Perhaps you just bought a rental property, or maybe you own several. You may be trying to decide whether you want to manage the properties on your own, or hire a professional property manager.
There are pros and cons to each option, and today we’re talking about what you need to think about when you’re trying to make this decision.
Professional Property Management Protects Your Time
Do you have the time and availability to take care of what’s needed by your tenant to protect your investment and the tenant’s interests? More times than not, things will break on Friday at 5:00.
Water heaters break, air conditioning goes out, and heat stops working.
Property managers have time and resources to manage these emergencies, as well as access to contractors who don’t charge overtime or extra after hour fees. If you don’t have the time, availability, or resources to take care of these things, you really have to think about professional property management. You cannot leave your tenant hanging without water or heat or air conditioning. Consider how much time you have and whether you can be available when you need to be.
A Professional Property Manager Has Expertise and Experience
Property management is what we do all day, every day. We know what’s happening and what’s changing, and we network with a lot of people in the industry. State, federal, and local laws change constantly. Many of these laws revolve around the landlord/tenant relationship. You need to know them to protect yourself and your property.
So, if you’re not able to keep up with the laws, and you don’t understand what’s happening in the industry, you could potentially violate a law and get in trouble. Hopefully, nothing will happen, but you have to think about the legal implications of managing your own property.
Measuring Management Fees against Services
When you hire a property manager, you do have to pay a property management fee. But, that’s a deductible fee, and a pretty small one when you look at your overall investment in your property. As property managers, we have great relationships with vendors who offer us discounts. We get better pricing than an individual owner might get. We also get around-the-clock service. Our preferred vendors take care of our tenants and serve us first. It’s hard to find that as an individual landlord.
If you decide to manage on your own, surround yourself with a good network of people who can look out for your property.
You may overprice your property because you don’t know what’s trending in the rental market. By doing that, you risk having your property sit on the market longer than it needs to. That vacancy period will cost you money. So, when you look at it, what you pay in a management fee is small compared to the money you can save by hiring a good property manager.
There’s a lot more to consider, and we’d be happy to talk to you about what we can do for you. If you have any questions about Northern Virginia property management, please contact us at Richey Property Management.