Today I am going to talk to you about what you should look for when selecting a professional property management company to take care of your rental property. Don’t be fooled by appearances. Anyone can look professional by having someone build a nice looking website or by doing great marketing with radio ads and print ads. Those things are not required for a good property manager. It takes a real professional to do these following things, so here’s what to look for:
Review a manager’s association involvement. Anyone can simply join an association as long as they qualify. But the involvement level makes a difference. Networking with others in the industry brings property managers to a higher level. Don’t just look for membership; look for committee involvement and leadership. Find out if they go after designations, which indicates a higher level of learning. To qualify for those designations, property managers are required to take classes, and I believe this adds value for property owners. It brings a higher level of experience and professionalism to the management of your rental home.
Look for references. Don’t just go off reviews you see online. Those reviews are important and worth your consideration, but go a step further and ask for actual letters of recommendations. You should also make an effort to personally talk to owners who work with the property managers you are considering. Anyone can write reviews online. You don’t know if you’re getting a tenant who is angry he didn’t get a security deposit back or some personal friend of the property manager who actually knows very little about what kind of work is required. When you talk to current or former clients, you can get an idea of how that property manager works.
Ask about how technology is used. New technology can provide a consistently high level of service for you the owner and your tenants. There are a lot of great tools available, so the company you use must have the latest software, online rent paying capability for tenants and electronic deposits to you.
You also want to look for consistent systems. When there are procedures in place that make managing property efficient and understandable, both owners and tenants are happy. Tenants are spending thousands of dollars to rent from you, so the management company you use must be consistent in everything they do and able to communicate well with the tenants. This will help you keep good tenants.