Property Management Blog

Rental Owner FAQs Part 1

System - Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Today we address Owner Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) concerning Cornerstone's Property Management team. How long have you been in business? How many properties do you manage? What fees do you charge? All very good questions for potential Owner/Clients to ask.
This video is the first in a series of FAQs in which we will answer commonly asked questions. Stay tuned for Part 2!


Transcription Results:

Hello, and greetings from Colorado Springs. My name is Lance Kohler and I'm the broker-owner of the Cornerstone Real Estate team. Today, I'd like to cover another addition of rental owner frequently asked questions. We'll say part one of a series of frequently asked questions and hopefully we can address some of your most common questions.

Today I'd like to talk about how long we've been in business. That's a commonly asked question by an owner who's interviewing a property management company, and I understand why. The investment property owner wants to know how long we've been in business because the longer we've been in business, or the longer we've been involved in the business, the more experience we're likely to have and the more likely we are to remain in that business.

So me personally, I've been in the property management business for over eight years and Cornerstone Real Estate team has been active under my ownership for five years. Another question that we get asked often in the interview process is how many properties do you manage? And I understand why that's important to an owner because a company that may manage 20 single family homes would not have the level of experience or the level of experiences that a company that manages a hundred or 200 or 300 properties would have. Each of those comes with different challenges, but a company that's managing more properties has more experience in different situations, may have dealt with a little more chaos, a little more chaotic events, emergencies; they may have dealt with fire, flood, etc. Whereas a company with a fewer number of doors wouldn't have that wealth of experience.

So at Cornerstone, today we manage 423 units. We manage a mix of multifamily and single family homes for residential lease. So our portfolio today is 181 single family homes, and the remainder are multifamily units and apartments. We manage two small apartment complexes. We manage several duplexes, multiple fourplexes, etc. We manage a six-unit apartment complex. So about two thirds of our portfolio is on the multifamily side and roughly a third is on the single family side.

So I tell you that and I want to follow up with the staff that we have to support that. We have five licensed property managers, we have two assistant property managers, and we have a support staff that works behind the scenes to assist us in managing those properties. We have a full time admin assistant. We have a bookkeeper that works for us. We have an accountant. So we have that support staff to assist those property managers and we have property managers to make sure that we're taking good care of your properties, if you were to join us at Cornerstone.

Another valid question is: What are the management fees? Our management fees are 10% of the collected income for the unit or property monthly. For the most part for a single family home, that collected income is the rent. For a multifamily unit that may include some utility payments or other payments that come in in addition to the rent income. So that's 10%. We do charge a leasing fee. That's a new lease, putting a new tenant into a property. We do charge a lease extension fee, and that's a fee to extend a tenant who's already in place. With a second lease, we'll do another inspection. We do the paperwork. We extend that lease, you know, provided the tenants are taking good care of the property, etc.

And we do charge a small monthly technology fee per unit. And that's just to assist us with the rising costs of marketing, etc. Several websites we use now are charging marketing fees and the rising cost of our software and accounting systems, our property management software system and our accounting system.

What I would like to also cover is that we don't charge an onboarding fee. We don't charge a new account fee. For a new owner joining us, we don't charge an onboarding fee for bringing you on board. We don't charge a new account fee for establishing a new account with us or if you brought on a second property, we don't charge a fee for that. And we also don't charge any markup on invoices. So if we had a vendor go to your property and replace the garbage disposal, because the disposal is expired, it's beyond its useful life and it stopped working and it costs $90 to install that disposal. That's what you will get charged. The owner would get charged $90. We don't mark that invoice up to cover our costs of coordinating all that.

And then another common question is what will my property rent for? What will I get for my property? If I decide to lease my property, what can I expect to receive for rent income? And so first I'd like to point you to our website. We have a free market analysis tool on our website that you can fill out and they send you a complete report on your property, which is fairly detailed; it'll break it out by zip code.

It'll show you comparable properties to your property based on size and based on location, typically by zip code. But often if they can, they'll narrow it down to neighborhoods. It'll also give you a common rent rates and a plus or minus variance that you expect based on the current marketing conditions. So that's a great tool. Feel free to use that if you'd like. We use that when we do assessments for new owners, or if we have a property that we're managing and we want to make sure we're keeping up with the market rents and maybe the lease is being renewed or putting it back on the market, we'll use that tool.

And then we'll also use several other reports. So we'll look at the multiple listing service (the MLS) in our area. We'll pull some other internet reports. We use the free market analysis. And then we also look at market trends because what somebody paid to rent a property, a similar property, or a property similar to yours in your neighborhood six months ago may be quite a bit different. Over the last several years, we've seen incredible growth in the rental market here in Colorado Springs. There's been a lot of demand. That may change and there may not be as high demand. So we want to adjust that and make sure that we're giving you the best recommendation on a listing price for your property.

I hope this was of value to you and that I provided you some answers to some common questions that rental owners have regarding a property management company and how things operate within the property management company. If you have any additional questions, please reach out to us on our website or on our social media platforms. Thanks for watching. Have a great day.


Cornerstone Real Estate Team
685 Citadel Drive East, #325
Colorado Springs, CO 80909

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