How new landlords can stay on top of property management guide, Buying investment properties, Home letting
How New Landlords Can Stay on Top of Property Management
21 April 2022
Upon stepping into their new role, many fledgling landlords discover that owning a rental property involves a lot more than collecting checks from tenants. This is particularly true in the case of apartment complexes, condo developments and other large properties. Since there are so many responsibilities involved with managing multi-family rentals, it behooves every first-time landlord to learn the ropes and get a handle on their daily tasks.
Hire Dependable Maintenance Personnel
The size of your first rental property will largely determine how much work is required to maintain it. For example, if you’re dealing with a single-family dwelling, you may be able to handle the bulk of maintenance and property management yourself. However, if you’re overseeing a larger property, like a condo complex or apartment building, there’s no way around hiring full-time maintenance personnel.
Hiring onsite maintenance personnel will help ensure that maintenance requests are processed and addressed in a timely and professional manner. Furthermore, the maintenance professionals you bring on should not only be proficient in a wide array of plumbing and home improvement-related areas, but perfectly capable of interacting with residents in a courteous manner, as well. No matter how skilled someone is at their craft, tenants are unlikely to appreciate being treated rudely by maintenance staff. By extension, make sure your maintenance people know to thoroughly clean any messes they make throughout the course of their work.
Don’t Sit on Maintenance Requests
If you develop a reputation for sitting on maintenance requests, your tenants are likely to make their displeasure known in a variety of ways. In addition to badgering you with phone calls, emails and text messages, many renters won’t hesitate to speak poorly of your business practices on various tenant feedback sites and social media platforms. Additionally, the longer you ignore maintenance requests, the more likely small issues are to become serious problems. Failing to carry out maintenance work in a timely manner can also result in rent payments being withheld and possibly even place you in legal jeopardy. So, if you’ve gotten into the habit of ignoring maintenance requests, this behavior needs to be corrected on the double.
While it’s generally a good idea to prioritize maintenance requests by level of severity, this doesn’t mean that tenants who report less pressing issues should be ignored. If you’re unable to process a request right away, at least get in touch with the tenant in question and let them know that their request has been received and is in the pipeline. Furthermore, depending on how many maintenance requests you receive in a given day, you may want to consider bringing on additional maintenance staff.
Utilize Reliable CRM Software
At the end of the day, property ownership is largely a customer service-based profession. After all, in order for landlords to retain existing tenants and attract new ones, they need to provide sufficient incentive and take measures to distinguish themselves from the competition. That being the case, the best CRM for real estate should be among the tools you use on a daily basis. Customer relationship management (CRM) software will enable you to document and catalog renters’ needs and concerns and keep track of the many responsibilities associated with property ownership.
Hire a Good Property Manager
If you have a day job that’s unrelated to property ownership, you may benefit from enlisting the services of a dedicated property manager. Acting as your proxy, this individual will effectively oversee every aspect of rental property management, including collecting rent, processing maintenance requests and addressing tenant grievances. In addition, they’ll provide you with regular reports and keep you fully abreast of what’s happening, ensuring that you never feel left out of the loop.
From a tenant’s perspective, many landlords don’t do much outside of badgering them for rent checks. However, unbeknownst to these individuals, the average landlord does quite a bit behind the scenes. From processing maintenance requests to interviewing prospective tenants to settling disputes between renters, most landlords work harder than we typically give them credit for. As such, if you step into the role of landlord without understanding the many duties this job entails, you’re likely to have a rough time of it. In the interest of staying on top of things, take the previously discussed pointers to heart.
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