- When will I receive my statement, and what information does it contain?
Generally, we close our books on the 20th of the month. A link to your Owner Portal is emailed by the 25th. The Owner Portal allows you to access your account and your monthly statements 24 hours a day.
Your ACH (Automatic Clearing House) transfer occurs on the 25th as well. However, delays can occur, and we must also allow for holidays and weekends. Management statements include: a monthly and year-to-date profit & loss statement for each property, a detailed activity page showing each transaction for each property, and a copy of all invoices.
The 20th of the month is the earliest possible date for us to close our books due to the possibility of a resident’s rent check being returned from the bank NSF. Banks can take as many as 14 days to process a check for which there may not be sufficient funds. If we were to transfer funds to you and the resident’s check did not clear, your account would go into a negative balance.
- How will my monthly proceeds be transferred to me?
Monthly proceeds are transferred directly to your bank account each month by electronic cash transfer (ACH). The transfer amount will show up on your bank statement as “Rollingwood Management.” Transfers occur on the 25th of the month. However, like our monthly statements we must allow for weekends and holidays.
- Are you insured, and how does that protect me?
We carry general liability insurance and professional liability insurance, which is commonly known as Errors and Omissions (E&O). When considering which property management company to choose, you should ask whether your property management company has the capability to reimburse you if they made a mistake which cost you money? The court may give you a judgment against your management company, but what would keep the manager from declaring bankruptcy to avoid paying the claim? Most of our competitors do not carry E&O insurance. Our insurance policy offers you up to $500,000 of protection. Fortunately, since our establishment in January 1986, no one has ever had to make a claim against our policy. Every day we strive to ensure that the need will never arise.
We also carry Worker’s Compensation Insurance. This means that every employee at Rollingwood Management is covered by worker's compensation insurance. If someone were to get injured on the property, it does not become a liability to you. We also require that all contractors are covered as well. Many property management companies do not require their contractors to have this coverage. However, without this protection, your liability is far greater than the small amount of money that would be saved from using an uninsured contractor.
- How do I know my property is being maintained?
We keep informed about a property's condition through several systems. In addition to property manager visits, maintenance visits, and vendor visits, our most comprehensive analysis is our annual property survey. Over time, a property’s systems and appliances will deteriorate. By evaluating them on an annual basis, you will be more prepared for needed improvements and more likely to discover potential maintenance items before they become larger, more expensive problems for you. Additionally, the survey gives us the opportunity to view the property and analyze its position in the market.
- Are the vendors you use qualified, insured, and competitive in their rate structure?
Yes, each of our outside vendors must agree to adhere strictly to the guidelines of our Preferred Vendor Program in order to do business with our company. This program requires vendors to: a) provide free estimates and competitive pricing, b) submit detailed invoices, c) be available 24 hours a day (if we need them in an emergency), d) perform criminal background checks on employees going into your property, e) guarantee the highest quality work with a warranty of labor and materials, f) alert us to any problems at the property, g) call for an approval for any repair out of the scope of work they were sent to perform, h) call for approval if the cost of the repair is going to exceed preset limits, and j) carry Worker’s Compensation Insurance and general liability insurance.
- Who will do the maintenance on my property?
Residents are required to do basic maintenance on your property. They must replace burned-out light bulbs, change air filters, fill water softeners, and change smoke alarm batteries. Additionally, we also expect them to be able to tighten a loose door handle, push the reset button on a garbage disposal, or reinstall a window screen that may have fallen off. Residents are usually responsible for lawn care unless they are in a property where an owner provides that service. Lawn care is defined as mowing, trimming, watering, and keeping flowerbeds weed-free.
When repairs need to be done outside the scope of the resident's responsibility, one of our in-house maintenance technicians or one of our sub-contractors will be sent to the property. Our maintenance staff is available 24 hours a day, and we guarantee their work.
- What needs to be done to my property for it to be leased?
The better condition your property is in, the better quality resident we will attract for you. This means that the property should be clean, and walls should be painted if they are dirty or marred. Carpeting, flooring, and appliances should be up-to-date. It is best to have window coverings, such as 2” blinds, on the windows. Generally, the property should be in good repair inside and out. Lawns and flowerbeds should be in top condition, as curb appeal is critical to the resident’s first impression. Many residents begin to make up their mind about your property the moment they pull up to the curb. If the yard, entrance area, and interior look sharp, the agent will be much more successful in leasing your home. A quality resident is motivated to take care of your home and will leave it in good condition when they leave. This means lower operating costs for you.
- What control do I have over who leases my property?
You can specify whether you want to allow pets and smokers. However, the more restrictive you are, the longer it could take to rent your property. This is especially true with pets.
Federal and local Fair Housing laws are very specific and clear about discrimination. Rollingwood Management believes in and upholds all aspects of the federal, state, and local Fair Housing laws. Our experience has been that it is best that you leave the selection process up to us. We are leasing professionals, and in order for residents to lease from us, they must meet our qualifying criteria.
- How will I know when my property is going to be vacant or when it is leased?
You will be notified in writing as quickly as possible when notice is given by a resident of their intent to vacate the property. We will then walk the property to determine its condition and rentability. If repairs are needed when the unit turns over, you will be made aware of these repairs, along with cost estimates. You will also be notified in writing when a property has been leased and will be provided with a copy of the signed lease if you request it.
- What happens if a resident breaks their lease agreement and wants to move out early?
During orientation, we explain to residents that one of the conditions of leasing the property is their fiscal responsibility for the entire lease term. If a resident needs to vacate a property early, we explain that they are responsible for the balance of the lease payments until the property is leased again. They are also responsible for paying a reletting fee that is equal to one month’s lease payment. We are then required to lease the property as soon as possible. Well-qualified residents are inclined to perform under the requirements of the lease agreement to avoid possible damage to their credit.
- Do you charge an override on outside vendor invoices?
No. It is our opinion that paying invoices in the process of managing your property is part of a management company’s normal responsibility. However, if you want us to monitor a substantial project that would require multiple trips to the property, a cost would be incurred for that work.
- What is your monthly property management fee?
Our property management fee is 8-10% of the gross monthly rent, with a $75 per month minimum. If your property leases for less than $937 per month, or is vacant for a period of time, you will be charged a flat $75 per month. Our fees are based on the service level needed to deliver the quality of services you expect from a full-service management firm. If you are considering a savings by going with a firm that is less experienced or does not provide a full spectrum of management services, you may not receive a good value for your management dollars. See our management fee guarantee.
- What is your leasing commission and what does that cover?
The leasing commission is 80% of the first full month's rent for new residents. From this commission, we pay all agents involved in the transaction, all costs associated with listing your property in MLS, listing it on our Web site and all the additional property leasing sites, preparing the lease documents, and performing the lease orientation with your tenants. A lease renewal fee of $500 is charged for retaining current residents and executing a lease renewal contract. Renewing the lease agreement is always our goal, not turning theproperty over and saves you money! Turn overs are the single most expensive event at a property. Click here for more information on how we market your property and here to find out more about our leasing commission guarantee.
- Do you manage property outside the immediate Austin area?
Since our primary focus is on the immediate Austin area, we do not manage property in Manor, Elgin, Hutto, Georgetown, Cedar Park, Leander, Kyle, and Buda.
- Do I have to allow pets in my property?
No, as the owner of the property it is your decision whether to allow pets or not. Some owners will unequivocally not allow any pets, others will approve only small dogs, while others will accept a dog of any size. Some will allow only one pet and others will allow multiple pets. Some will allow cats, some will not, and others will allow cats only if they have been declawed and spayed or neutered.
If you decide to allow pets, Rollingwood Management always recommends a minimum of a $300 pet deposit per animal living in the home, and the pets must meet our pet criteria.
If you decide not to allow pets within your home, we would like you to be aware that you will be eliminating almost 62% of the rental market, and it could be substantially more difficult to rent your home. If the management company has done its due diligence and properly qualified the resident(s) and collected the proper deposit, the risk from having a pet is minimized.
- Will you allow smokers in my property?
No, all our properties are non-smoking only. The lease agreement and our Rules and Policies clearly state this to the residents.
- Can the resident get my phone number and address if I use you?
Our office staff is trained to protect your confidentiality. We will not release any information about you to anyone without your approval. However, please be aware that anyone can access county tax records. If your address is on the tax rolls, you may be contacted by a tenant! If this happens, we strongly suggest you not negotiate any situation with the tenant. Ask your resident to call their property manager and then notify us.
- What liabilities do I have, and how can I protect myself?
As the owner of the property, you could be held liable for known and some unknown conditions at the property. In most cases, your fire and liability insurance policy will cover you adequately. However, you should discuss with your insurance company the amount of recommended limits for your situation. Our experience has found that "most owners are under insured for liability coverage".
Our management agreement with you, which is the same as most other management companies, has an indemnity clause that places basic liability on the property owner that are no fault of the management company. Insurance companies know this and most will willingly name the property manager as an additional insured at no extra cost. This is important to do, as you want the insurance company to protect us both, in the unlikely event of a lawsuit.
- Can you help me if I already have a resident?
Yes, provided that the current lease is one we can enforce. Once the current lease concludes, we will sign your current resident onto our lease. In cases where the resident is behind in their rent, we can take the necessary steps to either get them to pay or evict if we cannot obtain payment. Many residents will suddenly find a way to pay the rent or move as soon as they hear that a management company has been secured to follow through with collection.
- Can you use one of my vendors for repairs?
We would be happy to have one of your vendors fill out a vendor packet to see if they meet our vendor qualifications. In addition to being fully insured, a vendor must agree to a certain level of quality, response time and warranty provisions.