Your Leasing Agent or Broker plays a crucial role in the success of your rental. How well they perform their job can make a big difference in your profitability and longevity in the market. Whether you prefer to work with an individual or a company, it’s very important to choose your listing agency with care.
Consider these tips on how to find the best one for you:
- Ask for referrals from various sourcesGet information from people who have first-hand experience on working with a leasing agency. Friends with investment properties or owners of rentals in your area may also provide you with some options.
- Do an online searchThe internet is a good source of information on leasing agency who serve your area. Check websites that provide a list of tenant placement agency in specific locations. Some of the names you find may even be among the referrals you received. This gives you a good chance to find out more about them.
- Look into reviews and ratingsCheck with the local Better Business Bureau and look into online reviews to get an idea on how a property leasing agency works, and to see if there had been complaints against them. Find out if they are licensed through the state’s Real Estate Commission.
- Research on their current workCheck out the leasing agency listings and advertisements to see how they market a property. Are the ads and listings of good quality? Where and how do they advertise? Do they have a website, and if so, does the website provide useful information and leave a good impression?Visit the properties they listed and check the conditions. If possible, talk to a few tenants to get a feel of how satisfied they are with the work of their leasing agent.
- Interview potential agentsShortlist potential agents based on your research then arrange for an interview with each one. A face-to-face meeting would be ideal. The interview will give you the best chance of determining who fits your needs and preferences the most.
Some of the questions to ask in the interview include:
- Where and how do they advertise vacant homes or apartments?
- How many vacancies do they have?
- What type of property do they work on the most?
- What are their fees? Ideally, fees should be based on collected rent rather than due rent.
- How do they determine rental rate?
- What services are included in their management fee? Are they charging extra for services like eviction or filling vacancies?
- How will they handle the building funds and deposits from tenants?
- How and when will they send rental payments to you?
- How do they handle maintenance?
- Do they have their own repair and maintenance contractors? Do they do some of the work themselves?
- What is their policy on termination of services?
- How will you communicate?
- Examine their tenant lease agreementLeasing Agents often have a standard draft for tenant lease agreements. Make sure important and sensitive issues are covered in the agreement, including:
- Late rents
- The responsibility of the tenant and manager in unit and building maintenance
- Breaking the lease
- Security deposits
Finding the right leasing agent is not easy, but doing due diligence now can save you from bigger problems down the road.
If you need help in filling a vacancy or finding the qualified tenants for you, call Ray Amouzandeh of TARGA Residential Brokerage at 415-494-7009, or send him a message here.