I can’t tell you the number of investors I’ve met who are just not happy with the service they receive from their property managers.
The issues range from clients’ calls not being returned in a timely manner and sometimes not at all to not following up with tenants who are behind in their rent or authorising expensive repairs on the landlord’s behalf when the monetary repair budget was set at $300 – and the list of poor service goes on.
As a landlord, the property manager performs an extremely important service – that of caring for and helping to maintain your valuable asset, along with ensuring that the rent is paid into your account on time each month.
These poor performing property managers more often than not are part of a larger real estate office where the focus of the Principal of the business is on property sales with property management often well down the list of their priorities.
Often junior property managers are hired and may receive some cursory training and then are left to handle a portfolio of several hundred properties with little to no support from their Principal.
We then see the property management “churn” where young, inexperienced property managers leave the agency within approximately 18 months of starting and the cycle then starts again.
Now let me describe a great functioning property management team and how you can source them.
This team generally has an experienced, senior property manager who trains and oversees their junior property managers.
These senior managers understand that great customer service involves and is not limited to the following:
- Returning phone calls and emails promptly (within a 24 hour period or less)
- Informing the landlord of any changes to their property – tenant giving notice, wanting a rent reduction, needing a damaged or faulty item repaired or replaced.
- Qualifying a great tenant for your property with due diligence provided with income, references etc and proof provided. Also checking with the previous property manager to understand the rental history of the tenant.
- Making sure that all expenses are paid and the landlord is informed if the tenant has fallen behind with the rent and the reason.
- Providing advice to the Landlord regarding any potential Tribunal issues and how to navigate that circumstance.
The way to source these great property managers is to look beyond the more well known agencies to those who have their core business as ‘Property Management’. These Principals focus on providing excellent customer service and understand the landlord’s needs when it comes to getting the best return on their property investments.