Owning a rental property comes with a lot of questions. Whether you are a landlord veteran or a newbie to the rental property industry, questions will always arise as new situations and circumstances come into property management. At Real Property Management, SAC-METRO, we are here to help. With more than 30 years of experience, our team has expertise in all areas of rental property management and is here to make your experience a positive one. Below is a list of the Top Ten Most Frequently Asked Questions heard by property management companies in Sacramento, and the answers courtesy of RPM SAC-METRO.
How do I rent out my rental property more quickly?
Getting a vacancy filled quickly and with qualified tenants is crucial to the success of property managers and rental property owners. Once a landlord receives a 30 Day Notice to Vacate from a tenant, they should immediately acknowledge that Notice with an official date of move out, prorated rental amount, a property cleaning checklist, instructions on how to return keys, and Security Deposit Disbursement information. Once a property manager has received keys, enter the property within 24 hours to conduct a Move Out Property Inspection. Make detailed notes about the condition of the property and any repairs or improvements needed. Test all appliances, outlets, lights, smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, door and window locks and toilets. Inspect all flooring, cabinetry, countertops, doors and walls. Inspect landscaping, sprinklers, decks, and patios. Schedule proper vendors and maintenance technicians as needed. Work efficiently and schedule vendors back-to-back to minimize vacancy days. Once the home has been cleaned and is rent ready, property management companies in Sacramento start marketing aggressively.
Utilize technology to reach the maximum amount of potential renters. The internet has many rental marketing resources like Zillow, Hot Pads, Trulia, Craigslist, Facebook, and of course, use your own website to advertise the property. Clearly list the rental price, security deposit amount, application fees, and lease terms. Show multiple pictures of the property listed for rent including exterior, interior, and any community amenities. Use the best and prettiest picture as your “Featured Image” on the listing, which means the picture that potential renters will see first. This picture is often of the front of the property, the kitchen, or the Great Room. Post a For Rent sign in the front yard and attach helium filled balloons to attract attention. Property management companies in Sacramento use this strategy because even if the actual renter does not drive past the property, neighbors will alert friends and family of the property who may be interested in moving. Conduct professional showings of the property. Have the lights on inside when prospective tenants enter, make sure it is clear of all pests, and that the property is neat and clean.
How can I make sure my property stays rented?
The Golden Rule comes into play in this situation. Treat tenants the way you would want to be treated. Do not become a slumlord who moves tenants into a property, then walks away never to return or help with maintenance. Tenants want a property manager who takes their phone calls, responds to emails, helps them when maintenance and repairs are needed, and treats them with respect. Keep the property well maintained. Respond promptly to maintenance requests, schedule vendors and repairs as needed, and follow up with tenants to ensure work has been performed and that the repair is satisfactory. Property management companies in Sacramento must communicate expectations with tenants and treat them with respect and dignity. Reward tenants for obeying lease agreement rules and for on time rent payments. At SAC-METRO, our tenants have the opportunity to join our Resident Rewards Program. When a tenant pays rent online and on time, they can instantly unlock coupons, deals and discounts to places they spend money daily.
How can I make rent collection faster and less stressful?
At the time of lease signing, clearly communicate lease agreement rules and expectations. This includes the rent schedule. Inform tenants of when rent is paid each month, the amount due, how to pay rent, and what happens if they fail to pay their property management company. Sacramento landlords must stick to a strict rent schedule. Accept electronic and online payments and ACH deposit for less waiting and greater peace of mind. This allows tenants to pay rent from the convenience of their living room and requires a lot less work on landlords. The days of walking a paper check into the bank for deposit are far behind us. Get paid instantly by letting technology work for you. Set up automated notifications so that if the rent is not deposited into the account, alerts will go off informing you to take action.
How can I better protect myself legally as a landlord?
The best way to protect yourself legally as a landlord is to know the laws. Be educated and stay updated on federal, state, and local housing laws and ordinances. Study Fair Housing Laws, Habitability Laws, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and all local housing laws that pertain to property management companies. Sacramento landlords should never discriminate against protected classes of people and treat everyone equally. Follow the rules and terms set forth in the lease agreement. Consult a lawyer for additional help if legal circumstances arise.
How can I keep maintenance costs down on my property?
Be proactive in maintenance for the rental property. Conduct biannual property inspections, generally in spring and summer, to make certain the property is in proper condition for the changing seasons. During the biannual property inspections, look for any signs of maintenance that is needed that could cause bigger problems if not seen or reported immediately. Respond quickly to maintenance requests at all hours of the day or night. Hire licensed and insured repair technicians to remove liability from yourself. Do not attempt do-it-yourself jobs. Clients who hire RPM SAC-METRO get our Preferred Vendor Pricing. This unlocks discounted repair rates and costs for rental property owners, saving them hundreds, even thousands of dollars every year.
Should I manage my own rental property to save myself money?
Property management companies in Sacramento have experienced that even if you have time, energy, and expertise, most landlords find that managing their own rental ends up costing them more money. The extra expenses often stem from legal fees and longer than expected vacancies. It takes a lot of time to research, study, and know all of the housing laws and with one slip, landlords can find themselves in the courtroom with hefty legal fees. Those legal fees can eat away at years of profit from a rental property. SAC-METRO is known for having shorter than average vacancy times when compared to its competition. Our efficient turn over process, aggressive marketing, and professional showings help lease properties within 28 days of listing them.
Will management fees hurt my cash flow?
At SAC-METRO, our cost effective fees pay for themself. Our faster leasing times and fewer mistakes save property owners money instantly.
If I hire a property management company in Sacramento, how will I know what is happening with my property?
A good property manager communicates clearly and often with rental property owners. At SAC-METRO, we are proud to say that communication with our clients is a top priority. We use an online Owner Portal that can be accessed through our website from anywhere in the world. On the Owner Portal, property owners can view financials, maintenance requests, status of submitted applications, see how many showings they have had at their property during the leasing phase, and see security deposit disbursement information. We also have a 24/7 hotline that allows property owners to call our professional staff at any time to discuss their property.
How do I choose the best property manager?
Picking the property manager that is best for you is paramount to your success as a property owner. Compare property management companies in Sacramento against each other. Compare checklists, what they offer, and pricing. Pick a company with a proven track record and a trusted reputation.
Why should I trust SAC-METRO?
With more than 30 years in the property management industry, SAC-METRO has seen and experienced it all. There is no situation that will catch us off guard. Our professional team is involved in continued training courses so that we always stay up to date on current laws and practice all Housing Laws. Our shorter than average vacancy times make us the leader in the industry. Call us today to see how we can make your property management goals a reality.