5 Questions You Must Ask Your Property Manager
Your property can attract the gaze of a nefarious tenant and it may require one of its many urgent repairs at any moment. You cannot possibly have the time to look after all the aspects of your property; especially if you have an extensive portfolio. This makes a property manager a really valuable asset of your team. While this is very true, fact remains that you cannot take a property manager on board without conducting your side of Due Diligence. Here are 5 questions you should ask them before their formal recruitment.
Q1 # what constitutes their process of tenant screening?
Ask them “what method do you employ to screen tenants?” After all, no person can read the mind of another person and a disaster-tenant may be lurking close by at any moment. Ideally, a property manager must ask prospective tenants about their current employment and creditworthiness.
In addition, they should also ask succinctly framed question on topics that include, but are not restricted to, references a tenant can provide, his reasons for shifting, his propensity towards borrowing, toddlers or pets he will bring along, and number of earning members in his family.
Q2 # how forward-deployed are they with emergency repairs?
Ask your prospective property manager if he will take up the cause of a pressing maintenance or repair issue on an urgent basis, each time such a requirement crops up. If yes, will he update you in advance towards its expected costs?
There are pre-stipulated conditions under which the agency your manager represents foots the entire bill. Of course, this makes your initial payment for recruitment heftier. Be clear about such clauses or the lack of them.
Q3 # how do they judge capital growth?
Ask them the method they use to judge the capital growth of your property. Some property managers go by the rental yield reports and compare it with past reports. Others seek the Comparable Sales Figure of the area to find out the cost for which similar properties within a very close radius have been sold off in the immediate past.
Q4 # how do they propose to entice tenants to your property?
“How do you plan to attract prospective tenants?”- This question should be on your must-ask list. Ideally, property managers have subscriptions with top property portals and websites where any vacancy your end is advertised.
In addition, they may also send newsletters to the past (and current) database of tenants. While talking on this topic, do not miss out on asking if they are ever prepared to show your property to a hunting tenant.
Q5 # how quickly will they shuffle?
Humans feel discomfited in an environment of constant change. It then becomes important to ask prospective property managers if there will be a lot of shuffle from the agency’s side. It often happens that the manager you talk to in March turns out to be different from the guy you talk to in November and so on. Try insuring yourself against such quick change of guard.
If you are fairly satisfied with the answers you get to these 5 questions, do not hesitate in appointing the property manager in question.
What questions are on the top of your mind when hiring a property manager?