Are you having problems with your current property management team? If so, it might be time to make a switch.
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In this article, we walk you through four signs that might mean you need a new property management team.
Signs You Need a New Commercial Property Manager
1. You are having rent collection issues
If your rent is not collected on time or if your tenants are often late on rent with no repercussions, your property management team is not doing their job.
Not properly collecting rent will lead to cash flow issues at your property and will increase liability for you.
Not paying rent in a timely manner or tenants who start missing payments is a huge red flag that their business could be in trouble or fail. Actively working on past due balances helps to get ahead of these situations and get tenants back on the right track.
2. Your tenants are complaining
This is the most obvious sign you need to hire a new property management company and it could stem from a number of issues.
Maintenance complaints could be due to vendor issues, a general lack of knowledge, a slow response time, or simply neglect. Your property management team should address these issues swiftly and make sure they don’t happen again.
Are the elevators always out of order? Do tenants have trouble gaining access to the building? Is the gym always closed for maintenance? These types of building issues should not be persistent. If your property manager is following a regular maintenance schedule (discussed further in number three below) and has a system in place to address maintenance issues as they arise in your building, systems should remain in good working order.
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Is the trash not being picked up? Are the common areas messy and unkempt? Are the floors not clean? A property management team is responsible for keeping your tenants’ spaces and other parts of the building clean.
Is your landscaping messy or dying? Apart from any weather or similar extenuating circumstances, your property’s landscaping should be kept looking nice. Your property management team should regularly be maintaining any landscaping or hiring a vendor to regularly maintain it with a defined scope of work and expectations.
Complaints about staff could be in regards to vendors your property management team hired or about the property management team itself.
Are maintenance requests not addressed in a timely manner? Is your property management team unprofessional and rude? A tenant’s experience with your building is ultimately their experience with you as an owner.
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Ultimately, if a building is poorly maintained and has issues, tenants will not want to renew their leases. This will lead to vacancies, causing you to miss out on revenue from paying tenants. Additionally, leasing commissions and tenant improvements are typically much higher on new leases than renewals, causing you to spend more money than if you only had to renew a tenant.
If your building develops a reputation for poor maintenance, this could even lead to having to lower your rental rates until significant improvements are made.
3. Your property manager has poor communication skills
Communication is one of the most important parts of owning a property and if your property management team isn’t communicating with you, a lot can go wrong.
As previously mentioned, your property management team is the face of your building. Property managers should be handling all communication with tenants and respond to any requests in a timely manner. If your tenants are having to communicate directly with you instead of going through your property manager, your management team needs to correct this immediately. Your management team should also be readily available to you and your tenants whenever needed (within reason).
Your property management team’s communication skills can define your tenants’ experience with your property. This can play a large part in their decision to renew their lease or go to a different property.
Your property management team should be completely transparent with you across all aspects of your property. If you don’t know where your money is being spent, things can go wrong quickly.
Monthly reports should also be delivered in a timely manner and should have all the pertinent information you have agreed to in your management agreement.
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4. Your property manager is not following a maintenance schedule
Your property manager, along with the engineering team, should follow a scheduled and comprehensive maintenance plan. This plan can include regular and annual inspections, landscaping walks, regular cleanings, property walks, etc. Additionally, when any large maintenance is performed, your team should notify the tenants and seek approval from the owner to make sure the cost fits within the budget.
Your property management team also should not procrastinate repairs until a complaint or issue arises. Not only will the tenant be upset their space wasn’t maintained, but not regularly maintaining your property can lead to more costly repairs in the future. Your property manager should be proactive and make sure nothing is slipping through the cracks.
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Are you having any of these issues with your property management team? If so, it’s time to either sit down and address the problems with them or hire a new property management firm.
If you’re looking to hire a new property management team, schedule a consultation with one of our expert property managers today.