When searching for a reputable property manager, it will become apparent that there are numerous property management companies to pick from, and this can make it difficult to make a decision. All of these companies will claim to offer the very best service, pricing and overall value, but how do you really choose when all of them are promising the same thing? (wikihow.com)
As you embark on your search for the perfect match, keep these six simple steps in mind:
1. Get Referrals
By speaking with realtors and property managers in your area, you can find out which property managers they have used, and which they would recommend. Ask them frankly which companies they have used and what their experiences have been. Who did a good job? Who cut corners? Always keep in mind that referrals can be biased and that they should come from more than one source.
2. Do an Online Search
Doing a search online for a property management that suits your needs is an easy and effective way to get more information. Some websites allow you to plug in the size of your property and your location and they will generate a list of property management companies in your area.
3. Check Out Their Current Work
Look at some of the property manager’s current rental ads. Are they professional, well thought out and clearly stated? Do they advertise in a variety of places, or are their ads limited to free sources like Kijiji? The way that a company posts ads will say a great deal about how they run their business.
4. Visit the Properties They Manage
Why not take the time to actually stop by some of the properties that are managed by your potential property managers? Check to see if they are cared for and in good condition. Are the properties clean and well maintained? You can also gather some great information by speaking to the tenants that they currently managing. Because property management is about keeping you and your tenants satisfied, it is important to get their opinion as well. Additionally, you should ask the management company to provide a sample copy of the monthly report you would receive.
5. Check Their License and Certification
Most provinces require that a property management company have a real estate broker’s license or a property management license in order to operate. You will also want to know if the company or manager has been certified by any external entity. Many different organizations will offer certification after completion of a training program. If the property manager is willing to spend the time and money to go through continuing education courses, it can tell you that they are committed to providing you with the best service.
6. Read The Management Agreement
A property management company’s management agreement should clearly define the role of the management company and that of the property owner. The terms need to be the same as what was discussed in the initial interview. Pay close attention to all of the details, including the sections on services provided, such as extra fees charged, responsibilities of the owner, compliance with laws, and reasons for cancelation. (landlords.about.com)