Should You Have an On-Site Manager for Your Santa Rosa Apartment Building? - Article Banner

Managing an apartment building is much different from managing a single-family home or even a portfolio of single-family homes. When you specialize in multi-family investments as a property owner, you need to be prepared for a specific set of rules, laws, and guidelines. 

California is pretty notorious for its landlord and tenant laws. When it comes to renting out units in a larger apartment building, there are additional things to think about. 

You may have to hire an on-site manager when you own an apartment building. If your apartment building is not large enough to require an on-site manager, you should think about whether it’s a benefit or a risk for your community. 

Santa Rosa Apartment Building On-Site Management Requirements

California law requires every apartment building with more than 16 units to employ an on-site property manager. To comply with this law, you’ll need a property manager who actually lives in one of the residential units in your building. 

Buildings with fewer than 16 units do not have this requirement, although sometimes a property owner will want to hire an on-site manager or maintenance expert to keep an eye on things and respond to any repair needs that might come up.

Legal Language: On-Site Managers are Employees

California law will consider your on-site property manager to be an employee. In fact, it’s a requirement. 

Because your on-site property manager is an employee, you are legally required to provide workers compensation insurance. You also have to withhold all required federal and state income taxes from their salary and contribute to social security. Hopefully, you’re already running your building like a business. When it comes to your on-site manager, you’ll have extra business requirements and labor laws to follow.

On-Site Manager Duties and Responsibilities 

The on-site property manager is normally expected to take care of the day-to-day operations of the building, the individual units, and needs of the tenants who live there. These responsibilities may include:

  • Rent collection
  • Showings and tours
  • Tenant screening 
  • Serving notices when rent is late
  • Responding to questions from tenants
  • Overseeing maintenance
  • Providing reports to property owners

Sometimes, an on-site property manager will provide these services in exchange for a reduction of rent since they live in the building.

Pros and Cons of On-Site Management for your Santa Rosa Investment

Investment PropertyIf your investment property has more than 16 units, you know you are required to hire an on-site manager for the property. If you’re not legally required to have an on-site manager, is it something you should consider? It depends on the property and the needs of those units.

When you’re working with a Santa Rosa property manager already, you may not need an on-site manager for your six, eight, or 10 units. But, if you find that there are constant problems at the building and having an on-site person would help you manage those details, it’s something to consider. 

We have been successfully managing Santa Rosa apartment buildings and residential properties for years. If you’d like to talk through your options or your requirements, please contact us at Prestige Real Estate & Property Management. We manage homes in Sonoma County, including Santa Rosa, Windsor, Sebastopol, Petaluma, and Rohnert Park.