Owner Frequently Asked Questions

  • Q: Why should I use your company vs. another?

    • It is our top priority to make your property investment successful.
    • We are the only company that offers cost-efficient Guarantee Owner Plans covering costs of: eviction, damage, past due payments and attorney fees. A 30+ year track record exists of no owner losses on these preceding features. Our Guarantee Plans also include some paint, minor maintenance, marketing and vacancy cost coverage. (some restrictions apply).
    • A quality full service Standard Management Plan is available also.
    • Our company has been family owned and operated for over 30 years specializing in single family homes, townhomes and condos.
    • Our rates are competitive
    • Our staff is long-term and highly trained. There is high ratio of # of employees to homes managed. This improves the quality of management for your home.
    • The company broker is an “MPM” – Master Property Manager which is the highest professional designation for home property management. No other local managers have earned this National Association of Residential Property Managers (NARPM) designation requiring many hundreds of training hours and service.
    • Our company internet reviews are consistently near or at the top: Google, Yelp, BBB
  • Q: What will my property rent for?

    A: We will provide you with a well-researched rental comparable analysis. Overpricing causes unnecessary long costly vacancies and underpricing will keep an owner from receiving a reasonable rental rate. There are many factors we look at which include, but are not limited to: property size, location, condition of the property, age, neighborhood, time of the year, comparable properties recently rented or on the rental market. This extensive analysis will help you to be more successful.
  • Q: How long will it take to rent my vacancy?

    A: As soon as possible is our goal, but done professionally. Starting with a competitive rental rate and a home that is in good marketable condition, our goal is to rent your property in under 30 days to a qualified tenant.

    A success-achieving marketable condition means a home in good repair inside and out, updated where needed, walls and flooring in attractive condition and thoroughly cleaned. We offer suggestions on what has worked well and how to effectively prepare your property for the market. For marketing, we utilize the internet extensively and the rental MLS. We also have staff available 7 days a week to show your property to prospective residents.
  • Q: How does Secure One screen for good residents?

    A: Secure One requires a detailed application from each adult. All applications are carefully screened for credit, rental and ownership references, and income. A credit check will reveal hidden addresses and employers. If the credit history passes our requirements we will then verify prior residences and talk to their landlord about those previous tenancies. We access tax records to verify ownership. We will also check employment and income levels. No applicant will be approved until all questions are reasonably answered. Evictions, damages and re-renting are very expensive in southern Ca. so we treat each application very carefully. Our rental policies are posted on our website. Unlike many management companies, we do not outsource the verification checks on applicant income and prior housing as we want to quality control the collection of this essential information. Having a very professional screening program saves a property owner from many unnecessary costs and damages. Our cost-efficient unique guarantee leasing plans have provided a 30+ year history of no owner costs on eviction, lost rental income, damage, late payment or attorney fees.
  • Q: What should I do to get my property ready to market?

    A: Proper pricing is a good beginning. A very important controllable factor in renting a property is its condition. The walls should be freshly painted (or appear freshly painted), carpets or other flooring should also appear very attractive. Everything should be tip-top clean inside and out. Also, the yard should be in good condition both front and back. We can offer you help with an inspection and reasonable vendor recommendations.
  • Q: How is maintenance handled?

    A: Residents are instructed to call, email, or log into our website with their repair requests. We will compare the request to our history of maintenance on your property. We also keep on file your dollar limits for repairs as well as your contact information. Most callers need routine assistance and we can help them either by walking them through a simple procedure or by scheduling one of our technicians or vendors.
  • Q: Who handles urgent, emergency problems during the night, on weekends, and holidays?

    A: We have a 24/7 response to all maintenance calls. Our own company on-duty property manager (not outsourced) will talk with the resident to determine what is needed. Many times, we solve a problem over the phone or by simply calling one of our plumbers that we have access to 24 hours a day.
  • Q: What liabilities do I have and how can I protect myself?

    A: 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/liability insurance policy will cover you adequately. You should discuss with your insurance company the amount of liability coverage for your situation. The policy must be specifically for a non-owner occupied rental dwelling: a landlord policy. One million should be your minimum liability coverage and may require an umbrella policy to reach this. Our management or leasing agreement with you, which is like most other management companies, has an indemnity clause that places basic liability responsibility to the owner’s policy. Insurance companies know this and most will willingly name the property manager as an additional insured party to the policy 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. In most cases, just acting with common sense and acting quickly will lessen the likelihood of a lawsuit.

    We strongly recommend you add coverage for mold damage as these claims can be expensive and complicated. Your policy should also provide the ability to recover lost rents. A common example is a severe water loss or fire, which requires the residents to vacate to make the necessary repairs. With the proper coverage, your insurance company will cover the damages plus the lost rents, as well as support for the resident's temporary housing cost.
  • Q: Who manages my property?

    A: Your property investment will have one main point of contact for you, the resident and vendors. This keeps all important aspects more coordinated. Our mangers are licensed, experienced and well trained and have dedicated team management support. Their support includes leasing, inspections and bookkeeping personnel. It is not uncommon in our industry to see other management companies attempt to manage up to 2x the number of properties we allocate to our staff. That approach can easily lead to burnt out staff and unnecessary expensive losses for an owner. Your home is an important asset and comparing property management fees in the market requires more than just looking at the monthly rate.
  • Q: Will you inspect my property?

    A: When we take the property on, we conduct an initial inspection which includes a written report and photos. We also conduct pre-move-in inspections and tenant move-out inspections. The property owner receives a written report after each tenant move-out.

    While rented, we schedule your property for an annual inspection where we check for health and safety issues as well as roof leaks, pipe leaks, and tub/shower leaks. We also photograph the property and we do provide you with a written report.

    We also conduct drive-by inspections at least once a quarter. If a drive-by inspection suggests any reason to be concerned, we will give notice to enter and inspect.

    Our vendors are trained and required to report any needed cleaning or damages to the property when they provide service. This will prompt steps to cure the issue which may require added inspections.

    We also suggest you have a “termite inspection” performed at least every two years to check for dry rot, leaks under the house or in the attic, and for infestations.
  • Q: Should I accept pets?

    A: Some owners don’t want pets because of possible damage. We understand and we will professionally carry out your directions on this.

    Here is some background information that you want to consider: Over 60% of tenants have a pet today! If an owner doesn’t accept pets in their rental then this 60% of applicants are automatically disqualified.  Sometimes after a rental sits vacant for an extended amount of time, owners change their mind and agree to accept pets.  Then frequently the vacancy is filled very quickly.  There could be thousands of dollars in lost rent while waiting for a tenant.  That lost rent would likely exceed any damage caused by the pet.

    If a property owner should decide to allow pets, we have a strict pet addendum and a high security deposit. Pet limitations include no dangerous breeds, no puppies or kittens and a limit of one. Any pet damages will be deducted from the security deposit.
  • Q: What do the Secure One programs cost?

    A: Costs vary depending upon the type of property you have and level of service. Contact us here and complete our contact form for Guarantee Leases and Property Management Services.  We will review with you our current rates for your home. All rates are subject to negotiation based on location, property characteristics and number of properties in your portfolio. Our rates are competitive within our market.