There are a lot of responsibilities when it comes to managing a rental property, so if you’re looking for a property management service to help with your day-to-day tasks and more, there are several things that a company should be able to offer. Depending on your property and needs, responsibilities can vary, but generally include the following:
Marketing Vacant Units
When a unit opens up, it’s rent money that is no longer coming in, which can have a significant impact on the success of the property. It’s up to a property management company to advertise and market the property and the unit to quickly find a new tenant. A proactive property manager will look at when leases are up across all units and will plan accordingly. In the event that a tenant moves out, there will be minimal time when the unit is sitting unoccupied, reducing the risk of lost income.
Property owners want to ensure that they have quality tenants who will pay rent on time, won’t cause any disruptions, and will take care of the unit. A property manager will thoroughly screen potential tenants, completing a background check, credit check, and sometimes reference checks. This is an essential step that protects the property from potential disputes or legal issues down the road.
A property management service can establish the initial cost of rent by looking at the Lincoln real estate market and what other comparable complexes are offering. They will set prices depending on certain features of the unit, such as the number of bedrooms or any renovations or upgrades. The property manager will communicate with the tenant to ensure that they understand how much rent is, when it’s due, late payment process and associated fees, and about any necessary adjustments to the cost of rent. When a tenant fails to pay rent, they will handle the enforcement of late fees; and in the event that rent continues to go unpaid, they will manage the eviction process and any related legal matters.
Managing Maintenance and Repairs
All maintenance and repair tasks are meant to ensure that the property is habitable and safe for the tenants and anyone on the property or grounds. A property manager will complete a variety of tasks related to the overall maintenance of the property, including hiring a cleaning company to clean vacant units and office spaces, hiring subcontractors to fix HVAC, plumbing, or electrical repairs, landscaping, pest removal, trash removal, and more.
Property management services often have a network of relationships that they can utilize for each of these maintenance services. Through these subcontractors, they may receive discounted services, helping the property owner save money on these expenses. An effective property manager will know when to hire an outside service and when they can simply manage an issue alone in order to save the property owner money.
The property manager will also stay in close communication with tenants when there is an issue with a unit and will provide notices when there are regular checkups for the entire complex. By quickly and efficiently handling maintenance issues and repairs, property managers can help build or maintain a property’s reputation of providing quality service.
Communicating With Tenants and the Property Owner
Communication is an essential part of a property manager’s responsibilities. Whether it’s communicating with tenants about regular maintenance and needing to access each unit, if it’s letting the property owner know about an issue, or with subcontractors, there are various situations where effective communication can directly impact the success of the property. One slip in communication could mean an unhappy tenant or a repair that goes unfixed, resulting in an escalation of issues.
Whether it’s a dispute between two tenants or between a tenant and the property management service itself, any issues that arise will be handled by the management company. In many cases, the situation can be resolved by communicating each party’s grievances and wishes, but in some cases, issues escalate and need to be resolved through legal means. In that case, the property owner will work closely with an attorney or the courts to find a solution.
Managing the Budget and Financials
As supervisor of all of these tasks, the property management company is also responsible for maintaining a budget and ensuring that the property is making money. Because there are a variety of tasks, managing the finances of a property requires specialized training, knowledge, and experience. Each decision that is made regarding marketing, maintenance and repairs, the hiring of subcontractors, and more, is an opportunity to save money, helping to increase the property owner’s return on investment.
If you are the owner of an investment property and need a professional, reliable property management service, get in touch with the team at Hip Realty. We offer hands-on service and we always strive to be proactive, ensuring that your property is in good hands. Michael Holroyd, founder of Hip Realty, holds a Nebraska Real Estate Broker’s license and is a Certified Property Manager (CPM) designation with the Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM). With years of experience and a large client base, you can rest assured that we will take care of your property as if it were our own. Call us today in Lincoln for a consultation.