Owning rental property in the Baltimore County area is not without challenges and complications. That is why many landlords choose to hire a property management company to handle such tasks as finding quality tenants, collecting rent, and scheduling routine maintenance and repairs.
But what exactly do we mean when we talk about “property management”?
It is more than cleaning, responding to maintenance calls, collecting rent, and managing tenants. Property management can typically be divided into two separate entities—property management and rental property maintenance. These entities, though different, work together to efficiently and effectively manage your property.
It is important to know exactly what to expect when you hire a property management company to manage your investment. Today, we will examine the key differences between property management and rental property maintenance of your Towson rental home.
What is Property Management?
Property management companies manage your rental property. They operate, control, and oversee your investment in numerous ways. These tasks, when done properly, add vitality to your rental property and facilitate positive cash flow each year.
Let’s take a look at the primary responsibilities of a property management company:
Finding great tenants is crucial to being a successful landlord. This is why hiring a good property management company to screen potential tenants for your valuable Essex rental home is so important.
There is a lot that goes into finding the perfect tenant for your Dundalk property. Background checks should be performed for all potential tenants. You should screen for prior evictions, liens, bankruptcies, criminal history, and credit worthiness. You should also follow all federal, state, and local laws regarding tenant screening.
Lease Agreement Drafting
A legally compliant lease agreement should outline all of the important things a prospective tenant should be aware of. This is where a property management company is especially helpful. Understanding all landlord-tenant laws and the importance of a thorough lease agreement, your property management company will be able to take care of everything effortlessly.
It is vital to your bottom line be able to collect and distribute rent payments on time each month. A hired property management company will be able to efficiently collect rent from your tenants and get the payments back to you quickly.
Collecting late rent payments is the responsibility of your property management company as well. A quality property management company will also be responsible for starting the eviction process, handling lawsuits, and defending you as a landlord.
Property management companies are also responsible for many of the administrative tasks involved in the management of a rental home in the Parkville area of Baltimore.
Here are a few other important things that to look for in a good property management company:
- Rental property registrations
- Monthly and yearly financial statements
- Routine inspections
- Move in and move out reports
- Low management fees
- Advertisement of vacant rental properties
What About Rental Property Maintenance?
Though they seem like one and the same, property management and rental property maintenance are actually two separate entities.
When you own a rental property, even in the mature and wealthy area of Pikesville, you will eventually have to deal with maintenance issues on your property. And while property management companies are responsible for facilitating maintenance requests, that is typically where their responsibility ends.
Most property management companies have their own separate maintenance group. These licensed contractors are equipped to handle routine rental home upkeep, emergency repairs, and major damage that can result from accidents or an irresponsible tenant.
Tasks handled by rental property maintenance staff include:
- Lawn and yard maintenance
- Heating and Air Conditioning
- Electrical work
- Locksmith issues
- Common area upkeep
- Flooding emergencies
A responsible property management company will have a maintenance crew on hand 24/7 should your tenants encounter any issues— big or small.
In addition to the maintenance staff a property management company contacts when an issue of maintenance or repair pops up in one of your Catonsville property investments, your property management company should have relationships with professional licensed vendors that can handle being tasked with the difficult problems that are beyond the scope of expertise of most general maintenance workers.
It is the responsibility of the property management company to contact and schedule the repairs. From there the maintenance staff is responsible for resolving the issue, invoicing the landlord or tenant—according to the lease agreement—and taking care of any concerns that may arise during the course of work.
So, Aren’t They Really One and the Same?
It may seem that property management companies and rental property maintenance staff are actually one and the same—and some are. The problem is, not all property management groups provide their customers a rental property maintenance staff. This means that as a landlord all administrative tasks related to your property will be handled but the maintenance issues will be your responsibility.
Doesn’t this defeat the purpose of a hiring a property management company?
This is why it is so important to research your property management company beforehand and compile a list of questions to ask each company you are considering prior to bringing them in for an interview.
Bay Management Group
Luckily for you, if you own a rental property in the Owings Mills or the surrounding Baltimore areas you have access to one of Maryland’s premier property management companies, Bay Management Group.
Not only does Bay Management Group thoroughly handle all property management tasks related to your rental property, they have an experienced, licensed maintenance staff and vendors on hand to resolve any maintenance issues you or your tenants might encounter.
Bay Management Group is dedicated to the job of property management, and they take pride in a job well done. Bay Management Group is the ideal property management company for you and your Baltimore County rental property.
Whether you are new to the rental property business, or you have multiple properties, it is important to understand the benefits of hiring a reputable property management company. Take time to make sure that you and your property management company are in agreement about the tasks outlined in the contract as well as monthly management fees.
If you’re in need of a full-service property management company in Baltimore County, give Bay Management Group a call. Their knowledgeable and friendly staff is here to answer all of your questions and I bet by the end of the conversation, you will be convinced they are the right choice for your property management needs.