Owning an investment property is a great step towards financial independence. While many owners decide to manage the property themselves, others find that having a property management company manage their asset for them can greatly simplify their lives. Depending on whether or not they have a real estate broker’s license, a property manager can:
- Advertise the property’s availability to potential renters and show rental properties.
- Screen potential renters, verify credit and check references. (This is a crucial step and could make or break your experience as a rental owner. Always make sure that references are checked to determine that the potential tenant really is as reliable as they may seem.)
- Negotiate lease terms.
- Collect and track rents.
- Provide monthly and annual financial reporting about your asset.
- Handle repairs and maintenance, often 24-hours a day.
- Handle evictions. Proper notice of termination needs to be served to evict a tenant – a professional property manager will know these procedures.
Finding someone you trust to handle these issues can be well worth the expense, especially if you don’t live near your investment property, or if you have a busy life like most of us do!
When selecting a property management company, look for experience in important areas, such as maintenance, leasing, collections, marketing, advertising, tenant relations, financial analysis and budgets, and knowledge of relevant local and state laws. Ask for sample reports and for references from other property owners using that management company.In addition, make sure that your property manager has the proper licensing.
In most states property management companies must have a real estate broker’s license to list properties for rent, show them to tenants, negotiate leases and some states also require a broker’s license to collect rents. You can always check whether a real estate broker’s license is required by consulting your state real estate commission’s website, and most state’s have a license lookup tool on the internet. In addition, you can also check to see if any disciplinary actions have been taken against a broker. All in all, working with a good property management company can not only help you protect your investment, it can give you peace of mind.
Tracey March is the designated broker for All Property Management, LLC. The company website, www.allpropertymanagement.com provides a directory of property management companies and association management companies in the