Entrusting your investment to a rental agent is no small commitment. It’s about finding the right person to represent your interests, preserve your asset and yield a financial return.
You want to make sure they’ll protect your asset by finding the right tenants, and keeping abreast of the property’s condition.
So how do you find the right person for the task?
Here are the top 10 questions to ask as you sort through property agents…
Who will be responsible for my home?
Sometimes the initial contact you have with an agent isn’t the actual property manager who will have responsibility for your property. This makes it important to know who will actually be looking after your property and the skills they bring to the table.
What experience does this person have?
The role of property manager is an important one, so what experience does your property manager have in this role? How do they handle different situations, and what are their policies and procedures?
What are the full fees?
There can be different fees for different areas of property management. Some agents charge a flat commission while others have additional administrative costs including charging for each inspection. Get a clear overview of all the amounts that are likely to be incurred over the months managing your property.
How do you screen potential tenants?
It’s critical to know the screening process agents use when selecting tenants. Most will provide an application form, check a tenant’s references, employment and conduct a further search of any databases that may highlight previous problems.
What happens if the rent is late?
What is the agency’s protocol if a tenant falls behind on their rental payments? You want to know the issue will be dealt with quickly and effectively before you begin to feel any financial impact.
How often will inspections occur?
Inspections allow the property manager to flag any maintenance problems and ensure the house is in good order. Many agencies conduct these every three months, while others opt for six-monthly inspections.
What do you look at during inspections?
It’s important to know an agent’s attention to detail when it comes to inspections. What will they be looking at inside and outside you property, and how will they alert you if things are not up to scratch.
What will you do if my property needs urgent repairs?
Does the agency have an emergency repair protocol and what types of items fall within it? How will they pay for any emergency repairs, and how/when will you be informed.
What do you offer that other property agents do not?
It’s great to understand a little more about the ethos of the agency you’re entering an agreement with. What do they consider are their unique attributes that make working with them the best option?
What is the rental potential of my property?
This is probably the biggest question to ask any potential property manager. And you should get a few assessments done by various agents to really understand where your property sits within the market as well as conducting your own research.
It’s worth being mindful that the highest rental price quoted may not equal the best agent, as the last thing you want to do when attracting tenants is price your property out of the market, and have it sitting vacant for weeks.
Who do they envisage is the right type of tenant for your property, and how much should they pay in relation to the current rental market?
About United Strata
Specialising in the Macarthur region, United Strata offers professional yet personalised service for buyers, sellers, landlords and tenants alike.