Screening for Success, Chesapeake Property Management, Investor Insight

Renters Warehouse Hampton Roads | July 30, 2020

Investing Best Practices | Chesapeake Property Management Tips

Renters Warehouse has been in the business of Chesapeake property management for several years, and our focus is providing the best possible service for the property investors and renters we serve. However, the goal is to not only provide you with superior customer service, but also to ensure that your Chesapeake property investment is profitable!

It’s a delicate balance between profit and service—especially from the perspective of your renters. With that in mind, we would like to share some of the best practices we’ve learned over the years as the experts in Chesapeake on how to do just that!

Foreword: While we are experts in Chesapeake property management, this blog is not intended to replace in-person legal counsel. If you need live support, get in touch with the Rent Estate™ Advisors at Renters Warehouse!

Make That Property Listing POP!

It’s not enough anymore to write a catchy title, take some photos and add a description: marketing your listings is all about strategy.

  • Who should take the photos?
  • Which photos do you choose—and should they be edited?
  • What should your description include—and how long does it need to be?

It is crucial that your listing description is both descriptive and brief. This allows renters who might be skimming your listing to get the kind of information they need in a glance while also making it easier for listing sites to crawl.

Your photos need to be bold and without clutter; invest in either a good camera or hire a professional to maximize your rental property’s best angles! Once you’ve got the “write” listing description and excellent photos, feature your listings on internet listing sites or the professional website of a Chesapeake property management partner like Renters Warehouse!

After you get your listing up and running, use email to capture your leads. If you want your listing to spend less time on the market, working with professional property managers also allows your listing to reach a larger audience and generate useful leads that will lead to applications sooner!

Man working on laptop

Screening Your Renters Is Crucial to Success

Many self-managing investors are excited to get applicants and tend to ignore glaring red flags on the application and during the screening process.

A far more troubling fact is that many rental property owners don’t even have application criteria that help determine the fitness of the renter when screening! Without having the right tools to help you avoid unconscious discrimination or a violation of fair housing laws, you may find yourself in legal hot water!

We understand the desire to have quick cash flow coming in, but it’s better to have cash flow the entire term of the lease—and not just in the beginning. By ignoring red flags in the applicant’s past—such as missing or late payments on rent or a lack of income to qualify—you risk giving the keys to your kingdom right to a “Professional Tenant.”

The screening process is specifically designed to help you take into account only relevant factors about the applicant, rather than anything that could be used to discriminate against them. When you get in the habit of screening your future residents, you'll see that it helps you down the road when you have stable, long-term renters.

Turnover is expensive, but damage and lawsuits caused by unsound screening practices are far worse! Even if you intend to manage this delicate operation on your own, run your screening practices by a skilled Chesapeake property management company. It’s likely that they’ll catch something you missed!

Delight Your Renters or Make Things Right

Feedback (though at times difficult to hear) is vital to running a successful rental. Few investors enjoy the idea of asking for and really listening to feedback. It’s worth noting that there will certainly be instances where you can’t please everyone. However, some of your residents will have genuine concerns with regard to response times, quality of workmanship, or anything that was unclear in the advertising of the property.

When this happens, it’s important to listen, not be defensive, and be open to change. At Renters Warehouse, we know that listening to your renters bodes well for word-of-mouth advertising and creates lasting relationships with renters who stay in your property long term. 

Hot-water heater service

Professional Maintenance Is a Must

Managing and responding to requests for maintenance or repair can be complicated. Figuring out what is an emergency, what isn’t, and what you’re allowed to charge on a security deposit is not only challenging, but yet another legal matter that can come down hard on investors!

As an expert in Chesapeake rental management, we understand that maintenance costs money. However, we also know that poorly-managed maintenance is the number one reason why your renters might complain about their rental experience—and make rent collection difficult. This often means property owners find themselves walking a tightrope between quality and cost.

Renters Warehouse provides Chesapeake property management services at scale, and that allows us to manage maintenance requests quickly and efficiently using the best rental technology available. It also means we’ve already done the work of vetting vendors and establishing great working relationships, which saves you on repairs down the line.

Property Management Does It All!

While many of the above steps are possible to do yourself, serious Rent Estate™ investors have other goals. At Renters Warehouse, we have the resources you need to help you reach your financial goals while taking care of the day-to-day management of your property. This allows you to focus on growing your portfolio while we do the heavy lifting.

To get a better understanding of how we serve you, start by downloading your free copy of our Collecting Rent in a Crisis Handbook! Successful rent collection hinges on all of the practices we mentioned above, and this is no less true in a crisis.

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