Using a Property Manager for Rental Properties- What to know

Posted: May 4th, 2010  

For many property owners and landlords, the prospect of handing over 8-12% percent of your rental income to a property management company can often seem quite excessive and unnecessary. However, as many quickly discover through trial and error, making the right decision with a property management service can pay off ten-fold down the road.

Many landlords and property owners that are new to the idea of hiring a property management service often think of it as someone that only collects rent money from tenants. However, while most rent money is collected electronically these days anyway, a property manager can assist in much more than simply dealing with your tenants. In fact, pretty much everything you can think of can be handled by a property manager, from property maintenance to the writing and overseeing of tenant agreements.

One of the most important things that you can do as a property owner during the process of hiring a property management service is making sure you have all of your bases covered in the contract. This can include particular clauses that will allow you to make sure the property is being managed precisely how you want it to be rather than simply leaving everything up to the property manager’s discretion. For instance, a good idea would be to include a clause that protects from the property manager not reporting arrears or letting overdue rent get out of hand. You can include a clause that requires the manager to report to you on a regular basis. You can also include a clause that will help protect your financial investment in the property such as specifying that any repairs estimated to exceed a particular dollar amount require your authorization before ordered.

It’s important to remember when hiring a property management service that law does not currently regulate the fees they charge. This means prices can always be negotiated and, while 10 percent of monthly rental income is somewhat standard, there may be other companies that will do it for less.


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