If you own rental or vacation homes, you have to decide whether you want to handle repairs to the property yourself or whether you want to hire a property maintenance company to handle the repairs for you. There are many benefits to hiring a property maintenance company, especially if you are not handy, don't live near your properties, or are already busy enough with your work and family commitments. However, not every property maintenance company is the same. Here are a few questions you will want to ask a company before hiring them to ensure they are the right company for your homes.

Do They Use In-House Contractors or Do They Outsource the Work?

One of the questions you will want to ask a company you are considering hiring for your property maintenance needs is whether they use in-house, licensed contractors for repairs or whether they outsource the work and hire independent contractors. If they outsource the work, ask if they have approved vendors they have worked with in the past or how they screen new contractors. You don't want them to hire a contractor they've never worked with before, only to find out the contractor did sub-par work.

What Repairs Is the Homeowner Responsible For?

When you hire a property maintenance company, you are charged a monthly fee for their service. This fee goes to maintaining your home, including common repairs like leaky faucets, clogged toilets, or air conditioning maintenance. However, it does not cover everything that can wrong with the property you own. Many property maintenance companies will not cover roof repairs or foundation problems. Get a list of what repairs and types of maintenance are covered and which are not so you can gauge the value of the plan and so you can be prepared if issues arise.

How Long Is The Warranty and What Is Their Cancellation Policy?

The last question you will want to ask a property maintenance company is how long of a contract you will have to sign and what their cancellation policy is. Contracts can range anywhere from a year to several years. However, you do not want to lock yourself into a contract and then find out that your needs are not being met or run into financial problems and want to sell the home. As such, ask what their cancellation policy is if you are not satisfied with the service or if you want to sell your home.

Taking the time to read reviews, check references, and get estimates from various property maintenance companies will help you narrow your search. Be sure to also ask about contracts and cancellations, what repairs and maintenance services are covered, and who they use for maintenance and repairs to choose the best company for your investment properties.