Who should you trust to manage your property?

Published: 10/07/2019 By Patrick Henry

​There are so many options out there when it comes to selecting a property manager. So who should you choose? Is bigger really better? Is the personal touch going to give you the security that you desire? Or is there a middle ground between the two?
For me there are three keys attributes that I would look for in a managing agent, and as you can imagine I try my very best to deliver on them at Patrick Henry.

  • Are they capable? Does the managing agent have the facilities in place to always be on call, can they solve problems as and when they arise?  
  • Do they understand me and my property? We are all individuals with similarly individual plans for our investments. Your managing agent should understand that and also have an understanding of your property. 
  • Are they honest? Is the managing agent trust worthy. Can you rely on them to keep you compliant with the ever-changing laws in our country and do you believe that they will truly have your best interests at heart?
Over the years that I have worked in property it has always amazed me how little thought people put in to selecting a property manager. It usually just comes down to which ever agent they have dealt with in the past or who ever had the lowest commission rate out of the agents that they spoke with.

This seems to me to be a wasted opportunity which could have ramifications for the landlord in the long run. Along with the potential of choosing someone who is less than capable, which will cost you time, you also run the risk of picking a managing agent who is less than scrupulous and could cost you money or worse still, a date in court!

At Patrick Henry our clients appreciate the fact that our property management is carried out in-house. We have been told that there is an element of comfort from knowing that your property manager is always close by and has actually visited your property. Most estate agencies have centralised property management teams, and these teams can be situated miles away from properties that they are supposed to manage. For this reason, the vast majority of the time, no member of the property management team has ever actually been to the property. Maybe this is why some landlords opt to instruct individuals to manage their property for them. These individuals have a small collection of landlords who they act on behalf of. They often work from home and have very low overheads which in turn means their fees are quite low. However, the downside to this is that they are often not regulated in same way that estate agencies are. This raises questions around what recourse you will have if they fail to honour their obligations, stay within the boundaries of the law and keep charges to the landlord fair and transparent.  

These questions are far from trivial and when you are appointing and agency or individual to manage what is probably your most valuable asset it is almost certainly A Wise Move to think carefully about if they are 1) capable 2) knowledgeable and 3) trustworthy.​