Owners Frequently Asked Questions

  • Are there administrative fees or other service charges?

    There are no administrative fees or start-up costs. We don’t charge for copies, long distance calls, mileage, or other incidentals. We don’t mark up maintenance costs or nickel and dime you with petty fees as do some property management companies. The only other expenses you could incur would be for services which fall outside the normal scope of our property management agreement (such as contracting a major renovation, restoration or remodel, assisting in sales efforts for which we are not otherwise being paid). These scenarios are all outlined in the Property Management agreement but rarely come about.
  • Are you a licensed Property Manager?

    I am a licensed Realtors® and my company is a member of the National Association of Residential Property Managers. There is no "Property Management License" requirement in Florida, but professional property managers in Florida must have a Florida real estate license in order to charge commissions.
  • Do you hold some of my money for repairs? How much?

    We will hold back $200 per unit in your account so that we always have funds to pay our vendors quickly.
  • Does your property management agreement give you exclusive right to sell my property?

    No. We can sell your property if you would like us to, but we don’t bind you to that in the management agreement. We are only entitled to commission if your property is listed by another agent who represents you as the seller and our tenant we placed in the property purchases your home. As a placed tenant by our company we will represent him as the buyer. He is our customer and this is the only reason we are entitled to commission.
  • How do I know you won’t spend money on large repairs without my approval?

    This is a legitimate fear. We promise in writing not to do that. For ordinary maintenance and repairs of less than $200, the property manager will take care of it without notifying you. You will find out when you receive your monthly statement. If we think a repair might exceed $200, we will call you and let you know what is happening, what we think should be done, and what the estimated cost might be.

    Sometimes expenses such as a replacing a bad water heater, a roof leak that needs patching or repair, or emergency A/C are unavoidable. In those cases where 1) the health or safety of a tenant is an issue, or 2) in instances where there is only one option to consider or 3) the property will incur damage if immediate action is not taken, the property manager will initiate the repair work, even if it is higher that the $200 limit, and then let you know of the situation and what we are doing about it. Mainly, we don’t think important repairs should be delayed while we try to contact you for permission to do the obvious.

  • How do you handle maintenance requests?

    Tenants may call in their requests to us, but most fill out an online form on our website. After we receive a repair request, the property manager ask tenant questions which will help us determine the exact nature of the problem before sending a service technician. We also make sure it is not something the tenant can fix themselves (ex: reset button on the disposal, tripped breaker) before your money is spent on a service call. After determining that it is a legitimate problem, we will send our maintenance man which is $25 per hour minimum one hour charge. If he can fix it this will save you 50% of what a vendor would cost. If he can't fix it then the appropriate service vendor to make the repair. Our vendors respond quickly within an or not more than 2 and they do not overcharge for services.
  • How do you make sure the tenant is taking good care of my home while renting?

    There are several ways your property manager has to know this. Above all, careful tenant selection from the outset protects your property from being rented to irresponsible people. During the lease term, we may have occasion to enter the property for repair or maintenance reasons and will use that opportunity to have a look. If we are fortunate enough not to have any repairs or maintenance at your property over an extended period of time, your property manager will schedule a preventative maintenance walk-through to make sure the air filter is being changed, that the smoke alarms have batteries and that there are no unreported problems at the property.
  • How informed will I be about what happens with my property?

    Absent any special considerations unique to you or your property, our rule of thumb is this: If something may cause a potential interruption in your ordinary cash flow (loss of tenant or non-emergency repair in excess of $200), we will let you know about it right away. Other than that, the saying "no news is good news" is most appropriate. Non emergency items will be communicated along with your monthly statements and, of course, we encourage you to contact the property manager anytime you have a question or wish to discuss something.
  • How much do is your monthly property management fee?

    Our usual property management fee is10 percent of the monthly rent, with a $100 per month minimum. If your home rents for less than $1,000 per month, or is vacant for a period of time, you will be charged a flat $100 per month.
  • How much security deposit do you charge the tenant?

    We collect $1,000 security Deposit. We also require the tenant to give us last month's rent divided into 2 payments starting the month after they move in.
  • What areas do you handle?

    Our Property Management service area is Key West, Key Haven, Big Coppitt, Bay Point, Geiger Key, Sugarloaf, Summerland Key.
  • What happens if the tenant does not pay their rent?

    We give each tenant a 5 day grace period. On the 6th day of the month, we will post an 3 day notice of eviction Whether or not the property manager eventually proceeds with a formal eviction depends on the specific circumstances. It is always financially better for all involved if a solution can be worked out. If the tenant has experienced a one-time event which is causing them a financial hardship, and we have had no previous problems with them, it is better for you and the tenant if we give them a chance to catch up – if there is reason to believe they can do so. If the tenant has demonstrated an ongoing pattern of late payments, broken promises about payments and/or evasiveness, we know from experience that eviction is the best course of action.

    Each case is unique and the property manager will make a decision based what is best for you and your home in the long run. That said, we always proceed with the legal notices required for eviction regardless of any other factors. We will simply postpone the actual filing of the eviction if the tenant is showing favorable effort toward resolution.

  • What property management experience and credentials do you offer? How big is your staff?

    Our team consists of two licensed Realtors, two property managers and a core group of highly qualified and reliable vendors. Our property management clients appreciate the small office atmosphere and personal service we deliver. We have none of the employee and personnel hassles that can plague larger property management companies. Your property manager is available to you.
  • What type of rental properties do you manage?

    Single Home/condo (up to $300K)
    Single Home/condo ($300 to $500K)
    Single Home/condo ($500K to $1M)
    Single Home/condo (over $1M)
    Multi-Family (2-4 units)
    Multi-Family (5 -19 units)
    Vacation (1-2 units)
    Vacation (3+ units)
  • What will I receive with my monthly statement each month?

    The monthly statement showing all income and expenses for the accounting period. We don’t mark up repair invoices.
  • What will you do to rent my house?

    We give it maximum exposure while it is for rent and we carefully scrutinize all interested parties. 

    FOR RENT SIGNS – Posted at the property with our website and phone number clearly displayed. Prospective renters can find out very easily – even at 7PM on a Saturday – the price and size of your property and what is required for move-in through our QRC code. 

    INTERNET LISTINGS – Our available homes for rent in the Key West areaare posted online complete with photos, maps and property details for the convenience of those searching for a rental. 

    WORD OF MOUTH / REFERRALS – Current and past tenants, friends of our tenants, referrals from other agents that we network with. 

    LOCAL NEWSPAPER – our local newspaper branches out to their website www.keysnews.com which is popular for people who are searching from out of town

    FAX & EMAIL AROUND – We work closely with the hospital, sheriff office, police and fire department, pilots, and public school system to keep them up to date with what we have available for anyone relocating in their companies.

    CORRECT PRICING – Even the best and nicest homes will not lease quickly if overpriced. We make sure your rental home is priced according to current market conditions.

  • What, specifically, do you do to qualify a tenant after they have applied to rent my house?

    This is the most important aspect of the successful management of rental property. Application processing is typically done by us in-house. We don’t send the application to a third party for processing as do most other property managers. In general, we look at an applicant’s past behavior and assume their future behavior will be the same. An applicant must demonstrate a history of being a good, responsible tenant or homeowner as well as meeting credit standards.

    LANDLORD REFERENCES – We personally talk to past landlords and ask detailed, open ended questions about the applicant’s past performance.

  • When do you pay the Owner’s checks?

    Owners money is sent by ACH bank transfer on or after the 10th of each month but no later than the 15th for that month’s activity. Most months, you will have funds and statement by the 15th.

  • Who holds the tenant’s security deposit?

    All security deposits and last month rents are held in our non interest bearing trust account at BB&T.

For more helpful Key West Property Management information, please visit our blog.