As you learned from the first blog in our series on how to find a residential property manager, using a professional who belongs to the National Association of Residential Property Managers (NARPM) is always a benefit. NARPM members are required to uphold a series of professional standards and ethics that will benefits landlords as well as tenants. We helped you narrow your search to three potential property managers in your area. Here is the next step:
Step Two: Conduct a Background Check on the Property Manager
Doing a background check is easy in the age of the Internet. With all of the social networking sites, online review sites and digital references all over the place, you can learn almost anything you need to with a simple Internet search.
Check the property manager’s rating with the Better Business Bureau.
If you go to the bureau’s website at www.bbb.org, you can search for a property management company that you have on your short list and see how they measure up. If they do not have a rating on the bureau’s website, it might simply be because they are too new. This might be a problem for you if you are looking for a property manager with several years of residential experience. As an example, here is Hoffman Realty’s BBB rating.
Do an Internet search.
Most people find it easy to Google a company, but you can use any browser function to get information on the property management companies you are considering. Type the full name of the company in the search box, as well as your location. For example, if Hoffman Realty is on your list of three potential property managers, you would search “Hoffman Realty, Tampa FL”.
Check out anything that your search returns.
You can read reviews from current and former clients on sites such as Google, Yahoo and Yelp. Most property managers will have testimonials from satisfied customers on their websites. By searching this way, you get to see the good and the bad reviews. Remember that there will always be a little bit of negativity. People who are angry or upset are almost always more likely to post their thoughts than people who are satisfied and happy. The important thing to notice is how a company responds to criticism and complaints. If a company does not care or fails to address a specific concern that is on the Internet for everyone to see, you might wonder about their responsiveness and attention.
Conducting a background search on your three options should be able to help you narrow your options down further. Based on what you find online, you can now cross one property manager off your list.
Be sure to check out our final blog in this series, where you can discover how to pick between the two residential property managers you have chosen.
Contact us or give us a call if we can answer any questions at (813) 875-7474.