Despite the many pitfalls related to real estate in the last few years, it is still one of the best investments around. But buying real estate as an investment often requires holding the property and renting it. This leads naturally to the need to manage the property.
As buyers and investors, our ambitions and passions lay in the finding and negotiating for the property. Most investors hate having to deal with tenants, maintenance and other such issues. Here we will discuss the ins and outs of hiring a rental property management company to deal with those issues the owners would rather not deal with.
Hire an Individual or Company?
To hire someone, or a company to manage your properties you will want to know what exactly it is you want. If you hire someone with little or no property management skills then they will not have any system for managing or reporting expenses or issues. In this case you would need to provide a system for them.
“A company that is paid to handle many properties will have systems in place to provide you with monthly reports on repairs, expenses and other such items.” states Joe Adams of Ascent Real Estate in Vancouver. “In some cases this type of management company may also have relationships with suppliers and they may even have an in-house maintenance crew for repairs.”
Things To Consider
Deciding which type of manager or company you want, you will have to determine how much hands on you want to have. The budget you have to pay for such a service will also factor into which way you go, as well.
You will definitely want to make an appointment to interview with them. You do not want to trade one headache for another. If you hire a person or a company that is not suitable for you and your personality it will be as miserable as having to do everything yourself.
If you are a smaller investors and have only a few apartments or properties to manage, then you might consider hiring an individual and creating a system for handling the issues that come up as well as how you want them reported to you. You will need to give them a way of keeping track of all cost and you will likely need to develop relationships with suppliers and so forth.
In this situation it might also be good if the manager can take care of most maintenance issues. Because you are small, it might be too costly to hire one person to manage and another to perform maintenance. If you are willing to do a thorough interviewing process to pick a good candidate, and you are willing and able to develop your own system that you teach to them, then this can work well.
If not, you will want to get a company. They will cost more, but they will have everything in place. This includes a maintenance crew, relationships with suppliers and a complete system to report any and all issues and expenses.
If you do go with a company, be sure to interview them just as you would an individual because property management is something you need to handle long term and this means who you have doing it on your behalf needs to fit your needs and personality.