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Every investor wants to know how much they should be paying for property management fees. In Brisbane, QLD the industry average is 8.8% of all rental income, plus GST. This is usually dependent upon your properties location – with properties closer to the CBD often having lower fees due to more competition between agents. When it comes to property management, it’s worth shopping around!
If you’re a property investor or landlord in Brisbane or about to be, you probably want to compare our rates and learn more about property management fees in Brisbane. Getting the best deal and a great management agency is crucial to the success of your investment.
Fees are not set in stone. From suburb to suburb they vary, influenced by the local market, property type and what the agency or property manager decide to charge. Always do your research. If you skip over the fine print you could end up paying for additional expenses, including re-letting fees, monthly administration costs or a new lease preparation fee.
Find out more about what fees and charges you can expect below.
Property management basics
- A specialist – someone with industry knowledge who knows the local market and has experience managing properties similar to yours
- An excellent communicator – the backbone of a professional and personalised service
- Value for money
- Peace of mind
The value of a good property manager can make or break your investment. The right property manager will guarantee you achieve the highest possible rental return with quality tenants that have been screened and checked. They will also be in charge of liasing with your tenants and will arrange for collection of bond and rent payments, maintenance requests, lease renewals, managing routine inspections and more.
A property manager’s commission is generally based on a percentage of the weekly rent, and can be between 7% to 12% depending on where you live in QLD.
How much are property management fees in Brisbane?
Just as real estate agent commissions vary, property management fees across Brisbane differ widely, dependent upon circumstances and the experience of the professional you select.
Lower fees can be found in suburbs that are closer to the CBD where the value of the property is likely to be higher or where there are plenty of competing agencies or property managers in the area. For this reason, inner-city suburbs like Paddington will usually have lower fees than an outer suburb like Aspley.
In Brisbane, you can find fees that run from as low as 7% (a flat rate offered by propper) in or near the CBD, all the way up to 12% in the outer suburbs, while the industry average sits at around 8.8%. Some discount providers charge less than 7%, however, the service provided is often not comprehensive, and you may find that ‘you get what you pay for’.
Lower fees don’t always come with better service. It could mean less services are included. In many cases you may have to pay for extra support and representation in situations like tribunals or for advertising costs (all of this is included in propper’s flat rate of 7%) so make sure to check these details with any property management agencies you are looking at in Brisbane so you won’t be unexpectedly out of pocket later.
Flat rate versus percentage-based property management
How do property managers in Brisbane charge for their services? The two most common fee models you will encounter in Brisbane are percentage-based and flat-fee.
Percentage-of-rent fee model
This is the most common way property management fees are structured – charged as a percentage of the gross weekly rental amount. Be sure to ask for a breakdown of the agency’s fees before you sign, so you know what services are included.
What property management fees will I be paying in Brisbane?
The two most common property management fees that apply are:
- Management fee combined with rent collection fee (in Brisbane this can range anywhere between 7% all the way up to 12% in suburbia)
- Letting fee (typically 1 – 4 week’s rent)
Depending on your agency, other property management fees you may need to pay include:
- Internet marketing fee ($0 – $200)
- Lease renewal fee (typically 1 week rent plus GST)
- Monthly administration fee ($5 to $10 per month)
- Court or tribunal attendance (billed per hour)
- Photographers fee ($75 – $150)
- Tenancy database check ($10 – $12 per person)
- Property condition report ($100)
- Routine inspection fee ($10 – $30)
- Annual statement fee ($25 to $50)
- Lease transfer fee ($0 to $500)
Flat-fee property management model
New to the property management scene, the flat-fee model will charge an inclusive single fee instead of separate individual fees. The price is not influenced by the rental amount or the size of the property. Each landlord is paying the same percentage rate.
The fee is determined by location and there are certain agencies that do have additional charges to the flat fee or percentage, so you must do your research.
Here is a sample of flat-fee property management providers and what they charge:
- Queensland’s Pure Rentals charges $1,249 + GST per annum.
- NSW-based ‘Once’ charges an annual flat-fee of $1,100 incl GST per annum
- Brisbane-based ‘propper’ has an all-inclusive management fee of 7.0% of your weekly rent including GST, with no other charges. If you’re interested, you can take a look at our FAQs page or submit an enquiry to find out more.
What does a property manager do and what should you expect?
You may want to cut costs and manage your property yourself, but if life is busy and you don’t live close to your investment property, a professional property manager can save you time and eliminate the stress associated with owning an investment property.
So what exactly will a property manager do for you?
A managing agent’s responsibilities include:
- Sourcing the right tenants
- Ensuring the tenancy agreement is completed and signed
- Collecting rent and ensuring you receive this
- Lodging the rental bond
- Liaising with tenants and coordinating repairs to the property
- Conducting regular property inspections
- Handling disputes with tenants, including attending court and tribunals
- Paying rates and bills on your behalf
What questions should you ask a prospective property manager?
Are you questioning what to look for in a property manager? Once you have found a property manager you are interested in, make sure to vet them with the following questions:
- How long have you been a property manager?
- How many properties do you currently manage?
- Does your business also handle sales?
- How do you handle requests for repairs from tenants?
- Do you check and monitor repairs to my property?
- How do you find and screen tenants?
- How do you handle a tenant who is late with rent payments?
- What are your fees and how are they structured?
- What is included/excluded in your fees?
A professional property management team should have no problem giving you a breakdown of their standard commision and additional fees. Most times, you will be able to negotiate the commission and make arrangements for issues that arise, such as emergency repairs or other unexpected expenses that come up when handling a property.
Signing a management agency agreement
Once you have found the right agent for you, you will need to sign a written contract called a “management agency agreement” to formalise your relationship. This agreement outlines the terms of their service and what they are responsible for, as well as your obligations.
Ensure you list everything you want them to handle on your behalf. Don’t skimp on the details as it needs to be as comprehensive as possible so that all parties understand their requirements.
Include the following in your agreement:
- An itemised list of all the fees and charges that apply
- How often routine inspections take place
- The procedure for rental repairs and maintenance being undertaken
- The notice period for terminating the agreement – typically 30 to 60 days written notice
Property managers are not allowed to change or adjust their fees once you have signed this agreement. Any new charges or fees need to be covered by a new agreement.
Switching to a new property manager
If you feel that your property manager isn’t achieving the results you expect, you are entitled to switch to another property manager. It’s a relatively easy process, which involves informing the new company you would like to go with them. Simply fill out a transfer management form with all your details and they will handle the rest.
Let your existing agent know in writing that you are ending the contract. After a notice period of 30 to 60 days you will be free to engage the services of the new company.