Getting Started FAQs
Q: How do I get started?
A: Getting started with Circle Property Management is really easy. Completing our new client online form is the fastest way to get started. This helps us to start the set up process and establish the basis for a new account.
- Contact information for Condo/HOA management company
- Home owner’s insurance company information
- Home warranty company contact information
- Community amenities
- Trash pick-up policies
- Utility companies
- Mail box information
- Parking policies
- Contact information for any vendors you would like us to use
- Three lease related questions
- How much you would like us to hold for maintenance and repairs.
New Property Management Account
Q: How Does Circle PM Deal With Work Orders?
Q: Are there certain things I should do to the property to prepare for a tenant?
A: In most Virginia counties and Washington DC you are required to supply working smoke detectors on every floor and we also recommend supplying a new fire extinguisher for the kitchen. The lease your tenant’s sign warrant the smoke detectors and we suggest that, if you have an older smoke detector, you replace it with a newer unit which has an easy access door for the battery. We also recommend you do a couple of routine maintenance items before you leave especially if they have not been done in a couple of years.
- Replace smoke detector batteries and test.
- Professionally clean the dryer vent.
- Check your sump pump to make sure it is working properly and, if you have a battery backup, test to make sure the battery is still operational.
- Put in a new air filter upon departure
- If you have a high efficiency gas furnace, please make sure you clean the venting system in winter and or the evaporator coil drain in the summer.
Q: Does Circle Property Management Inspect my Property?
A: Yes! We will make the initial inspection to review any risk management issues like loose railings, improperly installed items and potential maintenance issues. We will document all your mechanical systems, HVAC, plumbing and appliances for our maintenance system records. As part of the inspection we will review mold policies and take a look around to see if there is any evidence of mold. After the inspection we will be happy to share any marketing recommendations and schedule a good time to take pictures for the MLS listing.
Q: Do I need a special Insurance Policy?
A: Yes, once you have a tenant you will need to convert your owner policy to a landlord policy. In most cases it will cost less than your current policy because you don’t have to insure any personal property with the exception of appliances, which should have some coverage.
Q: I have a Fireplace, should I get it inspected?
A: We recommend you inspect any wood burning fireplace if you anticipate the tenant will use it during their stay. If you have a gas fireplace, please make sure the pilot light is lit and the fireplace is working. It is very helpful to provide us with a copy of the instructions to have on hand to provide the tenant in case they wish to re-ignite the system. It can be costly to have a vendor visit to start the pilot light.
Q: I have a maintenance contract, should I continue?
A: It is always prudent to maintain your equipment but it is important to service any sprinkler systems and sump pumps. Sprinkler systems should have the lines blown out prior to winter. We will be happy to review your plan and make further recommendations on our initial site visit.
Q: Should I have the carpets steam cleaned?
A: Yes. We require your tenant to clean the carpets on exit and it is difficult to enforce this policy if the carpets were not cleaned prior to their entry. Please provide us a copy of the receipt. We also can handle the cleaning if you’re busy towards the end and need a little help. We do not recommend dry cleaning your carpets and have found that a good steam cleaning company can clean and stretch the carpets, but please allow a couple of day for the carpets to dry. In the summer and winter set your thermostat to 70 degrees.
Q: What should I do with the equipment service manuals?
A: We recommend you place all the service manuals in a binder and maintain the records on site in the property. This is very helpful for our vendors and the tenant as well. Certain pages we like to scan to our system for the tenant. The most common pages we keep on file are gas fireplaces, garage door programming, microwave operating instructions, security panel instructions and any proprietary manuals for sprinkler systems and audio video systems.
Q: When should I start marketing the property?
A: Our official day for marketing is “picture day”. We recommend marketing your home 45 to 60 days prior to your departure. The day your home is ready for pictures to be placed on the MLS is the day we start the marketing process. Once we have the high resolution, wide-angle photos, we can upload them to the MLS system, which also populates up to 250 additional websites including Zillow and Trulia. It is essential that your home be clean and ready for the photos. It is very important to have all the photos ready and uploaded at one time.
Q: Can I leave any personal Items in the property?
A: We do NOT recommend you leave any personal items at the property. They can be damaged or lost.