Self-Management vs. Property Management: What’s the Difference

Whether you own one rental property or are looking to build a real estate portfolio, at some point, you’ll have to make a choice. Do you take on all the responsibilities and landlord alone, or do you delegate to a management company? When it comes to self-management vs. property management, the decision depends on your priorities.


You haven’t just bought a rental property. You now have the responsibility of providing and maintaining a home for your tenants. That means you’ve signed up for quite a few duties, including:

  • Marketing your unit.
  • Researching and strategizing a rental rate.
  • Drawing up the lease.
  • Screening tenants.
  • Collecting rent.
  • Keeping to a maintenance schedule.
  • Responding to repair calls.
  • Fielding complaints.
  • Resolving tenant issues.
  • Keeping tenants happy.
  • Enforcing the lease.
  • Starting eviction proceedings when necessary.
  • Readying the vacant unit and starting the process all over again.

In short, self-managing your rental property means doing all that. If you have another full-time job or you’re not much of a people person, you might hate it. Then again, you might find that it’s your calling in life. Among the advantages of this approach involves:

  • Saving money. Property managers cost something, so doing it on your own can maximize your profit.
  • Personal relationships with your tenants.
  • Gaining hands-on experience in the real estate industry.
  • Complete control over your property.

Property Management

Handing the reins over to a professional team of managers can be a tough choice. Your property is your investment. Your tenants are your responsibility. There’s a lot of trust involved in choosing someone to represent you. But take another look at that list above. Is that how you want to spend your time?

Yes, hiring a property manager costs money. But saving dollars with a do-it-yourself approach is a short-term profit. If you’re looking to grow your money, it’s wiser to spend your time looking for the next opportunity, not bogged down in the day-to-day minutiae of your first property. Consider these advantages of working with a management company:

  • More time. You can be as involved or uninvolved as you want.
  • The professional experience of a company that specializes in this.
  • Local expertise and relationships with the most reliable and reasonably priced vendors.
  • Many more resources for finding quality candidates.

The Choice

Now that you understand the difference, you’ll need to decide between self-management vs. property management. Think of it like this:

  • Do you want to maintain control over all the details and day-to-day duties? If so, self-management is for you.
  • Would you rather save your time for other activities like relaxing with family or researching your next investment? Then property management might be the perfect solution.

If you want more information on the best approach for you, consult with one of the most seasoned property management companies in Orange County, Florida. R. Russell Properties can partner with you to take care of your rental unit and all that goes with it. Your sanity is worth it.