What should I look for in professional property management?
After making the decision to hire a professional property manager, it can seem like a daunting task to try and select one from the thousands available. Professional property management companies are as diverse and specialized as their managers and as such, it is important to know what to look for before hiring one.
Before you start looking for a company, first identify your needs and goals for the property. Would you like a large management company with multiple locations and resources? Or would you prefer a more boutique business with a personalized approach? Does your property require full property management services, or only partial? Do you need a manager who can live onsite? All of these questions will help you narrow what you are looking for, even before you send out your first inquiry.
Once you have selected a company, or a small number of candidates, keep the following criteria in mind:
- Find out if they have any particular focuses within their company like residential properties, commercial suites, or portfolios and whether your property fits their niche.
- Check how many years has the company been in business and how they are regarded in the
- community; if possible, locate other property owners who employ them to ask about their service, or request a list of references. See if they are accredited by the Better Business Bureau, have won any awards or, conversely, if they have been cited for any bad business practices.
- Observe their customer service and become familiar with their policies. Make sure they are open during regular business hours and find out how they respond in case of emergencies.
- Request the qualifications of the manager who will be handling your property and note if they have any professional designations or accreditation.
- Review the management contract carefully. If you are not comfortable doing this on your own, hire an attorney to advise you. Look out for unnecessary fees like maintenance markups or charges for services on vacant units.
- Don"t be afraid to interview multiple companies. Handing over your investment is a big step, and you want to be completely comfortable with the company you employ.
Professional property management is a valuable asset to any investment property. With the help of professional services, it is possible to reap the maximum benefits of a real estate investment with little to no strain on your time or schedule.
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