When you’re choosing a Charleston property management company, you’ll need to conduct a bit of research and ask a few questions.
Some of the most common questions people ask are: how much do you cost? And, how much can I earn on my property?
These are fair and necessary questions. However, if you really want to understand what you’ll be earning and spending, you have to ask a few additional questions. You want to know about vacancy rates and tenant retention rates. Customer service is also important.
We recommend that you manage to ask a few questions in addition to the usual questions about costs and earnings. Start with these important topics.
How do You Communicate with Tenants and Owners?
Technology allows us to communicate in several different ways. We can make phone calls, send emails, type out a text message or tag someone on social media platforms.
Find out how your property manager plans to communicate, and make sure it matches your own preferences and comforts. If you’re an out of state investor in another time zone, online communication might be best. If you like the in-person meetings and phone calls, make sure your property manager is prepared for that.
Discuss your expectations. Communication is an important part of your relationship, and you need to know how often you’ll hear from your property manager and in what format you can expect to have information shared and questions answered. You also want to know how they respond to your tenants.
How Do You Enforce Your Rent Collection Policy?
Ask how rent will be collected and paid to you. Find out when rent is due, how tenants are expected to pay the rent, and whether there is a grace period. Discuss late fees when rent doesn’t come in on time and who receives them. You also want to ask when you can expect to be paid. You’ll need to know if your payment will be deposited directly into your account or if you can expect to receive a check in the mail.
How are Routine and Emergency Rental Repairs Managed?
Find out how your property manager handles routine and emergency maintenance. Will they need your approval to make a $50 repair, or will there be a higher threshold for you to be involved? You need to understand how they pay for maintenance and whether you need to have a reserve fund. Find out if there’s an upcharge on maintenance invoices. Discuss vendors and how quickly they respond to small repairs. You’ll need to know if they’re available 24 hours a day.
What Kind of Data do you Use to Establish a Rental Value?
Properly pricing your rental property will result in a placing a great tenant quickly. A property that’s priced under market will cost you money, and a property that’s overpriced will probably cost you even more money in vacancy. You need to know your property manager is using good data and reliable information to price your home, and not just picking a number out of the sky.
These are only a few of the questions you should be asking your potential property management partner. Do your due diligence to ensure you have a successful rental experience. If you’d like to hear our answers to these and other questions, please contact us at Charleston Home Rentals.