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Increase Rental Returns with 5 Property Management Tips | Real Estate Blog – Niche Portfolio

Monday, October 22, 2012

Residential property management is investment over the long term. Experienced property managers in Sydney and other major cities won’t hesitate to tell you that the key to great property management is tenant choice not high valuation.

The steep rental prices we’ve been seeing across the range of Sydney rental properties are bearing benefits for property investors across Australia, but the question on every residential property manager’s lips—how long can the bubble last?

Like any typical investment, the choices made while managing property can make or break your investment. In residential property management, this make or break balance rests with tenant choice.

Great tenants make property management in Sydney a breeze; uninterrupted rental flow, property kept in top condition, pleasant owner/tenant relationship. As an investor this means that; you don’t lose out on weeks of rent, your investment returns will not be put back into fixing damaged property, and, negotiations will be free of hostility and parting will be on good terms for both parties. 

High occupancy rates throughout Sydney and other metro areas have seen tenants competing for rental properties, but given a shift in the market the opposite could just as easily be the norm in just a few years time.

So, how do you attract the right kind of tenant, and, for an extended period of time?

  1. Don’t skip on the basics.

Treat it like a job interview. Be specific about tenant requirements (e.g. non-smoker, student, etc.) Though obvious to most residential property managers, this is a point that seems to skip over the heads of most landlords.

Ignore first instincts that tell you to broaden the search for candidates, and focus on narrowing the list to a few who ticks all the boxes. Have your meet and greets. Remember good property management is about finding the right tenant not the most. Second, check their references. It’s always better to be safe than sorry, make sure all the facts on the application check out before giving the okay to move in.

  1. Keep the relationship professional

Make the division of roles and expectations in the tenancy arrangement clear from the start. Clear communication is another well known but badly practiced area of residential property management. Succeeding at this means finding the balance between detachment and attachment .

The tenant landlord relationship can be friendly but should not be confused for friendship.

  1. Stay on top of the market

Be business minded and track changes in the market when managing residential property. Pricing should be consistent and fair. Smart residential property managers in Sydney should be aware of the downward shifts in the market as well as the upward ones, making changes to rent accordingly.

Increasing rent gradually will help tenants ease into rises while helping you eat awary at your own mortage responsibilities. All the same, be wary of losing a great tenant by overvaluing the rent through poor market readings.

  1. Give and take with maintenance

Check the property regularly in planned intervals and where possible conduct all maintenance before it becomes absolutely necessary to do so. This residential property management tip deals with providing an appropriate level of care to tenants with the expectation that this gesture will be returned in kind.

On its own careful maintenance of property can easily boost asking price, eating out of profits but providing short term returns on your investment into tenant care, this is a good option for those looking to attract good tenants. Combined with a thankful tenant however, a little property maintenance can go a long way for landlords looking for long term tenants.

Steady tenant/landlord relationships are hard to sustain over long periods, but maintenance can be a good excuse to check up on the property without intruding while also showing an appropriate duty of care to tenants.

  1. When in doubt, seek professional advice

Residential property management is no walk in the park. Whether it’s your first time managing residential property or if you’ve simply got too many properties to manage, contacting professional property management services in Sydney (or the like) is the best option for those stuck for whatever reason.

Property is usually the largest investment most people will make in their lifetime and 'winging it' on that kind of investment is ill advised. When in doubt, seek professional residential property managers to help solve the problems you face.

Shop around, find the right kind of property manager to fit your needs and be picky because not all the advice out there is the right decision.  

All in all, hope that’s cleared the air on what we think tips the balance on residential property management—try a few out and see if you notice a difference on your returns.