All Topics / Help Needed! / Who Manages Their Own Properties?

Viewing 17 posts - 1 through 17 (of 17 total)
  • Profile photo of MTRMTR
    Join Date: 2004
    Post Count: 663

    Hi all, starting to wonder whether I could do a better job than the PM. Anyone out there managing their own, and what are your thoughts??

    Profile photo of lifeXlifeX
    Join Date: 2004
    Post Count: 651

    Hi marissa,
    I too beleive RE Agents often underperform.

    Both to owner and to tenant.

    As a tenant who always paid and kept property in good condition, I often moved on purely because I was sick of being treated like a second class citizen by nosy, rude, arrogant agents.

    Hey!, after all my rent was putting money in the agents hands, the owners hands (and probably a bank). If I handed that kind of dough over as a Restaurant customer EVERY week, what kind of service do you think I would then get????

    I manage my own properties, and I can tell you it is a quick learning curve.

    Be prepared for middle of the night calls about emergencies that you will have to deal with there and then!!!!

    Be prepared to chase up and keep an eye on rent payments

    But above all, I beleive you can avoid most of the problems with tenants with proper due diligence!!!!!!!!!

    Police check, Solid references,
    (It may not really be the INTERNATIONAL CHIEF of spy operations at the end of that phone, and they may not even really work for the British Secret Service as a 00something Agent!),employer, bank manager, even a private landlord data base is better than nothing ( it is difficult to access the same defaulting tenant database that RE Agents use. Maybe a credit check.

    Don’t be too soft either, I got myself into a bit of strife playing the “nice guy”, next thing you know….

    “hi, how r u, um… Can I borrow $50 to feed the kids, the dog ate my pay this week…..”[blink]

    Easy to put a trouble tenant in, hard to get them out.[cry]

    Hard to find a good tenant , easy to get them out [:D]


    Profile photo of MJTMJT
    Join Date: 2004
    Post Count: 80

    Hi Marisa,

    we manage our IP. It is in our local area and so far have had no probs. As long as they pay their rent on time and don’t wreck anything we are all happy.

    I guess a good PM comes into his own when you have problems!


    Profile photo of kpkp
    Join Date: 2004
    Post Count: 509

    Hi Marisa,
    There is a group called the Landlords Advisory Service based in Applecross. They have a website and from what I read look to be very good.
    I believe you would have access the the database of blacklisted tenants, etc,and also, you can perform credit checks , etc.
    Worth getting in touch with them…


    Profile photo of lifeXlifeX
    Join Date: 2004
    Post Count: 651

    I found this on WA legal aid site…….
    Landlords may also refer complaints to the Department of Consumer and Employment Protection

    Department of Consumer and Employment Protection
    Head Office
    219 St. Georges Terrace,
    Perth Western Australia 6000
    Locked Bag 14
    Cloisters Square Western Australia 6850
    General Advice Line: 1300 30 40 54 (cost of a local call)
    For new enquiries and general advice
    Click here for the Department of Consumer and Employment Protection’s web site

    You may obtain assistance from:

    Property Owners Association
    97 Clement Street
    Telephone: (08) 9384 7583


    Landlords Advisory Service
    Suite 5/ 16 Moreau Mews
    Tel: (08) 9316 8533
    Fax: (08) 9316 8522

    If you wish to complain about the management of your property by a real estate agent, you should contact the Real Estate Institute of WA.

    The Real Estate Institute of WA
    215 Hay Street
    SUBIACO WA 6008
    Telephone: (08) 9380 8200
    *Telephone enquiries 9-12 noon and 2-5pm only.



    Profile photo of yackyack
    Join Date: 2003
    Post Count: 1,206

    I use a property manager – but I manage them.

    One agency I use in Frankston has had about 10 different people in their property management group in the last 5 yrs.

    So there has been no continuity. But if rent is late I call them, they call tenant, tenant makes promise, i call property manager to ensure it happens.

    Dont rely on property manager. You need to ensure they do whats required. You need to chase them up. You cannot sit back.

    However having said that my property manager in Mentone is great. Never had a problem. But she is not too keen to increase rent though.

    I never intend to manage my own properties.

    Profile photo of YorkerYorker
    Join Date: 2004
    Post Count: 306

    I agree with Yack. PM’s allow you to focus more time on other areas of your investment portfolio.

    Profile photo of MTRMTR
    Join Date: 2004
    Post Count: 663

    Hi Yack

    The bottom line is WHERE DO YOU FIND A GOOD PM”, I have yet to find one.

    From my experience they appear to be overloaded managing too many clients.

    I too contact PM to remind him the tenant is late with payment etc. I get off the phone wandering who is the PM here….. oh well, seems when I speak to friends they have same issues.

    Lifex and kp
    I will make some enquiries with agencies you recommended, many thanks for this information.

    Also I contacted REIWA some time ago regarding PM recommendations, he gave me 3 and inappropriately included his own agency and really was not that much help.

    Regards, Marisa

    Profile photo of ActTodayActToday
    Join Date: 2003
    Post Count: 232

    Marisa I purchased Steve’s pack and have found it excellent in firstly finding a tenant and then managing them. I request all tenants have a periodic transfer in place with their bank and check weekly to see that it is done. One tenant was let down by his employer not paying wages and I am allowing him to pay off that fortnight’s rent. He thinks I’m terrific and has now even mowed the lawn. He is 23 and covered in tatoos but I treated him decently from the start and he has requested a signed lease for a further period at a higher rental. I don’t think I’ll ever have so many properties that I will not be able to manage them myself.

    If I knew then what I know now……….you know how it goes

    Profile photo of CeliviaCelivia
    Join Date: 2003
    Post Count: 886

    Marisa, I would never want to manage my own property.
    I like the “hands off” style.

    In another thread I said that I find communication with my PM really important.
    I told my PM exactly what I need, want and expect of them and asked if they’d be able to comply.
    I also contact them regularly for a chat (not TOO regularly) :)

    So far I’ve had no problems and I’m very happy with the way things are done.


    Profile photo of RugbyfanRugbyfan
    Join Date: 2003
    Post Count: 683

    I do a mixture.

    I manage the one in Sydney myself, and have saved about $4,000 in PM fees in two years. I speak to the tenant probably twice a year and his rent is an automatic deduction from his account every month. I just check my account at the beginning of each month to see if it has gone in. He is hardly there and the unit is still in v good condition.

    I use a PM in two others that are too far away and my Dad will be PMing one in WA when it is built.

    In the two that are self PMed, I just made a deal with an agent to get a tenant. He does all the background checks and paperwork for 1 weeks rent. It is my responsibility after that.

    “Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a handsome and well preserved body, but better to skid in sideways, thoroughly used, totally worn out and loudly proclaiming . …… Hell, what a trip !!”

    Profile photo of PurpleKissPurpleKiss
    Join Date: 2003
    Post Count: 580

    I manage one myself and never had a problem but I did do a “To Let only” lease through an RE so they could check the appropiate databases etc. Tenant has been great.

    Looks like I had one more I’ll need to manage when renovations finished.

    Other 2 are managed by a PM and I sometimes wonder if it’s worth it. In one, the tenant has been there for 2 years but in that time the agency has had 4 differnt PM’s so no continuity.

    The other PM won’t speak to my strata title companys, rekons she can’t speak to anyone but the owner, I find that one hard to swallow as they’ll ring repairmen when needed, but when it comes to repairs on the common property that tenant may have reported, they refuse to speak directly to strata company, I fail to see teh difference, they are still jsut ringing someone to have a repair carried out. The principal of the agency agree this is how it should be done. So waiting for agreement to fall due and will chagne that one.

    I don’t want to manage porperties due to time issues, but sometimes it seems to work out better.

    On that note though, I only give the tenant my mobile number and not my home number, at least if there’s a falling out I can turn the mobile off. I do tell the tenant to tell me when they ring if they need me to ring back, that way the cost doens’t need to be borne by them if ringing for a genuine problem.

    Well, good luck. Perhaps just try managing one first and see what you think before you take the whole lot on.


    Profile photo of jsandsojsandso
    Join Date: 2003
    Post Count: 44

    Hi Marisa,
    Yes we are managing our IP’s our self and in my opinion it’s ok to do when you live not to far away and have not more than 2-3 IP’s to look after.

    We used to use a small RE Agency to setup tenants for us. They where screening the applicants, done all the paperwork and condition report. After the tenants moved in we took over and managed it our self. The tenants are paying with direct debit or money order.

    We had a bit of a bad experience with our ex PM.

    The last tenant wanted to break the lease and moved out 6 weeks before the lease was up. We rang the PM and ask her to find a replacement tenant. The previous tenant agreed to pay for advertising. She advertised for 6 weeks and always told us that she did not even get one phone call. We did not care to much as the ex tenant were still paying the rent. But towards the end of this 6 weeks we started to get worried and ask why she can’t find a tenant.

    She had all sorts of excuses and we decided to put an ad in the paper our self’s and also advertised it on the Internet on various pages. On the day the ad was in the paper we got 5 calls before lunch and a few more over the next couple days.

    We believe that she was just lying to us and gave these properties preferences which she was fully managing and not only setting up a tenant. We think that they were just using the ex tenants money to print there Agency name in bold red letters in the paper.

    Since then we do it all our self as we live only 30min away from our IP’s. It is time consuming when you are in the process of finding new tenants. But once the tenants moved in there is not to much to do.

    Haven’t had any real dramas yet only a few phone calls about a blocked drain or a leaking toilet or a tenant who knocked on my door at 9.00pm because he locked him self out and did not have our number.

    I don’t mind this little disturbances, specially when I think of the $1200-$1500 per IP a year I save on management fees.

    I believe that a PM does not care to much what kind of tenant he puts in your place. The sooner he has got a tenant the sooner he gets the letting fee. If the tenant is bad he gets kicked out and he can put a new tenant in and again he gets his letting fee. If the tenant is good then he still makes $25 per week just for collecting the rent.

    Someone just told me that he had a bad experience with a tenant from hell, all windows but 2 were smashed, kitchen trashed, doors needed to be replaced. Just because the PM missed that the tenant was just released from prison.

    I prefer to meet the potential tenants in person, have a little chat with them and then I’ll let my gut feeling decide. I had tenants with written references and recommendations from previous private landlords and a PM. But this family was totally broke and could not get the money together for the bond and 2 weeks rent up front.

    If you got spare time to find a tenant, to do all the paperwork, to do a prop. condition report and don’t mind a phone call once in a while from your tenant, then I think you are better of to manage it your self.

    If you should decide to manage your self, then I would get the “Landlord’s Handbook” it contains helpful info and most standard forms (samples only). You may get a copy from a newsagent or a bookshop.


    Profile photo of techatecha
    Join Date: 2004
    Post Count: 79

    For what it worth we do our own.
    It savs $8k a year for us.

    We know all our tennents.
    They know us and think we only have 1 IP and are only a little different to them!
    We dress like them.
    We are certain to call around if even 1 payment is behind.
    We inspect regularly and fix(Often they do!)very quickly.
    All tennets have been with us over 3 yrs and yes selection is important but being visable saves a lot of dramas and goes a long way to eleviate the US V THEM attitude.You must have the time though!!


    Profile photo of hmackayhmackay
    Join Date: 2004
    Post Count: 197

    I have several properties either interstate or across town.

    I find that a good PM makes life more enjoyable at a cost, which i believe is worth it. They are specialists in their field. If they don,t perform I find a better one. I wouldn.t do my tax return although I am reasonbly confident in doing one reasonably correct.

    I get my PM to pay outgoings which reduces some of my paperwork too.

    I have one commercial property that I manage. I find this very simple and requires minimal time. Commercial leases are generally 3 or 5 years which are significantly longer that residential.Also no emotional tennants.

    Some people perhaps enjoy managing their properties, for me I like to see the monthly rent deposits and paid bill and get on with other activities ( recreational or business) that I enjoy.

    Horses for courses i guess.


    Profile photo of MKDMKD
    Join Date: 2004
    Post Count: 2

    Hi Marisa … I manage my own properties.

    Based on years at work as an employer/manager, and dealing with recruitment agencies, I learned “agencies” at large seldom truly work for the client’s true needs. Whilst an agency offers an introduction, I’ve learned to then manage the process myself.

    This equally relates to properties, their maintanance and screening of tenants. And so far, so good!



    Profile photo of housemousehousemouse
    Join Date: 2004
    Post Count: 13

    I only have 1 property and I manage it myself, after the trouhle my mum had with her pm I thought it would be easier to do it myself. A family member is in there now but when I had it tennanted I never had a single call from my tennant, I inspected every 3 months and no problems with rent payments. I couldn’t see a reason for not doing it.

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