What level of service should I expect from a property manager?

This is a generic question, I don't really know what I should expect as an answer.

I've had an investment property in Mooroolbark VIC for a few years and have gotten used to leaving the PM a number of messages and I sometimes get a call back. I believed this was normal.

In the last year I purchased a few more in SEQLD and found the PM's always return my calls, always follow up everything, and always do everything meticulously. They're also a fair bit cheaper.

I've been fortunate the tenants have been good and the property in Vic has gone up a good 20% in a few years enabling me to buy more.

I'm paying 8%+gst + 2 weeks rent for a new tenant here. Is that normal?

I know this will sound petty however I'm after advice to minimize the impact of changing PM mid tenancy because I'm frustrated with paying more than I should for them not doing regular quarterly inspections and simply not caring? I can wait until the lease ends before taking action, as that will be about 6 months.

Could some people share stories of pitfalls and successes of moving agencies? I feel I got lucky in Qld with the PM's I have who spent a lot of time talking and educating me even before I bought anything, they still occasionally call and ask if things are going well and if they're performing as I expect, I suspect just to keep in touch (they'll be getting a huge xmas hamper from me as a result!) even though they have my business.

Can't answer about the fees in Victoria.
It's good to compare fees, but it's also important to consider other factors such as the amount of properties managed, their % of vacant properties, management processes and who works with your property.

From the sounds of it, I would change agents as soon as possible.
You are better off having a more proactive one now so at least if the tenants give notice to vacate, you will have a better chance at renting it quickly.

There shouldn't be any issue changing as long as you give the required notice.
If they're not returning your call, or doing what they should do - why bother paying them anymore?

Changing agents isn't a big deal, and fortunately for VIC there isn't really any notice period - usually the new agent is who notifies the old agent.

Also, a lot to consider when changing agents and not just the fees.
The fee is negotiable, I pay 5% incl GST, 1 week rent for renting out (in Victoria). It is very easy to change the agent - just select a new one and he/she will take care of everything else. Will cost you nothing.

Regarding getting back on you enquiries, it is really depend on the individual agent. Some are good, others not.
Would you mind sharing how you negotiate? With a current agent or a new one? Do you simply offer less or does the PM offer fewer services, eg half yearly inspections instead of quarterly?