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Old 04-20-2009, 10:05 PM
djw djw started this thread
 
951 posts, read 2,578,856 times
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I may be in the market to rent my out my property. Would love to get some recs from owners or renters on management companies you've used here in San Antonio and been pleased with. Please DM any specific company info per TOS.

Also, as owners/renters what has been the up and down side of using a management company? Not looking for consumer complaints, just want to know what I need to look out for!

And, if you're a home owner that's rented without a management company...how'd that go? I'll be out of the area so that is a major consideration.

Thanks!
~djw
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Old 04-20-2009, 10:13 PM
 
330 posts, read 1,238,371 times
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I rent out my former residence through a rental management company. They've gone well above and beyond what I expected and I highly, highly recommend them. I'll DM you their info.

I originally rented out my place on my own. It wasn't a bad experience, primarily because I lucked out and had a good tenant. There are plenty of potential pitfalls to renting out on your own, but one that's often overlooked is that it's actually kind of hard to find renters if you're not experienced and don't know where to look. I posted rental ads on Craigslist, listed it on all sorts of internet sites, and even used the San Antonio Express, but it was hard to find truly interested renters. I eventually found one of course, but before and after that, I had a LOT of unoccupied time and would've been much better off if I'd paid the 10% fee and had a company taking care of things for me.

The major upside to using a company is they take care of EVERYTHING. I do absolutely nothing now, other than get the occasional phone call where they say "Hey Drzy, blah blah. Is that okay with you?" or "Hey Drzy, blah blah blah, what would you like to do." They check out the property every month. They take care of repairs. They handle payment. They mail you your tax forms (doing the 2008 rental portion of my taxes was a giant pain in the ace).

The downside is the 10% fee. That's really it, in my experience. But it's a fee that's well, well worth it.
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Old 04-20-2009, 10:20 PM
 
Location: Las Vegas
71 posts, read 231,463 times
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I agree with Drzy. I live in Las Vegas and am currently renting out our own property. My last tenant was not so great but my current tenant is wonderful. Renting it out yourself is doable but it can be hard to find a great tenant. If you are going to be out of the area I would definitely recommend using a property management company. They are experienced, deal with properties on a day to day basis, and they know all the ins and outs. If you choose to do it on your own, I recommend being a strict landlord, if payment is not made by the due date, then immediately send the pay or quit letter (if that is applicable in SA), if you let the tenant go a little late then they will definitely take advantage and will not be able to catch up, and yes, I learned the hard way

Good luck!
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Old 04-21-2009, 08:55 AM
 
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I currently own a house in VA and its with a property management company. It is 100% worth having someone in the local area to be able to take care of things!

I know this from personal experience. When we moved from VA (military) we were unable to sell the house. Some acquiantenances of ours...I wouldn't call them "friends" but we knew them fairly well because they were best friends with our next door neighbors, whom we adored. A few months after we moved (and the house was vacant...we had been opposed to renting it out...determined to sell it) they asked if we would consider renting to them. These people (when we knew them) were really, really well off. He was a mortgage broker during the housing boom and made a ton of money. They lived in an $850,000 home. When the market turned they decided they wanted to downsize their home and rent from us for a while in the interim. Based what we knew about them and the fact we "knew" them we decided to go ahead and rent to them. In our opinion, they were good people, had taken a hit by the economy...just as we had been in our inability to sell...and the the rent on our house would be a fraction of what they were paying for their house. We figured they'd be helping us with the mortgage payment and they'd be helped in their downsize effort. In hindsight, we cared much too much about their situation and had way too much compassion for them.

It turned out to be a NIGHTMARE!!! They couldn't pay. We floated them every month and were always told 'the check's in the mail' (we were in Kansas at the time). When the check finally came, it would bounce. It was terrible. Then, one time when they had caught up on their rent, the refrigerator broke, etc. Since we didn't really trust them at this point to handle buying a refrigerator on their own and us repaying them, I had to fascilitate buying a fridge online from Sears and having it delivered. It would have been so, soooo much easier if we had property management involved.

Long(er) story short, we finally asked them to leave after about 5 months and thankfully, they did without hassle. We were suckers and allowed them to use their deposit as their last months rent. (We continued to feel bad for their situation.) We expected they would have left the house in the way they found it....nope. So we were out of pocked for repairs and such.

After that situation, we hired a property management company and they found new renters... like was posted above, we rarely hear from them other than the occassional thing breaking, etc. They automatically deposit the rent payment each month. Its great. (AND I say its great.... even though we go out of pocked over $700 per month with what receive in rent, less the property management fee compared to what our mortgage is... yes $700 per month... and it is soo worth it!!!)
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Old 04-21-2009, 09:00 AM
 
165 posts, read 419,294 times
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I will send you a DM with a retired Air Force friend we know's infomation... great guy! Not sure what side of town you live on but his office is located in Schertz...but I believe him and his people work all over San Antonio.
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Old 04-21-2009, 12:07 PM
djw djw started this thread
 
951 posts, read 2,578,856 times
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Thanks for the recs, and the advice!

So, I should make sure the management folks will handle all repairs. What about kicking the tennants out and making the tennants pay for repairs due to their neglect, does the management company handle that as well? Who decides what the owner (me) pays for and what the renter pays for?

Any San Antonio renters have experiences to share from that side of the rent check?
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Old 04-21-2009, 03:37 PM
 
165 posts, read 419,294 times
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I current rent here in SA... from a very large property management company. They used the standard "Texas Association of Realtors, Residential Lease." Here is a link to what it looks like: http://www.austinlandlord.com/ResidentialLease.pdf (broken link) (disclaimer: there is specific language that says you cannot use this lease unless you are a Realtor so this link is obviously informational only.) If you go through a Realtor, I assume you will use this Lease...read it through.

Regarding the repairs, my current lease does not provide that I make any of the repairs, however, my lease in Kansas said I was responsible for the first $50. You/your PM will decide the terms you offer your house for.

If you had to kick someone out and make the tenants pay for damages, etc.... that's probably going to involve a lawyer...your

Realtor may have suggestions on who to go with but that's a whole other headache I hope you never encounter.

Regarding repairs....with my PM in VA, if there are repair costs during a month, my PM pays the costs and then deducts whatever the cost from that month's rent payment to me. And he gives me a spreadsheet of exactly what moneys have gone where.

Now that I have tenants in my VA house who like to pay their rent its not so bad. Yeah, we have costs associated every once in a while (in addition to the $700/mo.) but its really not that bad. The KEY is getting tenants in there who do like to pay their rent. Easier said than done, sadly.

Something we do for my house in VA, the rent is $1600 but if the tenant pays on or before the 1st of the month, they get a $50 discount off the rent. The tenants like that option, and it works for us because they usually pay by (or on) the first.
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