9 Questions to ask a Rental Property Manager

Property Management Blog.jpg

Your wondering if you should turn your property into a Vacation Rental but unsure what it entails. Your asking questions like “Will it be a burden?” “Will it make me more money?” “Could I buy a vacation home and rent it when I’m not there?” All great questions, and be sure to ask your potential Rental Property Manager the following questions as well before committing:

What Services are Included in your management fee’s?

When looking for a property manager, you’ll begin to find that there are many types of manager. I’ve broken down the different types of managers you’ll most likely find

Just Marketing These vacation rental managers will handle your listing across multiple websites, and that’s it. The management fee is typically the lowest and this is a good option if you don’t want to worry about Marketing and communicating with guest before and after a guests stay :)

Marketing & 3rd party maintenance and cleaning Some property managers will handle the marketing and bookings, and refer maintenance companies they work with. Often, these managers will handle the communication with the maintenance companies, so you won’t have to. 

Full-Service - A full-service property manager will handle everything required to run a well-performing vacation rental. This includes:

  • Photography, optimized listings, and home marketing 

  • Managing guests from booking to check out, including inquiries, guest screening, and handling any complaints

  • Responding to and generating guest reviews

  • Scheduling preventative maintenance and home inspections, and responding to guest emergencies

  • Revenue management and dynamic pricing strategies

+++ Ask to see a monthly statement and look at ALL fee’s. In addition to commission, we’ve seen maintenance visit fees, guest supply fee’s, tax payment fees, marketing fees, credit card fee’s. The fees might make sense, but we encourage all owners to understand them and know what they are paying.

How do you Create a Listing?

One of the most important aspects of marketing your property is creating a professional-looking listing.  Ask your property manager if he or she hired a professional photographer to display your property in the best possible way - this can make or break your listing!

How Will you Price my Home?

Ask what pricing strategies they’ll use to achieve a balance between high revenue, low wear and tear, and personal use. What is their strategy for initial pricing and how this evolves into a longer-term, ongoing pricing strategy? How does the property manager price high and low season? Have they looked at the competition? Have the manager show you other properties in the area and how your property compares.

How Will you Clean and Inspect my Home?

It goes without saying that cleanliness and consistency are critical in your vacation home. To get more specific answers, try asking the following questions: 

How has your cleaning staff been trained?

Is the home inspected after it’s been cleaned, prior to a guest stay?

Do you deep- clean specific areas of the home?

What technology do you use to enhance the guest experience?

The average age of people booking vacation rentals are within 25-45 years of age. Ask what household technologies their properties have.

Are you available 24/7 and how quickly do you respond?

The websites that your home will be on will rate your home on different criteria. One of these is communication and response time. Based on how often you communicate when a message is sent, highly effects your position on the search pages, when guests are looking to book. Be sure to ask the vacation rental manager if they are available 24/7 and how quickly they respond to messages and who is answering the phone.

What is your average guest rating?

The ultimate goal in vacation rental management is happy guests.  Guests should be pleased with the booking process, ease of entry to the home, cleanliness of the home upon arrival, and their overall stay.  How does your property manager prove to you that your guests are satisfied?

What if I decide I want to work with a different Property Manager?

We believe property management companies should retain homeowners by providing great service and financial results, not by locking them into long-term agreements. Be sure to ask the property manager what their contract terms are.

Can I see some of your listings online?

Simple enough; one of the easiest ways to get a feel for a property manager is to find out which of their rental properties are listed on major rental sites, and look up the quality of the listings, how many bookings they’ve received, and what kind of reviews they get.