I am starting my second year of MAILING out quarterly 3-panel direct-mail brochures to a target farming area of 400 absentee/landlord property owners. I have started 2 property management firms from SCRATCH so I know this method of attracting business works. This method gets me properties I WANT to manage rather than properties that are not suitable to my management portfolio.
As a result of receiving one of these brochures, I received a call in the fall from the owner of a VERY DESIRABLE townhouse that had been used as a model for the developer. The developer had given notice and would be vacating the townhouse in early March.
I sent the property owners my rental/management proposal and 2 copies of my 3-page management agreement. I followed up a week later with a hand-written notice indicating I was looking forward to working with them.
Last week I received another call from them and they had a definite move-in date for new residents and wanted me to get started * call the developer and take photos of the property, start my marketing routine, etc.
I asked them to sign and return the management agreement I had sent along with a check for their owner fund (many newbie property managers don't charge this fund and I have learned this mistake the HARD $$$ way). I indicated that if they did not have it, I could provide it via pdf and they could sign electronically.
Their return e-mail was surprising in that they would be CHANGING my management agreement. OK....I stopped my processing of the listing and awaited the snail-mail. I received their agreement yesterday.
They had marked out the need for owner funds, marked out my performing maintenance, marked out some insurance requirements.....3 BIGGIES in my experience.
I would have negotiated my management fee and we had already discussed the owner using their own maintenance personnel with my vendors as backup; however, I am NOT going to be stuck for repair charges or expenses if there is no money in their owner account NOR am I going to be fighting with them and their insurance company for coverage under their policy.
I e-mailed them my concerns yesterday * I suspect they may respond as my e-mail offered some suggestions as compromise; however, if I do not, I'm sending out another direct-mail effort in February. I'll keep them on my mailing list!