You can make the most of your rental property in Central Florida by using a top-rated Orlando property manager. There are many capable property managers, but how do you know what to look for if you’re shopping around? We offer a few suggestions below.
Not all property managers are created equally. Find out as much as you can about a property management company before agreeing to a contract.
How many years have they been in business?
We’d never knock a new company (every business was a new business at one point), but there’s something to be said for experience. If a company has been in business for a while, they understand the market better and have successfully managed properties.
How many doors do they manage?
If a company has a large clientele base, chances are there’s a reason. Finding out how many rental units they manage and where can help you determine if they’d know how to manage YOUR rental.
Are they a portfolio or team-based property manager?
Most property management companies are small and portfolio based, meaning the property manager handles every aspect of management. On the other hand, some property management companies are team based, where certain team members focus on only one role, such as leasing.
How many employees do they have?
You don’t want to work with an Orlando property manager who does not have the support system they need to provide a high level of service. Depending on the number of doors (aka: rental properties) under management, it may be necessary for a property manager to have help. Too many doors and an insufficient support system can potentially lead to a property manager who cannot be responsive to every client.
Orlando Property Manager Services
Just as important as a company’s reputation is the services they offer (and how much they charge for those services). Below are a few things to ask about as you do your research.
What fees do they charge?
Know what type of fees the property management company charges for their services, and what services are included for those fees. Do they charge any setup or onboarding fees? Do they charge you fees or are they deducted from the collected rent?
In the Orlando area, you will commonly see a monthly fee (8%-12%), a leasing fee, and re-leasing fee. Some companies will have complicated fee structures while others may lock you into expensive rates. If you get a run around, request a copy of their management agreement and lease to see what they entail. Also, find out their management agreement duration, cancellation clause, and if they have a penalty for ending an agreement early.
Conducting thorough, in-depth, property inspections is a crucial and often overlooked aspect of property management. What kind of inspections will your property manager conduct? Some property managers’ inspections are nothing more than written opinions without any supporting pictures, which is unlikely to hold up in court if the claims made against the security deposit for tenant damages are contested. An expert property manager will have detailed inspection reports and be willing to share a copy of their inspection report with you.
What technical platforms do they have in place?
One big challenge of the portfolio based property manager is staying organized when the portfolio grows. How can you access information about your investment property? Ideally, you should be able to see information like rent collected, cash reserves, etc. Do they use software that’s easy for you to access, or do you have to communicate with the manager directly?
How and when are owner funds disbursed?
The whole reason you have rental property is to make passive income. So, when will you see that money using a property manager? When a tenant pays the rent, how do those funds get divided and when will you see your cut?
Do they have an in-house maintenance team and after hours line?
Having an in-house maintenance team means you won’t have to wait for them (or worse you) to find a contractor to fix a problem. They also can address those middle-of-the-night situations via an after hours line without having to disturb you.
Do you have to use their vendors or can you use your own?
Some property managers will require you to utilize their vendors for repairs, while others will give you the freedom to use your own vendors. Requiring an owner to only use the property manager’s vendors can lead to distrust if the maintenance requests start piling up.
How involved do they expect owners to be?
Different Orlando property management companies will require different levels of owner involvement. For owners who prefer anonymity, find a company where they handle all the interactions with tenants from application to move out.
What are their reserve/escrow account fund requirements?
When you own rental property, you should have a reserve fund set aside for each property meant strictly for day-to-day operating expenses. This ensures services are performed promptly and bills are paid in a timely fashion. A reserve of $200-$500 is normal for a single-family property.
What property standards do they have?
You want to make sure your rental home is safe and up to applicable codes and standards. However, if the property management company specializes in high-end rental units, get clear requirements from then. They may want you to put thousands of dollars into your property upgrades before they consider it “rent ready.”
There are plenty of Central Florida property management companies out there. Before you sign a contract, make sure you do your homework on them and their competitors. Not all property managers are created equally. Make sure your expectations align with how your property manager operates.
If you’re looking for the top-rated greater Orlando property management company with more than 15 years experience and 1,600+ doors, check out The Realty Medics. Call us today at 321-947-7653 or request a free rent analysis for your Central Florida rental property and a demo of our services.