Anyone can own property in Oregon, but not everyone can manage it! Managing a property isn’t an easy walk in the park.
To have a successful rental business, you need a property manager that has the experience, skills, and industry knowledge.
The rental property business is competitive mainly because renters have such a wide range of options to choose from. For your property to stand out, you need to choose someone who understands the ins-and-outs of the business.
If you’re reading this, you probably already know what a property manager does. The next step is the find the right one to manage your rental property.
There are so many property managers out there, how do you improve your odds of landing the right one? Well, you do that by asking the right set of questions.
In today’s blog, we are going to take you through some of the best questions to ask a property manager when considering hiring them.
Question #1: What services do you offer your clients?
You want a manager who can take on a variety of responsibilities including:
- Tenant eviction
If any of these aren’t in the property manager’s list of services, chances are that they lack the necessary skills to ensure your investment succeeds.
Question #2: How many rental units do you manage?
This will help you understand how large their management portfolio is. You don’t want to work with an inexperienced company.
A small company may:
- Just be starting out. The downside to this is that they may not have the necessary experience.
- Provide sub-par service due to inexperience.
Ideally, look for a property management company that has a portfolio of 200+ properties.
Question #3: Are you experienced in managing rental properties?
Don’t assume it, ask it. They may have a great office or a slick website, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they are good at what they do.
Look for a property management company that has been around for a while. The logic is simple: if others have trusted them long-term with their properties, there is a good chance that they are good at what they are doing.
Question #4: Can you help property owners set the rent amount?
Charging the right rent is vital for the success of your Oregon rental business. The right rent will attract the right tenant.
Setting a competitive rent price is one of the many advantages of working with an experienced property manager.
With this in mind, look for a property manager that can help you determine the right rent amount.
Ask them how they do it. Do they know how to conduct a comparative market analysis?
If they do, great! But if they don’t have a clue, just do yourself a favor and walk away. Chances are that they are inexperienced.
Question #5: Have you invested in the local real estate market yourself?
Ideally, look for a company that has also invested in the local real estate market as well. If they have, it means that they understand what works and what doesn’t when it comes to succeeding there.
But if they haven’t invested themselves, it’s unlikely they have the understanding to make you excel.
Question #6: What is in your contract?
Some property management companies will try to clutch onto their clients by all means. They will offer contracts that will be costly to escape from.
Always do your diligence before signing on the dotted lines. Understand the terms of the agreement, including the renewal of the agreement, the length of the term, and what happens should you severe the contract.
Question #7: How much do you charge clients for your property management services?
Generally speaking, management companies usually offer two pricing options. The first one is the flat rate option.
With this pricing option, it means that the company will get paid no matter what. In other words, they will get paid whether or not your property has a tenant. The issues with this option are the risks of the property manager not being motivated to fill your property quickly or to get you higher rent.
The other pricing option is the percentage of collected rent. This means that your property manager will only be paid if you have a tenant. As such, this will motivate them to fight for higher rent amounts as it’ll benefit their bottom line as well.
Question #8: Are there any miscellaneous fees?
Some companies will try to entice their clients by offering them a low rate. Then after signing an agreement, the company that seemed inexpensive will then charge them lots of miscellaneous fees.
As the age-old saying goes – if the deal seems too good to be true, it probably is.
Keep in mind that, at the end of the day, your property manager is there to make money. Thus, if they aren’t making it through the low monthly rate, then they will definitely look for other ways of making it.
Question #9: How is your rent collection method?
Are they still requiring their tenants to bring their checks to the office? This is old-fashioned and inefficient, and most people don’t write checks anymore. The number of checks written decreased by about half between 2003 and 2012, from 36 billion to 18 billion.
In this day and age, any serious property manager should be offering an online rent payment solution.
- Requiring tenants to pay online makes it difficult for tenants to miss their rent payments.
- It increases the speed at which you can get paid.
Question #10: How do you ensure my property is in top-notch condition at all times?
Look for a property management company that conducts inspections regularly. If they offer in-house maintenance, that’s a bonus. Nonetheless, ensure to find out what their fees are, as it can sometimes be less expensive to hire a contractor to conduct repairs.
Admittedly, this list isn’t exhaustive by any means. That said, these are some of the best questions to ask a property manager before hiring one.
They can help you determine their strengths and weaknesses, and ultimately help you know whether they are a good fit for managing your Oregon rental property or not.