The 7 Essential Questions To Ask Before Appointing Your Property Manager

Choosing a property manager or estate agent can be a daunting task, especially if you’ve never rented a property before. In order to find the right property manager, you need to ask the right questions. 

Paul Stevens, CEO of Just Property says that when your biggest investments are on the line, it's imperative that you fully understand the investment criteria and the commitment you are about to make. A comprehensive step by step guide is necessary to follow before you buy your first house, flat or investment property. Stevens shares some of Just Property’s key questions to ask before appointing an estate agent or property manager. 

1. Are you the property manager who’ll be looking after my property? And if not, who will be?

Sometimes, a business development manager will facilitate the initial discussions with you about managing your property. When you meet with them, you want to make sure that you know exactly who will be looking after your property and to arrange to meet with, or learn more about, that person prior to committing to the agency.

According to Paul Stevens, the following questions are key when picking your property manager: 

How many years have you been working in real estate?
How many years have you been with your current agency?
How can you demonstrate your knowledge of the current rental market in my area?

2. Is a director/owner of the agency involved in the day-to-day management of the property management department?

Generally the business owner has a sales background and not a rental background, and looks after the sales department leaving the management of their rental department to a property manager. You may find that an agency where the director has an active involvement of the property management department will take the business of property management more seriously.

3. How many years has the property manager looking after your property been working in real estate?

This relates to the property manager and not the agency. Going to a brand name agency doesn’t mean their service is going to be any better.

As Paul Stevens from Just Property points out, “Many individuals choose property management as a career and this is the type of person that should be looking after your property.”

4. What happens if my property needs some urgent maintenance?

Many agencies will have a list of preferred contractors that deal with emergency situations at your property and they’ll organise quotes and coordinate required works to a prearranged financial limit. Some agencies will also offer the service to pay all property bills on your behalf if required. Make sure to discuss this with your agent to ensure that you are comfortable with the process.

5. What methods would you use to market my property and attract tenants?

The last thing you want is the agent handing out your keys to prospective tenants and allowing them to view your property on their own. Instead, your property manager should be present at the property whenever a prospective client is there. They should have a database of quality tenants looking for a home and/or a clear marketing strategy in order to find quality tenants for you. Ask your agent how many days they are available/planning to show the property to interested tenants and how they intend to advertise your property. A good agent will be available for open-house inspections on the weekends and after standard business hours.

6. How many inspections do you carry out per year? And what is the cost?

Ask what sort of report you will receive and whether there is an additional cost or if it is built into your management fee.

If you have any special requests of your tenants, either inside or outside of the house, you need to make sure to include these in the tenancy agreement.

Start by asking these questions:

How often does current legislation dictate that you can inspect the property?
Will you provide me with property inspection reports?

7. How can you ensure the best returns from my property? And what else can you do that another property manager can’t?

Property management is not just about collecting the rent: it is a comprehensive management service, which should be provided by a trained property manager. You want to find out what differentiates this property manager from his/her competition and what his/her strengths are.

  Comment on this Article

  Please login to post comments

Post to my facebook wall
Characters remaining

    Latest Property News
    • 22 Nov 2017
      Most people know of the Community Schemes Ombud Service (CSOS) and that levies must to paid to fund its operations. In this article the experts at Paddocks will address some of the issues that are causing confusion.
    • 22 Nov 2017
      While sales have noticeably slowed in most sectors in most Cape town suburbs, the security estate sector in Constantiaberg has bucked the trend by remaining buoyant, with sales by August this year already surpassing total sales in 2016.
    • 22 Nov 2017
      The end of the year is fast approaching, and so are all the travellers, tourists and holidaymakers. For those who live near or own a property in a holiday-hotspot, the festive season also brings with it an abundance of short-term rental opportunities. Its a great way for property owners to make a few extra rand for their own holidays or to put towards their savings.
    • 21 Nov 2017
      The buying process is over, and the moving truck has delivered your household goods to your new property. Now it’s time to unpack and turn your new house into a home.
    • 21 Nov 2017
      When an offer to purchase a property is signed by both buyer and seller, this constitutes a binding agreement or “Deed of Sale” between the two parties. However, in most cases the “standard contract” might not be enough to cover all the specifics pertaining to the sale. The agreement may require some additions or alterations to clauses, which needs an expert hand in the drafting of such
    • 21 Nov 2017
      As more and more South Africans look to invest in property abroad, Spain is offering them one of the best deals in global real estate.
    • 20 Nov 2017
      Since 2012, sectional title complexes have been leading the South African property market, not only in terms of price growth, but sales volumes as well. Remaining relatively strong, even in the face of 2017’s political and economic turmoil, experts say this market segment could offer valuable insight into South Africans’ property purchase priorities.
    • 20 Nov 2017
      Regardless of whether you are purchasing your first start-up home, downsizing or moving in with roommates, finding ways to maximise small spaces can be a big advantage, says Adrian Goslett, Regional Director and CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa.
    Subscribe to the MyProperty Newsletter

    Last Name  
    Email Address  
    Email Frequency
    Share this Page

    For Sale Property
    Rental Property
    More Options
    Connect with us