Hallmark Property Management

Orange County Property Management Company in California

Call Today 714-841-4500

Owner FAQ

Are your Property Managers licensed?

Yes, all of our property managers and showing agents are licensed to perform real estate services in the state of California.  We are also members of the California Association of Residential Property Managers, Orange County Association of Realtors, National Association of Residential Property Managers, National Associations of Realtors, and the California Association of Realtors.


Can you help me get my property in 'rental ready' condition?

Yes, we have a wide array of vendors that can assist you in repairs ranging from general cleaning to repainting a room in your home.  For a small fee we manage this process to ensure the work is performed to the highest quality in the shortest amount of time, we then authorize payment to the vendors from your owners account upon its professional completion.

Please call to discuss what your home may need and for specifics on our service.


Can you put the money directly into my checking account?

Yes.   We actually cut out the middle man (the U.S. Post Office) and only provide the direct deposit service (ACH transfer) for our owners when we manage their property.


Do you have any set up fees?

No, we don’t have a setup fee. Most other companies have a one-time set up fee of $200-$300 for the new owner for property management services.


Do I have to turn all of the utilities on when there is no tenant?

Yes, for two basic reasons:

Your property will show better when lights and air is circulating through the property.  If the property rents faster (and typically it will) because the unit shows better, you will easily make up the cost of the utility.

When we do the pre-move in walkthrough, we need to verify that the appliances, sinks, showers, toilets, etc. are all functioning properly.  You want to set the right tone with the tenant by turning over the property to the tenant in a clean, ready-to-go property type condition.


Do you do walkthroughs when the property is tenant occupied?

Definitely.  This is one of our keys to keeping the property in great condition.  

Do you get my approval before doing any maintenance work?

We will contact you on issues that will require work that will cost over $300.00.

There are instances in which we may take action before you are notified. For example, when the safety or well-being of the tenant is a concern or in instances where the property is likely to incur damage if immediate action is not taken.


Do you provide monthly statements to owners each month?

Yes.  Statements can be accessed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  We typically post these statements on or around the 1st of each month.


Does your property management agreement give you exclusive right to sell my property?

Absolutely not.  We will assist you in the sale of your property now or in the future if you desire, but we don’t bind you to that in the management agreement.  This is a trick that discount property managers use.  They manage your home at little or no profit knowing they have you locked into an eventual sales listing.  We think, at the time you decide to eventually sell, you should be free to decide who the best listing agent will be for your property given its location and characteristics. 


How do you handle maintenance requests?

We handle property management concerns like an ER handles patients.  A patient having a heart attack will be seen before one with a sprained wrist.  That does not mean that a garbage disposal repair is not important, but we most likely will send out a vendor to fix a broken window at a property before fixing that kitchen appliance below your sink.


We strive to handle each request in a timely manner, hire licensed and insured vendors who will have the request performed correctly the first time at a fair cost to the owner (in cases that the tenant is responsible for the repair, the tenant will be billed accordingly.)

How informed will I be about what happens with my property?

Aside from any special considerations unique to you or your property, our rule of thumb is this: If something may cause a potential interruption in your ordinary cash flow (loss of tenant or non-emergency repair in excess of $300), we will let you know about it right away. Other than that, the saying "no news is good news" is most appropriate. Non-emergency items will be communicated along with your monthly statements and, of course, we encourage you to contact the property manager anytime you have a question or wish to discuss something.

The property owners who appreciate us the most are those who truly want everything handled for them turn-key and don’t want to be bothered on every single event.  They realize we have a vested interest in their interest and will work extremely hard to provide great service.

How much is your yearly leasing and property management fee?

Please call us today at (714) 841-4500 or send us an email to info@hallmarkpmi.com for a free, no obligation quote.


How much more rent will I receive if my property is rented furnished?

Maybe more, maybe no difference, but unfortunately maybe less.  Each property is different, and each situation is different.  Based on our experience, we encourage the owners to remove all of the furnishings prior to putting the property on the market for rent. Please contact us on specifics regarding your property. 


How much will my rental property rent for?

Often real estate investors will set rents based on how much they need to cover their mortgage, or how much they want, or on what they heard another rental home is renting for. These methods almost always create problems. Arriving at the appropriate rent level can be a complex process that must take many factors into account. This is one of many areas where hands-on experience makes all the difference.


How quickly will you lease my rental property?

The million dollar question! Historically we rent most of the properties within a month from the day we put it on the market but we can never say with certainty how long it will take to lease a rental home. There are many variables that come into play including location, time of the year, price, etc.  This is a numbers game and to win, you have to have as many potential tenants looking at your home as possible. They can't look at it if they don't know it is there, and advertising is the only way to let them know what you have for them.  We follow our proven processes until we find the right tenant for your real estate investment.


How soon can you start managing my home?

We can start assisting you today. Please call us at (714) 841-4500 or send us an email to info@hallmarkpmi.com to get the process started.


I want to manage the property myself, can I do that?

Yes, some owners desire a hands on approach to managing their home.  We recognize that a home is a personal investment and a small percentage of owners are most comfortable doing the day to day managing themselves.  Please contact us to develop the best strategy for your situation and to provide you with the level of service you would like.

I want to only rent my property for $X.XX amount, no less.

Our job is to market the heck out of your property, your job is to present the property in its best possible condition, and those two factors will get the property rented in the shortest amount of time at the highest price.  Rental markets like all markets fluctuate depending on supply and demand and condition, that being said we will get you the highest amount the market will bear.


Should we allow pets in our property?

A lot of owners ask us whether or not to allow pets.  We would recommend that you allow pets in most properties.  Think of it this way, more than 50% of people have a pet.  You would effectively double the amount of time it will take to locate a tenant.  If it took one additional month to locate a tenant, would that be more or less money that the damage a tenant would create, in most cases the vacancy loss would be higher than the pet damage.


We collect additional $500.00 security deposit per pet and would not accept any of the dangerous dog breeds. 


What geographical areas of Southern California do you cover?

We provide property management services in Huntington Beach, Fountain Valley, Costa Mesa, Westminster, Seal Beach, Huntington Harbor, Sunset Beach, Midway City and other surrounding cities in the Orange County and the Los Angeles County area. 


What happens if the tenant pays the rent late?

We take the payment of rent very seriously.  A tenant paying the rent late will have immediate and swift action.

1.  Our leases are specifically written so that the tenant’s rent is due on the 1st so that our owners are consistently paid on time. The problem with a generic lease, internet downloaded lease or the leases used by many property managers, is that they give a 5 to 7 day grace period, then the rent is late, which allows too much time to pass for you to get your money. We expect the tenant’s rent on time and allow only 3 day grace period.


2.  If we don’t receive the rent on time, the tenant will be contacted via phone and/or email regarding their rent.  If no action is taken by the tenant to pay after our contact, the tenant will receive a 3 day notice.

As per California law, this is the first action a property manager/owner must take prior to evicting.  The 3 day notice gives the tenant written notice that rent must be paid in 3 business days or further action will be taken.

99.9% of the time, the payment is made.  Upon the expiring of the 3 day notice, we make one final attempt in contacting the tenant.  If no immediate payment is made, we contact the owner and discuss whether to immediately file the eviction paperwork or allow additional time. 

3.  Hallmark Property Management advertises extensively and we typically acquire good tenants who pay on time.  If they don’t, we are swift and professional in action to collect the rent.


What happens if the tenant must be evicted?

Our track record has been phenomenal; after placing hundreds of tenants throughout the years we have never evicted the tenant whom we placed. We have only evicted 4 tenants who were placed by someone else before we were hired to manage. We pride ourselves in selecting the right tenants.

Why do we think that we have had a great track record?  There are two types of tenants, good and bad.  Good tenants unfortunately sometimes have bad things happen to them like divorce, job loss, and family tragedies.  In these unfortunate circumstances with our effective open communication between owner, tenant and property manager we have been able to resolve these instances.  Unfortunately there are bad people out there that know the system and how to manipulate it.  We have reduced our exposure to these types of individuals through our aggressive marketing and thorough application process.

Great property management doesn't cost money, it pays. Again, with so few evictions our systems are obviously working, wouldn't you agree?


What if I want you to use my plumber, A/C company, etc.?

We will gladly accept the names, and numbers of your licensed, insured, and bonded vendors.  We do reserve the right to use our own vendors.  Why can using our vendor actually be better for you?   Our vendor has an obligation to us because of the sheer volume of business we give them to perform great on-time work at a fair price.

What property management experience and credentials do you offer?

We are a family owned company. Both owners are licensed by California Bureau of Real Estate with one having the Broker Licenses as required by the California law.  We are licensed and regulated by the California Bureau of Real Estate.  We are also members of the California Association of Residential Property Managers, Orange County Association of Realtors, National Association of Residential Property Managers, National Associations of Realtors, and the California Association of Realtors.  We have over 38 years in real estate / property management experience.


What specifically do you do to qualify a tenant after they have applied to rent my house?

This is one of the most important aspects of successful management of a rental property.  Application processing (see our application guidelines here) is done by us in-house. We don’t send the application to a third party for processing as do other property managers.  An applicant must demonstrate a history of being a responsible tenant or homeowner as well as meeting credit standards. We screen applicants very thoroughly.

LANDLORD REFERENCES – We attempt to speak to each tenant’s past landlords and ask detailed, open ended questions about the applicant’s past performance.

CREDIT REPORT - We obtain a credit report which tells us the applicant’s current and past performance toward meeting their financial obligations. It also tells us their monthly debt, credit score, and shows their previous addresses (which we compare to addresses listed on the application). An applicant must meet established credit standards.

CRIMINAL BACKGROUND CHECK – Each applicant has a criminal background check run.  

EVICTIONS BACKGROUND CHECK – We run an eviction check on each applicant.  If they did not pay a previous landlord, there is a higher risk they won't pay their next landlord. 

EMPLOYMENT/INCOME – An applicant needs to earn at around 3 times the monthly rent in gross income to qualify for rental and we will want to see a copy of their pay stub.

PETS – We permit animals/pets into managed properties as long as you allow us to do so, however, at least 50% of renters have pets. When we make the decision to accept an applicant with pets, we minimize your risk by limiting the breed, number and size of the pets. We are careful in selecting tenants who wish to bring pets with them.

OTHER FACTORS – Many of our managed properties are subject to Home Owner Association restrictions such as no boats or trailers, and limits on the type and number of vehicles. An otherwise qualified applicant may be unable to lease a property if, for instance, they own a boat and want to park it in the driveway. We make sure issues like that are covered up front to avoid surprises after move-in.


What steps do you take to lease my rental home property?

With many years in Southern California rental property management, we know what works and what doesn't. We've developed a comprehensive rental home marketing program that enables us to keep rental properties leased every year. Among other things we use many national rental websites (like Realtor.com, Rentals.com, the MLS, Craigslist, Zillow, Trulia, Homeseekers and others), a variety of other advertising venues and our high ranked “Hallmark Property Management” site.  No matter where prospective tenants go to find their next rental, they will find our ads!  Throw in yard signs, extensive property preparation, and there is simply nobody out there who can get as many tenants looking at your property as our property management firm. 


What type of rental properties do you manage?

Our property management services are catered towards single family rental homes, townhomes, and individually owned condo rentals.


When do you pay owners the rent money each month?

Typically, the rent is paid to our owners on the 15th of each month.  This will give the check paid by the tenant time to clear our account and for us to collect any vendor invoices so they are accurately paid as well.  Delays:  Holidays and weekends might delay the time to clear a check.  Also, if the tenant pays the rent late, we would then get the payment to you as promptly as possible.  


Who is responsible for the utilities?

Generally tenants are responsible for utilities upon the commencement of the lease through termination of that lease.  Prior to move in and upon the tenant’s moving out, the owner is responsible for keeping the utilities on (We can assist you with the turn on/turn off of a utility). Some HOA’s provide various utilities in their community fees.  Please consult your HOA for specifics.


Why do all owners need to sign the agreement?

We need the written permission from all owners in order to lease/manage a property.  We need all owners of a property to agree in allowing a tenant to move in and authorize our property management company to place a tenant.

Will you contact me on maintenance issues less than $300.00?

We have your best interest in mind.  If you don’t feel that way about us before hiring us, then please don’t hire us.  At the same time, we need the ability to do our job and that is manage the issues that can happen at a property.  If we don’t, we are going to lose you as an owner.  We have found through many years of doing this, that $300 will not ‘handcuff’ us, yet will give us the opportunity to earn your trust.  If we have a larger issue, like an a/c compressor that needs to be replaced or roof issue, we will contact you.  We will then review the circumstance, and help you make the best decision on how to move forward. 


Will you help me in determining what I need to have done to get the highest amount for my property?

Yes, we will provide you advice on your property’s condition and develop a pricing strategy to get the highest rent amount the market will bear in the shortest amount of time.  Along with our aggressive advertising we will rent your property at the highest the market will allow.


Will you use my American Home Shield or other Home Warranty?