Effective property management is all about being proactive when it comes to maintaining your investment property.
That’s because being proactive protects your asset, saving you time and money in the short-term and making you more money in the long run.
We look at what’s involved in proactively maintaining a property and what you should expect from your property manager.
Why proactive maintenance is the key to protecting your investment
One reason investors look to real estate in the first place is the opportunity it offers for producing a steady income – in capital growth over the years as well as the weekly rent. If you fail to maintain your property properly, you put that income in jeopardy.
Poorly maintained properties rent for less and give tenants more reason to leave. Once they are vacant, poorly maintained properties also usually stay on the market much longer than ones that are well-kept. They’re also harder to sell for a premium.
With that in mind, here’s what your property manager should be doing when it comes to maintaining your property.
Keeping the lines of communication open
Your property manager’s main responsibility is always to protect your asset. But they can only do this if they keep the lines of communication open.
That means keeping you up to date with everything that’s happening – how the property is being kept, what needs immediate repairing and what’s likely to need repairing in the future, and what will need to be replaced soon.
But for a good property manager, the lines of communication don’t only go one way. They also proactively listen to and liaise with the tenants – answering their legitimate concerns and making sure they’re satisfied with the property.
After all, a happy long-term tenant should be the holy grail for most landlords. That’s because they won’t just provide you with consistent income, they’re also far more likely to keep the property in good shape so that it maintains its value.
Being on the front foot with repairs
Believe it or not, a lot of tenants are cautious when it comes to reporting problems with a property. They’re more likely to do nothing than to rock the boat. However, if left unattended a leaking pipe or faulty electricals could end up becoming a much bigger – and more costly – problem.
Good property managers know what to look for when it comes to maintaining a property and they stay ahead of the curve when it comes to repairs and maintenance. They also make sure they’re approachable and available to tenants so that they can always raise their legitimate concerns.
Thinking of the detail
Because small issues can quickly become big ones for tenants, good property managers look into the details. This includes making sure they’re on top of any issues with kitchen appliances, lighting or air conditioning.
Some odd jobs that are easy to ignore – like cleaning leaves out the gutters before a storm – can quickly become a big issue if they’re not taken care of.
Little niggles such as a dishwasher that doesn’t work properly or a flickering light in a hard to reach place can detract from a tenant’s experience but in reality cost little to fix.
Looking for ways to add value
Proactive property management isn’t just about preserving what you already have, it’s also about looking for ways to add value. That could be by recommending features that would appeal to tenants, such as air conditioning or a dishwasher. It could also be by advising you on any renovations or alterations that would put the property into a different category and command more rent. From a simple coat of paint or new blinds, to a kitchen renovation.
Good property managers will usually put you in touch with the right experts – such as quantity surveyors and tax professionals who can help you make the most of your investment.
In short, good property managers stay on the front foot. And you should expect nothing less from any property manager you hire to look after your investment.
If you have any questions contact our team of experienced property managers today.