How to Find a Property Manager for Your Rental House

Shrewd real estate investing provides one of the quickest paths towards wealth building. But if you want to be successful with rental property investing, you can’t afford to do it alone. You’ll need help – particularly in the form of a property manager.

Why Hire a Property Manager?

A property manager is an individual or company who oversees the small and big picture details of your rental property investments. You pay them a small fee and they provide you with their expertise and services. The benefits include:

  • Higher profitability. According to Green Residential, one of the top property management companies in Houston, 83 percent of landlords who use property managers find that tenants pay more rent. Nearly 77 percent find that tenants rent for longer periods of time. Both of these factors lead to higher profitability per property.
  • Hands-off. A property manager takes care of all the little tasks and duties that landlords hate doing – such as responding to maintenance requests and dealing with late rent payments.
  • Lower daily stress. When you have a property manager, you essentially have an extra layer of insulation between you and the tenant – a go-between, so to speak. This lowers your overall level of stress and allows you to focus on the big picture.
  • More time. When you don’t have to respond to maintenance calls or chase down late rent payments, you can spend your time on more productive tasks that matter – such as finding your next rental property.

When it’s all said and done, a property manager provides you with the peace of mind that comes with knowing that someone is constantly taking care of your investments. And that’s invaluable!

What to Look for in a Property Manager

Not all property managers are created equal. If you want to increase your chances of being profitable and successful, here are some of the things you should look for:

  1. Proper Licenses and Certifications

Almost every state has certain requirements for who can professionally manage properties. These may come in the form of real estate licenses or other industry-specific certifications. While not always necessary, it’s nice to see:

  • Membership in The National Association of Residential Property Managers (NARPM)
  • Residential Management Professional (RMP) designation
  • Master Property Manager (MPM) designation
  • Certified Residential Management Company (CRMC) designation
  1. Good Reputation

You should never partner with a property management company without first looking into their past and evaluating their reputation.

“These days, it’s easier than ever to conduct research on a company, so head online to do your homework before hiring anyone,” suggests Brenton Hayden, Harvard Business School graduate and real estate expert. “Look up the company on the Better Business Bureau website and make sure they have a good rating. Research the state or local governing agencies for the industry in your area. Check out online review sites, and read what people are saying. Run a quick Google search to see if there are any negative blog posts or threads in forums.”

If you see a trend of negative feedback, you should move on with another company. If, on the other hand, you see consistently positive information, this is a good sign that the company is run by quality people who know what they’re doing.

  1. Comprehensive Management Services

It’s one thing for a property manager to collect rent or drive by your property every now and then, but you really want a company that offers comprehensive services. These may include accounting and finance, rent collection and distribution, maintenance and repair coordination, tenant screening, contract drafting, professional marketing, 24-hour support, property inspections, and evictions.

  1. Local Presence

There are a handful of national, online property management companies in the industry, but you should be wary of working with anyone who doesn’t have a local presence in your market. In particular, you want a company that’s been in your area for a number of years and has a positive reputation among locals.

Adding it All Up

You might be able to self-manage a single rental property, but as soon as you build up a portfolio of properties, it’s time to think about how you can streamline your responsibilities, save time, and maximize profits. The right property manager will help you move closer toward these goals. Don’t delay in finding help.

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