Five Tips on How To Choose The Right Landlord
When you are looking for a rental home, your property manager or landlord should not be the only ones evaluating you, you should take a little time and check out the landlord as well. Usually, property management companies in the Atlanta area are responsible and take care of their tenants, but you need to make sure. There some questions you should be asking as well.
- How long have they been in business? The longer your landlord has been in business, the more experience they'll have in doing things right. By that I mean having a Georgia specific lease agreement, knowledge on how to handle your security deposit in accordance with the Georgia Code, a crew that does maintenance, just to name a few.
- How fast do they respond to maintenance issues. Is it a few hours, a day, a few days, or week or more. Is it written anywhere? Did they make a commitment to taking care of their tenants? I heard a story from a friend who is renting a town home, and last year in the heat of summer, her air condition died. It took her landlord two weeks to get someone to come and repair the problem. So, take time and ask!
- Make sure you read your lease agreement thoroughly before you sign the lease. Ask your landlord to explain items that are not clear. Are there any amendments to your lease that you should know about ahead of time? Reading the lease ahead of signing will allow you to be prepared. An educated consumer (or a tenant) is the best one. Your landlord will be impressed, and you'll know the terms of your lease before you sign on the dotted line.
- How many rental properties do they manage? Why you'd ask to I need to know that? Well, if you are the type of person who values personal relationships, like to communicate with a live person and not a machine and like when things get done in a reasonable time frame, then you might opt for a smaller property management company. If you don't want to be bothered, then, any one will do and the number of properties managed won't make any difference.
- And last, but not least, ask for tenant references! Many professional property management companies in Atlanta, will have testimonials on their web site, but also check out such sites as Google+ and Yelp. Many people will post their reviews there. In addition, sites such as Zillow, Trulia and Hot Pads usually have a section on property management companies in the area where you are looking for a rental home.
I am hoping I gave you a few tips to think about when you are looking for a rental property. Remember, landlords and property managers are not the only ones doing the evaluating. Be proactive, take the time to ask questions. You'll be glad you did!