Buying your first investment property can be challenging. After officially taking ownership your challenges don’t stop there. Maintaining your investment property and making it profitable is another challenge altogether. Hiring a manager is a great solution for looking after your investment property. Let’s see a few things your property manager should be doing for you.
It’s very common for landlords to use the services of a manager. Most choose this option because of how challenging it is to maintain an investment property. There can be so many things you need to juggle and take care of at once. There are common duties that all landlords should be doing such as collecting your rent. But there’s a lot more they can do for you.
It’s important to hire the right property manager so you know that your investment property is being well looked after. Your manager should also be trying to increase the value and revenue of your investment property. To make sure you’ve picked the right property manager, see if they can do these five things for your investment property.
1. Organising open inspections
Need a new tenant? Your property manager should be actively organising, advertising, and supervising any open days to find prospective tenants. You can check the contract you have with the manager to see what their terms are in regards to advertising. Check whether online advertising and physical signage at the front of the house are included in their services fees.
Your property manager should be attending open days in person. They should also be answering inquiries, collecting contact details, and following up with prospective tenants. Your manager should also be processing applications and running background checks. With all this information available, they should be able to present to you the best options for tenants.
2. Organising repairs and maintenance
In the contract with your manager, there should be a section that includes a clause for urgent repairs. Your property manager should be able to authorize these urgent repairs without the need to bother you about them.
A good property manager should also have a great list of contacts up their sleeve when it comes to tradespeople like electricians and plumbers. Any property manager knows how important it is to provide value for you whenever possible. That’s why they should have contacts that can take care of any maintenance for a fraction of the standard prices you’ll see advertised.
For a big maintenance task, your property manager should also be able to offer you multiple tradespeople to choose from. They should be providing you with a few different quotes so you can decide on which service provides the best value. Some issues don’t even require tradesmen. For scenarios like this, your manager should know an easy fix such as resetting a fuse box instead of calling an electrician.
3. Routine inspections
Your property manager should have a policy for how often they carry out inspections. There should be at least one every twelve months. These inspections are done to make sure the tenants are taking care of your property. This also helps you and the manager keep an eye on any current or developing maintenance issues.
The advantage of using a property manager for inspections is their point of view. They will be able to be more objective about an inspection. Their decisions and judgement won’t be clouded by the emotions that usually come with being a property owner.
Your property owner should be able to identify problems before they become a costly issue. Early identification of safety and other maintenance issues can help save you thousands.
4. Getting to know your tenants
Swapping tenants and re-advertising your rental property can become quite costly. Having your rental property sitting vacant can start draining money instead of making it. That’s why it’s within your best interests to hold onto good tenants that want to stay long-term. One of the best ways to hold onto these tenants is to form a solid relationship with them.
Your property manager should be establishing a good rapport with your tenants. This can make many of the aspects of your rental property run smoothly. It can help minimise the stress and costs of managing a rental property. As your manager checks in with your tenant, they can periodically gauge interest in extending the lease.
If your property manager puts more effort into forming a positive relationship, then there’s going to be a higher chance of keeping those good tenants. Keeping good tenants will help keep your rental property profitable and in good shape.
5. Knowing how to increase rent
One of the biggest challenges for a property manager is being able to increase the rent of your rental property. As the years roll by, your property will likely increase in value. The cost of maintenance services also go up over the years. It’s these factors you need to be concerned about when it becomes time to increase your rent.
It can be challenging for a property manager to increase rent. Your tenants may not see the justification for it. How are they getting more value out of the rental property by paying more? Again, it comes down to good property management. Your property manager needs to show them the value they’re getting.
A good property manager will understand how much to increase rent and when is the best time to do it. Ideally, your property manager should be making comparisons with other rental properties in the area. They also need to juggle expectations with the tenants and understand how much they can afford to pay.