Property Managers can be incredibly helpful, but are also a luxury that many landlords simply cannot afford. Many landlords are able to manage their properties with very little effort. The trick to being an independent landlord is to first establish the proper processes, leverage available, tools and resources, and build multiple rental form templates for use, over and over again.
What does a Property Manager do?
A typical property manager will interact directly, on your behalf, with applicants and tenants.Managers will usually market and advertise your rentals, meet with prospects to host showings, collecting rent, deposit money to your bank account, and coordinate repair issues. They are also the first line of defense when responding to tenant complaints and will even stand by your side when you have to pursue an eviction or get sued.
A great property manager will voluntarily keep you updated with regular communication. Above all, the main purpose of a property manager is to give you peace of mind that your investment is being handled with care. Unorganized property managers will try to manage everything, but still turn to you for every issue and request; this forces you to be involved and develop stress, which is what you were trying to avoid when you hired them.
How to Decide if You Should Hire One
How many properties or rental units you own? If you own enough to where it’s hard to keep track, you should probably hire a property manager to help you.
How far away do you live from your properties? If you live far away from the property, you could benefit from a property manager. If you do choose to be a long-distance landlord, you should create a list of professionals that you can call upon in an emergency.
Are you detailed? Perhaps property management does not interest you, or you are not detail oriented. If you are not an organized person, then you should consider giving the responsibility to a professional.
Do you have the necessary skills and knowledge? If you have no idea what you are doing, and don’t want to learn, then don’t try to do it yourself.
How busy are you? If you are very busy, you likely should hire someone to help you.
Can you afford a property manager? A typical property manager takes 1 month’s rent as their flat fee. Others take a monthly cut of 4-10% of the rental income.
Are you struggling to fill your vacancies and don’t know why? If you feel like your property is vacant too often, then perhaps you need help with your marketing. If you aren’t sure what else you can do, then consider hiring a manager because they often have tried-and-true marketing techniques; albeit it’s no guarantee.
Do you mind working with contractors? Contractors are often needed to maintain the property. If you do not know any, or have the time to work with them, you should probably hire a property manager.