And I Thought Managing Property in Ventura would be a piece of cake….
From the number of professional management firms in Ventura California alone, it would seem reasonably obvious that property management is a big business and the existence of these firms serve and fill a vital need. Management, whether you think of it as a subset of real estate sales and procurement or its own field, is a lucrative specialty and there is a huge need for it. When you consider the fact that the state of California itself is growing in population year after year, despite the relatively recent economic downturn, it is clear that the population growth is going to translate into the need for the construction, and maintenance of, dwellings. These dwellings can be either one or two family homes, or multi-unit apartment complexes.
For the private individual who may own two or more homes in far reaching areas of the state, a management company would be a saving grace. Property managers are charged with the care and maintenance of clients’ properties because they are away from their property and a daily trip there would be economically unfeasible. The Ventura property management concern and the individual sit down to come to an agreement of terms, expectations, and fees. This is usually rendered in the form of a service contract, which both parties sign and are bound to. For a small cut of the monthly rent that the building collects from its tenant(s), the manager usually takes a small cut (around ten percent, usually) minus any unforeseen or sudden repairs that may present themselves during the course of the month. The client gets his rent money, minus the ten percent, and the company gets its fee, which is largely used to pay employees, maintain offices, et cetera, even if the concern is a smaller one.
For any firm, then, it is not difficult to surmise that a clientele of only one or two homeowners or a few duplexes may not be worth the time or money. The maintenance personnel that the concern employs will draw a competitive salary and would most certainly be going about his daily work in a company vehicle. Then there will be health and dental insurance that the company would need to pay for the maintenance guy and all other employees involved. In Ventura, these costs are considerable.
When you add it up, such expenditures for a smaller concern would seem to be counter-productive.
When you consider your larger businesses, the ones that manage the big apartment complexes, condos, and the property of the exorbitantly rich, for example, there are still unique challenges which must be considered. It goes back to the employee(s). The larger a concern gets, the greater the need for more employees. Therefore, the more “corporate” the concern becomes. What may be a limited licensed partnership with one handyman in a smaller concern is considered a corporation with many dozens or hundreds of employees. New levels of bureaucratic frustration and Federal guidelines come into play. So many employees? The concern is required to pay unemployment protection insurance and offer some health benefits for full time employees. Is there an issue of union membership or a system in place where employees are able to file their grievances? For larger concerns, there had better be. All of these play out and are significant for the property manager who must do right by the client.
Property management is an interesting and lucrative field, but like any field it certainly has its share of headaches and challenges. One particular company who seemed to have mastered Ventura property management is RPM. Check out their website at this link.
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