Monday, 22 December 2008

Why use a property management service?

Why use property management services is a question all landlords should ask themselves before they begin to rent their property. Surely we can do it all ourselves we ask but is it all that easy? Unfortunately, I don’t think it’s as easy as that. I'll explain.

Being a Landlord can be done part-time or full-time but no matter how much time you are able to dedicate to it, it is definitely a business us as landlords need to take seriously. For a start, everyday that property is left empty, it means we are losing money. Businesses should not be losing money. As well as losing on potential income, landlords also lose out on paying council tax and utilities as it is transferred back into his/her name. Surely, it’s better to drop your rental income rather than leave the property empty for weeks on end. Empty properties are an expensive business.Next, you need to find the tenant.

Finding a tenant can be easy (if you’re lucky) or difficult (depending on how competitive your rental value is). Most likely as a landlord, you will be looking to save as money as possible so you would be either using a free ads website like gumtree or some sort of tenant find service like Whenever I used free website adverts, I found the people that answered my advert were either not-interested, timewasters or very difficult to convince even though my property was in immaculate condition and cheap in comparison to other properties in the area. Tenant find services are good and it’s a good source for finding the right tenant but both these choices still leave the landlord with the stress of selecting their tenant and managing them. With finding tenants, a good property management company like will use different portals that landlords do not have in their arsenal to find a selection of tenants appropriate for the accommodation available.

Agencies also credit check the potential tenants. Independent landlords usually miss out this step at their peril as they try to minimise their costs. If as a landlord, you do not follow these procedures to protect your interests, it could become very expensive later on. Good property management companies will definitely follow the right procedures to make sure the tenants moving into your property can afford the rent and will look after your property. As an independent landlord, the tenant will move in and could make many phone calls regarding a range of issues like “can we put a shelf up”, “the neighbours are a nuisance” and hopefully not “the boiler is not working” a landlord’s nightmare sentence. Again, a good agency will handle these phone calls and only pass on the relevant information required for the landlord. Agencies can also sort out your issues like adding selves or fixing boilers with no hassle to the landlord. It would just be invoiced on the next rent due.

If you have not done your homework with your tenant, or you just get some back luck, then you might get a tenant that is malicious or maybe just cannot afford to pay their rent. This is when the experts really pay for themselves. They will continue to chase the rent until it is paid. If it’s still not paid, it starts to become a legal issue where the expertise of a good agent can advise on what steps to take next in order to recover your rent or evict your bad tenant.

To conclude, this business is very difficult, especially if you are a part-time landlord. If you do not mind the in-and-outs of property management, then by all means choose to do it yourself as you will definitely save yourself some money (but I do not recommend you skipping stages of the process like tenant vetting as this could prove costly later). If you are a part-time landlord, maybe you have another job or just do not have the time to be handling tenant grievances, I would fully suggest you use an agency like Eden josh to handle your rental affairs and have some peace of mind knowing that your property is looked after, your rental income is coming in and you will get your property back safe and sound.

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