If you’ve had a bad property manager in the past, or heard from those that have, you might be thinking you don’t need a property manager because all they do is sit in their office waiting for the rent to be paid. If you sign up with a bad manager then you would be correct. The frustrations and expenses of a bad manager are not worth your time, energy, and money. The dangers of a bad manager is not only are they a waist of time and money but they can cost you extra expenses on your investment property because of long periods of it sitting vacant, mishandling of maintenance issues, improper procedures to deal with late rent, misappropriation of security deposits, rents being too low, etc.
The alternative, using a great property manager, will be a great benefit to the success of your investment property. You should be able to depend on your management company to communicate promptly, and to know how to properly take care of issues. Whether they are regular issues like maintenance and vacancies or bigger issues like unpaid rent, a good manager will know exactly what to do and be immediately in the middle of a resolution. I truly believe Kasteel Property Management saves our clients more money than it costs them because we do our job and we do it right.
What are the Duties and Responsibilities of a Property Manager?
The number one answer to that question that guides the actions of everything else is to take care of the property owner and their interests. This is done by taking care of the property and the tenants so the property owner can have the best possible success from their investment property. Specifically that means:
- Finding tenants and thoroughly screening them.
- Keeping rent up with the market.
- Regular inspections.
- Enforcing the lease, including late fees.
- Resolving and coordinating maintenance issues.
- Collecting the rent and dispersing funds to owner.
- Monthly and annual statements and tax forms.
- Documenting the condition of the property with move ins and move outs.
- Prompt communication with tenants and owners.
What Skills and licensing Should your Property Manager Have?
In Utah, to manage real estate that is not owned by yourself, you need a Real Estate License. That is the minimum requirement but in practice you need a lot more than that.
- At Kasteel Property Management not only do we have a real estate license but we are our own independent real estate broker. This means our brokerage is not listed under some other Real Estate Company who’s focus may or may not be Property Management. At Kasteel Property Management our priority and focus is property management. To maintain our licensing we also attend the required ongoing State approved education courses.
- We also attend regular trainings from our attorney that specializes in Landlord Law. Their firm is a valuable resource for keeping up on the laws, what policies and procedures we should have, and keeping all our forms and leases current. In addition we have them available to answer questions and give legal advice for any property management issues that may come up.
If property management is done right, it is a full time job. To often people and even real estate agents think they can do property management “on the side” and make some extra money. A property manager needs to be dedicated and full time. With a part time property manager you will get part time service, including all the hassles and expenses that come with the mismanagement of your property. At Kasteel Property Management our full time service keeps our clients happy by taking care of their investment properties.
In addition, to the licensing, training, and skills a good property manager needs to have the right tools. This is more than just a good, up to date lease agreement. In today’s world tenants should be able to apply online, sign electronically, have access to their own portal to submit maintenance requests, pay their rent, see transaction history, and to share documents like evidence of renters insurance.
Property owners also need online resources, or portal, to view, store and access their past and present monthly statements, to retrieve tax documents, view shared files, and to send money electronically when needed. At Kasteel Property Management all these things are provided and conveniently accessible with a smart phone app.
How Does a Property Manager Get Paid?
Part of the responsibilities of a property manager is to collect the rent. From the monthly rent the manager will deduct their fee and any other expenses, like maintenance if there had been any that month, before sending the balance to the property owner. These charges will be accounted for on the owners monthly statement.
Is it Worth Hiring a Property Manager?
If you hire a good property manager it will save you money, time and hassle. When considering a property management company make sure you ask a lot of questions. See our previous blog post, How to Pick the Right Property Management Company, for a list of questions you should ask.
Although I am a big believer that here at Kasteel Property Management we save our clients money, there are a few cases in which some individuals should not hire a property manager. This is rare but it does come up. Hiring a property manager requires a level of trust and confidence in your manager. This can grow over time, but if you are a “do it yourself” type of person or someone that prefers hands on then you might feel more comfortable without a property manager. This is different than a property owner that wants to personally handle a large maintenance issue themself, or periodically do their own inspection of a property, or wants to do some annual yard care themself. Such things are often wise and prudent and can help build confidence in how your investment property is being managed.
To clarify, in saying these things, I never want to make a property owner feel they can’t ask questions about a concern they have or get involved in some way. We love our clients and always want to help and accommodate. The “do it yourself-er” I’m referring to is rare but I felt it was important to bring up because in those situations using a property manager will essentially be putting “too many cooks in the kitchen” and you will be better off with one less cook.
If you want to seek out professional advice and property management services then Kasteel Property Management will save you time, money, hassle, and stress. We will get your investment property on track and you will be surprised how easy we can make the process. You want to know your property is being taken care of by a company that is doing their job and working hard for you. You want Kasteel Property Management.
Stay tuned for more written blogs and videos from Kasteel Property Management.
At Kasteel Property Management we do more than just watch your rental property. We protect it, cultivate it, and help your investment grow.