Congratulations – you have secured a great investment in a reputed neighborhood in Singapore. Time to sit back and enjoy the returns? Well that would depend on how you decide to progress from here onwards. Your foreign investment in Singapore generates income only when you rent it out. However, tenant finding and management can be a pain. Your real estate agent would almost always do the first part, but their professional responsibilities as your letting agent expires when you sign a tenancy agreement with the tenant. So how do you look after the property now and how should you manage your tenants? Hire a good property management agency for the job.
Doubting our suggestion already? Yes, we know the fees, service and so many other aspects of this relationship are a concern, but read on, and we’ll go through all of them. Plus, we’ll give you some quick tips of finding a reliable property management agency in Singapore.
Tenant troubles and misconceptions
Several misconceptions exist in the rental industry in Singapore. Generally, most of the landlords assume that their real estate agent, who helped them secure the deal, is fully responsible for maintaining the rental property over the entire tenancy term, the set standard is 2 years. Landlords believe that the commission paid to the agent already includes these services for a term of 2 years. The tenants also have the same assumptions, and believe that the property agent will address all their issues as part of their duties.
The law, doesn’t in any way, oblige real estate agents to manage your tenants. Some of them may do it out of goodwill, but it still doesn’t fall under their responsibilities. The Council for Estate Agent is putting in plenty of efforts in removing these misunderstandings. Landlords who have realized this are finally turning to property management agencies, and cashing onto the benefits.
Bring in a property management agency
The biggest reason as to why you should appoint a property management agency has already been explained in the above section. Your real estate agent is not responsible for property matters after the tenancy agreement is signed, so you bring a property management agency on board.
A foreign investment in Singapore is rewarding, but before you enjoy returns, you have to put in commitment, dedication and time. A property manager will do all the hard work for you, handling all the headaches and issues on your behalf. They’ll truly ensure that you sit back while they take the pain for you.
But what about the fees?
A property management agency would charge you something between 3% to 10% of your rental income every month depending on the property type and the duties that they would carry out for you. For a single bedroom apartment, the fees start from $150, and for landed houses, you would be charged not less than $300 monthly. These fees are a reason why some foreign investors have second thoughts about hiring a property management agency in Singapore. But actually this one expense is only a fraction of your rental income. Property management agencies provide you with so many intangible benefits, turning out to be a valuable choice
Here is the real question: how do you ensure that you are hiring a property management agency who offers quality services and is reliable. See if your real estate agent or someone else in your circle can provide you with some recommendations. Check the internet for reviews. List down a few names, and ask them to provide you with client references. Compare qualifications and rates, you should be looking for someone who specializes in property management. Ascertain that all necessary clauses are mentioned in writing, including a proper exit strategy.
Also check with your property agent in Singapore, and see if they offer any separate property management services like Century 21. Should that be the case, you can get some discounts or even pay no fee at all for a specific term.
Understand the duties of a property management agency
A property management agency acts as an intermediary between you and the tenant. They do all the general tasks of collecting rents, dealing with late payments, conducting maintenance, fixing repairs, resolving issues and paying your bills. Should there be any issues related to late payments or property damages, your chosen agency would deal with, saving you from unpleasant confrontations.
An experienced property manager can also help you draft tenancy agreements, and make sure all necessary terms are included. They’d help you sign up for various insurance plans so that you are covered for unfortunate incidents and risks are minimized. They also screen tenants on your behalf, and conduct thorough background checks.
Paperwork is another task which property managers can take onto. They can help you draft rules and regulations, repair contacts and any other documents which are required.
Property managers also collect necessary feedback, and may suggest improvements or changes that can help make your property more valuable or marketable. They also keep a close tab on average rentals in the area, and guide you on increasing rents as and when necessary.
Your chosen property manager should have a set of qualities
A good property manager takes a proactive approach towards their responsibilities. Involving you as much or as little as you desire, they often go the extra mile to get things done, satisfying you as well as the tenants.
Property managers inspect your property and check on the tenants regularly. They are social, friendly and always willing to help out. Property managers are skilled in handling unpleasant solutions and resolving issues such that both parties benefit.
Managing a rental property is a tedious process. A property management agency takes on most of the responsibilities, doing everything that is required of them. Century 21 is an experienced and reputed property management agency in Singapore. From finding tenants to ensuring your property is always in a topnotch condition, we can help you with every step and everything. Visit their website for more information.
Check out our Rental Property Management Services and how you can enjoy professional management at no cost.
Author: Nic Ee
Nic is the Executive Director and Key Executive Officer (KEO) of CENTURY 21 Property Agent Singapore Pte Ltd. Nic starts his real estate career in 1995. He focuses in providing real estate services specifically to international high net-worth individuals and corporate clients. His expertise includes luxury home finding, property investment planning & acquisition, managing buy to let property, expat home finding and tenant representation for office space.