Property managers are professionals in the real estate sector who specialize in the general administration, maintenance, and operations of rentals on behalf of owners. A property manager plays a vital role in the rental process, ensuring critical aspects, including lease terms enforcement, standards, compliance, records, and taxes, are covered and within the law.
There are many regulatory obligations in the rental business that an independent landlord may not be aware of and that could cause adverse consequences if handled without expert guidance. Here is a look at the duties of a property manager that illustrate their role in the rental process.
Marketing and setting the rent
Once you get your property rent-ready, you need marketing channels to showcase it to potential tenants. Hiring a property manager to market the rental for you will yield faster results and save you a lot of time that you would have lost in an extended vacancy. In Colorado, for example, Evernest, Corvias and Flex Realty provide expert assistance in property management in Boulder that includes rental listings in the market.
A property manager can also assess your rental and, using industry metrics and market dynamics, set a competitive rent that will attract and retain tenants. An agency or property manager has the necessary tools to conduct a rent survey in the area and set one that’s just right for your rental able to cover costs and earn income. The rent should then be reviewed annually to stay competitive while accounting for normal inflation indices in the economy.
Screening tenants and enforcing lease terms
Getting the perfect tenant with a clean background and credible history can be a challenge and a time-consuming exercise with no guarantees. This is where a property manager comes in handy with the right metrics and resources to screen potential tenants within the Fair Housing laws to avoid unnecessary lawsuits. A professionally screened tenant guarantees a long stay, timely tent payment, amicable relationship, and responsibility while using the property.
A lease agreement is a legal document that may require expert knowledge to prepare and enforce to avoid costly contract breaches. The property manager understands how to prepare a comprehensive and binding lease agreement that covers the interests of both the tenant and property owner. The agency or property manager prepares a lease agreement that follows the Fair Housing Act stipulations and the area civic ordinances for legal enforcement.
Rent collection and handling tenant complaints
Keeping your tenants happy and handling emergencies round the clock is a challenge an average rental owner may find insurmountable. A property management service has the personnel and other resources to sort out tenant grievances as they emerge and mediate conflicts where you have multiple units. A manager will address tenant complaints, the legal implications and the landlord’s obligations under the lease agreement.
Rent must be collected when due to cover recurring monthly expenses on the property and maintain a stable cash flow. The property manager sets the rent collection date and enforces penalties on late rents according to the terms of the lease. By continuously assessing the property market indices, realtors may adjust the rent to match current rates in the exercise of the powers ceded to them by the owner.
Administrative duties and budget management
Vital administrative duties that a property manager handles on behalf of the owner include prudent budget management, properly kept records for accounting requirements, and filing tax returns. The manager also ensures that the property is compliant with all aspects of rental processes stipulated under local ordinances, state, federal, safety, health, and housing regulations.
Filing tax returns is a legal requirement that a property manager can undertake on behalf of the owner or offer expert guidance where the landlord prefers to file personally.
The manager must operate within the designated budget and ensure the owner earns their portion after clearing all other expenses. The realtor must keep a meticulous record of these expenses, including maintenance costs, records of repairs and costs, inspections, signed leases, utility payments, insurance, maintenance requests, and a record of all income. Property management services provide accurate bookkeeping for accounting, investment, and tax purposes in one package for the landlord.
Property care and maintenance
Once you hand over your property to a management service, they take over the responsibility to ensure the house is habitable, secure, healthy, functional, aesthetically appealing. Managers carry out routine repairs, drainage inspections, cleaning, paintworks and supervise on-site workers, if any. They arrange for security during vacancy periods to prevent squatting and vandalism that may cause costly damage to the property.
Other than securing vacant units, the property manager also prepares them in readiness for market listing. They know from experience what converts potential tenants looking for a rental and will prepare the unit to meet such expectations. When the unfortunate happens, and you have to deal with a difficult tenant, the manager knows how to do this legally.