There are a number of excellent reasons to hire a professional property manager, but if you decide to manage your own property in Portland, OR, you have to make sure you are doing it legally and in compliance with the Oregon laws that govern the landlord and tenant relationship.
It’s important to have an attorney review any of the documents you use as a landlord. Property managers are licensed professionals who understand the latest laws and the changes to federal, state and local rules. In Oregon recently, there have been a number of recent changes to the Section 8 law. If you’re not familiar with those requirements, you can get into trouble. Landlords must review and accept any qualified tenants who have Section 8 housing vouchers.
Thorough tenant screening and careful background checks are critical, and a lot of self-managing landlords neglect to do them or don’t have a rigorous process in place. Tenant screening is one of the most important things you will do as a landlord. When you work with a professional property manager, you have access to the resources and procedures they have in place to ensure you’re getting the best possible tenant. When you’re managing on your own, you have to be sure to check for past evictions and criminal activity. You need to talk to previous landlords and get information on how the tenant has performed in the past.
If you get to the point that you need to evict a tenant, you must file the required paperwork, which includes the 72 Hour Notice. It’s important to know how many days you must wait after mailing that form before you can take further action. An eviction company can be very helpful so you know that everything is being done correctly and lawfully. If you make a mistake during an eviction, the process will become more expensive and time consuming.
Professional property managers understand the local rental market. If you’re managing on your own, make sure you educate yourself on the market. This knowledge will help you properly price your property and tell you what to look for when you’re buying investment properties and seeking tenants. You have to know the market if you’re considering a rental increase because if you’re raising your rent too much, you run the risk of losing great tenants.
You’ll need to conduct regular inspections of your property to ensure the lease is being followed and the tenants are maintaining the home. Give the tenants plenty of notice and document everything you find with a detailed inspection report. Use these inspections to ensure the smoke detector and carbon monoxide detectors are visible and functioning.
When you decide to manage your own property, make sure you have professionals you can reach out to when you need help. Contact Jim McNeeley Real Estate and Property Management if you have any questions or need any help.