Top 10 Questions When Interviewing Property Management Companies

Top 10 Questions When Interviewing Property Management Companies

December 22nd, 2023

When it comes to managing your investment properties, choosing the right property management company is crucial. Whether you're a seasoned real estate investor with a substantial portfolio or a first-time landlord, finding a reliable, efficient, and experienced property management team can make all the difference in the success and profitability of your investment. To ensure you make an informed decision, here are the top ten questions to ask when interviewing property management companies.

  1. What Services Do You Offer?
    Understanding the range of services a property management company provides is essential. Inquire about their expertise in advertising, tenant screening, rent collection, property maintenance, project management, issue resolution, and other key aspects of property management.  Also ask which services they provide in-house and which they outsource.
  2. How Do You Determine Rental Prices?
    Determining your rental prices appropriately is critical for attracting quality tenants and keeping your vacancy factor low. Ask the company about their methods for determining rental prices and how they stay competitive in the local market.
  3. What is Your Tenant Screening Process?
    A thorough tenant screening process helps minimize risks associated with problematic tenants. Inquire about background checks, credit reports, rental history verification, eviction history, income verification, and other screening procedures the company employs.  Bad tenants are hard to manage and even harder to get rid of.  A thorough tenant screening process is worth its weight in gold.
  4. How Do You Handle Rent Collection and Late Payments?
    Timely rent collection is vital for your cash flow. Inquire about the property management company's methods for collecting rent, dealing with late payments, and their approach to enforcing lease agreements.  Make sure that they have relationships with attorneys who will be ready to send collection letters and start the eviction process at a moment's notice.
  5. How Do You Handle Maintenance and Repairs?
    Property maintenance is a significant aspect of managing real estate. Understand how the property management company handles maintenance requests, emergency repairs, and their network of reliable contractors and vendors.  Make sure that their property managers are technical and can speak the language of construction.  If they manage repairs and maintenance like they’re spending their own money, you’ll be in good shape, otherwise they can easily eat up your profits.
  6. How Many Property Managers Does Your Company Employ?
    Knowing that a company has enough resources to sufficiently serve its clients is important.  If a company overloads their property managers, they will only be reactive to issues and provide poor service to everyone except the one client who yells the loudest or who generates the most revenue for them.  Also ask if you will have a dedicated property manager, and what their background and experience is.  Furthermore, you may ask to meet one or two of the property managers and interview them yourself.
  7. What Technologies Do You Utilize?
    A tech-savvy property management company can streamline processes and increase efficiency by leveraging technology.  Additionally, they can provide you with real-time information and communicate with tenants more effectively. Inquire about the technologies they use for tasks such as receiving online rent payments, financial reporting, and communication with tenants.
  8. What are Your Fees and Contract Terms?
    Clearly understanding the fees and contract terms is essential for budgeting and avoiding surprises. Ask about the management fees, any additional charges, project management fees, the duration of the contract and the renewal terms.  Also ask about the price escalation terms and whether they can increase prices at will.
  9. How Do You Stay Informed About Local Laws and Regulations?
    Property management involves navigating a complex web of local laws and regulations. Ensure the company stays informed and compliant with all relevant laws, including landlord-tenant regulations and property maintenance requirements.
  10. Can You Provide References from Current Clients?
    A reputable property management company should have no issue providing references. Speaking with current clients can give you valuable insights into the company's performance, reliability, and overall satisfaction.

Choosing the right property management company is a critical decision that can significantly impact the success of your investment. By asking these questions during the interview process, you can make an informed choice and entrust your valuable asset to the right company.


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