COVID-19 has certainly upended the way we tackle even everyday tasks. From rent collection to property maintenance, landlords have had to change how they approach these routine elements of rental property ownership in Parrish and across the rest of Manatee County. As the guide to Parrish property management for many DIY landlords, we've been keeping an eye on these changes and have been providing advice where we can.
However, there are some fundamental aspects of maintenance that, even in the face of these changes, you can't afford to ignore as a property owner. It's these very pillars of successful property maintenance that we want to focus on in today's blog. Some of the advice is even more relevant now that we've had to adapt to a life of social distancing measures for a while to keep the most vulnerable members of our community safe.
Let's dive deep into three top fundamentals you should keep in mind when tackling the maintenance and upkeep for your rental property in Parrish—whether there's a crisis or not.
A quick note: The following article is not a substitute for legal counsel. If you need immediate help with a pressing issue concerning maintenance for your Parrish property, turn to a competent attorney or Gulf Coast property management for real-time assistance!
The First Fundamental: DIY Maintenance Is Holding You Back
This is one we see a lot of DIY landlords run into that can actually be a major stumbling block to your success as a landlord. Even if you can manage maintenance as a property owner because you have the skills, you’re already probably spending most of your day putting them to work as part of your career.
If you’re not licensed or educated in the fine art of home repair and upkeep, there are small tasks you can definitely handle around your rental property—but should you have to? More often than not, the time you would invest in repairing something yourself destroys any of the potential cost savings of DIY maintenance because your time is valuable.
Even if you happen to be an avid student of "YouTube University," well-meaning DIY repairs without the right expertise could cost you down the road due to hidden damage that might have otherwise been discovered by a professional. Knowing when to allocate a task is a crucial element of being a successful property owner.
As a Parrish property management professional, we always recommend that the property owners we serve leave their repairs in the capable hands of licensed, insured, and skilled tradespeople who can get the job done right—and often at a savings to you, based on the value of your time.
However, entrusting this work to another leads us to another fundamental aspect of maintenance for your rental property: finding the right contractors for the job.
The Second Fundamental: Finding the Right Repair Professional
Once you’ve decided to leave your repairs in the hands of the professionals, it’s time to start building a list of contractors and vendors who check off all the right boxes. This means being able to find a partner who:
- Can handle maintenance calls day or night and year-round.
- Are specialists at what they do, with the experience to match.
- Can scale their skills to meet your needs as a property owner—or point you in the right direction of someone who can.
Often, this unique list of needs means that Parrish landlords have to spend an unfortunate amount of time on trial-and-error to find the right contractors able to meet the demands of a rental property.
Not only do your prospective upkeep partners need to match the schedule of a rental property (which means, essentially, they need to be available at any time), but you also have to ensure they are qualified to work with renters. You’ll have to employ a thorough screening process of any contractor you’re considering to confirm that they can enter your rental home.
- Pre-screen your potential picks in-person or over the phone.
- Investigate their work and their company—you’d be surprised what you can dig up just using a simple Google search.
- Perform a background check on your contractors to confirm their identity and history.
- Ask for and confirm references for previous work, their licenses, any insurance they have, and bonds.
- Start small and work your way up: if they can’t handle the details of a small job, they probably can’t handle a large one, either.
Of course, for many property owners, it’s easier to skip all the work of crafting a list of reliable repairs experts and just head straight to experienced Parrish property management.
Property managers work on a larger scale than most landlords do, so they already have a network of trustworthy contractors they can turn to for repairs. They often employ in-house teams for greater flexibility as well, which means the savings from top-notch repairs get passed along to you.
The Third Fundamental: Working With the Right Property Management
We already mentioned how property management serves landlords as a source for high-quality, experienced, and trustworthy repairs. However, that's not the only way professional property managers benefit you as a landlord.
Your property manager also handles all aspects of the coordination process, provides access for your renters to customized and professional tenant portals where they can place maintenance requests any time, and completely removes you from needing to be hands-on in the process. When you work with property management, you get to enjoy all the income benefits of being a landlord—without the work involved.
If you want to learn more about the perks of professional management, get in touch with your Parrish property management experts at Gulf Coast Property Management! We're here to show you a new level of service—and the kind of peace of mind property owners experience when they leave their properties in the right hands.