Why Property Management Companies in Fayetteville, NC Are Bad
As a property management company in Fayetteville, NC, we thought long and hard about whether to write this blog.
The concern, primarily, was what would our Fayetteville residential property management company peers in the industry think.
Would we be viewed as traitors?
Would there be a backlash and a string of hate emails and Google reviews?
Would we be ostracized to live in our own tiny bubble shunned by the rest of the property managers in Fayetteville, NC?
After careful consideration, we came up with one conclusion:
We don’t care.
We know as a landlord, you want to find property management companies in Fayetteville, NC to help you manage your property.
The funny thing about any profession, and any business, is that the ones who will complain about your publishing accurate facts, are the ones most guilty of some of those transgressions.
Think about it, it’s most certainly true. The facts and circumstances speak for themselves.
Even more so, the landlords and property investors are the ones who are speaking.
Perhaps they have their heads in the sand, or sitting on a throne believing they can do no harm.
We don’t know, but what we do know is for change to happen, you have to bring some things from behind the curtain.
Enough about that, let’s get into the meat of the discussion. We have come up with 8 things property management companies do to upset property owners.
Bad Property Management Company in Fayetteville, NC Practice 1: Unresponsive to Property Owners
This is, by far, one of the biggest complaints of landlords and property investors. Property management companies in Fayetteville simply don’t return phone calls in a timely manner.
It’s as if the landlord on hold listening to elevator music.
The owner, if they want a response, is left with no choice but to keep calling, and keep trying, to get in contact with their property management company.
Is this any way to treat a client?
And please remind us, who is the client of the property management company, and who is the agent?
Bad Property Management Company Practice 2: Not Knowing the Law Like the Back of Their Hand
Liability is the one thing a landlord wants to avoid.
Much is said about tenants not paying rent and the financial impact it will have on landlords, but a lawsuit can end up bankrupting a landlord.
And a discrimination lawsuit is one of the biggest ways to end up bankrupt.
It is frustrating to hear landlords tell tales of how their former property managers failed to follow the law, and the landlord ended up in hot water.
If you hire a property management company in Fayetteville, it is not your job to know all the property management topics that can be covered. This is why you hire a company to look after your asset
Equally as frustrating is the fact that property managers don’t keep up to date on changes in the law.
I can’t tell you how many debates we have had with ill informed Fayetteville property managers about the law, and they swear up and down they are right.
Excuse me Mr. Property Manager, your complete ignorance of the law doesn’t trump our CEO’s law degree. . . .no he didn’t stay at a Holiday Inn last night (If you are old enough you will get the joke).
A property manager’s lack of understanding of the law is, by far, one of the biggest liabilities for a property owner.
At Linchpin Property Management, we are fortunate to have a CEO who is a retired military attorney, and licensed North Carolina lawyer, so you know you will be well protected.
Bad Property Management Companies in Fayetteville, NC Practice 3: Not Taking Care of Tenants
We get it. The property owner is the client of the property management company. As a result, the property management company’s duty of loyalty, and fiduciary duty is to the landlord.
But. . . . Do you know what the tenant is? The tenant is the customer.
Whose customer? Not the property management company’s customer.
The tenant is the landlord’s customer.
The property management company is the conduit to make the customer happy.
What this means is that property management companies must treat the tenant with respect and dignity. The same way Mr. Jones used to great everyone in his butcher shop back in the day. Even though Mrs. Johnson was a pain in the butt, Mr. Jones took care of her, and Mrs. Johnson kept coming back.
It is important to understand that the tenant and the landlord are equal stakeholders in the success of the landlord’s investment. While they are separate and distinct parts, the best property management companies know how to serve both sides.
A lack of response to tenant concerns does nothing more than make the tenant bitter, want to vacate the property, or not pay rent. Worse case scenario, the tenant’s complaints may be valid, and the landlord ends up in court for something they may not have had knowledge about (see point #2 above).
A good property management company, always respond promptly to the landlord’s tenants.
A good property management company knows how to communicate with tenants.
We are not saying that the tenant is always right.
Far from it.
What we are saying is that you need to understand that the tenant is a stakeholder, and when the tenant decides to remove themselves from the equation all parties suffer. When a tenant is not in place, the landlord’s bottom line is impacted.
Bad Property Management Company Practice 4: Lack of Professionalism
Professionalism in property management starts with the overall leadership.
It’s a top down problem.
When the leadership conducts themselves unprofessionally, or deals with clients unprofessionally, the troops will follow.
What this means is that Fayetteville property managers need to be professional at all times, in all of their dealings.
But professionalism is not only limited to the property management company’s interactions with landlords and tenants.
It also includes interactions with other real estate professionals, professional service vendors, the mailman, the garbage collector, and anyone else the property managers encounter personally and professionally.
The Fayetteville property management company’s communications on the phone, in correspondence, and online interactions should also be professional.
Telling a tenant if they don’t like it they can move, or “firing” a landlord is not the answer to the problem.
A professional property management company, must look deeper.
Bad Property Management Company Practice 5: Inability to Retain Talent
Landlords are increasingly annoyed with Fayetteville property management companies when it appears as if they have a revolving door of property managers.
How frustrating is it for a landlord to deal with Property Manager 1 in January, call back in March, and Property Manager 2 is managing their property, and then in August, Property Manager 3 is at the helm.
Think about it.
The landlord has an asset worth hundreds of thousands of dollars in their property management company’s hands, and the landlord has to deal with different property managers constantly.
Additionally, the landlord is paying a high price and cost for property management services to the property management company.
But, let us guess.
It’s the property manager’s fault.
They couldn’t handle the pressure of the job.
No Carl, it’s your fault. You are the boss.
The property management company in Fayetteville has to look internally. What is happening at the company to make property managers leave.
The bad Fayetteville, NC property management company must do a little soul searching, because the landlord doesn’t want to hear that excuse at all.
More than likely it is due, in large part, to numbers 6 and 7 below.
Bad Property Management Company Practice 6: Not Compensating Property Managers Fairly for the Work Performed
Landlord’s would be shocked to learn the compensation structure for most property managers in Fayetteville, NC.
In fact, the vast majority of them are severely underpaid, in relation to the number of assets they manage.
The result for a landlord is that their arguably largest investment, is left in the hands of someone who doesn’t feel they are paid enough, and not treated with the respect they deserve.
Think about the math for a second.
Some property managers manage in excess of 100 properties. Let’s just say 100 for arguments sake.
Let’s look at an average value of the homes in the property manager’s portfolio of $125,000 (which is extremely low)
Now, if we multiply those numbers together, we end up with a $12,500,000 asset management portfolio that the property manager controls.
If we dig a little further, let’s say the average property management fee across all of those properties is $125 (again, a low estimate)
This means the property manager is generating $150,000 a year for the property management business. Their pay is probably somewhere between $25,000-$30,000 a year.
Do you see what we are getting at?
The landlord is the one that suffers because, the property manager is probably spending more time looking for other jobs, is disgruntled at work, and the asset management function of their job is an afterthought.
What do you think happens to the value of the landlord’s asset?
Do you think the property manager has any incentive to increase the value of your asset?
Do they have an incentive to boost your rental value?
Or even maintain the value?
Bad Property Management Company Practice 7: Property Management Companies Overwork Their Managers
As we stated in point 6, some property managers manage a 100 property asset portfolio. What this leads to is some things many obligations relevant to the property manager’s fiduciary duties are falling through the cracks.
Inspections more than likely aren’t being conducted in a timely manner.
And we aren’t just referring to the move-in and move-out inspections.
Tenant’s are being neglected.
And the landlord is left with the headache of an overworked property manager who is managing the landlord’s asset worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, with enormous growth potential.
No other financial investment management company does this.
And yes, property management is financial asset management.
Further, despite arguments to the contrary, no electronic systemization is an adequate substitute.
We have our process nailed down and Linchpin Property Management. Our systems have systems. Every possible automation you could think of.
That doesn’t mean we pile on more properties on our managers.
It means our managers can have a good quality of life, and fulfill their fiduciary duty to our landlords.
Bad Property Management Company Practice 8: Locks Landlords Into Contracts
Ok, so here’s the deal. Our CEO is a lawyer, and could write a contract that forces the landlord to sell their first born.
You know why?
Because he believes long-term contracts serve no useful purpose.
Instead of sitting back and collecting fees for subpar work, and the landlord having little to no recourse. We believe that the obligation should be based on service, not a contract.
In other words, if either party is unhappy, you fix it.
Or you let them go.
Contracts do little more than allow property management companies to become lazy, and provide lackluster service.
Then are in shock and awe when the landlord wants to walk away.
Final Thoughts on Bad Fayetteville Property Managers
We know the rant was long, but it was necessary.
Our goal at Linchpin Property Management is to provide a high degree of quality service to our property owners.
We can only hope we have inspired other property management companies to move towards greatness.
The Team at Linchpin Property Management.