There are some fantastic benefits to using a property management service, regardless of whether you’re a seasoned landlord looking to relieve some of the workload and hassle that comes with managing a large portfolio or a first-time property investor seeking professional advice and assistance with the process.
An experienced property management company will be able to streamline the entire process and take away the stresses you face - all while managing your portfolio in the most efficient way, allowing it to become the investment you want it to be, rather than a tiring full-time effort.
Easing the workload is just one of the reasons you may want to consider employing the services of a property management company. Perhaps you’re keen on property management but less keen on the day-to-day responsibilities that come with being a landlord, or maybe you’ve had one too many bad experiences and would rather hand over the legal, financial and letting dealings to a professional.
It’s a huge decision allowing an external property management agency to take over the reigns of your investment, so it’s important you’re fully aware of the things you should be looking for and the questions you need to be asking when searching for the perfect company.
The services offered will vary from one property management company to another, so a landlord needs to consider what sort of things they would like taken care of. In some cases, a landlord may want to retain some of the responsibilities, whereas other landlords may choose to use a property management company to take care of every detail, no matter how big or small.
You will have to research the management services on offer from the companies and letting agencies that take your fancy, but generally the services include:
It’s important to understand how your property management company screens prospective tenants because you want to ensure that all procedures are being correctly and legally followed, such as the legally required ‘right to rent’ check, full referencing checks and accurate and reliable credit checks. It can also provide you with an opportunity to take a look at the backgrounds and occupations of some of their current tenants so that you can better decide if they line up well with the type of tenants you’ll be looking for.
Finding out how many properties a management company currently manages will provide you with an idea of the scale and experience of that particular company. You should consider both the number and the type of properties they manage against their current staffing levels so that you can ensure their employees and resources don’t appear overstretched, and ask yourself do they seem well positioned and prepared to effectively manage and closely monitor your specific property investment?
It’s vital you’re fully aware of how the rent is being handled as this is your money and is something you will no doubt see as one of the biggest responsibilities being handed over to the management company. You want to be sure the rent is being collected regularly in a legitimate, reliable way and will be transferred into your bank account promptly without fail.
All deposits must be legally placed into one of three government-approved tenancy protection schemes within 30 days, and a copy of the certificate must be given to the tenants. The three approved schemes are the Deposit Protection Service, Tenancy Deposit Scheme and Mydeposits. This is one of many legal requirements you should ensure your property management company of choice is fulfilling. Other legal requirements include providing an up to date Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) and conducing a full fire and gas safety assessment.
It’s always worthwhile for a landlord to protect themselves against legal and financial difficulties with adequate landlord insurance, but you always want to make sure the property management company you’re considering also have comprehensive cover in place as well as public liability insurance.
One of the first things a landlord or property investor should do when researching a property management company or letting agent is check they are a member of the Association of Residential Lettings Agents (ARLA) as this is the first indication of a legitimate and high quality company. Besides seeking out qualifications, another way to sound out reputable management companies is through recommendation, so before you commit, ask other landlords and property investors about some of their personal experiences over the years.
Are you a landlord or property investor looking for an experienced and reputable property management company in Cardiff? If so, contact our experienced sales and lettings team here at CPS Homes to learn more about how we can help. With branches across Cardiff our knowledge of the city is second to none, so contact us today by calling 02920 668585, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or pop into a branch to speak to us face to face.