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Owner Frequently Asked Questions
You have questions and... we have answers!
Browse our comprehensive frequently asked owner questions below and find answers:
What is your management fee structure?
Our plans start at 5% and are tiered into 3 plans (We also have non-plan A-La'-Carte services) to see more of our pricing options read below or go here:
How do I know that you: 1) are not just going to place anyone regardless of qualifications or 2) that you’re not just going to let my unit sit vacant?
We have an incentive to keep your unit occupied with quality tenants which is why we offer a Tenant Placement Guarantee of 3 & 6 months for Standard and Deluxe plans and Eviction Protection and a 21 Day Leasing Guarantee for Deluxe. If we let your unit either sit vacant or place a bad tenant, it looks bad on us for doing so and we may potentially lose you as a client, we make money by doing everything possible to ensure you make money and that you remain our client regardless of the plan you choose - we are big on performance.
When are monthly funds distributed?
Monthly funds are distributed on or around the 10th of every month (depending on holidays and weekends).
How are owner statements provided?
Statements are itemized and you can view them 24/7 365 via your online Owner Portal here; they are posted every month within your account. There are multiple reports you can generate within your portal as well – profit and loss, rent rolls, cash-flow, etc.
How do I determine the rental amount?
We can actually help you determine the rent amount, it’s what we do. Get a FREE no-obligation rental analysis here. Remember we are incentivized to rent your unit for as much as the market can support --- too low and we both lose money; too high and the unit sits vacant and again we both lose money.
What happens if rent is late?
- 1st - Rent is due
- 3rd - Last day of grace period (no late fees or notices given up to this point, although tenant has received numerous email notifications of payment due). Rent is due by 5:00 pm.
- 4th - A notice for ‘Non-Payment of Rent’ is mailed to the Tenants as required by law. Our eviction lawyers are notified and you are notified.
What happens if a tenant doesn’t pay rent?
1st - Rent is due
3rd - Last day of grace period (no late fees or notices given up to this point, although tenant has received numerous email notifications of payment due). Rent is due by 5:00 pm.
4th - A notice for ‘Non-Payment of Rent’ is mailed to the Tenants as required by law. Our eviction lawyers are notified and you are notified.
5th - 11th - We again notify the tenant and wait the required period by the state.
12th - On or about this day (depending on holidays and weekends) the required waiting period by the state has been met. On this day we turn the eviction and necessary documents over to our eviction lawyers and a money and eviction judgment is filed with the court and tenant will be served. A court date will be scheduled. We notify you again.
On court day - Our lawyers will appear before the court and carry out the complaint to completion and we will be on stand-by ready to support any necessary operations. If you have Eviction Protection in your plan you will be covered for some if not all of the eviction costs on an average eviction.
Please review your Owner Handbook for more information on this.
Do you collect first and last month’s rent and security deposit up front?
We ensure that we collect first month’s rent and the security deposit AND that they both clear or are received in certified funds prior to the Tenant taking possession of the property, this protects you. We do not accept last month’s rent and this is not advised as the State of Michigan and a judge may require special rules to apply, we don’t do it.
How do you market the property?
Your Owner Handbook is a good resource on this topic.
Before marketing we do a bit of backend work and update the going market rates for your unit then if it’s the first time we’re listing for you or you have made some upgrades to the property we will take property marketing photos. We note all the features and come up with a memorable, attractive and legal marketing description of your property for future applicants.
We then utilize our amazing property management software to immediately syndicate (list) your listing to 20-30 different major websites and online platforms in addition to our management website which also uses social media platforms.
Your property listing will be visible to all and applicants will have the ability to not only contact us but to also fill out an online application. For Deluxe plans we also make a property video, digital marketing flyers, offer professional property photos, and a virtual property tour.
How long will it take to rent?
Well it depends on a number of different factors; time of year, location and condition of the property are just a few things which will influence length of your vacancy. However, rest assured that we will be pulling out all stops to get your property rented with a quality and qualified tenant and have an incentive to do so, remember we have guarantees which we need to ensure are fulfilled. See our Tenant Placement Guarantee and our 21 Day Leasing Guarantee.
What is the average length of tenancy?
Our average, single-family residents remain Tenants for an average of 2 ½ years. However, keep in mind that a few things influence this; property type is one of them. If your unit is a duplex, triplex or apartment building expect the length of tenancy to be slightly less, however typically we do not see any less than 1 year across the board. There are exceptions in every case however; we have seen tenants stay as long as 6-7 years regardless of property type but, every Tenant is different.
About My Property
How are inspections conducted?
All of our management plans include a Move-In and a Move-Out Inspection. Deluxe and Standard plans also include additional inspections done throughout the year as determined by our managers.
Pictures are taken of maintenance related items and a summary is posted to your account of our inspections. We also inspect the property if we ever need to visit the property for an unrelated reason (i.e. tenant communication) and our vendors (i.e. lawn maintenance, snow removal, maintenance, etc.) are advised to notify us of any issues they notice. Everytime we determine that we need to inspect the property beyond the inspections included in your plan we do so free of charge. If you would like to request additional inspections we can do that too.
What needs to be done to prepare a property for rent?
We like to provide a safe, clean and functional living environment to your tenants. Safety issues and hazards need to be addressed, which we can help with. The property should also be clean and appliances and systems should be functional.
Remember we’re not just preparing the property for rent; we’re setting a standard of expectation for the tenant, the better we turn your property over, the better the tenant will take care of it. We will guide you through and let you know exactly what is needed and why; there is a method to our madness, but we’re here.
Am I allowed to visit?
It is your property and we do not want to say otherwise. However, keep in mind that a Lease (any Lease) is a binding agreement which legally gives the tenant a reasonable right to privacy and quiet enjoyment. Additionally, visiting the property without us present opens both you and us to liability issues. With this said however, if you would like to visit the property just let us know so that we can give the Tenant a minimum of 24-hours' notice.
How are repairs handled?
Tenants are able to make maintenance workorder requests online through their tenant portal or by calling or emailing us. You will be able to view workoders in real team and their status within your online Owner Portal here.
Once a repair is deemed valid and needed we will coordinate with our vendors to get the issue resolved as soon as possible; we then post the maintenance request and repair to your account so that you can view: the request, the time until fixed, the cost of the repair and any other issues found. If the repair exceeds the property reserve we have set for your property (typically $300) or is not related to safety and welfare, we will notify you however, you can let us know the level of notification you want from us.
We also have the capability to keep some repairs and maintenance in-house in an effort to safe you money, please review your Owner Handbook as it is a good resource on this topic.
How do you handle emergencies?
We have a maintenance emergency line which tenants are able to reach after-hours for maintenance emergencies. We will typically instruct the tenant on how to mitigate the damage to the property (i.e. how to turn off water to a toilet, soak up any water, etc.) and if needed will travel out to the property to ensure damage to the property is mitigated and under control.
Once under control we will keep the issue as priority and assign a vendor as soon as possible. If the emergency requires an immediate monetary response which exceeds the set property reserve of $300 and we are unable to reach you or the emergency contact you have listed, we will carry out the repair to mitigate damage and protect your property and then post the invoice to your account. Here too you can let us know the level of notification you want from us.
What type of property Insurance do I need?
Typically you will need to switch your policy from a Homeowner’s policy to a Rental Dwelling Policy however; it is highly advisable you consult with your insurance carrier. Regardless it is important that you let your insurance carrier know of the change in property use; a switch in policy to a rental dwelling policy is typically similar in price and ensures you are protected. We can guide you through the process and answer any questions your insurance carrier may have.
How do you find and keep good tenants?
Can you say trade secret? Well not really, the truth is that we’re thorough. We don’t just accept an application, a credit check and eviction report from a computer and call it a day. We verify, verify, verify. We verify, employers, current and past residences, and we verify pets. We also stick to our tried and true applicant approval criteria. We are so adamant about finding the best tenant possible that we offer a Tenant Placement Guarantee, a 21 Day Leasing Guarantee and Eviction Protection.
What are the policies regarding pets?
You can decide whether you want to allow pets or not. We will advise you to and if you do, we will ensure that certain pet clauses are included in the lease agreement which require the tenant to be responsible for their pet, ensure it is vaccinated and require the tenant to inform us of any vicious or destructive pet behavior.
We will also require tenants to submit a non-refundable pet administration fee to cover our cost for processing and screening pets. Additionally, we will charge an additional $25-$50 per month as pet rent which this will be part of rent and which will be forwarded to you. We have a limit of two pets per unit and do not allow vicious breeds. Service animals are protected by fair housing laws and cannot be prohibited solely for that reason.
Do you allow smokers at your properties?
No, we do not allow smoking inside any of our properties. It increases your turnover costs, your vacancy and your liability. If a tenant smokes inside the property they will be reminded of the lease, warned and assessed a smoking penalty fee. If it occurs again, we will notify you and we will move to evict the tenant for breaking the lease and forward the costs of cleaning for all issues related to smoking to the tenant for reimbursement.
Is it possible to refuse to rent to families with children?
No, it is against fair housing laws. Please see our Fair Housing Statement here.
Am I allowed to contact the tenant or visit the property?
This is so important that we’re addressing it twice. Remember that any contact you have with your tenant opens you up to liability and as managers we have a fiduciary responsibility to protect you and ensure that fair housing laws are abided by, so we advise against it. However, we understand that you may still want to and we can’t stop you, give us a ring and let us go with you so that you have a neutral third party present should any liability issues arise later.
It is your property and we do not want to say otherwise. Keep in mind that a Lease (any Lease) is a binding agreement which legally gives the tenant a reasonable right to privacy and quiet enjoyment. Additionally, visiting the property without us present opens both you and us to liability issues. With this said however, if you would like to visit the property just let us know so that we can give the tenant a minimum of 24-hours' notice.
Does the tenant know who I am or will he/she be able contact me?
No, not unless you want them to know. We keep our owners’ identity information confidential from tenant’s and do not divulge any identifying information about you unless you request us to or are legally required to.
Are there any onboarding fees?
No. We don't believe in charging you for trusting us to manage your property. There are no onboarding fees.
Will you need to meet me at the property?
Not necessarily. We work with many out of state owners and can onboard your property without you being present. However, if you have the ability to meet us at the property then all the better. Your management agreement can be sent to you electronically and you can send us the keys via mail or some other method. If you need us to re-key the property, we can do that and then mail you the key.
My property needs to be cleaned and needs minor repairs, can you help?
Yes. We will access your property and assess what needs to be done and if you already have a list we can use that too. We will take pictures and provide you with what needs to be done to get your property rent-ready. If you approve and if needed, we will carry out the tasks to get your property rent ready.
Will you be able to help coordinate with my HOA/COA?
Yes. We will review what your HOA/COA requirements for leases and rentals are and ensure your property receives the proper approval and follows the by-laws and CC&Rs of the Association.
How long will it take between onboarding and getting my property listed?
We can have you onboarded and your property listed within a few days after your management agreement has been submitted, we want to get your rental listed and marketed relatively quickly.
I currently have a tenant, can you still help?
Absolutely. If your property is already rented and you want us to start managing in the middle of a tenancy we can do that.
I'm switching property management companies, can you help?
Sure. We want to thank you for considering us. If you currently have a property management company which you are unhappy with and want to come onboard with us we can certainly review the issues with you how we will address them under our management and then will work with your current property management company to get your account transferred over to us.