Answers to your common questions
Why should I use a professional to manage my home?While the reasons our clients choose professional management vary, here are some of the key reasons many people elect professional management over self-management:
- We handle maintenance and emergency repairs, allowing you to sleep at night.
- We enforce collection of rents and serve the proper notices upon failure to pay.
- We understand and apply the correct federal, state, and local laws, keeping you and your investment out of trouble.
- We know the local market, have an extensive network of contacts, and have advertising resources available to us at discounted rates. This allows us to effectively market your vacant home to prospective residents to get it filled.
- After you add up the increased rent we can often command, the discounts you'll receive on advertising, and the company rate we get on repairs, you'll often make more money than if you managed the property yourself!
Can I choose to disallow pets, smokers, large families, ect….?We comply fully with the Fair Housing Act. This means that you cannot choose to disallow anyone that is a member of a protected class under the act. You can choose to disallow pets and not permit smoking in your home, but you cannot deny a service animal. If you have additional questions on the specifics of the Fair Housing Act please contact us.
How long does it take to lease my property?Generally, Signature Properties can have your property leased within 30-60 days of being on the market. However, some homes will lease quicker and some homes will take a little longer to find a qualified tenant. We will begin to market your home the moment it is rent ready! The best time to have your home on the market is before the first of the month as tenants are usually looking to make a move at the end of the month. Which means that if your house is priced right, in good showing condition and available to occupy by the 1st then there should be no reason to miss a month of rent. We will guide you to price your home correctly the first time so we don’t have to reduce after it is on the market. This way you can receive a full month’s rent instead of a prorated amount after a price reduction. At the time you turn over your property to us to handle, we will inform you of current market conditions, which will give everyone a better idea of market time.
How do you qualify the applicants?We strive to provide you with the caliber of residents that you want in your rental home. We accomplish this by following a strict set of tenant selection criteria plus performance of a complete national credit report on each of the adult tenant applicants, a complete verification of their rental history from their previous landlord, a verification of their employment and a criminal background check.
Do you manage only residential property?No. We are specialists in the management of residential and commercial properties. Our portfolio contains many single family, duplex, tri and 4-plex, multi-family properties. We also offer management services for commercial office properties.
What happens to security deposit? Are they sent to me?
We can place the security deposit in our trust fund account. We work for you and you set the parameters not defined by State and Federal law.
At move out, we complete a thorough inspection, document the condition of the property and prepare a security deposit claim if necessary. Any damage expenses beyond normal wear are deducted from the security deposit along with any other money owed by the tenant. The balance is returned to the tenant within 30-45 days of lease termination.
Will you help me find a qualified tenant without having me sign a full management contract?Yes. Many owners have the time and ability to manage the day-to-day operation of their rental property but lack the resources to attract and screen qualified tenants. We will assess and market the property, screen the tenant, sign the lease, document the move in, and the first month’s rent, and then return the property to you for daily management. Speak to one or our property managers for details on fees.
Do you provide me monthly reports on my property?Yes, we will provide you a monthly report of rent and other income received, as well as maintenance, repairs, and other expenses incurred. This will be provided once a month. Most owners choose to have electronic funds deposited into their account. In this case, you would not receive a paper statement. The statement will be emailed to you. If you have questions regarding your statement, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Who do I contact if I have questions on my monthly statement?Please contact us via email INFO@SPMRental.com or via phone 804-746-7466 or your individual property manager.
When should I expect my rent payments?
Direct deposits are usually done to your account by the 15th-20th of each month. If your rent has not been collected, you will be notified by the 6th of the month.
Some owners ask us: "Why is it taking so long?"
Answer: The rent payment is due on the 1st of each month. Most of the tenants pay the rent payment on the 3rd or the 5th of each month. It takes about 5-7 banking business days for the bank to clear the deposited funds. Unfortunately, we cannot pay out funds that have not been cleared by the bank. In addition, we receive invoices monthly for all of our properties. It takes several days for our accounting department to pay all invoices, scan all invoices, upload them into the system, pay the owners and prepare owner statements.
What type of insurance do I need for my property?You will need to have Landlord/ Dwelling policy naming Signature Properties additional insured, additional interest or have a provision that covers the property manager. For more information or a quote you may contact Atkinson Insurance Agency 804-789-0795 or email Ryan@AtkinsonIns.com.
Can you help refinance my property?Presidential Mortgage, our affiliate company, is a full service mortgage brokerage and can help you with financing or refinancing your property in Virginia. For more information, you may contact Presidential Mortgage Loan Office (Mark Atkinson 804-929-3924 or email Mark.Atkinson@presidental.com)
Where do you advertise?Over 90% of prospective renters are using the internet to find housing. Every day, we work to strengthen our internet presence. Our listings are advertised on rental websites includes: Craigslist, Oodle, Realtor.com, Hotpads, Zillow, Trulia, Twitter, Youtube and more. We include at least 15 recent photos of each rental we advertise, and often take video tours and provide floor plans, room sizes, and neighborhood photos and information.
Can you help me to find Section 8 tenants?Yes! We are familiar with the all Housing Authority programs. We can find you tenants with Section 8 vouchers.
Do you offer property management services in Virginia only?Yes. We manage properties only in the Commonwealth of Virginia at the present time.
Can you manage my property if I already have a tenant on a lease? Will you sign the new lease with the tenant?
Absolutely. We will inform the current tenant of the change in management and provide them with all information needed for paying rents, contacting us for maintenance issues/repairs, etc.
We will not sign the new lease agreement with the tenant because all lease agreements are between the property owners and tenants.
Who is responsible for the utilities?You, as the owner, can determine this, however in most cases the Tenants become responsible for the payment of their utilities
Where and how does the tenant pay their rent?Tenants can deliver cashier check or money orders to our office, or office drop box, pay their rent online via our website, or setup automatic withdrawals from their bank accounts. We offer a secure payment portal where tenants can choose a one-time withdrawal from their bank account, setup recurring withdrawals from their checking or savings account, or credit card information for payment.
What is your eviction process, and who pays for it?The owner is responsible for eviction costs. If necessary and with your approval, we will proceed with an eviction process. This process is considered a management duty, so you will not be charged for Signature Properties time. Approximate eviction costs can be $500-$1,000 and the fee is paid directly to the eviction attorney. We work with attorneys specializing in real estate and property management law. We refer any cases to them to insure they are handled as efficiently and expediently as possible.
Will tenants ever contact me?No. Tenants are not given access to owner personal contact information and we ask that you not contact the Tenants, except through Signature Properties.
Do you give out keys to prospective tenants to view the property alone?No, absolutely not. All prospective tenants are accompanied to the property by the Property Manager.
If I leave the country, does Signature Properties have the ability to manage my property?Signature Properties currently manages property for owners and military personnel living around the world. Signature Properties has many systems in place to help absentee owners get the information that they require.
Why do I need to have Signature Properties named additionally insured or additional interest on my Dwelling Policy?Signature Properties requires its owners to name Signature Properties additional insured, additional interest or have language in the policy covering the property manager due to the great cost of litigation. Signature Properties is able to provide its service at competitive rates due in part to the owner’s Dwelling policy along with our E&O Policy being obligated to pick up coverage for all issues related to the property.
Are you licensed by the Commonwealth Of Virginia?Yes! You can check our license here: Va. License #: 0226-022780
You can check our Broker's of Record license here: Va. License #: 0225233272
Our Corporate offices are located at: 5311 Lakeside Avenue Richmond VA 23228
Can I choose to use some of your services and manage my property myself?
YES, we will allow you the option of choosing our “a la carte services” that we will perform for you. You pay for only the services that you choose. There are 3 different level of services that we offer:
- Tenant Procurement Only
- Tenant Background/Credit Check
- Tenant Lease and Addenda preparation
Please contact us for the details of how these programs can assist you