Frequently Asked Questions
All interested applicants are required to complete a Rental Application. We run credit, criminal, and eviction searches, verify income, employment and rental history. Once an application has been processed we will contact you and go over the information. We will give you our recommendation and whether to approve or deny the applicant; however, we leave the final decision up to you. We will never move anyone into your home unless you feel completely comfortable with them!
Once an applicant has been selected, we will contact them and set up their move in day/time. If the move in will not take place for 2 weeks or more, we will collect a $500.00 Holding Deposit. This helps to give you assurance that the applicants are serious and will not back out. Once the deposit is collected, we will stop advertising the property and, should the applicant back out, you are entitled to deduct “lost rental damages” from the deposit at a pro-rated daily rate.
We complete a 5 page move in inspection form for the property which we will require the tenants to sign prior to move in. Tenants are given 3 days after move in to find and report any damage that may have been missed on the inspection form.
At the move in appointment, we complete all required contracts with the tenants and collect their move in funds. Move in funds are required to be in the form of cash, cashier’s check, or money order. We collect the full 1st month’s rent and security deposit upon move in, regardless of the day of the month. The next month will then be pro-rated to reflect the actual move in day. We also verify that the necessary utilities have been transferred to the tenant’s name. We then give the tenants the keys to the home so they can begin moving in.
Once the move in is complete, we will send you copies of all of the signed contracts, your first statement, and rent check. We deduct our management fee, any advertising fees, and any maintenance invoices that may have been completed from this check.
We do our best to process rents as quickly as possible and will mail your check as soon as we are able. Generally, you can expect to receive your monthly rent check around the 10th of each month, provided your tenant pays on time. Rent is due on the 1st of each month and is considered late if not received by close of business on the 5th. If a tenant pays with a personal check, we have to wait 3 business days to ensure the check clears the bank. Once funds have cleared, we pay any outstanding maintenance invoices for the property, deduct our management fee and send you the balance, along with a statement and copies of any invoices.
We will complete a property inspection upon your request.
Tenants are instructed to contact our office directly for any maintenance issues that may arise. We do have a maintenance line for issues that may occur after hours. However, we simply cannot get to every call 24 hours a day so we do provide tenants with contact information for Amador Plumbing, they have someone on call 24 hours for emergencies. This helps to ensure further damage does not occur to your home should tenants not be able to reach us immediately. However, we do monitor the line as much as possible and will respond to emergencies as quickly as we are able. We will try to contact you prior to sending someone out, however, if it is an urgent issue we will go ahead and send the appropriate person as soon as possible. For routine maintenance, we will contact you and let you know about the issue before sending someone out. Our Property Management Agreement with you gives us permission to authorize expenditures of a pre-determined amount without obtaining prior permission, and to authorize emergencies repairs when required. See the Property Management Agreement for the amount and details. We have vendors that we frequently work with for just about every type of issue that may come up, or we will work with any preferred vendors that you may have. We also work directly with home warranty companies so be sure to let us know if you have an active plan and provide us with the company name and plan number. We will pay any maintenance invoices out of the monthly rent whenever possible and will send you copies of all invoices.
Tenants have until the close of business on the 5th of each month to pay rent. Rent received after this date is subject to a late fee. Our office does keep this late fee to help cover the additional costs our office incurs when a tenant pays late. We will contact tenants who have not paid to inquire on the status of their payment and will keep you informed. If a tenant has not paid, we can serve them with a 3 Day Notice to Pay or Quit. Once this notice has been served, the tenants have 3 days to pay the rent due or they are subject to an eviction. Once you have decided that you want to move forward with an eviction, we will work with the attorney to make sure all notices are served properly, will provide all necessary documentation, and will accompany the attorney (and you if preferred) in court. We have attorneys we can recommend or you can use one of your choosing. Property owners are responsible for the upfront attorney and court costs, however, the Rental Agreement with the tenants stipulate that in the advent of a lawsuit the prevailing party is responsible for these fees so the judge will award this amount as part of the judgement.Evictions are never enjoyable and we do everything in our power to ensure you will not have to go through one, however, they are sometimes necessary and we will assist you in every way possible to make the process as swift and smooth as possible.
Tenants are required to submit a written 30 day notice to vacate before moving out (provided they are not in a lease). We will notify you when we receive their notice. Once keys have been turned in to our office, we will complete a move out inspection, using the inspection form completed at move in. We verify the final utility bills have been paid, that the tenants have had the carpets professionally cleaned, and that all keys, garage openers, etc. have been returned. If we hold the security deposit, we will contact the appropriate vendors to have any damages repaired and will deduct these costs from the tenant’s security deposit. Any past due rent will also be deducted from the deposit. Law requires that we have all of this completed and the remainder of the security deposit in the mail within 21 days of receiving keys so we work quickly to ensure we always meet this deadline. Once everything has been completed, we mail you copies of all documentation for your files.
The IRS requires us to send in a form 1099 each year for each property we collect rent for. You will also receive a copy of this form from us at tax time. The form will be in the name of the person that completed the W-9 form when you first signed up for services, this will be the same person that the monthly checks are made payable to. Due to extra staffing and administrative costs that we incur, we do charge an annual processing fee of $25.00 to help cover these costs. This fee is charged per owner, not per property so it will remain the same regardless of the number of properties we manage for you. Please seek the advice of your tax professional for more questions regarding the 1099 form.
For property owners living outside of the state of California, the state also requires us to withhold 7% of the rent and submit it to them for taxes. However, many owners are exempt from this tax. When you first signed up with us, we sent you a form 588 with included more information about this exemption. Unless this form is completed and returned to our office, we are mandated by the State to withhold this tax. Please consult with your tax professional for more information.
If you have additional questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us!