The Four Essential Questions to Ask a Property Manager
Being a landlord is stressful. Buying an investment property is a huge investment and you want to make a profit from it. A lot of things can go wrong. One bad tenant, botched project or unexpected vacancy can cost tens of thousands of dollars. In addition, many are doing it part time while working in an already difficult career.
Deciding to hire a property manager is a big decision. Are you paying them too much? What are they going to do that you can’t do yourself? Are they really going to bring the value they say they are?
There’s dozens of good questions you can ask a potential property manager when vetting them.
How long have you been in business? What areas do you serve? What is your fee structure? The questions are endless, and they won’t really tell you what you want to know anyway.
You want to know if the property manager is telling the truth about their supposed value proposition. You also want to know that your property is being rented out and taken care of, headaches are being kept to a minimum, and that you are still getting a proper return on your investment.
There are only four questions you need to be asking a potential property manager. If you can’t get a satisfactory answer to the following, you need to continue your search.
What have you learned since you have been in business?
Real estate professionals love to hang their hats on years of experience. But frankly, a lot of people find a profitable niche and can then coast for decades. We have been in business for 30 years, but more importantly, we have also been learning and growing the whole time. We’ve learned how to build meaningful relationships with dozens of contractors and vendors in the area. That gives everyone piece of mind and saves both time and money.
We also know the unique challenges that many landlords face in Northern Virginia. Many of you are foreign service officers or serving in the military and are therefore not local or even available by email on short notice. We have systems in place to meet your unique needs while keeping everything running smoothly. We have both the knowledge and experience, two of our core values, to meet and exceed your expectations as your property manager.
What do tenants like about living in properties you manage?
A big part of being a landlord is your relationship with your tenants. A big part of our job as your property manager is to keep that relationship on good terms. We have systems in place to make repairs in a timely manner, keep your property well maintained, and communicate everything with your tenants quickly and tactfully.
Over the years, we have amassed dozens of positive reviews not just from our clients, but tenants as well. This keeps vacancies low and renewals high. We can advise our clients on which improvements tenants tend to like and which ones are less important. We know the difference between the lifestyle decision of renovating one’s own home, and the business decision of renovating an investment property. This not only provides value to the tenants, but increases the landlord’s ROI.
With honesty and integrity, our other two core values, we clearly communicate with tenants and provide them with what they expect from their landlord. This is one of the many reasons why the properties we manage boast much higher renewal rates than others in Northern Virginia.
Why do your employees like working for you?
We manage 500 properties, that is a big endeavor. Maintaining relationships with hundreds of tenants, clients, vendors and contractors is a massive undertaking and therefore we have built a large team. Our full time, dedicated property management teams are cross-trained in all aspects of the business and are empowered to solve client’s problems and exceed their expectations. Since we only hire quality people who share our core values, we tend to have much less employee turnover compared to other companies similar in size. Simply put, our cross-trained, empowered and tenured teams of high quality people are able to meet and exceed our client’s expectations.
What do your clients like about working with you?
What sets us apart is that we live by our core values of honesty, integrity, knowledge and experience. Our clients like that we have built a solid foundation in Northern Virginia. Our professional staff provides our clients exceptional service in all aspects of property management.
One area in which we excel is tenant selection. Background checks and reviewing credit reports, financial statements and references are all done by our staff quickly and efficiently. In addition, we know how to effectively market your property to get a lease signed as soon as possible. All this is done while maintaining compliance with all laws and regulations that landlords are required to follow.
We also handle all vendor and contractor relationships. Our clients have access to and benefit from the many solid relationships we have built with carpenters, plumbers, roofers and dozens of other types of contractors. Individual property owners will struggle to build these types of relationships on their own because they typically do not operate at the scale that we do, and since the properties we manage are capped at 500, we are still small enough to give you the individual attention that you deserve.
We are also available and on call 24 hours a day, every day. No landlord likes having their phone ring late in the evening with an immediate issue that must be taken care of. We give our clients the peace of mind to know that any issue will be corrected immediately and with minimal inconvenience. When a client signs with us, being on call is simply a thing of the past.
We have been in business a long time because we have been providing our clients with exceptional value. We have the knowledge and experience to effectively manage your property and maximize your return on investment while keeping your time commitment to a minimum.