If you own rental property, it’s a great investment – but it can present some real challenges, too. That’s especially true if your’re new to owning income property.  And even if you’re a longtime landlord, you’re in a more difficult environment than ever before, as you navigate through the maze of today’s rental market.

You’re facing challenges like marketing your property, mulitple showings, finding the right tenant, signing a legally defensible lease and more.

That’s why many property owners turn to a professional property management company for help with the biggest hassles. These chores include:

1. Setting rental rates based on market conditions. 

We’re always surprised at how many owners just guess at the value of their rental and don’t get a fair market rate. An experienced property management company will work with you to set a price that maximizes your monthly income while maintaining a low vacancy rate.

2. Collecting rent on time. 

Collecting security deposits, pet deposits and monthly rent can sometimes be tough. Efficient property managers use time-tested methods to collect rent on time and maintain your cash flow.

3. Advertising and showing your property.

This can be very time-consuming, and if it’s not done right, you’re missing out on good tenants. The right property manager will rent your property quickly by getting the right messages and photos on the right websites and social media outlets – and holding as many showings as needed.

4. Finding and screening the right tenants.

This can be the biggest hassle for owners. But an experienced property management company is expert at identifying solid tenants through background checks, credit reports, employment verification and checking with current and former landlords, as well as sizing up potential tenants in person.

5. Managing routine inspections, maintenance and tenant relationships.

Not all property managers have the time (or the desire) to deal with the ongoing work that keeps good tenants happy. So some owners choose to have a property manager handle tenant requests and manage repairs and maintenance.

6. Ensuring compliance with housing regulations and laws.

Compliance is becoming increasingly complex as federal, state and local governments get more heavily involved in tenant safety and fairness issues. Your property manager should work closely with you on inspecting your property and making sure it’s up-to-date on all regulations. They should also make sure your lease documents meet all legal and regulatory requirements. Both of these help protect you from lawsuits.

If you think using a property manager may be right for you, why not talk to several who manage rentals in your area? Find out how they charge and exactly what services they provide – and whether they can be flexible about taking on just the things that make you squirm. And be sure to check their references with other owners and tenants!