How to Choose a Good Property Manager

For someone who just fired his property manager two days ago, I couldn’t help but contribute to this post…

I actually (had) two property managers I was working with on 4 different properties. The first one I hired (the one I fired) I had found simply by contacting many different managers in my city and interviewing them at the property. Even though screening through at least five different managers could be a good idea, it is in no way enough to determine if they will perform and manage competently.

That being said, the other manager I have been using (and who took over in my other managers place this week) is a full night and day difference from the previous one I’d been using.

How did I find him?

Through references and networking with other investors. He came recommended by at least 3 other investors. He also is an investor and landlord himself and knows what is important to a landlord/property owner. You want to find someone that will do their best to treat your tenants and your property as good if not better than you would do yourself. I am currently living overseas so you can imagine how important it is to have the correct people in place for the job.

What to look for when hiring?

Its important to find out how many properties they currently manage and more importantly based on that number, how many people they have in their office that manage all those properties.

It is also important to find out how they handle the screening of new tenants, how quickly they respond to non-payment and evictions (hopefully won’t occur but you never know) and how they handle other operations such as 24/7 emergency svc, repairs and your payment each month.

Between these two managers, each was charging a mere 7% but wow, what a difference between the two when it came to professional management and competence. So my word of advice is don’t pay a higher mgmt fee such as 10-11% thinking a higher price will command better management. It should have nothing to do with it.

Talk to other investors for recommendations, speak with their current landlords/references, screen the ones you speak with and trust your instincts.

Wishing you successful investing…

Don’t forget to include markups on maintenance and lease fees in your consideration. I charge 10% of all money recieved but nothing if no money is collected. I don’t charge leasing fees at all. Other folks charge if the place is empty or full and lease fees on top of that. I try to make sure I charge in a way that aligns my interests with the owner.

Making smart and cost conscious recommendations to the owner that will increase overall return while improving the property so that it becomes more desirable, will help increase rental rates, lower turnover and decrease vacancy. Your property management company should make sure that your property always stays competitive in the leasing market.

Nowadays there are various property managers available in the market but it is difficult to find good one as I have same kind of experience with my property dealer. You have to gain proper knowledge about the property manager before hiring them.