Your Two Choices When It Comes To Property Management
Chris Lengquist - Wednesday, October 7, 2009
Let's face it, the toughest and sometimes most frustrating aspect of owning and operating residential investment property is managing the property...or even just working with the property manager. Let's look at your choices, shall we?
Self managing your rental property really isn't too tough if you own one or two or three houses. You can still work your full time job, show the place every now and again when it becomes vacant and there really shouldn't be too much maintenance on just three rental homes or less. You will save the property management fee and you'll be able to keep a handle on expenses better since they come directly out of your checkbook.
But then again, maybe you are a softie. Or you are a professional that really is very, very busy at work and you need all your personal time. Or maybe you just would rather be at your son's baseball game.
Choosing a property manager is a very important process in your real estate investing career. Sadly, most just go with whomever they find in the phone book or was recommended to them without ever really doing any research. There are some good property managers out there. But property management also lends itself to the shadows. After all, if the owner is California and his property is in Kansas City will he/she ever really know what the condition of the air conditioner really was?
Then there is the time issue. If y0u own more than a few properties you have to decide if you are going to be a whatever you are or a property manager. Where do you make more money? What is a better use of your time? Heck, even if someone else charges you 9% and then overcharges you occasionally are you still not better off using a property manager? (Not advocating the latter position. Just asking.)