You’ll want a steady, reliable and competitive return from your investment property – so how do you find the right choice when you’re choosing between property management companies? These 10 questions will help you separate the best from the rest.
1. What percentage of tenants on your books are currently in arrears?
This is perhaps the single most important question because it cuts right through to the heart of the matter. If a small fraction of tenants are in arrears, it’s a strong sign that the property manager is actively doing their job.
2. How do you make sure that my tenant pays their rent on time?
Methods matter. As one example, at Let’s Rent, we place a strong and clear emphasis on having tenants pay by direct debit. By automating this process we’ve been able to reduce our arrears to less than 0.5% of our portfolio on average. At Let’s Rent, we have been able to ensure that 99% of our tenants pay their rent in advance, so you have peace of mind.
3. How do you manage and maintain your systems?
Let’s just say it – in 2020, your property manager should not be relying on post-it notes and paper forms for everyday processes. Things like paperless condition reports and electronic leases can make a world of difference for owners and tenants.
4. How up-to-date on legislation are you?
You’ll want peace of mind that your property is being managed by someone who’s across the latest legislation. If a property management agency is providing regular updates and news as they relate to your property, it indicates that they’re keeping up-to-date.
5. Are you solely focused on managing properties – or do you sell them too?
A property manager has less incentive to manage your property well if you can also use their services to sell your property. It’s worth checking that any prospective property management service is focused on property management alone.
6. How do you advertise or find new tenants?
You’ll want the right potential tenant seeing your property. At Let’s Rent, for example, we’ve been achieving strong results with realestate.com.au and domain.com.au listings for the suburbs of Annandale, Darlinghurst, Maroubra, Birchgrove and Petersham.
7. How do you screen tenants?
You’d be surprised (and horrified) by how often property management services don’t conduct a truly thorough screening for new tenants. Be sure to check that yours really follows through with employment and previous tenancy checks. At Let’s Rent, we like to do this over the phone to gain a true impression and we make sure to maintain the paperwork required to back it up.
8. How do you estimate rental rates?
Rental rates can fluctuate, but what’s most important is working with a property management provider who will give you the facts – and the choice – when finding the right balance between keeping your property rented and ensuring a healthy rental return.
9. How do you handle urgent and emergency repairs?
Not only do you deserve effective maintenance services for your investment property, but tenants also deserve a proactive and responsive service when it comes to urgent issues.
10. What are your residential property management rates?
Of course, value is vital when it comes to maximising your return from your rental property. Any provider should be upfront about costs. Focus on finding real value rather than just the lowest price, because the last thing you need is a property manager who will cut corners.
We get that you want peace of mind when you rent out your property. That’s why our services are built around providing thorough, transparent, and focused property management services in Sydney. Give us a call on 02 9555 4886 and we’ll be happy to answer all these questions and any others you might have.
Oh yes – the stakes can certainly be high when it comes to finding a tenant for your rental property. The right tenant means reliable payments and minimal maintenance. The wrong tenant can lead to missed payments, or even your property being trashed. It’s simply not a process you want to get wrong. That’s why our residential property managers in Sydney have a defined process for finding the right tenant. Here’s how we go about it.
Advertise the property in the right places.
The first step is to get the right eyes on your property listing. We achieve good results with listings on realestate.com.au, DOMAIN and our website. A listing should include a clear and enticing description, together with professional, well-lit photos that give a true sense of each living space. Outlining the features and lease terms in the listing helps to develop a suitable tenant pool at this early stage. At Let’s Rent, we use virtual furniture if a property is vacant which gives a sense of size and identifies each room.
Maintain clear communication with potential tenants.
Everyone deserves to be kept in the loop while a property is being rented. We require all potential tenants to register before they see the property, so we can keep them updated throughout the process. This also gives us the chance to update you on the level and quality of interest for your property, and where it fits in the market for rental properties in Sydney.
Engage and speak with potential tenants.
We find that one of the best ways to determine whether a tenant will be right for your property is to engage with them, both at the viewing and over the phone. This can provide a wealth of information that might not be outlined on their application.
Really, truly conduct reference checks (we mean really).
It’s both surprising and disturbing how many investment property managers in Sydney will skip through the reference check process for the sake of efficiency or from pure laziness – but it’s such a crucial step. We check with the national tenancy database for any outstanding matters against the applicant, and we actually pick up the phone to check employment tenancy and personal references. Once more, an actual conversation reveals far more context than an email can.
Make an informed decision.
If you’re renting your property out with our team, here’s where we provide you with the details so you can sign off on your new tenant. We’ll provide you with a summary of the potential tenant’s background and provide our observations. Armed with this information, you can make a fully informed decision and sign on your new tenant with confidence.