Changing Property Managers Has Never Been Easier!
Changing property managers doesn’t have to be a scary task. Considering that your rental property is likely to be one of your biggest assets it is essential that your property manager gives you absolute peace of mind that your investment is in good hands. If this isn’t the case then it pays to shop around until you find a property manager who will work with you to get the most out of your investment and feel fully informed along the way.
At Wolfbrook Property Management we are property owners and investors ourselves so we understand what it takes to be a successful property manager and what landlords expect from us. If you are interested in changing property managers then read on to find out more about the process.
When to change property managers
If you have been with your property manager for an extended period of time and think that they could be doing a better job but are unsure if anyone else will do a better job property then these are some things to check before you commit to changing property managers.
Rent hasn’t been reviewed
The rental property market in New Zealand has been rapidly increasing over the last few years and so if the rent hasn’t been reviewed then it is likely that you are missing out on some of the returns your investment property could be generating for you. Rents are able to be increased every 12 months and so it pays to do a rental appraisal each year to stay up to date with market conditions.
High rent arrears
Life has its ups and downs and tenants do on occasion struggle to make their rental payments on time. If this is a one off occurrence which has been well communicated then there are ways around it. If it becomes a regular occurrence and the unpaid rent accumulates then this becomes a wider problem that may require a new property manager to take control and get things back on track.
Vacancy is any time period when a rental property is empty and there are no paying tenants. This has a huge effect on the yield of a property and means landlords have to dip into their own pocket to cover costs. This is usually caused by poor marketing and/or setting rents too high which stops people from applying.
Missed inspections/Poor inspections
Inspections are critical and without them landlords have very little to fall back on when it comes to taking tenants to the Tenancy Tribunal, not to mention being a requirement for your insurance. Inspections should occur every 3 months and if anything is out of place then you can schedule a follow up inspection sooner than that to ensure any issues are remedied. Property Managers should take comprehensive photos of any marks or damage so that your property remains in good condition and there is no chance of Tenants claiming the “it was like that when we moved in” excuse.
Hard to contact
Communication is one of the most important factors when it comes to property management. Both between the manager and yourself as the landlord but also between the tenant and the property manager. If the tenant is not able to get a hold of the property manager in a timely manner then they will often try to reach out to you the landlord which defeats the purpose of having a property manager in the first place. One of the key reasons to have a property manager is to handle the inevitable after-hours emergencies. Therefore you need to have confidence that these issues are dealt with at the time and not left to become bigger more expensive repairs.
Property managers fees are always a balancing act between getting what you pay for and getting your money’s worth. The other main complaint we often hear is around unexpected extra charges in the monthly invoice. If you don’t feel that you are getting value and transparency from your property manager then it pays to speak to other companies about how much they would charge in comparison. If you own multiple properties then you might expect a discount or for property managers to offer some more flexibility around how they will work with you. Learn more about Wolfbrook’s property management fees
Poor tenant selection
With increasingly strict rules around the eviction of tenants it is becoming more important to ensure your property manager selects good tenants. Attracting and retaining good tenants is a combination of proper advertising, background/reference checks and good communications. The risks of getting this wrong can be unpaid rent, property damage that exceeds the bond and time wasted on Tenancy Tribunal hearings trying to resolve issues.
How to choose new property managers
Once you have decided that it is time to change property manager then the next task is trying to choose a better one. Here is a quick guide to what questions you should ask when choosing a new property manager.
What is their tenant selection process?
Before a tenant commits to living in your property for 12 months you need to be confident that the property manager has undergone a thorough selection process. At a minimum this should involve widely advertising the property, conducting showings where they meet candidates in person, reference checks and a credit check.
Have they been to the Tenancy Tribunal and what was the outcome?
A trip to the Tenancy Tribunal is not a bad thing but you would want to check that the property manager wasn’t the cause of the complaint and that the issue was resolved in favour of the property manager.
Can they provide landlord reference?
Any experienced property manager who has built good relationships with the landlords they act on behalf of should be able to provide you a reference backing up their claims.
How many properties do they manage and experience levels?
There is no substitute for experience in property management so it pays to ask not only for the total number of years but also some of the significant situations they have dealt with. It also pays to ask how many properties they are looking after so you have an understanding of whether you think they have enough time and effort to dedicate to your property.
Are they owners/landlords themselves?
Property managers who also own and invest in property themselves have an intuitive understanding of the needs of other landlords. At Wolfbrook Property Management we own a large amount of the homes that we rent out. By partnering with us we will provide your property with the same level and care as we would if we were the owners.
Are they flexible to suit your needs?
A good property manager will be able to work in the way that suits you best. A good example of this is around maintenance issues. Some property owners are happy to let the property manager take care of all work under an agreed dollar amount while others would like to approve any costs before work is carried out. It pays to set out all your expectations at the start and agree on a management style that works for everyone before changing property managers.
How to change property managers
If you decide to change property managers to Wolfbrook Property Management then we do our best to make the process as easy as possible.
Before we can start we require:
- You to inform us of how much notice you need to give your current provider as set out in your current management contract/authority and when we can officially start.
- A signed termination of current property manager authority form.
- For you to inform your current provider of your our details so that we can facilitate a handover process
Wolfbrook Property Management will:
- We will obtain a copy of all current documentation relating to the property, specifically any current tenants and tenancy agreements.
- Advise the Tenants that we are taking over as the Managing Agent
- Conduct an inspection of the property at the time we take it over and advise you of any anomalies between your previous Agents most recent inspection and the current condition of the property.
- Notify any relevant authorities of the transfer of management (e.g.Bond centre, Tenancy Services)
- Take the best possible care of your Property and Tenants moving forward so you never have to switch again!
Why you should join Wolfbrook property management
- 100% money back guarantee in the first 30 days
- We’ll contact your old manager and handle transfer
- We are landlords and property owners ourselves.