Looking for a property management company in Philadelphia

7 Replies

Bigger Pockets Family,

I am closing on a triplex in Philly next week and I'm looking for a recommendation for a good property management company.  If you've had a great experience with a management company in the Philly area I'd appreciate a recommendation.

Thanks,

Kelly

@Kelly Arthur

I haven't had a chance to work with @Joe White as a property manager, but I've worked with him on different projects. He is clearly knowledgeable and does property management for a number of folks in the Philly area. May want to reach out to him. Good luck!   

Disclaimer: While I’m an attorney licensed to practice in PA, I’m not your attorney. What I wrote above does not create an attorney/client relationship between us. I wrote the above for informational purposes. Do not rely on it for legal advice. Always consult with your attorney before you rely on the above information.

You can start by going to www.narpm.org and search their directory of managers. These are professionals with additional training and a stricter code of ethics. It's no guarantee but it's a good place to start.

1. Ask how many units they manage and how much experience they have. If it's a larger organization, feel free to inquire about their different staff qualifications.

2. Review their management agreement. Make sure it explicitly explains the process for termination if you are unhappy with their services, but especially if they violate the terms of your agreement.

3. Understand the fees involved and calculate the total cost for an entire year of management so you can compare the different managers. It may sound nice to pay a 5% management fee but the extra fees can add up to be more than the other company that charges 10% with no add-on fees. Fees should be clearly stated, easy to understand, and justifiable. If you ask the manager to justify a fee and he starts hemming and hawing, move on or require them to remove the fee. Don't be afraid to negotiate!

4. Review their lease agreement and addendums. Think of all the things that could go wrong and see if the lease addresses them: unauthorized pets or tenants, early termination, security deposit, lease violations, late rent, eviction, lawn maintenance, parking, etc.

5. Don't just read the lease! Ask the manager to explain their process for dealing with maintenance or problem tenants. If they are professional, they can explain this quickly and easily. If they are VERY professional, they will have their processes in writing as verification that it is enforced equally and fairly by their entire staff.

6. Ask to speak with some of their current owners and current/former tenants. You can also check their reviews online at Google, Facebook, or Yelp. Just remember: most negative reviews are written by problematic tenants. The fact they are complaining online might be an indication the property manager dealt with them properly so be sure to ask the manager for their side of the story.

I hope this basic guide helps. If you have specific questions about property management, I'll be happy to help!

@Nathan G. Wow!!! This is great. I really appreciate this. I will definitely use this to “screen” management companies because while it’s important to screen tenants, it’s just as important to screen property managers. Thanks again. This is helpful. 

Hi @Kelly Arthur

Welcome to BP!

Former Union County Resident :)

When you use a PM company Philadelphia is all about communication and a understanding of the type of tenant you expect based on your finishes of your rental and neighborhood.

I have identified one that has been very good for me based on the neighborhoods Ii own in and is a HAPCO member as well which is the landlord association of Philadelphia. Let me know if you would like an introduction.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Regards

Joe Scorese

Hey @Joseph Scorese .  Nice to hear from a UC neighbor :-).

Great advice.  I now have a great list of things to look for when I screen the management companies. I would definitely like to talk to you when you have a moment.  I'll send you a private message.

Thanks,

Kelly