Here are a few key points you should follow if you are going to hire a new property management company.
5 Steps to Changing Property Management Companies
1. Make a Wish List
Before making a change, write down everything you currently like and dislike about the property manager you have now. Use these notes to make a new list of everything that you require your new property manager to do for you.
Most companies will strive to meet your expectations, so the higher your expectations, the better service you will usually receive. This list will be a great tool, especially when it comes to interviewing new property managers.
2. Explore New Management Companies
First, you want to talk to other management companies who you might want to hire. A good place to find other management companies is either online or simply drive around and look at who is managing properties in the surrounding neighborhood.
Another idea is to ask your neighbors who they use to manage their property, or you might want to ask your realtor who sold you the house for a recommendation. After you have at least two possible management companies, contact them and set up an interview. After the interview process, pick the management company that you are most comfortable with.
3. Review Your Agreement
Review the legal agreement you have with your current management company to see if there are any grounds for immediate termination and to double check when the current agreement expires. If you’re happy with the current management company and you are leaving because another company is offering superior services for a cheaper price (like HCM Property Management’s owner special of $150 flat fee per month), then you might find it easier to let the agreement expire on its own.
If you choose to let the agreement expire be sure to send them a letter notifying them of your plans not to renew with them. Usually these agreements roll over or renew on their own if no notification is provided. However, if you are really unhappy with the current management company, then terminate the agreement immediately. Your rental property is an investment, and any long term neglect of your property can have a negative effect on the value of the property.
4. Notify the Old Management Company
You can notify them through a letter or on the phone.
If you do it over the phone or in person, you should also follow it up with a termination letter. Whenever you terminate an agreement, it’s smart to have it in writing as well. In the letter, outline why you are leaving, the actual date you want the agreement to be terminated, and the name and contact phone number of the new management company.
5. Follow Up
Every few months it is a good idea to check on the property and make sure the management company is doing what they are supposed to be doing. If the management company knows you will make unannounced visits to your property, they will do a better job than if you never check in on the property.
Any time you are looking to make a change it can be very stressful, but if you follow some of these steps it can make the change that much easier.
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