Choosing to hire a property manager for your vacation rental is a big decision.
A decision that can seem daunting when there are so many different property management companies out there, all claiming to be better than each other in various different ways.
A good way to weigh up the pros and cons between them and gain useful knowledge about each company is to come up with a list of questions that you should ask. While a lot of property management companies will have this information readily available from their website, others you may have to ask.
But once you have gathered the answers to these important questions for each of vacation property manager, choosing the right one for the job will be a lot easier!
We’ve come up with what we deem to be the four most important questions you should always ask.
1. How experienced are they in the area?
Vacation rentals in different cities often come with a unique range of issues to the area. Let’s use Barcelona as an example.
Not only is Barcelona one of the most popular tourist destinations in Europe, it’s also becoming known as a city with a rising hatred among locals for tourists. So, as far as property management goes, it comes with many different issues than, for example, managing a vacation rental in a quiet village along the coast would.
Years of experience in managing vacation properties in a particular area is an invaluable attribute for a property management company to boast. They will have handled lots of different situations typical to the area before. For instance, what to do if conflicts arise between the tourist and a neighbor in the apartment block. This means that they have already learned what are the best ways to deal with these issues and also they will know details of all the various laws in the area.
2. What are the costs and contract details?
It is important to know all of the costs, details and “small print” involved in hiring a vacation property manager before deciding to hand over your money and sign on the dotted line.
A good property manager will be open and upfront about the costs and make you aware of the exact breakdown. A property manager that tries to hide information like this, or make the information hard to get hold of, is likely far less trustworthy than others who have a more transparent relationship with the property owner.
Obviously a vacation rental property manager is going to focus on all of the services they can offer you and their good reviews rather than focus on the costs and contract details, but if it becomes apparent that something seems wrong with the costs or contract details, or they’re hard to get hold of, don’t ignore your gut feeling.
3. What services are included in the price?
It is always a good idea to assess which kind of services you will need from your property manager and what the costs of them would be if you took them on yourself. This way, you’ll be much better qualified to match up the suitable candidates to your needs. Additionally, you’ll also have a much better idea of whether what they’re quoting you to take care of maintenance, housekeeping etc. is a good deal or not!
Remember to factor in the stress of organizing these services yourself. Even if it is cheaper to take care of some of the services they are offering yourself, it could be worth the extra money so you remain stress-free and have your property manager worry about every single detail instead!
4. Who takes care of the marketing?
It is no good having the perfect property that’s ready to welcome traveling guests if nobody knows about it!
As a property owner, you should assess how well you would be able to market the property yourself, then decide whether it’s worth hiring a vacation rental property manager whose services include marketing the property. This question links back to all of the others asked so far – because if the property manager has experience in successfully marketing other rentals in the area, they will surely be able to do the same for your home.
However, it is also useful to look at the costs that the property manager is charging for this service if it is not already included in the price. There are plenty of free vacation rental resources and guides available to help you market your property if you prefer!
Hiring a vacation rental property manager can be a big decision, but we hope you feel more equipped to make it after reading this post! Do you have any other questions that you think are just as important? Feel free to leave them in the comments below!
About the Author
Stay U-nique is a tourism apartment rental company with 11 years experience managing properties in Barcelona. Stay U-nique goes above and beyond expectations to create truly unique, tailored experiences for each and every guest.