Choosing the right property manager

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There are many benefits to hiring a property manager. It will save you a lot of time and eliminate the stress of having to manage the rent, paperwork and dealing directly with the tenant. However, it is vital that you do your research before hiring one to ensure your investment is in safe hands. Here are some things to consider when choosing the right property manager, or switching to another.

Ask Around

One of the best ways to determine whether a potential property manager is right property manager for you is to do your research. Ask around or check out reviews on websites to get an idea of what to expect, whether other clients are satisfied with the service or whether there are issues and concerns. Do not be afraid to ask the potential managers to give you references from their current or former clients.

Communication is Key

Before settling on a property manager, it is vital that you are able to communicate with them effectively and that they are able to do the same with you. Choosing a property manager that keeps you in the dark about tenants, sales or property advertising will only increase your stress levels. Ensure that you are on the same page about the method and the frequency of communication that is expected of them and the information that these communications should contain.

Fees and Charges

For most, this is the most important. Ask the property manager these questions: What is your management fee, including GST? Are there any other hidden charges? What is the average cost to bring the property to market between tenants? Note: do not be fooled by a property manager with extremely low fees – they may be significantly cheaper for a reason. Perhaps they cut corners, or do not invest an adequate amount of time into managing their properties. Consider these questions before proceeding with the property manager.

Property Management

Ensure that the way the property manager conducts their business is suitable to you and cost-effective. If you already have an existing property manager, consider whether you are paid on time, how often do they communicate with you, and whether their fees and charges match those of similar property managers in your area. If you are still on the hunt for a new property manager, you should enquire about their tenant screening process, rental return assessment, and their eviction rate. Find out how they handle repairs and emergency works and how often you will be able to conduct inspections on your property, and especially how and when you will be paid.

Remember, you are ultimately giving them control of one of your most expensive assets so it pays to do your research when choosing the right property manager. Ask as many questions to satisfy yourself and, if months down the track you are still unhappy with their performance, or you think you could be getting a better deal with someone else, then make the move.