Our Answers to Some of 80 Smart Questions to Ask a Property Manager

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Recently on our company LinkedIn page we shared an article from BiggerPockets.com called “80 Smart Questions to Ask BEFORE Hiring Your Next Property Management Company.” We meet with many investors who tell us they want to switch companies because their manager did horrid things X, Y and Z, so we think this article is a great resource for all current or wannabe investors, whether or not you’re looking for management right now.

If you are shopping around, check out the article and then our website at www.PanzeraRealty.com, where we answer many of those 80 questions for you before you even walk in the door.

Here are some answers to a few of those questions that are not on our website (and they’re really good questions).

Q:        Do you provide the owner’s information to the tenant?

A:        Never. Investors hire us so they don’t have to be a landlord. We are the landlord, and the tenant’s contact information is for Panzera Realty only—emergency line and all.

Q:        What is the average length of time a tenant stays with you?

A:        While we don’t have an exact number, we’ve been in business since 1995 and a few of the tenants in our 325+ units have been renting from us for a good chunk of that time. We have a large number of tenants who’ve been with us in the 5-10 year range. And we always have those transient tenants who only need a year lease in the first place because of education or job requirements, and they leave when their 12-month lease expires. We also have renters who’ve come back after a period of time and re-rented from us because they were satisfied customers.

Q:        Do you troubleshoot with your tenants when they call for repairs?

A:        Yes, if it’s appropriate, because it saves everyone time, money, and hassle. We get many calls regarding no heating or cooling and run through baseline checks with tenants, such as whether they have power to the furnace, have checked the breaker, have checked the kill switch above the furnace, have checked and replaced the filter (they are required to in their lease agreement), have replaced the batteries in the thermostat, have it set correctly and know whether it’s on or set to auto. If the kitchen sink isn’t draining, we ask if they have a disposal, whether it’s working, whether something was dropped inside. The same applies to a clogged toilet—we always ask if something has been dropped inside (once, we pulled out a toilet and found a TV remote down under!).

Q:        How and when is money dispersed to owners?

A:        We disperse funds by ACH transactions only, at the end of the month. We do not send checks.

Q:        Do you have a termination clause in the management agreement if a unit sits vacant for a certain amount of time?

A:        No. We will make the unit “market ready” and price the unit to rent because we know how to set them based on neighborhood knowledge and market rent “comps.” If the unit has been sitting with self-management or a previous management company, either the rent is too high, the unit isn’t market ready, or the unit is in an undesirable living area.

Q:        Who gets the late fees charged to a tenant, you or the owner?

A:        Both of us. We consider it gross rental income, which our monthly fee percentage is based on, so we take that percentage of the late fee. For instance, if the tenant is charged a $50 late fee and the owner of that property pays us a 6% monthly management fee, we take $3.00 and the owner receives the rest.

Visit us online or in person (614.291.3406) to discuss any other questions you have about our property management services.