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Working with your Property Manager – The Golden Three

By Donna Jones

The question of what to look for in a property manager is potentially one of the most thought about questions by a landlord/property owner, and of course a vital one if you are considering handing over the responsibility of your investment to a complete stranger.

If you’ve got to this stage of your thinking, you know why you need the services of a property manager and are at a state of mind (and play) of sitting back and letting someone look after the day to day stresses of managing your property. But how do you make the most of the relationship?

The team at McPherson Property Management believe there are three golden rules to selecting and having a productive relationship with a property manager that will ease the uncertainty when handing your property over to a property manager.

THE GOLDEN THREE

1. Evaluate the Property Manager

If a Property Manager is worth their weight in gold, they will have a long list of references or people available to advocate for them in terms of their service and professionalism.

Don’t be afraid before hiring a particular property manager to ask them for references from landlords and tenants, and contact details if possible so you can give them a call. Treat selecting a property manager like a job interview – no one wants any hidden secrets exposed once you’re locked in to a contract.

Experience is key in the industry, so also ask for details such as their arrears and vacancy rates to add to the mix when selecting the property manager for you.

2. Be honest

Don’t hide away your agenda from your Property Manager – they are the tool that will make your investment dreams a reality. Be honest about your investment strategy with your property manager so they know your risk exposure.

A good practice is to base your yield on approximately 48 weeks rather than 52 weeks. This allows you to build in some fat into your mortgage account for unplanned maintenance, days on market (if property is unlet/vacant) and in the worst case scenario, if the tenant seeps into rental arears through not paying their rent.

3. Benchmark

With benchmarking, this is a two pronged approach. The first is benchmarking the actual property. Work with and listen to your Property Manager to present your property in the best light in can be. By presenting the property to the best possible standard, it will ensure the best tenants apply, and you can achieve the best market rent possible.

The second prong is that of benchmarking your expectations. Make sure that all parties have a clear understanding of expectations and communication channels – between you and the property manager, and the property manager and tenant. Note: though you will have expectations of the tenant, there shouldn’t be a relationship or link between you and the tenant. This is the job that you are paying your Property Manager for!

Your expectations should cover things like maintenance timeframes, rental payment dates, a process around arrears, and a timetable or frequency of inspections.

It is important to find the property management company that ‘fits’ you and your investment. By taking charge of these three golden points of advice you’ll make the relationship a productive and healthy one where everyone is in a win-win situation. For your Property Management solutions, contact us here at McPherson Property Management today.

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