Property Management and Real Estate Services

Unison Property Management knows what it takes to be an exceptional property manager, but do you know what it takes to be a good condo board member?

 

Just so everyone is crystal, board members are groups of owners elected by the owners of the rental condos to oversee its affairs. They’re entrusted with the duty of retaining a property management company to manage the day-to-day responsibilities of the community so everything can run smoothly. The board keeps a close watch on the maintenance and repair of assets, and fiscal responsibilities of the corporation.

 

So, let’s take a look at what excellent board members should be bringing to the table, shall we? 

 

1) Condo Board Members Must Have Good Communication
Plain and simple; clear communication plays a huge role in having a harmonious condo. More often than not, miscommunication is the root of all conflicts between board members, property managers, and even the residents. To avoid any clashes, ensure you communicate with multiple members of the board in a timely and respectful manner. Explore and set expectations early on, so as to set a standard for everyone involved in looking after the condo and corporation. A board member with good communication is sure to be off to a good start when it comes to supporting their local Calgary community! 

 

2) Condo Board Members Must Be Punctual
It may sound pretty basic, but it’s common for board meetings to be significantly delayed due to late arrivals or even no-shows. It’s easy to lose sight of meeting schedules when we’re focused on the hustle and bustle of our everyday lives. However, being a board member is more like a part-time volunteer position, and should be treated with punctuality. The best way to avoid any scheduling issues or consequences for tardiness is to plan ahead, and as always, keep communication as open as possible. 

 

3) Board Members Must Be Proficient 
Organizations have a multitude of moving parts, and it’s important to educate yourself on all the ins and out’s of your condominium so you can provide as much support as possible. From the latest by-laws and regulations to best practices and new technologies, it is part of your responsibility to keep learning about the various dimensions of the condo board. 

 

4) Board Members Should Learn How To Read Financial Documents
You may not be an accountant, but take the time to read the financial statements of the organization. As a condo board member in Alberta, it’s key to have some level of understanding of the financials as they may be presented to you. It’s important to try and stay interested in the financial health of the condo. 

 

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5) Board Members Need To Participate
Being able to participate in meetings and decision-making means being well prepared. Read your board packets beforehand; review previous meeting minutes, and research issues before they’re discussed. 

 

6) Board Members Need To Maintain Confidentiality 
Keep sensitive information within the boardroom setting. Don’t divulge information to family and friends, as the information discussed is confidential and should only be the concern of other fellow board members, property managers, and residents. 

 

7) Board Members Should Be Good Delegators 
Pets, parking, maintenance, and noise can be some of the biggest complaints at condos, but keep in mind it’s not your job to try and mend these issues. The board makes the rules, but it’s the management’s job to enforce them. The ability to delegate is crucial for board members and the overall health of the condo. 

 

8) Board Members Should Work With Their Property Managers
It’s important to trust your property manager as you’re both working in the best interest of the condo. To keep communication clear and concise, some boards designate one person to directly liaise with the property manager. It’s also useful to notify your tenants to report issues in the appropriate manner by contacting the associated property management company, versus the individual property manager. 

 

Being a condo board member can be a rewarding opportunity, and opens the door to a new learning experience. You may want to join to give back to your community, or you may have your own concerns regarding the condo and you would like to have a say in its resolution. Your condo is your biggest investment, and taking the initiative to help guide its growth is commendable. Although it’s not a position that’s suited for everyone, assess your suitability and availability to see if it’s the right fit for you. 

 

At Unison Realty Group Ltd. we will find the perfect rental for you in a location that fits your needs. We’ll handle what you don’t want, and you’ll enjoy the benefits.

For any questions or inquiries, please contact us:

Phone: (403) 219-3000

Email: [email protected]

Calgary has really lucked out for this year’s fall weather! As such, we’ve taken a bit more time before we share some tips on how to prepare your Calgary property for the chilly winter months. 

 

As a homeowner, it’s important that you’re proactive when it comes to taking care of your property. Winterizing your house not only prevents damage, but it maintains your homes value in long run. Calgary Property Managers may send you a list of things you should be taking care of, or they may coordinate maintenance with their partnered vendors. Definitely take a moment to touch base with your Calgary Property Management Company to see what they’re doing to look after your biggest investment. 

 

With winter now being right around the corner, it’s time to run through the checklist below and get your Calgary rental property winterized. 

 

Top 5 Tips for Winterizing Your Home

 

1) Winterize the yard 

  • Close valves, remove the hose and professionally winterize underground sprinklers.
  • Remove leaves & weeds, mow the lawn, and clear your eaves troughs to prevent ice blockages, which may cause snow and water runoff to drain towards the foundation of your house.
  • Prepare your mower: As the mower sits through the winter, fuel remaining in its engine will decompose, “varnishing” the carburetor change your furnace filters and causing difficulty when you try to start the engine in the spring. Check your mower’s manual for cold-weather storage steps.

 

2) Change your furnace filters
Clean or change your furnace filters and humidifier filters (if you have one) so that your furnace & humidifier can work efficiently, better control dust in the home, and ideally use less gas to heat the home.

 

3) Check your smoke detectors
Change the batteries (if not hardwired) and test your smoke detectors and/or carbon monoxide detectors to see if they are working properly. If they do not work, or if you are lacking one, you should contact your Calgary Property Management Company.

 

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4) Air Conditioners
If you have air conditioning, it might be a good idea to turn off the breaker on your electrical panel so it is not accidentally started in winter, plus cover your AC unit outside if you have the proper coverage.

 

5) Ice in your windowsills 

If you find you have ice building up on your window sills this winter, adjust your humidifier to a lower % setting, raise your blinds 3” – 4” so that there’s better airflow, and be sure to run bathroom fans for at least 30 minutes after all showers and baths.

 

Although winterizing your property may not feel like the most enticing activity for your weekend plans, it’ll definitely save you dollars in repairs, and the head ache of managing any damages during a cold snap. If managing your property is taking too much time away from your schedule, or you need extra vetting for reliable tenants, call Unison Property Management today and connect with our team. 

 

At Unison Realty Group Ltd. we will find the perfect rental for you in a location that fits your needs. We’ll handle what you don’t want, and you’ll enjoy the benefits.

For any questions or inquiries, please contact us:

Phone: (403) 219-3000

Email: [email protected]

Calgary’s rental market can change from year to year.

 

However, well-experienced property management companies and their managers are up to date with the very latest. Wondering when the best time is to rent out your home is a common question amongst many owners. There isn’t always a straight across answer and can have various factors that you need to keep in mind.

 

Here is what can determine the timing of your listing. 

 

Three Factors That Determine The Best Time to List Your Rental Property In Calgary

 

1) Number of Listings: 

The number of listings in your area will have an impact on the best months to rent your Calgary property. According to rentfater.ca, when there are a higher number of listings, it’s typically an indication of more people looking to rent. For example, moving in the spring and summer months to avoid the cold weather, settle in before the school year starts, and also avoid holiday seasons. As a result, owners will typically rent their homes within these cycles of transition. If you are working with a property management company, they’ll have the latest information on the current rental market, and guide you through the most favourable options. 

 

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2) Average Price:
Check out the other rental properties in your area to get an idea of the rent you can charge. With a local Calgary property management company, they’ll take the time to determine if there have been any rent increases, decreases, or incentives to determine the best fair market rent for your condo or home. Wondering how much rent you should charge for your home? Read our guide here!

 

3) Peak Rental Season 

Once spring comes around, renters start looking for a fresh start and change of scenery. With this in mind, consider having your Calgary rental property ad up well in time for when people start making decisions. Typically, you should start the search for your new tenant 60 days prior to their lease ending, unless they have plans to renew. This gives you plenty of time to plan ahead and be proactive.

 

(Are you a renter looking for a new start in life? At Unison, we can help you. Read our guide here)

 

Managing your property and understand when is the best time to list your rental can be overwhelming and stressful. However, hiring a property management company gives you access to insider information, and up-to-date data on the best time to rent your property. 

 

At Unison Realty Group Ltd. we will find the perfect rental for you in a location that fits your needs. We’ll handle what you don’t want, and you’ll enjoy the benefits.

For any questions or inquiries, please contact us:

Phone: (403) 219-3000

Email: [email protected]

Choosing a property management company that you can trust can feel like a daunting task. However, if you know what to ask – you’ll be prepared to make a confident decision in who will manage your most valuable asset. With these suggested questions, you will be able to make an informed choice and feel self-assured that your Calgary rental property is in the right hands. 

 

Three Essential Questions to Ask the Calgary Property Management Company

 

How does the property management company qualify applicants? 

When it comes to the success of your rental property in Calgary, having reliable and trustworthy tenants can be a weight off your shoulders. 

 

It’s important to ask how the property managers screen potential tenants and what processes they have in place. They should complete a detailed rental application and review the applicants’ credit, criminal, and employment history. 

 

This step will help ensure you have high-quality and long-term tenants occupying your property. 

 

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What does the property management company charge for management and leasing? 

Property management companies collect fees to ensure all of your property-related concerns are well looked after. 

 

On top of the operations of your rental, they handle difficult situations that can come with managing a property, such as eviction notices, dealing with difficult tenants, or maintenance issues. 

 

They also handle new tenant placement and financial reporting. These are all valuable services and are meant to give you peace of mind while also providing your tenants with a sense of comfort and security. 

 

However, it is important to have a solid understanding of how these services are charged and for how much. While the fees vary from company to company, ask what is charged above a flat percentage of actual income. Are there annual administrative fees? What fees are there when the property is vacant? These are important questions to consider when choosing a property management company in Calgary. 

 

Read our special blog post here if you are interested in learning more about what property management companies charge. 

How many properties are being managed in the company? 

This question helps you understand the property manager’s business size, workload, and time to allocate to your property and tenants. If the manager has many clients, they will typically have an assistant promptly answer your questions and requests. 

 

It also indicates the experience of the property management company. As a follow-up question, you can ask about the type of properties they typically manage. The answer can suggest that your property manager has expertise in a particular type of rental property and if they’re best suited for you and your property management needs. 

 

While these are just some of the best questions to ask your Calgary property management company. Ensure that you research the company beforehand so you know how they work and their success. The more research you put into the company, the more confident you’ll feel when agreeing to sign up with them.

 

At Unison Realty Group Ltd. we will find the perfect rental for you in a location that fits your needs. We’ll handle what you don’t want, and you’ll enjoy the benefits.

For any questions or inquiries, please contact us:

Phone: (403) 219-3000

Email: [email protected]

The exact fees charged by a Calgary property management company are contingent on the services you are hiring them for. 

 

Most will fall within the range of 10% to 15% depending on the unit’s rental value or if the property comes furnished or unfurnished. To manage your property, administrative processes must take place. 

 

With this in consideration, most property management companies will charge a yearly or monthly fee. 

 

What’s Included In Property Management Fees? 

 

When it comes to the success of your rental property in Calgary, choosing to work with a property management company can be a step in the right direction. Whether you’re managing a busy schedule, you live out of the country, or you simply need support in efficiently running your property, property managers help you save time and stress. 

 

Property management companies collect fees to ensure all of your property-related concerns are well looked after. On top of the operations of your rental, they handle difficult situations that can come with managing a property, such as eviction notices, dealing with difficult tenants, or maintenance issues. 

 

Some of these valuable services include: 

 

New Tenant Placement 

One of the core responsibilities of a property management team is managing your tenants. They’re able to conduct thorough screening processes to ensure those occupying your home are taking good care of it throughout their lease. Property management teams coordinate move-in and out’s, as well as the marketing of your property, so potential renters have the opportunity to take a look. Property managers keep everything in check when it comes to your tenants and most important assets. 

 

(How much should you charge for rent? Our guide can help you)

 

Financial Reporting

To keep you informed on how your real estate is doing, property management teams will send you monthly reports to keep you up-to-date or provide you with easy access to this information by calling their property manager. Knowing the rent has been paid and being made aware of any maintenance expenses is important. Let your property management company keep you in the loop with the financials of your rental. 

 

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Maintenance 

For some rental property owners, having to deal with maintenance requests can be a major stress point. From handling property emergencies at odd hours of the evening to ensuring your home is properly cared for throughout the change in seasons. Property managers eliminate this hassle and proactively prevent and look after maintenance issues. When tenants have concerns, they feel valued when they have quick response times from their landlords. Calgary property management companies also have relationships with verified vendors. Allow them to save you the stress of finding the right service and reap the benefits of a property management company looking after your biggest asset. 

 

Overall, these services are meant to give you peace of mind while also providing a sense of comfort and security to your tenants. Hiring a property management company means you’re taking an extra step to ensuring our most important asset is well taken off while it earns you the passive income you’re expecting. 

 

At Unison Realty Group Ltd. we will find the perfect rental for you in a location that fits your needs. We’ll handle what you don’t want, and you’ll enjoy the benefits.

For any questions or inquiries, please contact us:

Phone: (403) 219-3000

Email: [email protected]

Part of owning a Calgary rental is that you get to maximize your income. You have the potential to make more money while paying off the mortgage by analyzing how much rent you should charge per month. 

 

You can’t go over the market rate (as you’ll deter renters), and you can’t charge too low, or you’ll lose money in the short and long-term. 

 

Finding the middle ground is the perfect balance where you can make a steady rental income that helps your debt and gives you more financial stability. 

 

How do you go about finding the perfect balance? How much rent should you charge? 

 

This guide will help you make the right moves to secure your rental income. 

 

4-Step Guide To Creating Your Calgary Rental Income 

 

Crunch Your Numbers

Ensure that the rent you charge has enough to cover all the expenses you accumulate as a landlord. Setting too low a price means you won’t be able to pay off the mortgage, maintain the property or pay back other debts. 

 

As such, it’s best to calculate all the expenses that come with being a landlord, so you can determine the minimum amount you’ll need to ensure that you can securely make payments while knowing that any extra means more cashflow. 

 

Consider the following: 

  • Mortgage
  • Bills for heat, power and water (if you include them in the rent)
  • Maintenance and repair costs (for both the interior and exterior of the property)
  • Income and property taxes 
  • Homeowners association fees (if part of a condo or apartment complex)
  • Property management fees (if you’re using one) 
  • Home insurance 

With this foundation, you can determine the minimum you can charge and now move forward to the next step. 

 

Know What Your Property Can Offer 

What your property can offer in terms of lifestyle and livelihood is paramount to determining how much rent you should charge. You know your property inside and out, so you can understand what makes it an appealing option for renters. 

 

For example, does your property offer cool amenities, such as a pool or gym room that other properties don’t? Does your rental condo in Calgary have an in-unit washer and dryer? Is the location close to supermarkets, public transportation, highways and Downtown? Is the walkability decent for families or couples? 

City living

It’s these pointers that mark your property out as different compared to others, so make sure you find the “attention-grabbers” that will hook in future renters. 

 

Know Your Competition

It’s essential to take a look at what other landlords in your area are charging. Remember, they might be your neighbours, but they’re also your competition; you’re both fighting to attract renters’ attention. 

 

Therefore, understanding what other landlords are charging for similar properties is pivotal to use as a starting point. But you have to dig a little deeper. You have to find why they are demanding that amount for their property. 

 

Is it the location, the amenities, or the large backyard? See what contributes to their overall rental price, and add it to your calculations. Do you offer something more or less? If so, you’ll have to adjust your rent accordingly.

 

Carefully comb sites like Rentfaster, Rentals, and to a lesser extent, Kijiji to get an idea of the competition in the area. 

 

If finding out this information is difficult, you can also speak to industry experts with an in-depth understanding of rent prices within your area. Real estate agents or property management companies in Calgary can give you insight into your competition and guide your pricing.

 

Remember to check if there was a shift in price in the last couple of months within the area. You may have to do the same to remain relevant in the rental market game. 

 

Check Track of Rental Laws 

While you’ll love to charge any rental amount you want, you can’t do it. Some provinces have limits to monthly increases, security deposits and late fees. Rent control laws exist to ensure that there is support for both renters and landlords. 

 

It’s best to double-check with the Alberta government on the laws regarding rental properties, security deposits and income. You can click here for more information.  

 

 At Unison Realty Group Ltd. we will find the perfect rental for you in a location that fits your needs. We’ll handle what you don’t want, and you’ll enjoy the benefits.

For any questions or inquiries, please contact us:

Phone: (403) 219-3000

Email: [email protected]

Website: unisonrealty.com