Landlord FAQ

How long will it take to rent my property?
How does Excalibur determine the rental rate?

We manage several hundred rental homes. We also have access to listing information on many more units through the multiple listing service and internet. After inspecting your home, we can recommend items that might enhance your home’s value. Once we know your home and understand your goals, we will use our knowledge of the market to recommend a rental rate. It’s your property—we recommend, and you decide.

How will Excalibur advertise/market my property?

Almost all of our applicants tell us they found the house on the internet. Excalibur posts properties on several national web sites in addition to our own site. We also use signs and newspaper ads to promote properties we manage. We analyze each property and design a specific marketing plan that promotes your property in the most favorable manner.

How does Excalibur check the applicant's credit/reference history?

One of the most important aspects of making your experience as a Landlord rewarding is placing the right tenant in your property. While no one can discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, age, national origin, or familial status, we can screen applicants on the basis of credit and rental history.

Once we receive an application from our marketing efforts, we conduct a detailed background check on the applicant(s). Some applicants can be very deceptive, even to the point of having friends or family members pose as former landlords or employers so that the information sounds good to the landlord conducting the background check.

To reduce the possibility of being deceived by an applicant, Excalibur uses a multi-tiered background check to cross-reference each applicant. Our background checks consist of:

  • Asking to see a picture ID of the applicant.
  • Pulling a copy of their credit report and their FICO score.
  • Checking whether the applicant has had dispossessory warrants filed against them.
  • Getting copies of their paystubs or contacting their employer to confirm their source of income. If they are self-employed, we ask for copies of their tax return.
  • Confirming their landlord reference or residency history (mortgage payments).

 

A thorough background check is crucial. A bad tenant can be very expensive due to lost rent, extra time spent having to deal with the tenant, and possible damage to the property. While no background check can eliminate all of the risks of a problem tenant, our thorough examination of their rental history can significantly reduce the risk.

How much does Excalibur charge to lease my home?

Generally we charge a fee equal to one month’s rent to place a tenant for a one-year lease term. We call this a “Procurement Fee.” We offer discounts for owners who have multiple properties with Excalibur, and these discounts are quoted on a case-by-case basis. Our procurement fee comes with a 12-month prorated warranty; if the tenant does not stay for the full term of the lease, then we will refund part of the procurement fee based on the ratio of the number of months of rent not paid by the tenant during the term. For example, if your tenant paid rent for 9 months and then moved out, you would receive a 25% refund of the procurement fee charged based on the 3 months (3/12 equals 25%) that they did not pay rent during the remainder of the lease term. This warranty is described in more detail in our management agreement.

 

Who collects the rent? When do I get paid?

The tenant makes all payments to Excalibur. The security deposits are maintained in one escrow account, and all rents and other payments are deposited into a separate escrow account. We deduct our management fee and any other expenses that have been authorized and send the balance to you. We send out statements on the 9th of each month (or the next business day thereafter). We also do statements on the 23rd for clients who choose to have us charge a reduced management fee. We can mail you a check with the statement, or we can deposit the money directly into your bank account for you (direct deposit).r.

What happens if the tenant does not pay the rent?

In our lease form, we give the tenant a 5-day grace period to pay the rent on time. On the 6th, we post late fees for any tenants who have not paid yet, and then “Late Letters” are generated and mailed. Under Georgia law, we must first notify the tenant that they are in default on the lease, and the Landlord must “demand possession” of the property before a dispossessory warrant can be requested from the court. We send these demand letters out on the 10th. We also will try to contact the tenant and find out why the rent has not been paid.

If we still have not received the rent by the middle of the month, depending on the particular circumstances with each tenant, we start filing Dispossessory Warrants (eviction). As needed, we will go to court, arrange to get the “writ of possession” from the court, and if necessary, meet the sheriff at the property with a “put out” crew to remove the tenant and their things from the property. The reason why the tenant cannot pay the rent is not really relevant. We can help tenants with legitimate problems find help from different charitable organizations, but we are retained by you to protect your interests. If the tenant cannot pay the rent, we need to find a new tenant who can.

What happens if the tenant has a maintenance problem?

The tenant contacts us to report all maintenance problems. We can be reached any time of the day or night, including holidays. Our property managers rotate being “on call” so that someone can always be available to handle emergencies. Upon receiving an “emergency maintenance” message, our voicemail system will page the manager on call so that we can get the emergency under control.

In the management agreement, you set a “repair limit” that tells us when, based on the estimated cost of the repair, you want to be involved in handling a maintenance problem. For non-emergencies, we will contact you first or we will handle the repair on your behalf depending on the repair limit you set. You can choose a dollar limit of zero or some higher figure. Please note that this repair limit is based on non-emergency repairs. We will handle emergencies immediately, based on our judgment and experience, to protect your property from suffering any further damage.

How much does Excalibur charge to manage my property?

Generally speaking we charge as little as 6% and up to as much as 12% of the amount we collect from the tenant as our management fee. The range depends on the rental rate of the property, age of the property, and options the owner selects regarding how quickly they want to get paid and whether they receive their payments and statements electronically (less expensive) or if they prefer for us to print and mail (more expensive). There is no minimum monthly fee. If you don’t get paid, we don’t get paid! For owners who choose to have their statements sent out on the 9th of the month, the management fee is 1% higher than if the owners choose to have their statements and net rental proceeds sent at the end of each month (around the 23rd). We can email your statement and pay you via direct deposit, but if you would like paper statements and printed checks, your management fee will be an additional 1% higher.

Can I sell the property to the tenant?

Yes! If you (we) sell the property to a tenant that Excalibur placed, our management agreement sets out that you will pay Excalibur 3% of the purchase price because Excalibur brought you the “buyer.” We will help prepare the contracts, arrange financing, and coordinate all of the tasks required to successfully close the sale; however, if Excalibur did not place the tenant, then we do not expect to get paid a sales commission if the tenant buys the house (unless you ask us to represent you and help with the transaction).

Can I sell the property to someone else if the tenant cannot buy it?

Yes! Many leases include a clause that allows the tenant to terminate the lease early in exchange for paying certain penalties. Our lease form also has a clause that allows the owner to terminate the lease early. If you need to sell your property, and the tenant is not willing or able to buy it, we will try to get the tenant to rent on a month-to-month basis so that you can sell the property and be required to give the tenant only a 30-day notice to vacate.

If you cannot wait until the lease term expires, then the clause described above still gives you the option to sell the property even though the lease has not expired. Our management agreement places no limit on you selling the property to someone other than the tenant. You can sell it yourself, list it for sale with another broker, or list it for sale with Excalibur. Yes we also sell property. We have much experience selling properties that are occupied by tenants

Does retaining a management company mean I will not have any problems with my property?

NO! If you own rental property, then over a period of time, you will have problems of one sort or another. Whether the problems are related to maintaining the property or dealing with the tenant, there will be problems that need to be resolved. Retaining Excalibur to manage your property will eliminate some but not all potential problems.

Our experience will help reduce the number of problems related to a rental property. Problems that can’t be avoided must be solved. Our expertise will help reduce the aggravation and potentially higher expenses related to solving these problems. We can’t prevent all bad things from happening, but we can help solve the problem for you so that you don’t have to handle it yourself.

How long has Excalibur been in business?

Over 20 years. We started as a sole proprietorship in January 1985. We became a corporation in 1988 and became an LLC in 1996. The owner and managing broker has always been Mike Nelson.

Does Excalibur have any references?

Yes! View some of the remarks made by our clients and tenants about their experiences with ExcaliburClick here