Do You Need a Property Manager?

If you’ve been wondering if you should hire a property manager or do it yourself, hopefully by the time you’ve finished reading you will have some idea of what works best for your situation.

While many hands-on (DIY) landlords manage their rental properties themselves, some opt to hire a property manager to take care of some or all of the landlord’s duties.  

What is a property manager responsible for?

In essence, property managers save you time and lessen the stress and worry associated with being a landlord, including:

  • ⬥ marketing the rental
  • ⬥ managing tenants
  • ⬥ collecting rent
  • ⬥ attending to maintenance requests, and 
  • ⬥ handling legal issues

They are frequently employed by a business that manages your home’s rental in return for a fee that is typically between 7% and 10% of the monthly rent.

Why would I want to use a property manager?

If at least one of the following situations applies to you:

  • ⬥ You have several rental properties available
  • ⬥ Your to-do list for property management seems endless
  • ⬥ You don’t live close to your rental
  • ⬥ You aren’t interested in self-management
  • ⬥ Your time is limited or worth more than hiring a property manager would cost

If you want to manage your own rental properties, you might be able to find a property management company to help with some of the work while you handle the rest yourself. If so, they might reduce their property management fee for you.

Do I need a property manager?

Depending on how much time you’re willing to spend on rental tasks or if you’d prefer to just pay a property management fee rather than handle everything yourself, you may or may not need a property manager. 

Here are some reasons why you might decide to handle some tasks on your own or hire a property manager to handle everything.

Hiring a property manager to take care of some of the duties of the landlord will:

  • ⬥ limit your need to respond to tenant calls about urgent repairs or deal with evictions, which will free up some of your time
  • ⬥ possibly save you money on costs associated with property management
  • ⬥ provide you with a knowledgeable individual who is capable of handling significant issues like litigation and maintenance
  • ⬥ give you discretion over any duties you choose to assume as a landlord

Employing a property manager to manage all landlord duties will:

  • ⬥ save the time you would have spent performing landlord duties
  • ⬥ cost more in the end, but many property owners accept this trade-off
  • ⬥ give you the peace of mind that your rental property is being managed by knowledgeable experts

How to find a property manager

If you haven’t purchased your investment property yet, find out if any local property management companies will take on a single rental. 

Many businesses only want to work with people who own multiple properties or apartment buildings and complexes, so they may not be interested if you currently only have a single residential home available for rent.

Here are some steps to help you find and hire a property manager:

  1. Check with a real estate agent or your friends and family for recommendations. 
  2. Research property investors’ associations in your state, neighborhood or online forums for reviews. 
  3. List a few property management businesses that might fit your needs. 
  4. Compare each company’s fees. 
  5. Verify the certifications and licenses of each business. 
  6. Read the property management contract for each potential property manager.
  7. Examine the properties that your potential property manager is currently managing
  8. Set up interviews with various property management businesses to determine which one is the best fit.

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