How do you determine the rental rate?
Rent amounts are determined by finding the “fair market” rent value of comparable properties in the area. We do extensive research using internet, other management companies and our own expertise in a walk through to provide the rental rate recommendation to you.
What websites do you use to market the property?
In addition to our own highly visited website, we post properties to dozens of different websites including very popular sites like Craigslist(no address attached to ads) Zillow, Trulia, AHRN, Apartments.com, and Hotpads. Our software allows us to quickly advertise vacancies online, posting to our website, and dozens of other listing sites. Applicants can also apply right from their smartphones.
How do you screen prospective tenants?
We understand the importance of finding responsible and reliable tenants. We require a detailed application from each adult. We will process the application by completing current and previous tenant verifications, income qualification, we run a background, rent history and credit check. We call each of the applicant’s provided references for a thorough understanding of each possible tenant.
How long is the Lease?
Unless otherwise requested by the property owner, our leases are for 1 year or less(May 31 termination in most cases), per our property management agreement we do reserve the right to create a 2 year lease term. At the end of the initial lease term the contract becomes a month to month tenancy. We will typically contact you 30-60 days prior to the lease expiration to inquire about offering the tenants another one-year lease or keeping them on a month to month agreement, we will also recommend any rent increases that we feel are justified.
What happens if the rent is late?
The rent is due on the first of each month and late fees are assessed if rent has not been received by the 5th of the month. If we have not received payment, we will contact the tenant promptly. We initially work to resolve any rent payment issues without legal action. If it becomes clear that the tenant is unable or unwilling to pay any more rent, you will be notified to discuss options for removing them from your property.
When will I receive my disbursement check?
Rents are due in our office on the first of each month. Our leases specify that if rent is not received by the fifth of the month, a late fee is assessed. In order to avoid violating trust accounting laws, we need to wait until rent checks clear before we can send payment to you. Owner disbursements are directly deposited into the bank account of your choice between the 12th & 15th of each month. Shortly after your statements are uploaded to a personal, secure Portal for Owners to access current and past statements anytime from anywhere.
Who collects the rent?
The Landlord collects all rental payments from tenants, and then uses these funds to manage the monthly operations of your property. Any residual income remaining is dispersed to your account.
What happens to the tenant’s security deposit?
All security deposits are placed in a separate Trust Account at a FDIC insured banking institution where they remain until the tenant moves out. Deposits minus any damage noted are refunded within 30 days of the end of the tenancy as required by Montana State Landlord Tenant Law.
Who pays the recurring monthly bills?
We can pay monthly recurring bills associated with your rental property at no additional cost except for taxes, mortgage payments, and association dues. These bills may include utility service, pool care, lawn/landscape care, etc.
Am I informed of all repairs you make on my property?
Our standard management allows us to take care of repairs without bothering you up to $300 dollars. In the case of a repair in excess of $300, you will be contacted for approval. However, we need to keep in mind that MT State Landlord Tenant Law provides us with specific timelines on repairs being done, so time is of the essence when dealing with repairs at your property.
How do I know the repair people will do quality work?
We use a large network of licensed and insured local contractors. We are experts in finding you the best price for the job, and require all our third party vendors to have the highest level of professionalism and quality.
Will you use my brother, neighbor, friend to do maintenance work? They are really good.
NO. All of our vendors are required to be licensed and insured in the State of Montana. We take liability very seriously. Our vendors have a proven track record of getting the job done right in a timely matter with fair pricing. We are committed to protecting your asset, mitigating liability and maximizing the return on your investment.
How often will my home be inspected?
We conduct a 3 month and 9 month inspections the first year of tenancy, and 1 inspection every year thereafter. Additional inspections are conducted if necessary. We drive by each of our properties seasonally at minimum to inspect the exterior and yard.
What types of rental properties do you manage?
We specialize in residential homes, multi-family housing, and commercial properties throughout Flathead County.
What services do you provide?
The Landlord is a full service management company. We handle everything pertaining to your rental property. We assess rent amounts, we coordinate repairs, place ads, meet and screen prospective tenants, place a tenant in the home, provide a monthly statement and surplus check to the owner, annual tax statements and maintenance inspections. We also provide emergency repair service and internet advertising including interior and exterior pictures of your rental home.
What if I want you to use my plumber, HVAC company, etc.?
We already have a stable of very qualified and reasonably priced vendors that we have used for many years. If you would like to nominate a service company to be added to our vendor list, they can contact us and we will interview them and let them know what documentation and references we need, what our invoicing and payment policy is, etc. We cannot guarantee however that your favorite company will be sent on all service calls to your home. Our concern is always to resolve repair problems in the most efficient way possible with the best available vendor at the time. We can’t keep track of a pre-established roster of vendors assigned to certain properties – it would be a cumbersome and inefficient property management system and would not achieve the best service to the tenant and your investment property.
Our professional reputation as property managers, both with tenants and owners, is largely, if not almost entirely, determined by the effectiveness with which we handle maintenance. We follow a practice that is most likely to insure the best possible response and resolution to maintenance and repair problems for your property.
Are you a licensed Property Manager?
We have licensed Property Managers & Real Estate Agents, along with being members of the Montana Association of Property Managers.
Is the cost of property management deductible?
Yes, generally the cost of management services is deductible, just like your mortgage interest, property taxes and the cost of repairs. (See your tax advisor for details.)
What do I need to do to get my property ready for rental?
The property should be in the best possible condition to attract a quality tenant. Paint should be in good shape with marred or dirty areas touched up, carpets or flooring cleaned, needed repairs fixed, light bulbs replaced, carbon monoxide and smoke alarms installed and checked for operation. The home should be “detailed” clean and the yard should be maintained until occupied.
How much money do you hold in reserve for repairs?
We maintain no balance in any owner’s operating account. We will be allowed to spend a maximum of $300 on repairs if needed to cover any repair expenditures without owner approval.
Do I have to pay for every repair?
When a tenant reports a repair or we discover a repair need during an inspection we first determine the possible cause. From there we determine which party is responsible. If damage was caused by the tenant, then they will be billed for the cost to repair automatically. If there is a repair need due to normal wear and tear, then we will coordinate the repair and pay for it out of the owners account. Your owner statement will reference any paid invoices with a description of the repair.
How quickly can you lease my property?
Unfortunately, we cannot give you an exact time that the property will rent, some properties rent within days while others may take over a month. But we will work diligently to rent the property as quickly as possible while considering our most important objective is to have a quality tenant.
Do you use a well-written lease agreement that protects me and my property?
Yes, our Lease/Rental Agreement is written and reviewed by our attorney. All of our forms are regularly updated as laws change. Our agreement is very comprehensive to protect you and your real estate investment.
Will I ever be contacted by Tenants, City, Neighbors, Homeowner’s Associations, etc?
No. As a full-service management firm, we handle all communications concerning your property. In the event that someone tracks you down – refer them to us and we’ll take it from there.
What are the policies regarding pets?
Statistics indicate that 60+% of renters own pets. Restricting pets reduces the number of available, qualified tenants. Pets will be met and pet references checked out. In general, a well-behaved cat or dog causes little wear and tear on a home and yard. An additional pet deposit is always required. You make the choice if you will accept pets.