Whether you have a few individual rental units, or are a group representing several properties under ownership, such as a Home Owner Association (HOA), managing those assets is always a priority. Most property owners don’t have the experience to oversee the day-to-day managing of the assets. That’s why they turn to professionals with expertise in real property management in Columbia MD. These professionals act as representatives on behalf of owners, landlords and HOAs, and provide a wide range of related services as part of their contracts.
Doing Your Diligence
Before you hire a property management company, however, you must do your diligence. Here are three questions to ask before signing a long-term contract with your property management specialist:
- What Types of Properties Have You Managed?
The broader their experience, the more value-add you’ll receive. Ideally, you should look for property management companies in Columbia MD who have managed a wide range of real properties, these include:
– Individual residential units
– Homeowner Association (HOA) properties
– Townhouses, High-rise apartments, and Condominiums
– Free-hold rental property
– Civic properties
– Commercial and industrial buildings
The diversity of their experience adds value to what they’ll bring to a potential property management agreement with you. In other words: They have honed their craft on other properties, and now they’ll bring those experiences to managing your properties.
– What Specific Services Do You Include in Your Service Agreements?
Ask what’s included as part of their service packages. Even if they mention phrases such as “full service” or “comprehensive”, make sure you get a list of what’s covered. Ideally, experienced providers of real property management in Columbia MD must offer:
– Property marketing, including showings to prospective renters
– Tenant screening
– Online payment and direct rent deposit by tenants
– Regular unit and overall property inspections
– Preventive maintenance
– Financial reporting
– Regular communication with owners
In short, as a rental property owner, you must expect the property manager to act as a go-between yourself and your tenants. They must demonstrate, through their service offerings, that they are equipped and experienced to look after your interests.
– Convince me Why I should Partner with You?
Most property management companies in Columbia MD have experience with fixing broken toilets, collecting rent, and doing landscaping. However, what you need is someone who can demonstrate that they can handle anything that renters, tenants, and other stakeholders expect from a landlord (you). This “seamlessness” includes:
– Acting as your “voice” with your tenant base
– Representing your interest at Tenant-Landlord sessions and HOA meetings
– Handling the financials of your properties, and responding to questions posed by Board members, accountants, and auditors
– Assuring irate tenants that you (through your property manager) will review their grievances and provide an appropriate response
– Managing evictions and expulsions with finesse
More importantly, look for the prospective property manager to provide evidence that they are up-to-speed on all State, City and Local legislation and bylaws that impact your property. Because of the high stakes involved – City property inspectors can make recommendations to revoke your rental license! – this is one area where you don’t want novice property managers to represent you.