1. Do you use an owners’ manual?

The property management firm should have a guide on how their business is operated and what the customer can expect in certain situations.
In the world of business, clean expectations on both ends are needed to be successful. The owner of the investment property and the apartment manager must be on the same page for daily operations and how to run the property. Do not assume anything. This can be a costly mistake.

Some things should be addressed in this manual including:

  • When do I get paid?
  • How often will I get statements?
  • How do you handle late rent?
  • What are the dates when eviction notices are sent out?
  • How often will you check on the property?
  • How do the management handle and document expenses?

When this information is available, you will know how the manager works. There are some situations that you may think can be handled differently but this is a guide to the procedures and operations from your property manager.

2. How are you going to communicate with the owner?

You will need to communicate with the property manager. You should find out how they communicate and find a way that works for the both of you. There should be some rules for regular meetings.
Some owners think that is they are not bothered everything is running smoothly. You need to talk this over with the property manager.

Some suggestions:

Agree on the time of phone calls and how often they will take place. For example, you may only need one phone call a month to go over finances. For a single home, you may only need to speak to the manager quarterly.
You should also agree on email communication. You need to state if you want to be notified of all the operations or important things.

3. How will you conduct the initial property inspection?

Your property manager is going to want to inspect the property. They should know the property well, and you can assist with this. Your manager should have a file on all the work that was done to the property and other important information. There are some things that should be included in this file:

  • Professional pictures of your property
  • Documents on the conditions in any common areas
  • Documentation of the condition of the roof and windows
  • Serial number and age of the hot water tanks
  • Any detail on security systems
  • Keys for all of the doors
  • Details on water shut off
  • Information on any elevators
  • Pool maintenance information
  • Sources of heat that is used
  • Information on the air conditioning systems

If all of this information is documents, it can be helpful on both ends. If you have just purchased the property, you should include the inspection report in this file.

4. How will you meet and select tenants?

This is one of the most important things for the property manager. They should meet each of the tenants. This will help build a relationship with them. In addition to meeting the residents, they should send out an introduction letter and include how to get a hold of the property manager and what to expect from them.

5. What kind of software programs do you use? What are you able to provide owners?

If you are working with a professional company, you can expect access to an internet portal that will have information about your property. The manager should provide you with the login information for your account, and they should show you how to use this portal. You can have access to your property as well as financial information.

You are more than likely going to use the portal rather than speaking directly to the property manager. This is important for your overall business.

When looking to hire a property manager, it is important to ask them questions to get a feel for how they work and if they are a good fit for your property. Most of this information is often overlooked. Now that you know what to ask a property manager it is time to go out and find the right one to manage your property.

In Metro Vancouver, you need a great property manager to manage your properties. Don’t fret to look at the property manager pros at Ascent Property Management here. They’re local, and they’re damn good at their job!:


Ascent Real Estate Management
2176 Willingdon Ave, Burnaby, BC V5C 5Z9
(604) 431-1800
www.ascentpropertymanagement.com