Interviewing a Property Manager

When purchasing a home or townhome that is not your primary residence, it is always a good idea to have someone looking after your valuable property. What you pay a property manager may be worth its weight in gold if they ultimately prevent a catastrophe in your home. Property managers are typically multi-faceted and can prepare your home for your arrival (shoveling, grocery shopping, cleaning), assist you while you are in residence and make sure the home is secure, safe and not at risk for pipes freezing, water leaks, etc.

I have compiled a list of questions that might be helpful when interviewing a potential property manager:

1. What is the greatest threat to my home? And how do you plan to protect against it?
2. What is your experience, specifically in regards to construction, materials and systems?
3. What does your house check walkthrough entail and how often do you propose to do it?
4. Do you self perform all of the management work or subcontract it out (ie, lawn mowing, snow removal, window cleaning, etc)
5. Who else works for you and how big is your company?
6. If a more than one person firm, will the same primary person be working at my house or will it be
various employees?
7. If a larger firm, how do you train your employees and how long have they been with you?
8. Are all of your employees actual W2 employees covered by Worker’s Comp, or do you use independent contractors?
9. Please supply me with a copy of your insurance certificate naming me as an Additional Insured, with a Waiver of Subrogation in favor of me as the homeowner for both your Worker’s Comp and General Liability policies.
10. Who are your go to vendors for plumbing, electrical and mechanical, and what are their response times?
11. How do you propose to invoice me monthly?
12. How do you treat reimbursable expenses?
13. Do you have references?