The difference a professional Property Manager can make.

If you’re a landlord, then you already know that the role comes with its fair share of responsibility. Keeping tenants happy, staying on top of rent, maintaining your property, resolving issues and adhering to current legislation can sometimes feel like a full-time job.

Of course living in a country of DIY Kiwis, we love to do it ourselves. But as tenancy law becomes increasingly complex, and the regulations mount up, more and more investors are turning to professional Property Managers to give them a hand.

“Paying a Property Manager is something that tends to pay off in the long run,” says Stephen Dallow, who's the Training and Recruitment Manager at Barfoot & Thompson, and Host of the Property Matters podcast. “For starters it takes the stress and personalities out of the mix. It is very hard for private landlords to have the tough conversations about overdue rent for example, or damages to the property.”

“Importantly too,” Stephen adds, “the legal situation can get incredibly costly if you’re not on top of it. A professional Property Manager knows the law, they know both a tenant’s and a landlord’s rights, and can always act within the law.”

This topic was also touched on by Monique Barker, who is the Head of Property Management at Barfoot & Thompson Takapuna, in one of Stephen’s podcasts.

“The penalties can be steep if you don’t get it right in this environment” she says. “And since 2021, when there were over 90 amendments made to the Tenancy Act, it has been getting harder and harder for private landlords to stay up to date with the legislation.”

“Having a professional Property Manager on board can take away the stress,” Monique adds. “There is no need to worry about making decisions that are incorrect. We know the legislation and we have the experience - we would’ve been through similar situations before, so we also know the best approach to take.”

“The other thing is, because we run such thorough background checks, and find good quality tenants in the first instance, legal issues are largely avoided.”

“Something else to note,” Monique says “is that tenants actually prefer the safety of renting through a professional company, rather than a private landlord. It offers them the reassurance that the house they are living in is up to standard - meeting all the Healthy Home requirements - it's warm and dry as well, and that they are being looked after in line with the law.”

“One of the best things about having a Property Manager,” Monique adds “is if there’s a hot water cylinder leak in the middle of the night, or an urgent after-hours maintenance emergency, we’re the ones on call and we know how to take care of it!”

Karen Rodie, Head of Property Management, Barfoot & Thompson Remuera agrees.

“Our landlords and tenants benefit from the wonderful network of suppliers we have. These are trusted relationships with quality tradespeople, and we give them regular work, so the price is good and often our jobs are given priority.”

“We know what’s required when things go wrong, but we also know how to keep things going right” Karen adds. “Our service includes property inspections every three months – often saving our landlords money as it prevents small jobs from becoming big ones. And we conduct regular rent reviews, on an annual basis, to help ensure our landlords are getting the return they should.”

“We also have a zero tolerance for rent arrears,” says Karen “with strict procedures in place to make sure things don’t fall behind.”

Referring back to Stephen, when asked what landlords should look for in a Property Manager, he says “you need someone who is local. Someone who can drive past your property and keep an eye on it. That being said, our branches also manage entire portfolios, regardless of where the properties are, so there’s one person and one point of contact. Either way, it’s important that they have a good eye for detail, and the backing of a great company to support them.”

“Barfoot & Thompson is all that,” he adds. “We manage over 19,000 tenancies across Auckland and Northland, so we have a wealth of experience and great resources at our fingertips. Our fee is all-inclusive, and it covers a huge list of services, from all the legal expertise through to the advertising, letting, checks, rent collection, reviews and inspections – you name it.”

Monique chips in by saying “experience, attitude and communication are important when you’re choosing a Property Manager. You need to find the right fit. It’s all about building a relationship and rapport, so you can trust them to make sound decisions on your behalf. A good Property Manager is absolutely worth their weight in gold.”

To find out more about Barfoot & Thompson’s industry-leading Property Management services, get in touch with your local team.