Are you considering a change in management for your Missoula investment property, or maybe you are just beginning your search to purchase investment property in Missoula. This is a great place to start. Below are some basic questions you should ask any of your prospective property managers during your interview process.
A: We begin advertising your Missoula rental property immediately, once we receive the notice to vacate. It is our goal to secure your new tenant to be in place by the time the unit is rent ready.
The rental market in Missoula is seasonally based. The rental market begins to pick up in March and demand continues to increase through the summer, while late fall and winter experience a lull which affects both vacancy and rent rates. Rentals that are priced appropriately and are in good condition rent out at a quicker pace than those that suffer from deferred maintenance.
The market rent must match the condition of the rental. If there is a lack of interest in the rental that is a sign an adjustment needs to be made. Either change condition, by making improvements, or change in market rent to match the condition. We will always make suggestions to reduce your vacancy rate.
A: Rent Smart Property Management takes a multi-pronged approach in the marketing on our rentals. It's a blend of branding, technology and relationship building.
When we launched back in the spring of 2012, it was a different time. Management companies had very little to offer in the line of resident relations. We knew if we could develop a loyal following of qualified prospective renters, we could create a shift in our market. We launched our Facebook page and worked diligently to grow an audience. We had to give the audience what they wanted, and they wanted pet-friendly properties. They wanted to be treated with dignity and respect. They wanted their deposits back.
Our social media posting of pet-friendly rentals, coupled with security deposit refund statistics goes a long way in building trust. And that trust lays a foundation of loyalty that is rewarded for years to come. This loyalty is something you can't buy, something you can't pay for, you have to earn it through actions. This is a huge benefit of placing your Missoula rental property with Rent Smart Property Management.
We built a brand on doing things differently. We built it and they came.
We have come so far in 7 short years of managing real estate in Missoula. We were the first to invest in responsive web design, the first to watermark our listing photos to help prevent fraud, the first to offer online marketing videos of our listings. Our technology continues by offering 3D virtual tours for our Elite clients, lockboxes on our vacant listings for showings 7 days a week from 9 am - 7 pm. Online applications, online lease signings, online rent payments, online maintenance portal, everything we do is with convenience in mind. Our prospective. residents LOVE it, and time and time again we are told how convenient it is to work with us. And that is exactly what we want to hear, and you should, too.
A: No, but you should.
We want the same results that you do. Quality tenants, with secure jobs, stable income, good credit and residence history. If they show responsibility in all other aspects of their life, it is reasonable to expect that they would also be responsible pet owners.
63% of our population in Missoula County has a licensed dog. This does not take into consideration the number of unlicensed dogs or cats. This a huge demographic in our market. If we close the door to the entire pet owning pool we are down to slim pickings.
For a pet to be considered, they have to be mature and of a non-aggressive breed.
We are happy to report that currently all of our properties do either accept pets or will consider a pet in the right circumstance. Your level of comfort dictates our parameters for your property. We always charge additional rent and deposit. And, pet-friendly properties tend to rent far quicker then pets prohibited properties. This means your property is ahead of the competition.
Rent Smart has come a long way with our branding to position ourselves as the "pet-friendly" property management company in Missoula. We have the largest social media following on Facebook in the property management industry in the Missoula market, with over 1200 fans at the time of this writing.
Our pet-friendly branding helps draw greater attention to our listings than the competition. And each advertisement caters to the property owner's degree of comfort in accepting a pet.
And, as an added layer of protection, we have our pet owning prospective renters complete a rental application for their pet. We utilize the services of a third party screening agency to fully vet the animal. Whether it is an emotional support animal or just the family dog, each pet is fully screened.
A: Renting is not without risk. We do our best on the front end to minimize risk by running a credit report, background check, collecting back up documentation like driver’s licenses and copies of bank statements, and vehicle registrations.
The added benefit of collecting the additional documentation is to look for red flags, such as addresses that don’t match up to the applications, wage garnishments on paystubs, running balances on bank statements, NSFs, etc. At Rent Smart Property Management, we dig a little deeper than most. During the course of our time professionally managing rentals in Missoula, we have uncovered countless fraudulent applications and protected Missoula investment property owners from potentially thousands of dollars in lost rent, legal fees, and damages.
Our minimum credit score requirement is perhaps the biggest differentiator between Rent Smart Property Management and the competition. Most of our competitors will accept credit-challenged individuals with a cosigner or additional deposit. With 7 years of history, we are proud to report that our systems work. We successfully collect the rent month after month and our clients receive timely distributions, thanks to our strict screening criteria.
Thorough screening, coupled with proactive monitoring helps minimize risk.
A: Non-emergency requests are to be submitted online through the resident portal. Rent Smart Property Management responds to the resident directly through the portal keeping all communications in writing. We attempt to troubleshoot the issue before sending out a technician to save our clients unnecessary expenses, say, for a tripped circuit breaker. If an outside vendor is assigned to the request, the resident and vendor communicate directly through the portal to arrange access. Once the request is closed out and invoiced, the residents receive a followup on work performed to ensure customer satisfaction.
We also employ an after-hours emergency dispatching service to handle all emergency calls after hours, nights and weekends. The dispatch service is well versed in trouble shooting prior to dispatching the vendor, and often times can walk the tenant through the solution and assess if the service call can wait until normal business hours to save the property owner in increased emergency service fees.
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