The Balance reporting an average cost of 8%-12% of the monthly rent. This also varies depending on the number of properties you need managing services for, as well as the market. And while not all management professionals require vacancy fees, some do. Around $50 could be charged every month the property remains without a tenant, so look over contract details to ensure transparency with fees.

Knowledge of the law

If you have more than a handful of properties to manage, laws and regulations that differ from area to area can be confusing, and you might be prone to a few mix-ups. In our list of ‘3 Reasons Why You Should Hire a Property Manager’, we note how property managers have the know-how and experience to handle compliance issues and difficult tenants. By ensuring compliance with applicable laws, you can avoid unnecessary lawsuits and drama. This can also be useful for evictions and late rent payments, as you will have a professional who can take active action if needed, without you getting too involved.

Now that you know 5 key traits you should look for in a property management company, let us show you the CHARLESGATE way. Hospitality-focused and comprehensive to meet all your unique needs. Learn more or ask us for a free proposal.

Published by Ashley Page November 9, 2021