We all like to think there isn’t anything we can’t do ourselves. Many rental property owners choose to handle all the management duties of running a property themselves. Many of them do it because they don’t understand the value a management company would bring—in other words, they may not recognize the net benefit of paying a management fee. But many of them do it because they enjoy it, at least to a point.
When the time has come for a serious look at working with a property management firm, property owners are often surprised by the slew of advantages that come with it. At Pan American we occasionally talk to property owners who would like to understand the pros and cons of handing off management of their properties to a professional manager. Here are a few ideas:
Self-management has its advantages
Professional management may not be the right answer for every property owner. There are several common reasons why that is the case.
The first is the up-front expense involved. A smaller property that enjoys stable occupancy rates and minimal administrative headaches may not justify a professional firm’s fees. Some owners enjoy doing light maintenance work themselves. In some situations, budgets are relatively simple, and major decisions like whether to renovate or when to raise rents are not difficult.
Managing a property yourself has another key benefit: personal relationships with residents. When renters know and trust their landlord, they’re more likely to stay. A management company that doesn’t treat them with respect and personal attention might undermine that sense of trust. Hiring a property management company that puts people first is critical to making a transition work.
Many property owners also enjoy the feeling of being in complete control over all aspects of the property. You’ll be the only one making the decisions. You’ll choose the people who are doing specific work, like maintenance, and can hold them accountable to the standards that matter most to you.
The benefits of hiring a property manager
The aim of hiring professional management is to generate returns in excess of the manager’s fee. Improved retention rates and a more competitive market position for attracting new residents tends to “pay for itself.” But the revenue side is only one part of the equation.
These are some of the solutions a professional management company brings to the table:
- Attending to resident requests.
Residents expect prompt service when they have a maintenance issue to resolve. Owners who self-manage can become overwhelmed trying to respond to these requests themselves, or may find that hiring third-party vendors to handle problems on a piecemeal basis is not cost effective.
A property management firm takes complete responsibility for maintenance. This brings several key advantages for the owner. First, the work tends to be less expensive thanks to the economy of scale a property management company can bring. Second, the manager handles all the communications with the resident, from initial receipt of a request to final resolution and verification. Third, the management company handles the bookkeeping, helping the owner track in detail each of the property’s performance over time, which leads to better budget planning in the future.
- Controlling liability risk.
Inexperienced property owners typically do not know how to operate a rental property in compliance with the law. They might pay attorneys to handle documents, but they do a fair bit of the leasing themselves. This opens potential pitfalls for an unwary owner: fair housing issues, safety concerns, and other problems that can quickly become significant sources of liability.
A professional property management firm is dedicated to smoothly running rental properties. Compliance with the law is only the baseline expectation. Putting the property in the best possible light for residents and applicants is critical for maintaining value and managing risk.
- Market expertise.
Optimizing the financial performance of a property is hard to do without a sophisticated understanding of market trends. Setting rental rates, establishing budgets, and planning for contingencies are just a few of the ways a professional property management company can transform the property’s long-term value.
The net result is greater profitability, even when factoring in the property manager’s fee.
Pan American unleashes a property’s potential
At Pan American Properties, we distinguish ourselves from the competition by always focusing on relationships. We start every engagement by working hard to understand our client’s unique expectations and goals. We also diligently explore the property to develop an owner’s understanding of its community.
These are some of the benefits our clients gain:
- Taking Back Your Schedule: There’s no time like your own time. Owners who transition to professional management often are surprised by all the things they can get done when they aren’t busy with the day-to-day work of keeping their properties running smoothly.
- Dealing with the Experts: You might eventually encounter a regulation or legal issue for which you’re not prepared. A property management company like ours has experts on staff who know the ins and outs of local codes and regulations, eliminating the hours that you would spend researching and dealing with the issue.
- Screening Processes: We use proven screening techniques to find the best tenants for each property. This ensures that you’ll have fewer problems with new tenants. We also know the best ways to find tenants, eliminating legwork on your end and the potential of having spaces sit vacant for months.
- Experience: A truly knowledgeable firm like Pan American Properties has people on staff who have dealt with every imaginable issue and know the best way to handle them. You’re not just be hiring someone to take care of your property. You’re also hiring someone who can eliminate all the stress involved with having to learn how to deal with situations as you go.
Pan American Properties has a track record of providing superior service to property owners, landlords and tenants alike. We’ll never treat you like you’re just “another” client. Learn why we’re different today. Give us a call at (888) 754-9700, or send us an email at [email protected] to get started.