Avoiding Common Property Management Mistakes
Wondering how you can avoid common property management mistakes? Real Property Management Southern Connecticut answers questions like this every day. To make it easy for property owners we compiled this list of common landlord mistakes, and explain how you can avoid them
1. Leasing Delays and Extended Vacancies
Vacancies can kill your cash flow. Even landlords who plan ahead can find themselves in a bind if their rental is vacant for too long. You can avoid long vacancies by making your home rent ready, marketing aggressively, and partnering with an experienced real estate property management company like Real Property Management Southern Connecticut.
2. Poor Property Selection
Do you know what to look for in a rental property? Things like location, school district, community amenities, and proximity to public transportation can drastically affect how your investment will do. The same is true for the layout of the home, the square footage, and the number of bedrooms and bathrooms. Before you buy an investment property talk to an experienced property manager to find out how the local market is doing and what tenants are looking for.
3. Property is Not “Rent-Ready”
Imagine walking into a rental house for a showing and seeing broken light fixtures, dog hair, or a badly stained carpet. Even if the property manager promises these issues will be fixed before move in, you have already made a first impression of the home. When your home is not ready for a renter to move in before you put it on the market, you risk longer vacancy days and lost revenue. A professional rental property management company can guide you through the steps to getting your property rent ready.
4. Inadequate Tenant Qualification
Strict tenant qualification is one of the top ways to reduce tenant turnover and avoid an eviction. Checking into an applicant’s rental history, credit, employment, and income is a necessary part of southern Connecticut property management.
5. Negative Tenant Interactions
Often property owners who are trying to rent out their former residence feel an emotional tie to it. When you’ve lived in and loved a home, it can be hard to see someone else living there and not caring for it as you would. Feeling emotional about your property quickly leads to unpleasant tenant interactions. These interactions often result in tenant turnover, which is expensive. Even worse, negative interactions can lead to an eviction. Professional property managers can act as a go-between for the property owner and tenant, making sure all communication is clear, consistent, and professional.
6. High Tenant Turnover
Tenant turnover is expensive, no matter how fast you get a new tenant in the home. Paying for re-keying, professional cleaning, and touching up before your new tenant moves in adds up. To avoid high tenant turnover, think about being the kind of landlord you would want. Respond quickly and respectfully when your tenant reaches out. Always be clear and consistent in your interactions. An experienced real estate property management company can help take you avoid tenant turnover by providing excellent and immediate service to your tenants.
7. Inadequate Rent Collection
How do you collect rent each month? Does your tenant know when rent is due if the 1st falls on a weekend or holiday? At Real Property Management Southern Connecticut we know rent collection can be difficult if you don’t have clear processes in place. We provide an online portal for tenants to set up automatic rent payments. We also clearly state rent collection processes, including when the rent is considered late and what fees will apply, in each lease agreement.
8. Costly Regulatory Violations
Connecticut real estate law is typically not something you learn for the fun of it. It can take years of experience in the rental property business to become aware of each law and regulation. Unfortunately for many landlords, they end up paying for costly regulatory violations as part of their property management learning curve. When you hire a rental property management company, you benefit from their years of experience navigating all the laws and regulations, so you don’t have to pay hefty fines.
9. Neglecting Inspections and Maintenance
Why do we recommend regular inspections and proactive maintenance? Checking in on your rental property at the beginning, middle, and end of a lease will result in a better cared for home and signal to your tenants that you care about the property. Regular inspections also mean you can catch a small problem before it turns into a costly issue. Proactive maintenance will save you money in the long run because when you take care of your home’s systems, they will last longer before needing to be replaced. A proper inspection and maintenance schedule should always be communicated to your tenants when they sign the lease.
Many first time landlords are trying to cut costs to increase their profits. However, as a first-time landlord, it is difficult to know where you can cut costs without cutting corners. The steep learning curve of the property management business means you will most likely lose money due to costly mistakes while you learn the ropes. If you choose to hire a real estate property management company like Real Property Management Southern Connecticut, you not only avoid the headaches of property management, you benefit from our years of experience and proven processes.
11. Cash Flow Problems
When you are barely breaking even on your rental property each month, you have a cash flow problem. When your rental HVAC goes out, or you have too many vacancy days, your investment could be in danger. By making good decisions and planning, you can avoid cash flow problems and have more stability with your investment.
12. Choosing the Wrong Real Estate Property Management Company
Once you decide to hire a professional Southern Connecticut property management company, how do you find the right one? Think about what you want from your property management company, learn what questions to ask, and research what companies have local experience. You, your tenants, and your property will benefit from professional property managers.