Finding the right Orlando property management company can be tough; there’s hundreds of options available, so how do you know which one to pick? Your rental property is one of your most valuable assets, and it’s essential to place your trust in a reliable and experienced property management company to safeguard your investment.
It’s essential to get a feel for each property management company prior to hiring them and signing a, possibly, binding contract. Browsing their website, reviewing client testimonials, and speaking directly with the property manager can all provide insight to help make a decision about which company to hire.
In the process of researching potential property management companies, here are 5 things to avoid in Orlando property management companies:
1) Time Sensitive Money-Back Guarantee
Some property management companies will offer enticing guarantees right out of the gate. These guarantees may offer a discount or free services if the property manager “fails” to do a certain task. Although the potential of spending less money can be tempting, it’s important to keep in mind that money-back guarantees can be a potential red flag.
One guarantee to look out for is the time sensitive guarantee. This may sound something like, “We will place a tenant in 30 days or less, or get your first month of property management free”.
This offer can sound promising at first, however it shows that the company is uncertain about their abilities and relies on the fast tenant instead of the right tenant. Although filling a vacancy quickly is ideal, this time limit will pressure the company into placing a tenant that’s under-qualified and unreliable.
Be sure to check your property management agreement to ensure you are familiar with all guarantees and conditions before signing it.
2) Unprofessional and Lack of Transparency
An unprofessional Orlando property manager may not be transparent about their services, pricing, or experience. Two ways to tell if your potential property manager is professional are thoroughly inspecting their website, and speaking to them over the phone or in person.
When browsing their website or speaking to them, are all of your questions answered? If the property manager is unable to answer your question or dodges your question with long and irrelevant spiels, they may be inexperienced or hiding something.
Some property management companies will take advantage of their clients, surprising them with hidden property management fees once the agreement is signed. The Miami Herald said it best, “Cheap property management fees are often accompanied by a long list of extra charges”. A property management company that seems cheap upfront may end up being more expensive in the end.
The property manager should be able to provide you with exact details on pricing and services. It may be another red flag if the company’s website does not provide a pricing breakdown. A professional property manager will have no problem sharing management pricing information, as this is an essential part of the property management process.
As a professional property management company in Orlando, we pride ourselves on providing 100% transparency and trust to all of our clients. We find value in not only being a resource, but taking the time to educate, align, and guide our clients on a successful property management journey.
3) Lack of Communication
Consistent and reliable communication is one of the most important qualities to look for in a property manager. In the property management process, there is always a need for communication whether it’s between the property manager and the property owner, tenant, or outside vendors.
When you hire an Orlando property manager, you are trusting them to take care of your property and your tenant’s needs. If your tenant has an issue or a question, they will communicate with your property manager. If your property manager does not have effective property management communication skills and processes, your tenant may not be satisfied with their living situation.
A lack of communication can lead to bigger issues like property damage or financial mismanagement. Your property management agreement should establish clear guidelines outlining when your property manager must notify you of maintenance issues. Failure to communicate major problems may result in news of unexpected property damage and a large bill for expenses you did not authorize.
A pipe burst in your rental property. The pipe bursting caused flooding and damage to the property. Your property manager failed to notify you properly, violating the terms of the agreement. Not only does this put your property at risk for further damage, but it also damages the trust between you and the property owner, you and the tenant, and the tenant and the property manager.
This example may sound extreme, but unfortunately, it is a possible scenario that you must try to avoid by hiring a reliable property manager. You should remove a property manager from your list of potential hires at the first sign of inadequate communication skills, like a delayed or failed response, to avoid a situation as such.
In addition, according to research done by Buildium, “As of 2023, 90% of renters are interested in completing rental processes online, ranging from 72% of the oldest renters we survey to a full 96% of the youngest renters”. The property manager’s services and communication methods should reflect the preferences of renters to ensure complete satisfaction. Discuss tenant portals and potential communication methods with your property manager.
4) Poor Tenant Screening Process
A property management company that has a poor tenant screening process is a company that you should avoid. As experienced Orlando property managers, we cannot stress enough the importance of a thorough and consistent tenant screening process.
By placing your trust in a property management company, you are allowing them to choose who lives in your rental property. If you prefer a tenant with a positive rental history, financial stability, and a clean criminal and eviction record, we highly recommend hiring a company with a strict tenant screening process.
Property managers should not be lenient in regards to who lives in your rental home. Here at The Listing Real Estate Management, our tenant screening is a multi-step process that ensures each applicant meets certain criteria.
Our tenant screening includes:
- Credit history check
- Debt to income ratio
- Nationwide eviction search
- Background check
- “It has been found that 7% of criminal requests in the state of Florida return criminal records found”.
- Income and employment verification
- Previous two years rental verification
5) Limited Property Management Experience
One risk we strongly advise against taking is handing your investment to a property manager with little to no industry experience.
A company with experience knows what it takes to manage properties efficiently, effectively, and successfully. Here at The Listing Real Estate Management, we have over 15 years of experience, and we are true experts in our craft.
With over 300 5-star client reviews, we pride ourselves on providing award winning management services. Our property management team is part of the National Association of Residential Property Managers, Orlando Regional Realtor Association, National Association of Realtors and Institute of Real Estate Management.
In the hands of an inexperienced company, your property may not live up to its true potential. At The Listing, we have local Orlando property management experts that understand the Central Florida rental market. Our property managers will provide you with not only valuable insight, but also with confidence, and faith.
Orlando Property Management Summary
Knowing what to avoid in property management companies will help distinguish which company is right for you. As there are hundreds of property management companies to choose from in Orlando, each company will operate differently. Never assume that one company will have the same policies and services as another; always do your research.
At The Listing Real Estate Management, your boutique property manager, our years of experience in the Orlando real estate industry have equipped us with the skills to help you manage your property, and optimize your income and financial returns.
Contact us today to get started on your property management journey with our best-in class hospitality and services! Cheers!
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