Just as you would assess a potential property manager’s skills, you should also review the qualities of their property management company too. After all, their property inspection, accounting, and maintenance procedures will have a direct impact on their management of your property.
To help with choosing a property management company, we’ve put together a list of five key qualities we recommend you look for.
5 Qualities of a Great Property Management Company
Having someone collect and follow up on unpaid rent and check that the tenant is looking after the rental are just two essential property manager skills that every landlord hopes they can utilise. To ensure this happens, it is important to also check that their property management company has these five key qualities:
- Experience with your type of property – it makes sense that if you are wanting a property manager to look after your commercial store, you use one which has an experienced company behind them. This will help them to remain accountable, undergo regular professional development and know what to do should issues with the property arise.
- Reliable and trustworthy – ask for client references and look online for reviews to help you assess the company’s trustworthiness and reliability. Meet with key players within the company to learn more about the way the company is run, as this gives you a good opportunity to not only judge their personal characteristics but to ask questions about the company’s stability and industry presence too.
- Industry-specific systems, structures and software – an effective property management company will have in place highly specific systems and structures to assist them in their work. This includes things such as accounting software, procedures to follow for unpaid rent or tenant damage and undertaking of property inspections.
- Communication skills – not only are the property manager’s skills in communicating with you and the tenant important but so is the way in which other members of the team communicate with you. Ideally, there would be a company policy of when, why and how often you and your tenant receive information from them and what is done with the ‘paper trail’ at their end.
- Comprehensive tenant screening process – every landlord wants a great tenant and the way to get one is to complete a thorough tenant screening right at the beginning. The property management company should require all property managers to complete background checks of prospective tenants, including their credit scores, personal and professional references, and income. While this may be an additional cost to you, the peace of mind and likely reduction in future tenancy issues is a huge benefit.
Depending on your property’s location, it is useful to also consider the local regulations in regard to the licensing of both property managers and their associated companies. Selecting a company that is registered with the local or national property management authority, tells you that they will be held accountable for their actions, undergo regular training, and must meet the required levels of competence for their industry.
As a landlord, it is essential that you complete due diligence and assess both the company and the property manager’s skills before signing any contracts. After all, your property is likely to be one of your largest investments and as such, requires a competent manager and company to oversee it.