19 Feb Interviewing a Property Management Company: 39 Questions to Ask
By Dana Browning
About the Company
- How long have you been managing properties?
- What is your primary service: property management or sales?
- How many properties do you manage?
- What types of properties do you manage?
- How many staff members do you have that are dedicated to management? What are their job functions?
Leasing & Resident Services
- How many vacancies do you have right now?
- What is your average vacancy rate as of today?
- How will you market my property?
- If paid advertising is used, who pays for it?
- How does a prospect schedule a tour of my property?
- How do you price my property? Ask for a comparable market analysis.
- What will you do to make my property stand out from the others?
- How often do you post your listings?
- What are your tenant qualification standards?
- What is your average length of tenancy?
- What is your move-in and move-out process?
- Create a difficult scenario between manager and resident and ask how they would handle the situation.
- What happens when a resident doesn’t pay rent? Eviction process?
- How many evictions did you have last year?
- Do you accept online payments for residents?
- What other conveniences will you provide for my residents?
- What is your management fee?
- Do you offer a discount to investors with multiple properties?
- Do you have a leasing fee? Renewal fees?
- What other services provided in the management of my property could I be charged for? Do you have showing fees? Marketing fees? Do you have reporting/accounting fees? Do you have inspection fees? Do you have a set up fee?
Maintenance & Inspections
- How do you handle maintenance requests and after hours emergency calls?
- When is an owner consulted before spending on repairs?
- Are there limits or policies on how to handle certain repairs and emergencies?
- How often do you inspect the property? Do you have an inspection fee?
- When is your disbursement date?
- What happens if my resident pays after the disbursement date?
- How do I get my reports?
- Do you provide an online investor portal?
- Do you provide an itemized list of all expenses? Will I receive copies of all invoices?
- Do you offer automatic deposit of funds (ACH)?
- Ask for 3-5 references and contact them! Ask the references about what they like about the company and what their frustrations are. Ask for them to include a current resident as a reference.
- Make sure to check out their online reviews on places like Google, Yelp, and Bing. Read both owner and resident reviews and inquire about them. What were they upset or happy about? Is there a theme both positive and negative?
- Check out their website. Was it easy to find? Is it appealing? Is it easy to find an available rental? What options do they have for prospects and current residents (online applications, online maintenance requests, etc.)? What is the focus of their website?
- Check out their rental ads. Are their photos attractive? Are the lights on, counters cleaned of clutter, or people or pets in the photo and are the photos clear or blurry? Is the advertisement complete with amenities and a description? Go to Craigslist and search by their company or property manager’s name. How often do they post? Daily? Weekly? Do they post the same headline each time or do they switch it up? Are there plenty of photos in the ad?