So you’re interested in renting a home?
Finding the right home to rent can be a daunting task. School systems, bedrooms, bathrooms…the right combo is hard to find. When you find the perfect house, you want to jump on it and rent it before anyone else does.
Before you choose your home, we think it is important to consider WHO you are renting from.
All people who collect rent on a home aren’t the same. From single homeowners who are renting a home they can’t sell to large and small professional property managers; why would it make such a difference who you rent from?
Let me share with you 3 of the most important reasons it is in your best interest to rent from a professional property manager.
What happens with your security deposit. When you lease a home from a professional manager, we are required to keep your security deposit in a separate account that is FDIC insured.
That means at ALL times we have your actual cash in a bank account that we reconcile once per month. People who self manage aren’t required to do this. That means they can spend your security deposit and you have to hope they have the cash when it is time for you to move out.
This would also be true if the homeowner gets foreclosed on.
In this scenario, if you are renting from the person that owns the home, you more than likely will lose your deposit. Your security deposit is safe with a professional manager regardless of foreclosure.
In addition to this, professional managers are usually more objective when assessing a property when someone moves out of a house. This would include when it comes time to determine if a house has normal wear and tear or if certain items should be charged to the tenant.
In our experience homeowners can be more subjective because the house may have special sentimental value…it may have been a house they’ve lived in for years or that their kids grew up in during the special years. As a tenant, you want a property manager who is completely objective.
With a professional manager, maintenance items are taken care of quickly. Professional managers have relationships with people who perform maintenance on homes. It is our business to do so. gkhouses.com actually owns the maintenance company!
When you call a professional manager with a maintenance need, you never catch them off guard and send them to the phone book to find a solution to your problem . . . we simply call the vendor we already have in place.
Because a self managed homeowner doesn’t call a plumber or a heating and air contractor on a daily basis, they also don’t have the leverage to be first on the list to be taken care of quickly. Professional managers who send these vendors a lot of business get taken care of first.
Also think about what happens if you have a maintenance emergency and the owner is on vacation? A professional manager should have a 24/7 emergency line where you will be taken care of no matter the vacation schedule.
Fair housing laws don’t apply to single owner properties. Yep, can you believe that? You could actually lose your application fee and be denied based on skin color, sex or something else!
Professional managers are bound by all federal fair housing laws and will underwrite your application based on how good a tenant you will be and not something that doesn’t matter. Want to be treated fairly for sure, choose a professional manager.
We highly suggest you choose a property manager before you choose your home.
Once you get in the home (or even to get in the home) you will be treated better. Professional managers aren’t perfect, but playing the law of averages you will have a more consistent experience.
Matthew is the CEO of Evernest. He is a student of the book Good to Great and is passionate about building the best property management company on the planet (and maybe even the universe if Elon Musk will hurry up). You can usually find Matthew at the baseball field with his son, at a dance recital with his daughter, or at his favorite restaurant with his wife, when he’s not in the office. And if you can’t find him in any of those places, it probably means he’s traveling.