Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Property Manager in Wellington

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While many householders in New Zealand spend significant amounts of money and time researching neighbourhoods and property markets during the purchase process, they often ignore the role a property manager plays in the preservation of the home’s value and maximisation of the owner’s income when it is time to sell. Rentals are rising and vacancies are decreasing, and many new landlords under estimate the role of a professional property manager.

Many believe they can do it all alone because they do not understand that managing property is about more than collecting rent. If you are considering using property management services to help manage your rental then here are several questions to ask a potential property manager in Wellington.

Does the Agency Have a Licensed, Dedicated Team?

Many Wellington real estate agencies view property management as the “ugly stepsister” to the more lucrative sales department, and some leave clients’ asset management to receptionists and office staff. When evaluating property management agencies, choose one that is professionally and adequately staffed to ensure continuity of management in the event of a staff member’s illness or death.

Is the Managing Broker or Owner Involved in the Company’s Daily Operations?

Some offices have sales and rental departments. Generally, business owners have a background in sales rather than in rentals, and they leave rental duties to property management staff. Rental departments have lower incomes than sales departments have, and they are more labor-intensive to manage. Clients may find that an agency where the owner is actively involved is better equipped to manage their properties.

How Long Has the Manager Been in the Real Estate Business?

This question concerns the manager rather than the agency. Choosing a well-known agent does not guarantee quality service. Some people start a real estate career as a receptionist and gradually move up the corporate ladder. However, others choose a career in property management, and these people are the ones clients should choose to ensure that properties are adequately looked after. By choosing an agent who focuses on property management, customers will get better service.

How Long Has the Agent Been With the Office?

Stability is an important attribute in a property manager. Clients should look for someone who will learn the property from all sides, and they should choose a manager who will be accessible in the long term. Due to the high-stress nature of the property management industry, turnover rates tend to be quite high.

Does the Manager Offer Sample Leasing Documents?

Some managers accept properties with only a cursory inspection. Householders should choose a person who has put forth the effort and time to portray a professional image, and they should ask for written proposals. If the manager makes the effort to present his or her services in a professional manner, it is likely that they will extend the same care to the client’s property.

Which Geographical Areas are Covered?

While clients should choose a manager with knowledge of the Wellington area, they should also consider their property portfolio goals. Some owners start small, while others own properties throughout the suburbs. Here, the client could choose property rental management in Wellington, or they could choose a larger company that serves a broader area.

Does the Manager Provide Keys, or do They Show the Home to Potential Tenants?

If the manager just hands the keys over and allows the potential tenant to self-inspect the property, the client should look elsewhere. This approach can go wrong in many ways, compromising the property’s security. A manager who attends showings with potential tenants has a better chance to promote properties and get to know tenants a bit better.

How Many Properties Does the Company Handle?

Property managers with excessive workloads may not have enough time to devote attention to the client’s property. Some agencies have hundreds of properties per staff member. Smaller agencies have more manageable caseloads and, while these agents may charge more, the extra expense may yield a higher return on the investment.

Are Staff Available on Renters’ Schedule?

The hectic speed of modern life and the 24-hour advertisement of rentals online means that good managers must be ready and available to show the property to potential tenants when it is convenient for the clients.

Does the Company Have a Way to Check Tenants’ Credit Worthiness, Rental, and Employment Histories?

While people should not be judged based solely on their pasts, it is important to screen tenants before approving rental applications. When choosing rental property managers in Wellington, the client should select one with a subscription to a tenancy database.

Will the Manager go to Court If Necessary?

When a client chooses a property manager, they should work to establish a good business relationship with clearly defined parameters. While many of Wellington property managers are willing to go to court, they are not lawyers. Clients should explain their expectations, and they should make it clear what the manager can do without permission.

This step can help both sides avoid many misunderstandings that commonly arise. For instance, if the client agrees to allow the manager to spend up to $500 on maintenance without permission, they should not expect a phone call for every minor problem. Clients should listen to their property manager if non-major repairs and maintenance are suggested.

Many people assume they can perform property management in Wellington, but they fail to see how much work it can be and quickly become overwhelmed. By hiring a property management company in Wellington such as Manage My Rental (www.managemyrental.co.nz), owners can keep their properties in top shape and keep tenants longer.

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