We have found over the years you get what you pay for. Also you cannot assume that a specific service will be provided unless it was specifically discussed. It must be included in the contract. Too many people leave their homes for the weekend or a week with out proper over site. They end up with problems with their insurance companies, because they thought that the cost of property management was just too expensive. If you place yourself in the shoes of a property management firm for a few minutes, you will quickly see that the cost to run a company and to visit your home on a regular basis can be expensive.
Affordable Property Management
Types of Property Management Situations
There are many different types of property management situations to consider. The one we will look at today is the consumer who will be away for a month and needs someone to check on his or her vacant house once every 3 or 4 days. This time frame was chosen because that is typically what insurance companies require, however it does vary by company and location and circumstances, so check with your home insurance company before you agree to a property management contract.
What Should a Property Management Firm Do
Basically you need some one to collect flyers or mail items at the front step, check that the security of the home has not been compromised, check that the furnace is working during colder months and that there are no water problems of any kind. You may also get them to water a few plants or add extra services such as lawn care or snow removal. Basically the property management employee should be in and out of your home in less than 15 minutes including the time it takes to fill in a brief report and also send an email confirming his or her visit and the status.
Travel time is an issue that must also be considered. We are assuming that it will take an average of 15 minutes to get to your location. Anything more than that is considered extra costs. The price of gas and the wear and tear on a car must also be considered. Let’s assume 10 miles of driving and an average cost of $.50 cents per mile. It may vary in your location.
So now before any profit is considered you have 30 minutes of someone’s time at whatever rate is paid and a minimum of $5 for car mileage. Add to this profit for the company that runs the business, overhead and taxes and you will be fortunate to find someone who will check on your home for less than $30 a visit! Sounds expensive, but there is the cost at reasonable rates and times. If you add requested services, that take a lot of time, look for increased expenses to be added.
Decision Time re Affordable Property Management
Many people will shy away from charges like these and will take a chance and not have their home checked or will have friends or neighbors check the home. As long as you have agreement on what is to be done, and it is written down and you can depend on the person or persons to perform the checks then you should be safe. Remember you are paying something in the order of $30 a visit to make sure that your home which is worth hundreds of thousands of dollars is monitored and action will be taken if there is break in or damage while you are away!