If you’re reading this, it probably means you took heed of the popular financial advice to invest in real estate. Great move! Real estate can be a lucrative investment as long as you handle it the right way.
Many homeowners get into the income property game by renting out their vacation home when they aren’t using it. If that home is in a hot area like South Florida, you could be raking in the cash before you know it.
There’s one problem, though: renting a vacation home is more hands-on than most people realize. You have to respond to inquiries, manage a schedule, process payments, and that’s just the booking process. Don’t forget about preparing the home for each renter and cleaning up after they leave.
The good news is that hiring a property manager can take those tasks off your plate. Here’s how:
The Benefits of Hiring a Property Manager for Your Rental Vacation Home
Hiring a property manager can free up your time while also adding to your profits. Check out these benefits they can offer:
1. No More Hounding Renters for Payment
Cash flow is vital when you have a mortgage and maintenance costs to pay. Sometimes collecting payment is harder than it sounds. This is even more of a hassle if you let renters pay their fees in a few installments.
Property managers are prepared for the hassle of payment collection. They also have systems in place to deal with it in a more efficient way. Chances are that it’ll take them less time than it would take you.
2. Knowledge of the Local Market
A rental property is like any other business: you have to know the local market to do well. Market research informs your pricing, your amenities, and more.
When you hire a property manager near your vacation home, they already have this knowledge. They can advise you about your price points and the amenities that will make you competitive in the area.
3. Marketing Insight
In that same vein, property managers know how to market your property based on the area. They know where vacationers look when they want to rent in South Florida, and they know how to give your listing visibility.
Part of the problem with marketing a vacation home is that it’s time-consuming. There are so many sites where you want to list your property, and they each require individual attention. A property manager can take the task off your hands.
4. Screening for Long-Term Tenants
If you’re considering a rental for long-term tenants, you need to screen them first. The screening process for tenants is a time-consuming one if you want to make sure you’re getting good renters.
A property manager knows what to look for and can manage the vetting process for you. They already know how to pull credit reports, check court and criminal records, interview references, and more. They also know the red flags that signal a poor tenant.
5. Attentive Financial Tracking
Keeping strict financial records is vital for an income property. It helps you track your profits, identify unneeded expenses, and follow tax laws.
Proper financial tracking can be a challenge if you’re tight on time. There’s also a fear that you’ll miss valuable information which can have serious consequences. A property manager already knows how the handle these finances. A reputable one will also have financial software and tools to do the job well.
6. Legal Knowledge
There are legal requirements for any type of business agreement, and there are strict laws about tenants and landlords. This also applies to short-term rentals like vacation homes.
Keeping up with these laws in your practices and your documents can be a challenge.
If you hire a property manager, though, they already have this information and know how to keep you in the clear. Keep in mind that these laws are different in each state, so hire a property manager who’s near your vacation home.
If you’re like many people, you live hours away from your vacation home. So what do you do if a renter calls you with an emergency?
If you have a property manager nearby, you don’t have this concern. They’re available when you need them so they can handle emergencies. They can also deal with non-emergent convenience issues, like bringing guests extra towels or toiletries.
8. Assistance with Repairs and Renovations
Like any building, your vacation home will need repairs and maintenance from time to time. If you’re hours away, it’s hard to find reputable contractors and keep an eye on their work.
A property manager, on the other hand, offers a distinct advantage. As a local professional in the industry, they know the which contractors will do the job well for a fair price. They’re also available to drop by and make sure the work is proceeding as promised.
Property managers also tend to develop professional relationships with local contractors. They might be able to get you a better deal, or the contractor may be more motivated toward an on-time completion.
9. Prompt Turnover and Inspection
When it comes to your bottom line, this is the most beneficial advantage of a property manager. Let’s say you live hours away from your vacation home. When a renter leaves, you need enough time to get to the property, inspect it, clean it, and prepare it before the next renter arrives.
If you have a full-time job, chances are that you can only handle this task on weekends. That means if a renter leaves on a Monday, you have to wait a week before re-renting it.
A property manager, on the other hand, can facilitate a fast turnaround. If a renter leaves in the morning, they can turn the property around for an afternoon rental on the same day. This could double your income from the property in some cases.
How to Hire a Property Manager for Your Rental Vacation Home
At this point, it’s clear that a hiring a property manager can give you financial and time-saving benefits. By letting someone else manage the logistics, you can free yourself to invest in more properties if choose. Talk about making money with minimal effort!
To take the next steps or find out more about hiring a property manager, reach out to our property management experts.