Best practices when hiring a PM company

milwaukee property management

There are a great many property management companies in Milwaukee, but how do you decide which one to choose?  Many people are once again beginning to invest in real estate, especially rental apartments and condominiums, as a means of creating monthly cash flow and enhancing their retirement incomes.  Choosing the wrong property management firm can actually cost you more money than you originally intended it you do not do your due diligence and research your options.

All that you have to do is go online, and you will find a great many horror stories of landlords who have received poor service from their hired managers.  Perhaps maintenance issues were not properly addressed, or perhaps there was a disagreement about the proposed rental rates.  But not every management company is going to be in line with your personal long-term investment strategies and expectations.  Here are some factors to consider when interviewing prospective candidates for property management companies in Milwaukee.

Management Fees

 Always remember that hiring a property management firm is strictly a business arrangement, pure and simple.  If your primary residence is located a fair distance from Milwaukee, this company is going to be your “eyes and ears”.  The last thing that you will be expecting is a lot of trips back and forth to the city. Do not let the overall price of the firm be your final determining factor.

The more reputable and experienced PM companies in Milwaukee may charge a bit more, but they most likely offer a wider range of more thorough services as well.  When you take into account those costly traveling expenses, you might come out way ahead.   Always ask for an itemized list of individual fees and charges before making your final decision.

Inspections, Repairs, and Maintenance

 This is a very critical factor that can sometimes go overlooked by the first-time landlord.  Maintenance and repairs can easily become the single highest yearly expense if not handled properly and timely.  This means that units and condominiums should be regularly inspected to catch possible problems early.

Each issue and individual repair needs to be catalogued, monitored, and tracked by the property management firm based on date assessed, date repaired, and total cost including man-hours and supplies.  Is this a service that your company offers?  Does it cost an additional fee?  You had better find out beforehand.  This is where the truly professional PM companies in Milwaukee will stand out among the less experienced.

Tenant Retention and Marketing

 First time landlords often overestimate how much money they will receive in rental payments every year.  For example, if you have an apartment renting for $1000 per month, then you might assume that you will be receiving $12,000 per year in rent checks.  This only works if you are able to keep your existing tenants in these units for very long periods of time.

Every time a renter vacates, you lose time and money.  The property management firm will first have to market the empty apartment to the general public, the applying tenants will have to become qualified, and then a period of time will have to be given before the renters can move in.  Tenants rarely walk into the clubhouse, sign a lease, and move in the same day. The highest rated property management companies in Milwaukee will have the best retention rates.  Always ask for proof and documentation of other properties that are similar to yours.

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