It’s only natural to want to understand what’s happening with your rental investment, and most property management companies will happily read the ledger with you, or explain why you have incurred certain expenses. There is a fine line between staying informed and wanting to take control of the management of your property, though. Just to make it clear, both attitudes are absolutely fine, yet they lead to different decisions when it comes to choosing or not choosing a professional property manager.
Most property management companies have clear procedures and timelines in place, and in order to optimize these processes, they are more likely to be less receptive toward adjusting their operations to your particular requests and needs. You’ll find, for example, that your input is rarely needed unless there are serious repairs or legal issues. Similarly, depending on the property management company, you may need to pay upfront owner contributions, or there will be repairs and maintenance work performed without you giving the green light for that. The main reason is that professional property managers try to optimize your rental revenue by addressing repairs and maintenance work as fast as possible. Fast repairs mean happy tenants, happy tenants renew their leases, and you do not incur losses in your rental income due to vacancy.
If you want to outsource most or all property management activities, if you value your time and peace of mind, and are looking to optimize your rental income, then a property manager is a must. If, however, you are contemplating the idea of managing alone simply because you enjoy the work, and you don’t have issues with losing a few hundred dollars a month because you forgot to repair x, y, z appliance, or you forgot to update your rental rate to the market value, then you’d also be fine without a property manager.