Grandma was kind and left you her residence in her will. It’s a great place, but it’s not convenient for you to live in, and the upkeep might be too much. You’d sell it, but the current market might not bear its full worth. The logical choice is to rent the home and to make some income every month. There are so many questions though: how do you find a reputable renter? How much should you charge each month? And are you really ready to be a full-time landlord? If the looming questions are too overwhelming to consider, the best choice might be to let a Property Management Company handle the process.
Whether you own one property or a handful, a property management company can help you accrue the monthly income, but not have to deal with the headaches that accompany being a landlord. The key to generating recurring income is good tenants. Owning a property can quickly become a nightmare if your tenants don’t pay the rent consistently and you are stuck having to pay the mortgage out of your own pocket. If your property is out of state, it becomes even more difficult to keep a watchful eye on your investment Worse yet is a tenant who damages your property, leaving you in the unenviable spot of having to fix whatever the renters destroyed. Being a landlord can be a full-time job, especially if you need to maintain the unit or units, and if you run into that troublesome tenant and have to go to court, you are truly investing your time in what might turn out to be a losing venture.
The benefits of hiring a professional property management company can heavily outweigh the monthly fees you would have to pay, especially if you own several properties. When you own property and you have a friend or family member who needs a place to live, oftentimes your first inclination is to rent your place to him or her. You know them; what could go wrong? The first time the rent is missed, the situation becomes awkward and the situation could go south from there. How do you evict a friend or family member? The best way to avoid this situation is to let a property management company handle all the details, from the completion of the credit check and background screening to the collection of the rent. Screening potential tenants are one of the major, time-consuming services a professional property management team can provide.
Another invaluable service a property management team will handle is all the legal intricacies of maintaining a property. In addition to making sure the property meets all local codes and safety laws, property managers also navigate inspections, handle evictions and lease negotiations with tenants as well as any requests for repairs. The most important aspect that a management team can handle is the specific landlord-tenant laws that vary from state to state. This service alone can help you avoid legal problems and expensive lawsuits. If a tenant doesn’t pay their rent on time, a property manager will contact the renter and, if necessary, file an eviction notice on your behalf. The property manager will also enforce the terms of the lease; for example, if the least stipulates that no animals are to leave on the premises, and a renter gets a puppy, he or she is in violation. If the tenant makes modifications to the property without authority, he or she is in violation. These are matters handled by the property management team to ensure the rules are followed and you are reimbursed for any repairs to the unit.
The point of renting the uninhabited place is to generate money, but you can’t do that if you don’t have tenants. When one moves out, there are the cleaning, repainting, and repairs that can be costly and time-consuming. Every day that it sits unrented is money lost. A property management company can step in and handle the redecorating process, as well as any other issues that may arise. Then they can get the place rented for you, quickly!
While it is true a property management company might be expensive, in the long run, considering all the aspects they handle, the fees may very well be worth it—especially come tax time. A qualified property management company can assist you with the number of deductions to claim and how to get organized for tax season. The fees paid to the management company will certainly be less than any fines and penalties the government will assess for improperly reporting rental income.
What other services can a property team provide? Say you’re unsure how much rent to charge for grandma’s house since it’s not in your neighborhood. A local property management company can assess the place’s rental value and set the price accordingly on your behalf. They can also handle the marketing to quality tenants, to ensure the place is rented fast, and to someone who is fully qualified. They may even have a list of qualified renters available to expedite the process. A property manager is also available to show the property, which may be difficult for you if you don’t live near your rental or you have several units to show. Taking the time to draw up contracts, maintain the rental, collect the rent, retain tenants and keep apprised of all the property laws and tax implications can be overwhelming, to say the least. A professional property management company can alleviate these headaches for you.
When selecting a property management company, it is important to look for one that belongs to the National Association of Residential Property Managers, also known as NARPM. Members of NARPM are real estate professionals who handle the issues and challenges of managing single and multi-unit rental properties. These specialists know the ins and outs of real estate law and are trained in ethics.
Aligning yourself with a reputable property management team will not only ensure your best interests are maintained but that your tenants also feel protected.