Slaying the beast of repairs and maintenance保时捷彩票代理注册
In an effort to save some coins, do-it-yourself landlords choose to roll up their sleeves, make their own repairs and handle the day-to-day maintenance of their property. We
are hard-pressed to find many owners who enjoy plunging toilets or having their slumber disturbed late at night when a frantic tenant reports a broken water heater, but for those who possess the gift of an inner Bob Villa, they will attest it comes with the territory.
Whether or not you can fill the shoes of a DIY landlord, of course, requires taking personal inventory of what your time is worth to you and making an honest assessment
of your plumbing and electrical abilities, along with other skill sets when a job calls for more than a handyman.
We pose a provocative question: Are you penny wise and pound foolish by going it alone?
Don't get us wrong - in our years of managing properties throughout the Bay Area, we have met a lot of hands-on owners who are supremely capable with power tools, but if you choose to go this route, you should realize it may be costlier in the long run. Self-sufficient landlords could quite possibly shell out more rental income to effectuate necessary repairs and worse yet, irritate tenants who expect things to be fixed in a timely manner and enjoy a habitable rental unit.
These are not only tenant wants and demands; the implied warranty of habitability is implicit in every California lease and may become an issue down the road in an unlawful detainer action If it’s more appealing to outsource repair and maintenance, you have a few options we dive into here.
Option one: Hiring a resident manager
For larger apartment buildings with 16 or more units, this is not optional; the law requires that a “responsible person” reside on the premises and “have charge” of the
building. Owners of buildings with fewer than 16 units have more discretion. While there is an advantage to appointing someone as the “eyes and ears” of your
property in your absence and have someone on-site to interact with tenants and put out smoldering problems before they enlarge, the law considers resident managers an
employees, not an independent contractors.
Our broker of record, Daniel Bornstein, asked a friend and colleague, Maggie Grover, to summarize some of the considerations in this guest article
. As you can see if you follow the link and read on, employment laws are extremely complicated, leaving many owners loathe to deal with the added paperwork and hassle.
Option two: Hire contractors
Finding the right person to protect your real estate investment is no easy feat. While you can get personal recommendations from people who rub shoulders with contractors in their field, it’s critical to do your due diligence to ensure whomever you work with is licensed, insured and bonded, a topic we broached in an earlier post
Imagine shoddy work done on a heating system that results in tenants suffering carbon monoxide poisoning, or a plumber sweating down copper piping using a blowtorch and starting a fire by igniting insulation. If you’ve used a friend of a cousin who is unlicensed and uninsured and nothing has gone wrong so far, please don’t get a false sense of bravado - catastrophe can strike in the blink of an eye.
Technology is no crutch
Trolling the Internet for reliable contractors has been made easier with sites like Angie’s List, Home Advisor, Houzz.com and others that give owners the peace of mind knowing tradespersons have some longevity, but technology is no panacea. Like with tenant screening, there is no substitute for old-fashioned detective work when finding the right contractor for the job. This includes asking pointed questions in the pre-planning phase, checking references, verifying licensing and insurance, and studying a sample copy of a contract, among some other sleuthing tasks before coming to the negotiation table with contractors on the short list.
The true cost in hiring contractors
Since a good contractor is worth their weight in gold, now may not be the time to trip over dollars to save pennies. When a botched job has to be done over, you pay twice for the materials, and lose time and rent. By calling upon a true professional or a property management company, the work is bonded and you will be recouped for lost revenue if something goes awry.
The third and perhaps most sensible option is to entrust your investment to a property management company
The responsive maintenance staff at Bay Property Group can take the guesswork out of the equation. Our dedicated maintenance manager, Jessica, works closely with tenants to promptly address concerns and in fact, a maintenance request can be initiated seamlessly on our website 24/7.
Let’s face it. However careful the tenant, things will break with regular use, and if not taken care of early on, your building can age in dog years. Most of the time, our in-house handyman, Charlie, can perform preventative maintenance and handle small to medium-sized repairs, but we have competent contractors on speed dial when a specialized need arises.
One big advantage for owners utilizing a property manager is the ability to leverage the longstanding relationships it has with vetted contractors who get regular business from a company with several investment properties in their portfolio. A property management company can its their clout to negotiate the best prices and terms, and insist on exacting standards to make sure the job is done right without expensive delays or poor workmanship.
These enduring relationships with battle-tested tradespersons are not forged with a simple handshake, but nurtured over a long period of working together to optimize the real estate investments of clients.
To reduce the stress and expense of maintaining your rental units while realizing a steady stream of income, Bay Property Group is open for business. Please contact us today
to learn more about our comprehensive suite of tailored services to put your rental business on auto-pilot.