How to find great property managers

6 Replies

Hi everyone,

I am looking for a great property manager to work for to bring great value to and to gain experience and knowledge in the field. So I was wondering, what is the best way to find a great manager in a given market? I can think of a few ways, but I'm just poking around to see what others have to say.

The best way I can think of finding the best manager in town would be through networking. I can see getting out there and talking with the other investors in the area being very helpful because they have lots of connections and experiences to know who is doing a great job managing and who isn't. 

I can think of a couple other ways but I'm just curious what ways you have found to be effective in finding great managers in your area.

Thanks!

@Ben Davis yes, get with other investors. Avoid internet searches, as tenants often get on there and leave scathing reviews -- sometimes reasonably, but sometimes not. 

Look for your REI groups, or try connecting with contractors.

I'd echo @Wes S. advice except for the part about internet searches. I found a great property management company using the internet. But, I had to speak with over 20 companies before I found the right one.

Besides other investors, REI groups, and contractors, I would reach out to real estate brokers. Also, listen to podcast interviews and reach out to guests who are property managers in your area.

Sounds like good advice! I'll be meeting with a manager in my area next week to discuss possibilities of employment or to seek advice on how to get started in this area. Hopefully I can build a great relationship with him and can provide some great value to him.

Hi Ben. I own property in two different cities that are very far from where I live and have found that finding a good property manager is the hardest, yet most important member of a successful investment. I've gone through multiple property managers and though I can't say I've got a fool proof system for finding a good P.M. There are a few things I think I've learned from my own experience.

1) Look for a property management company with multiple people who have specific tasks. For example, one person may be the leasing specialist while some one else deals with the day to day collections and phone calls. Any time I've had a company that uses one person to handle all my P.M. needs it hasn't turned out very well.

2) Companies that use multiple people probably have systems in place. There should be a set of guidelines for how they deal with tenants and day to day management. What are their systems for rent collection? How about late rent? When do they start eviction? All these questions should have specific answers.

3) Don't be afraid to ask for services you feel you require from them. For example, I require copies of receipts for all work that they do or hire out to do. I've yet to have a company do this without asking but have never had a problem getting receipts when requested.

4) Don't be afraid to move on. Sometimes a P.M. is just over their head., other times they are just crooks. I've had both. I've yet to stay with the same property manager that I've started out with in a new market, but I've eventually found the right one. Once you have that it really provides confidence in growing your portfolio in that city.

5) All P.M.'s are 'great guys' when you first meet them. Beware.

Good luck. 

This is all great information as I'm in the research stage of possibly starting my own property management company!! Thank you!

I'm a property manager in Everett, Washington. I find that realtors have a really good grasp on who does good work and who doesn't. Ask all the local realtors you can find who they recommend. You'll probably hear the same couple names repeated over and over.