Self Manage or PM



From: Judith Mill

We're in the process of purchasing our 1st IP & are weighing up the pros & cons of self manage vs Agent.

Some friends successfully self manage and advocate this as more sucessful and of course cheaper - say it requires little work. They have a number of properties some which are managed thru an agent.

Others find self managing is risky and time consuming.

Although our final decision will come down to $!!!. We are considering paying an agent a letting fee & taking over from there.

Any ideas or opinions

Regards, Judith
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Reply: 1
From: Ian Findlay

Self manage. Why give an agent a big chunk of your hard earned cash for next
to nil work?
Get them to find the tenants, screen the tenants on the RE databases etc,
arrange that the tenants pay the rent straight into your bank account and
pay them a weeks rent for their trouble.
Then self-manage.

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Reply: 1.1
From: Lesley .

Aren't agents fees deductible anyway? If so why not get an agent to do it?
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Reply: 1.1.1
From: Duncan M

On 6/9/02 4:10:00 PM, Lesley . wrote:
>Aren't agents fees deductible
>anyway? If so why not get an
>agent to do it?

Agent's Fees are deductible but they are NOT free.

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From: Gail H


I think it comes down to how you feel about dealing with tenants directly. I use agents because I couldn't bear the thought of someone ringing me up at 9pm to tell me their toilet isn't working. And the thought of hassling someone who is late with rent is my idea of a nightmare. Therefore, I am happy to pay the agent a fee to put the distance between me and the tenants. If these things don't worry you, then the cost of an agent is probably not worth it.

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From: Glenys Shepherd

I have done and am currently doing both, however each situation is different. I don't do it to save money on agents fees. I took over the management of one of our properties because the agent shut up shop. They were going to pass my details over to another agent but they leased commercial property and my gut feeling was that my tenants were outstanding and I didn't like the sound of the company who was going to take over the rent roll so I decided to do it myself This particular tenant always paid rent one month in advance, looked after the property as if it were their own and luckily I didn't receive any phone calls in
the middle of the night. I might also add they were in one state and I am miles away in another.
I had a second unit that was managed by the same company and also decided to take this one on myself. After all I had a high profile highly paid AFL person as a tenant. I ended up handing this over to an agent because he was months behind in his rent. When he finally vacated, the hole in the wall had to be fixed and the wax on the carpet had to be removed as well as general cleaning. It would have been difficult to do this at a distance.
Ultimately you have to decide. I would suggest paying an agent and keep a close eye on them to make sure they do their job properly and when you buy your second IP if it is in similar area then you have already an agent in place. Jan Somers says that she has actually bought in an area because of the managing agent.
I apologise if this is a bit long winded.
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From: Michael Keleher

From my experience it depends on the type of property and likely tenant.
With an expensive or newish property little or no management is usually required so most agents are perfectly qualified or yourself if you wish.
For mid range properties where constant management is required agents are perfectly qualified to collect the rent if by accident it actually gets paid....or maybe do it yourself.
For downmarket low rent properties definitely manage it yourself......because the agents are not interested (like the other 2 groups but worse).....and also these types of tenants respond well to a midnight tune up, hate tribunals of any sort and are used to late night callers like the police and their drug dealer.
Cheers Mike
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Reply: 2
From: Jas

On 6/9/02 1:15:00 PM, Judith Mill wrote:
>We're in the process of
>purchasing our 1st IP & are
>weighing up the pros & cons of
>self manage vs Agent.

Many tenants dislike renting from the owners. There is a belief that the owners are too greedy/lack professionalism/are too precious about their properties.

The other side of the coin are the tenants who specifically look for an owner managed property, just so they can shaft the owners. Owners, particularly new owners, don’t know how and when to take trouble makers to the tribunal.


In the end, all bankruptcies are caused by too many tax deductions
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Reply: 2.1
From: John Fewster

I agree with Jas.
Agents wont take the multitude of excuses that tenants seem to provide as to why they cant pay the rent this week. Also, its too easy to become friends with them, as I did with my very first tenants, which made it very hard to make the tough decisions when they needed to be made. I ended up losing 15 weeks rent by the time we had them evicted. Been with an agent ever since. I think its a small price to pay for the peace of mind it gives me.
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Reply: 2.1.1
From: Felicity W.

I've never self managed, and I don't think I would. Partially because I know I'd be too soft, but also because I've had two situations now that have required claims on landlord's insurance, one included going to the tribunal to evict a tenant (and this was a new, higher end property, so it happens!!) and I have to say that the stress to me was absolutely minimal. I'm so glad I didn't have to do any of that myself.
Keep smiling
Felicity :cool:
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From: Glenn Mott

I have self managed my properties for the last 4 years; winning some, losing some, learning heaps!

It is work, be sure of that. Why else would people make profitable businesses out of it? That is one of the attractions to me, increasing cashflow, learning how to run my own business, and learning how to say NO!

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Reply: 3
From: John P

Hi Judith, as you can see by the variety of responses,I think it is fair to say that it is a very personal choice. I think that if you are going to self-manage, you should definitely buy a book called "Managing Rental Property" by Phillipa Bellemore. If you decide to get an agent, you really need to shop around for a good one as this can really make all the difference. When you meet them, find out exactly what they are going to do for you as managing agents. You might like to ask them questions like, how many properties do you manage?? I have a property manager and have done for 6.5 years and overall they have been great. Don't forget you can then "USE" them for advice on what's happening in your area, what the property down the road is renting for, how the rental market is going etc etc. Just be aware that if you decide to manage yourself, some landlord insurance policies will not be available to you as they only deal with property managers. I think this should be one of your main considerations. Hope this has been of some help.


John Poulos
RESI Home Loans Rep
0412 588986
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From: Michele B

Glenn is absolutely right. Great way to learn the business and a great way to develop your assertiveness skills. Later on, engage managing agents when your time is better spent elsewhere - the advantage here is you'll be able to demand superior service from your agents because you know your stuff.
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From: Ross Sondergeld

Hi Glen,

Subject: Self Manage or PM

You said, "Self management? It is work, be sure of that. Why else would
people make profitable businesses out of it? That is one of the attractions
to me, increasing cashflow, learning how to run my own business, and
learning how to say NO!"

Property management is profitable when you manage about 200ish properties.
(Robert Bevan - R/E Profitability Studies.)

Well, i think it was 200ish... Mostly because it became more efficient and
economies of scale reached the point whereby... it produces a decent profit

P.S. I don't know much about property management !!! ;)

Ross Sondergeld ~ Buyer Agent

" Imagine buying real estate the easy way...
...with a Buyer Agent on your side!!! "

Buyerside Real Estate Mobile 0412 289 464
Office 9b, 34 Glenferrie Drive Office (07) 5562 1555
East Quay Corporate Park Fax (07) 5562 1248
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