You could deal with property care yourself, but if you’re a multi-property owner or if the scope of maintenance is too much, it may be worth it to outsource your duties to a property care company. Not only will you be able to save time and money, but you’ll also be able to have peace of mind, knowing that your property is in more-than-capable hands.
What is Property Care or Maintenance?
In rental real estate, property maintenance refers to any preventive or reactive measure you take to keep a property fully functional or in tip-top condition. Property maintenance pertains to a wide range of duties, including exterior and interior maintenance, pest control, common area maintenance (in apartments, condominiums, etc.), inspections, and more.
Are Landlords Responsible for Property Care or Maintenance?
You may be wondering what your role is as the rental owner. In landlord-tenant laws, it’s written that landlords must maintain the property’s condition. The terms vary by state, but overall, landlords must make sure their tenants live in a habitable home. While you don’t have to do all maintenance-related tasks, you do have to make reasonable repairs to make sure your home is fit for occupancy.
Generally, as long as your rental is safe and sanitary, you should be safe from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). However, if you fail to perform maintenance, your tenants can withhold their rent, move out without penalty, or worse – take you to court.
This isn’t to say that tenants are free from responsibility. While the bulk of the responsibility rests on you, the landlord, your tenants still need to do their part. Tenants may still have some responsibility but only the bare minimum. And remember, if your tenants are to do some maintenance tasks, be sure to add a clause to the rental contract, otherwise, you can’t enforce them to care for the property.
Importance of Property Care Services
Why conduct maintenance, anyway? Below, we’ve rounded up the top reasons why property maintenance is non-negotiable:
- Eliminates the need for repairs and replacements. As counterintuitive as it seems, the failure to conduct property maintenance can cost you a lot of money. Sure, you’ll have to shell out some money to do maintenance, but at the end of the day, that’s better than spending on (costlier) repairs and replacements. Regularly checking HVACs, appliances, etc., can make sure those items stay in good working order. In that way, you won’t have to pay out of pocket for unexpected repairs and replacements.
- Reduce the risk of liability. A well-maintained property is a safe property. If you successfully perform maintenance, you can reduce the risk of onsite accidents, which means you’ll be safe from liability.
- Preserve your real estate investment’s value. In order to preserve your property’s value, you must maintain it. A property that’s poorly maintained (e.g. overgrown grass, untrimmed trees, chipped paint, etc.) will decrease in value over time. This means your rental rate will also be lower and you may not be able to sell your home at a profit.
- Part of your tenant retention strategy. Tenants expect to live in a well-maintained property for their whole tenancy. If you meet their expectations, they’ll continue to rent with you and won’t mind if you raise their rent. Plus, they’ll be more likely to tell other people about you (and that means more tenants!).
Why Hire a Property Care Services Company?
You may be able to maintain your rental if you have only one rental, but what if you have more? If that’s the case, you should consider partnering with a property care services company. Here’s why working with a third party to help with maintenance is one of the wisest decisions you can make:
1. It Saves You Time
As we’ve said, conducting maintenance by yourself can be time-consuming. That would be fine if maintenance was the only item on your to-do list, but as a landlord, you have an extensive list of duties. In addition, if you were to spend your whole day on maintenance, you wouldn’t have time to expand your portfolio. The logical solution would be to look for a company that can manage maintenance-related tasks for you, such as cleaning, gardening, and more.
2. It Saves You Money
Property maintenance companies have a vast network of vendors, which includes contractors, electricians, plumbers, etc., that can provide their services at a reasonable rate. The reason why vendors hired via a company are cheaper is that they “owe” the company. The company constantly provides them with work, so in return, they provide their services to the company’s clients at a lower rate. This means you can save money.
3. You Won’t Have to Worry About Maintenance
If you were to tackle maintenance on your own, you’d need to create a checklist and constantly make mental notes of what to do. However, if you hire a property maintenance company, you wouldn’t have to worry as they will deal with maintenance for you.
4. You Can Have Peace of Mind
Peace of mind is priceless. With a property management company by your side, you can rest easy, knowing that your property will be well taken care of by a team of professionals. Should something go wrong, you won’t have to worry about a thing – your property manager will already be on it. Or, if a tenant reports an issue that you can’t currently deal with, you don’t have to tweak your schedule as your team will do that for you.
5. You Can Ensure Quality
The problem with doing DIY maintenance is that you might unknowingly violate the building code. For example, if you fix the electricals yourself, your home may not pass future inspections. If you’re inexperienced, it would be better to leave maintenance and repairs to the people with the tools and know-how.
Running a Rental? You’ll Need More Than Just Maintenance
If you own or are planning to own a rental property, you’ll need more than property maintenance – you’ll also need property management. Fortunately, at companies such as Luxury Property Care, property care is already included in the standard management plan. When you work with us, for example, you can expect to work closely with a team who’ll do everything, from collecting rent to conducting maintenance. That’s what makes us the premier full-service property management firm in South Florida.