Investing in property is one of the biggest commitments a person can make and almost always you want the end result to be profitable. While many owners spend a considerable amount of time researching the rental market, they often forget the impact a property manager can have on their property and their return on investment.

Managing a rental property is not an easygoing venture, but if a landlord chooses to hire a property manager then their workload becomes simplified. Often times, owners assume that being a landlord is simple, but it’s much more difficult and time-consuming than it appears. Landlords have to be on-call 24 hours a day, every day.

If you don’t have the time to handle day-to-day operations then it’s time to hire a property manager to handle these issues for you. Property managers are, among other things, licensed real estate agents and brokers with the state of California who are up-to-date on all the current Fair Housing laws. Basically, they are professionals who have the expertise and knowledge to maximize income and preserve a property’s value.

If you decide to choose a property manager to manage your unit, it’s good to first understand the fees involved, so you can plan accordingly. To start, almost all property management companies charge an ongoing monthly fee that is a percentage of the gross monthly rent. Although there’s a wide range of prices property managers charge, here in the East Bay the general range is anywhere from five to eight percent. For instance, if your monthly rent was $2000, then a property manager may charge you up to eight percent of that rental income.

These fees cover services including regular maintenance, checkups, collecting rent, adhering to tenant/property issues and accounting services. However, some companies tend to have hidden fees and it’s important to talk with them about all possible costs. Other fees that may be applied include placement fees, releasing fees and maintenance fees. For example, if something breaks on the property, there will most likely be an extra charge for the time and labor of the vendor who was sent out to do the work.

Despite the inherent cost associated with property managers, it’s highly recommended you not pick the least expensive property management company. Like most things in the world, you get what you pay for. If a firm is charging a lower amount than others, you should consider why it is their fee is so small.

Ultimately, the most important thing is finding someone who has the same business ethics as you. Someone who treats the renters well and manages the property the way you would. Essentially, you want a property manager who is in alignment with your values and principles without cost being the major factor. Having a professional property management company on your side is essential to the success of your investment. When you find somebody who thinks like you do, and the cost is fair, it will end up paying you dividends in the long run.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact us.