Property management services can make life infinitely easier for both landlords and tenants renting in New Zealand. Let us look at four key pros of property management, focusing on the value and expertise professional property managers bring to the rental industry.
Property management companies employ professionals
As industry professionals, property management companies understand just exactly what’s expected by law of both landlords and their tenants. They are utilised by landlords to manage their investment properties, find suitable tenants, keep landlords compliant with industry regulations and law, and deal with all maintenance issues. As such they have a higher level of accountability and a more public-facing profile than independent landlords.
It’s in the best interest of property managers (PMs) to represent the best interests of both tenants and landlords. Their goal is to find responsible tenants and avoid tenant turnover, so as to reduce tenanting-related costs for landlords. In turn they want to take care of any issues the tenants have to uphold their good reputation and keep the tenants in the home as long as possible.
Property Management Companies can be more accountable than independent landlords because:
- They have a brand and reputation to protect and uphold.
- They employ staff, for whom property management is their livelihood (it’s not a passive income).
- Unlawful behaviour by PMs risks bad publicity and in extreme cases loss of real estate licence.
- In the case of First Avenue Property, we’ve recently been through a government audit to ensure we have been complying with Residential Tenancies Act law. The results were pleasing and have given our landlords the confidence they deserve when using our property management services.
Good property managers follow tried and proven processes for better transparency
Because reputable property managers deal with rent rolls made up of multiple properties, we are highly experienced in the act of listing rental properties and starting and ending tenancy agreements. We follow finely tuned, tried and true processes to make these events smoother and provide greater transparency for all parties.
This means property managers:
- Provide a comprehensive ingoing report with photos and notes to record the property condition when tenancy begins — protecting the tenant’s bond when damage occurs.
- Ensure all bonds are lodged with The Department of Building and Housing with written confirmation provided when bond payment is received.
- Keep a rent ledger for each property on their rent roll, recording all the rent payments tenants make during their tenancies. Both landlords and tenants can ask to see this at any time.
- Deal with all tenant enquiries about their tenancy and property during and after their tenancy ends.
- Help facilitate the return of bond payments in a timely manner (here are tips to help tenants get their entire bond back, quickly).
Professional responses to maintenance issues
When it comes to maintenance issues, management is the operative word in the phrase property management. Unlike some private landlords who will drag their heels when a maintenance issues arises; property managers take a proactive approach and have longstanding relationships with reliable tradespeople who tenants can count on.
Rather than potentially having to continually hassle their private landlords to have maintenance issues seen to, tenants who deal with property managers have these issues resolved in a timely fashion.
If something’s wrong with a property, tenants can be confident their PM will address it promptly — they’re in fact legally required to address issues within a 14-day period.
We are experienced in rental property legislation
Good property managers are knowledgeable in all aspects of rental property legislation. We know the Residential Tenancies Act and how it affects the interested parties (landlords and tenants), inside out.
This serves landlords and tenants equally well. We help inform tenants about their rights, so they know where they stand around any given issue with their dwelling. We keep our landlords informed about their responsibilities to their tenants to help prevent tenants having to deal with disputes by making an application to the Tenancy Tribunal themselves.
Throughout any disputes, good property managers can easily be contacted or visited by tenants and landlords, helping them air their concerns and potentially reach a resolution before a Tribunal application needs to be made.
First Avenue Property represents our landlords at the Tenancy Tribunal at no cost. We back ourselves, our systems and process such that Tribunal representation is a small portion of our work.
What do property managers actually do?
We hope these points have helped you understand the value to be had in using property management services in Christchurch. Drop us a line at First Avenue Property to speak to us about our services, or read more about what property managers actually do.
Image: ‘‘Christchurch!’, New Zealand, Christchurch, Summit Road’ by Chris Ford via CC BY-NC 2.0.