A property manager takes care of everything to do with your investment property, so you can sit back and relax, watch the rent roll in and watch the value of your property grow. Well, that’s the idea anyway.
To make it easier we’ve split the function into parts, addressing two different aspects of the property managers job. ‘Tenant Lifecycle’ and ‘Investor Services’.
So, what does a property manager actually do?
We’ll step through the ‘Tenant Lifecycle’ part of property management here, but be aware, not all property managers are created equal, and there’s a breadth of tasks that are often done to varying degrees of competency, or in some cases, not at all.
1. Find you a reliable, suitable tenant for the property
To do this a good property manager will determine what kind of tenant is ideal for the property, advertise appropriately then interview, and vet the tenant to make sure they’re a good fit. This results in a tenant who stays longer, pays their rent on time, and doesn’t damage the property either. A rigorous, considered search is what you’re looking for, and even if it means saying no to a few possible tenants, you’ll benefit in the end.
Tenant secured, what does your property manager do now? Well they’ll take an inventory, and produce an entry report before the tenancy begins, and in most cases, that’s about all.
What they should be doing, however, is performing a range of maintenance checks and basic repairs, to prevent a series of phone calls from your increasingly annoyed new tenant. There’s no quicker way to shorten the tenancy than having to send a repair person round on a frequent basis, in the first couple of months.
That’s why our property managers take care of that themselves, knowing it’s done once, and done right, every time.
2. Stay on top of the rent, pay all the bills
This involves setting up a payment structure that suits everyone, and having a great relationship with the tenants so if anything goes astray, it can be resolved amicably. There also needs to be a legally sound, and fair process for when this don’t go according to plan.
Your property manager will also pay all your bills, including council rates and water, strata and repair bills too, which brings us onto the next part of the job.
3. Keep your property in great condition
A property manager will inspect your property on a regular basis, and provide you with a report on how it’s all looking. They’ll have a network of tradespeople to address a range of issues, and overall, keep your property in the condition it was when you rented it in the first place. All of this helps to maintain the value of the property, and keeps the tenants happy too.
What the majority of property managers won’t do, once again, is actually perform basic maintenance and repairs while they’re on site. This averts many problems, and reduces the amount of inconvenience experienced by the tenant.
4. Find you another tenant when they leave
When a tenant leaves there are a number of tasks your property manager will take care of for you. This includes a full inspection and exit report, making sure it matches with the entry report and the condition the property was in at the start, and bonds will be held until this is addressed.
As soon as your property manager knows the tenant is going to leave, they should also start looking for a new tenant, minimising the renal gap as much as possible. They’ll also manage all of the legalities involved with ending one tenancy, and starting the next one!
And that’s the end of the ‘Tenant Lifecycle’ part of the property managers job.
Some people do it all themselves, managing their own investment properties to save on fees, however, the amount of time involved often prompts them to offload the work to a professional. It all depends on how ‘passive’ you want that investment to be, how much spare time you have on your hands, and how much you stay on top of the latest legislation.
In our next article we’ll address the other part of ‘What does a property manager do?’, which we call ‘Investor Services’.
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As always, if you have any questions about property at all, just give us a call on 02 9586 0000, or click here, and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.