When you’re leasing, managing, and maintaining a rental home in Arizona’s East Valley, it’s easy to make a mistake every now and then. There are going to be oversights when it comes to marketing or tenant screening. You might wait too long to make a repair. Unless you have a lot of experience or the support of a property manager, it’s normal to miss some important details.
Unfortunately, these oversights can have some devastating consequences. You could lose money. You could lose tenants. You could see your property’s condition and value deteriorate.
East Valley property management can help you prevent these expensive oversights.
We’re sharing some of the most common oversights we see landlords grapple with, and we’re also showing you how we can make sure you avoid them.
Local Market Oversights When Pricing an East Valley Rental Property
Pricing has an impact on what you earn, but accurate pricing isn’t always easy. We see a lot of oversights when it comes to pricing - either owners price their homes too high or they price their homes too low, or don’t adequately raise the rent when the lease renews.
Your property’s rental value will depend largely on the local rental market.
Make sure you look at what similar homes are renting for, and compare those homes to the one you’re renting out. Remember that underpricing a property will not earn you what it could be earning in monthly rent. It will be harder to bring that rental value up to market rates because a huge rental increase at renewal time will only chase away your tenants. Also, an overpriced property will result in a longer vacancy period, and it might induce you to accept a less-than-qualified tenant who is willing to pay your too-high price.
Property managers do not have to worry about pricing your rental property incorrectly.
We know the competition in the market and we conduct a thorough analysis of the market and the competition before we price your home.
Screening Oversights with Phoenix Tenants
The tenant you place will impact your entire rental experience. Some of the landlords who come to us for help have not screened their tenants thoroughly. Maybe they glanced at a credit report or didn’t bother to verify income. Very few landlords will call former landlord references.
Rigorous tenant screening is essential.
If you’re not careful about who you put into your property, you will spend a lot of time trying to collect late and unpaid rent. You’re going to run into conflicts and disputes, and you may even find yourself with expensive property damage at the end of a lease. Bad tenants often need to be evicted, and it’s sometimes challenging to hold them accountable or have them removed once they’ve taken possession of your property.
Skipping the screening process or not giving it enough attention is an oversight that can be extremely costly in the long run. Always look at rental history, measure income against what you’re charging in rent, or check for past evictions.
Here’s what a property manager in the East Valley will do to ensure you’re getting a qualified, responsible tenant:
- Establish and share standard qualifying rental criteria.
- Check national eviction and criminal databases.
- Evaluate credit and financial stability.
- Verify income and employment.
- Check rental references.
These are the most important details in placing a good tenant. You’re looking for a stress-free rental process, which requires a tenant paying rent on time, helping you take care of your property, and following the terms of the lease agreement.
Property managers are already equipped to screen tenants. We have resources and tools - as well as expertise - that independent landlords do not.
Ignoring Deferred and Unreported Maintenance
Most property management companies will have a plan in place to address every type of maintenance that your property might need, whether it’s preventative maintenance, emergency repairs, or a routine fix. This protects owners from some of the most expensive oversights, especially deferred maintenance. Unreported maintenance is also a problem; sometimes your tenants will not immediately bring repair needs to your attention. They’ll think it’s no big deal or they’ll worry about being blamed.
A good management team with a solid maintenance process will help you prevent the expensive oversights of deferred and unreported maintenance.
If you put off repairs or you don’t hear about a leaking sink for a few months, the repairs you’re called upon to make will always be more expensive and complicated than they would have been if you’d responded right away.
You’ll also face additional deterioration of your entire property. Property managers won’t allow this oversight to happen. We will protect your property and its value and condition by:
- Establishing good relationships with residents, and explaining the importance of reporting repair needs right away. By helping your tenants to understand that everything should be documented and reported right away, we’ll keep a better handle on how and when things are repaired. We won’t let small problems become large catastrophes.
- Conducting thorough, well-documented inspections. Property managers will document the condition of your property accurately and with inspection technology.
- Putting together a preventative maintenance plan so you can have all of your major systems and functions inspected and serviced. Have the heating and cooling system inspected and serviced annually. Get the roof and the gutters cleaned annually. Hire a pest control service to do routine treatments.
Responsive maintenance can help you avoid the oversight and expense of deferred maintenance. Make sure you’re prioritizing preventative maintenance in order to save money, retain tenants, and protect the condition of your investment.
Another Maintenance Oversight: Unlicensed and Uninsured Vendors
Working with professional vendors and contractors who are licensed, insured, and bonded has to be non-negotiable when you’re renting out an East Valley property.
Every rental property owner we work with is concerned with the cost of repairs, but it’s going to be far more expensive for you to fix the problems that are caused by the cheap labor you hired.
When you need work done at your property, don’t cut corners. Hire professionals who are reputable and have the necessary license and insurance. If a worker falls off a ladder while repairing your roof and they don’t have insurance, you’ll be the party who is held responsible for medical bills, loss of wages, and who knows what else.
Cheap labor is not just an oversight. It’s neglect. You can have a cost-effective maintenance plan that isn’t dangerous for you, your tenants, or your investment. Don’t make the mistake of seeking out the cheapest possible workers or using substandard materials when you’re attending to routine maintenance.
Property managers are more preventative. We already have relationships in place with good, qualified vendors who stand by their work.
Legal Oversights Phoenix Landlords Make
Plenty of state and federal rental laws need your attention. If you don’t know the laws, you’re at risk of making an expensive legal mistake.
A property manager won’t let that happen. We’ll keep you compliant.
Here are some of the biggest oversights when it comes to legal compliance. These mistakes will not only cost you money, they’ll potentially land you in court.
Understand the Fair Housing Act
If you’re not up to date on the fair housing laws, there’s a lot of room for error. Not knowing the protected classes, the difference between a pet and a service animal, and what types of accommodations are needed for people with disabilities can be a huge oversight.
Your lease agreement is going to be the most important document of your tenancy.
This will protect you and your tenants and your property. Make sure you have a lease in place, and make sure it’s both legally compliant and legally enforceable in the state of Arizona. When you have a property manager taking care of the lease agreement, you know it’s going to be thorough, complete, and compliant. Your property manager will provide a lease agreement for tenants to sign that includes a rent collection policy, instructions for maintenance reporting, rules and requirements, and expectations around cleanliness, landscaping, and other situations.
Security deposit oversights can happen as you’re collecting the deposit, holding it, and especially returning it. In Arizona, you have 14 days after the tenant moves out to return the deposit and itemized statement. It’s a tight window, and property managers can prevent you from missing the deadline.
Eviction Oversights in East Valley
There’s a process to evictions in the East Valley, and you need to follow that process to the letter. You can easily make an expensive mistake while serving the notice, filling out the paperwork, and missing something that’s required by the court. Working with a property manager will reduce the risk that you even need to evict; professionally managed homes are usually less likely to require an eviction.
These are the most common oversights we see landlords deal with, and we know there are many more that are likely to cause problems. Let’s talk about how we can prevent and avoid them. Please contact us at TCT Property Management Services. We manage homes in the East Valley, including Mesa, Gilbert, Chandler, Scottsdale, and Phoenix.