DIY property management provides an opportunity to save money and maximise rental yields, but when things go wrong it can create big hassles. For many, the solution is to enlist the services of a professional property manager.
The commission charged by most professional property managers can certainly chip away at a landlord’s rental returns, but when appliances breakdown or you have to chase a tenant for rent in arrears, this can seem like a small price to pay.
As a landlord, you could be fortunate enough to find perfect tenants and a trouble-free property. Under these circumstances, the do-it-yourself property management approach can produce additional savings which ultimately goes into your pocket.
The trouble is, not all tenants fit that description, and a professional property manager can help you avoid future headaches by accessing tenant databases (or ‘blacklists’) to identify lease applicants with a tarnished track record.
Strict rules apply
Along with screening tenants, professional property managers collect rent and handle repairs and maintenance on your behalf. These are two simple, yet noteworthy tasks, because in the instance that a tenant can’t (or won’t) pay the rent, strict legal protocols must be followed. Failing to adhere to any of the rules could delay the time taken to evict a difficult tenant, secure the bond and re-let the place; which ultimately impacts your hip pocket.
You could potentially handle repairs and maintenance yourself, however, hot water heaters, roof tiles and electrical wiring have a habit of falling apart at the most inconvenient times and a 3am call from an unhappy tenant is the last thing most landlords need.
Using a professional property manager can also help streamline tax time. Typically, landlords receive a single statement from their property manager detailing rental income, management, maintenance and repair costs and other tax deductible items for the year. This can save you time tracking down receipts when 30 June rolls around.
Many landlords enjoy both satisfaction and savings by managing their own investment properties, but the approach you take to managing your rental property depends on your individual situation and your rental goals. Before making your decision, it’s worthwhile speaking with several local property managers to learn more about their services.