Today we’re taking a light-hearted approach to a frequently asked real estate question. Here are some of the unusual, confusing, and down-right-funny comments that we’ve heard when asked, “Do I really need a property management company?”
Do You Need a Property Management Company?
“Oh, no thank you, we don’t need property management, everything in this place is brand new, so nothing will break.”
We just cringe when we hear this one! Isn’t it Murphy’s Law that as soon as you declare something like this, it all falls apart? Don’t assume that the investment you’ve put into your property to get it rental-ready is some kind of insurance against any problems. Brand new doesn’t always mean hassle-free, and an experienced property manager can help you choose the right tenants to ensure it stays running like new for as long as possible!
“I don’t think we’ll need property management: my dad is really handy so we plan on using him for repairs.”
This one sounds good on paper, but rarely works out in practice. Will your father appreciate multiple calls in one weekend or a late night call? How about urgent calls that need to be answered immediately because there’s been a water leak? Can he handle roofing, landscaping, plumbing, electricity, air conditioning, and all the other areas of home maintenance? More importantly, would he WANT to?
“Why should I have to include pool service in the rent?”
This one is a little more complicated – it refers to homeowners who are hesitant to include pool maintenance service in their rental. Our stance at Desert Dimensions Properties is that there is one main benefit to keeping your own pool service, instead of passing that responsibility and cost to your Tenant. That is, that you’ll know that it is being serviced frequently and properly, protecting your pool’s value today AND the future.
“Do you guys market properties by using Craigslist?”
This is easy for us to answer – NO. Many clients think that Craigslist is the best option for advertising their rental to find potential Tenants. Instead, Desert Dimensions Properties uses the listing services of about 20 different websites, through MLS, to target a more specific audience, and secure you a more qualified renter.
“Can you send someone over to change my air conditioning filter?”
Hmm. Perhaps Tenants don’t know how simple, inexpensive and quick this routine maintenance step is? Regardless, it falls under the list of things that renters can take care of themselves, and do not need to reach out to the property management company or landlord for.
“Oh, really? You have to put something IN the water softener?”
There’s nothing like hearing that something in your home hasn’t been taken care of by your Tenant. It’s not that your renter has destroyed it on purpose (which DOES happen, and that’s even worse!); it’s just that they didn’t understand the operation and routine care for the water softener. The result for you is the time, money and hassle of repairs or even replacement of a whole new unit. We make sure your Tenants know EVERYTHING they’re responsible for.
Mid-lease: “We’ve decided that we want something bigger – can you move us to a new unit?”
Sometimes Tenants don’t understand that their lease is a strict contract linked to one property. Just because they have a new preference for a bigger unit doesn’t mean that they can just move to one in the middle of a signed lease. While a property management company MAY be able to help ‘break the rules’ and orchestrate an ‘upgrade’ if it is of mutual benefit with the Landlord, it is NOT the norm, and shouldn’t be expected. Along these lines, Tenants are not “helping” by finding a replacement Tenant for the balance of the lease, if they are breaking it.
“Tell the HOA that if they are fining ME for weeds, then they need to fine all of my neighbors too!”
Tenants may not think that they are subject to the rules made by an HOA, but this is incorrect – as the current inhabitants of the home, they are responsible for following them. Yes, this includes something like weeds in the front yard, and is not affected by the state of the weeds next door (who are often also in violation). A good property management company will outline these responsibilities for both Owner and Tenant, before move-in, so that there are no surprises.
Joking aside, we hope we’ve highlighted some common misperceptions when it comes to Property Management – from both Owners and Tenants. There is a good reason to employ good management, like the experienced team at Desert Dimensions Properties. Call us today if you’re in need of property management or have questions, at 480-270-5355.