How To Hire the Right Vacation Rental Property Manager

Estate agent shaking hands with customer after contract signature

Picture this: you’re about to go to sleep after a long day at work. Before you can shut off the lights, you hear the phone ring. Your tenant is calling you about the leaky bathroom.

Unlike the stock market, real estate requires hands-on work. This investing model can turn into a second job. Delegation becomes essential as you build your real estate portfolio.

Hiring the right property manager will save you hours. You won’t receive calls deep into the night from your tenants.

Property management companies can take those calls for you. They also help preserve your property. 

Property management companies let real estate investors focus on finding great deals. However, not every vacation rental property manager provides quality service. 

Investors must discern between effective and ineffective property management companies. Hiring the right property manager can save you hours each week. 

Wondering what goes into finding a real property management company for your rental? We’ll share a few indicators to look for in each property manager.

Savvy Local Market Knowledge

Local markets play a significant role in real estate returns. Laws and consumer behavior vary across states and counties. 

The best property management companies know the local market. However, don’t take their word for it. 

Ask them questions about local markets and consider how they respond. If the property manager lacks confidence when discussing the local market, look elsewhere. Insufficient understanding of local markets will hurt tenant recruitment efforts.

Conduct a search on Google such as “property management near me” to find a local property manager. Local property managers should know more about the area than non-local property managers.

Do some initial local market research so you can fact-check the property manager. If a property manager mixes up a region’s offseason and peak season, look elsewhere.

Ask the Property Manager about Their Fees and Contract Terms

Before you consider hiring a property manager, determine your budget. How much can you pay for the property manager’s services? 

Knowing this budget will help you negotiate with a property manager. You can also look for another choice if a property manager surpasses your budget. Ask about the property manager’s fees and contract terms. 

Most property managers receive payment as a percentage of rent. This structure incentivizes property managers to keep your vacation rental properties fully occupied. 

Most property manager fees do not exceed 50% of your rental income. It would help if you looked for property management companies that offer lower fees. Even if you can afford the fees, reach out to several managers so they compete for you as a client.

Review the contract terms to see if it offers any opt-out clauses. Property management companies should allow owners to opt out due to poor performance. This clause places the significant risk on the property manager. 

Ask questions about the contract and voice any objections. Talking with multiple property management companies will allow you to review various contracts. You can compare contracts and see which ones offer the best terms.

Review the Marketing Strategy

Your vacation property needs tenants to generate consistent cash flow. Property management companies find tenants and welcome them to the property. 

Poor marketing can increase vacancy during the peak season. This scenario is a vacation rental property owner’s nightmare.

An effective marketing strategy capitalize on peak seasons and get some offseason traction. Ask each property manager how they will promote your vacation rental. 

A property manager needs digital marketing expertise to reach the most people. Old-school tactics work, but ask about their Facebook ads and social media strategies. 

Many property management companies adapted to incorporate digital marketing in their strategy. Make sure your property manager does the same.

Speak with Their Current Clients

A property manager’s current clients provide a glimpse into their performance. Property managers can boast about their services, but their clients know the truth.

Ask each property manager if you can speak with current or past clients. Property managers with excellent performance should welcome this request.

If a property manager balks at this request, challenge them and see how they respond. Some may cite confidentiality. 

If other property managers share a few clients, reach out to those clients first. If those clients are happy, ignore other property managers who withhold information.

Check Their Staff and Property Portfolio

Each property manager comes with a staff and property portfolio. Both factors impact the type of service you will receive.

A large staff increases the likelihood of timely service. More people can manage more responsibilities across the property manager’s client portfolio. 

However, many clients can spread the staff too short. A property manager with ten employees may sound appealing. Ten employees won’t suffice if that property manager services 100 properties.

A smaller staff with fewer properties can give you more attention. If you are nervous about the staff’s size, ensure the contract includes opt-out clauses.

Looking for Property Management in the Myrtle Beach Area?

Managing a property is challenging. You’ll get numerous calls from existing tenants. When a tenant leaves, you must quickly fill the vacancy. 

A property manager addresses these concerns and more. Property management companies let you focus on finding deals.

If you are looking for property management in the Myrtle Beach area, we can help. We provide 24/7 access so you can reach out at any time.

We also provide professional housekeeping services to ensure your property looks sharp. Contact us today to see how we can assist with managing your property.

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