Hello BiggerPockets community,
I'm doing my first investment property in Fayetteville and I'm due to close this week. It's a SFR in a C+ neighborhood.
I’ve been talking to a few PM but have not been able to find a good match. So far all of the recommendations I’ve found were through yelp and google reviews. So far, all the PMs I’ve talked to are hard to reach and/or slow to respond. Not sure if that’s the norm or if that’s because I only have one property so far to offer for management. I’m getting a feeling that because my property is on a c+ neighborhood that these management companies don’t want to manage it.
Have you guys/gals had experience like this?
Also if you can recommend me to a good PM in the city, I would highly appreciate it! Thanks and looking forward to a good discussion!
@Mark M. , Josh is working with a PM/GC that is extremely trust worthy and has a great reputation within the Fayetteville REI community. He can handle your rehab then manage it for you. I met him at the last Pints and Properties meetup and may work with him in the future. Josh can also help with finding your next deal.
@Josh Wagner, can we connect Mark with your rock star?
Happy to do it! Thanks for dropping my name @Robert Shortsleeves . And you were at Pints and Properties?! How did we miss one another??
@Josh Wagner hello Josh. Pleasure to meet you. I sent you a quick message. Hope to learn good tips about the local market from you!
@Mark M. Hello Mark, you are one step ahead of us, we too are looking into investing in the NC area as well, out of state. If we come up with anything we will let you know.
You can start by going to www.narpm.org to 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. Regardless of how you find them, try to interview at least three managers
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 addenda. 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, late rent, evictions, turnover, etc. 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.
7. Look at their marketing strategy. Are they doing everything they can to expose properties to the widest possible market? Are their listings detailed with good quality photos? Can they prove how long it takes to rent a vacant property?
This isn't inclusive but should give you a good start. If you have specific questions about property management, I'll be happy to help!