As a snowbird with a home in Jupiter, Florida, how do you care for your home during the months when you are away? An estate management service that offers home watch services is the best way to keep your home safe and in good condition and give you peace of mind while you carry on with your life out of state. It is essential that you choose the right service provider, since you will be entrusting your valuable home to them for much of the year. To help you make the right choice, ask the candidates the following questions.

1. Is your team licensed, bonded and insured?

It is imperative that the estate management service and all their contractors are licensed, bonded and insured. These assurances help you to know that you are dealing with trained, seasoned professionals who can provide quality service and who are covered if there are any accidents or mishaps.

2. How often do you inspect my property?

Your service provider should inspect your property with reasonable frequency – once a week is best. You need to know that your home is being consistently monitored.

3. How do you report on your inspections – and how often will I receive these reports?

A good service provider will inspect your property and check every item on a comprehensive checklist. They should also take photographs as they move around the property. Once they have done their inspection, they should email a full report to you that gives you a complete picture of your property’s condition. If they inspect once a week, you should receive a report once a week, promptly after the inspection is done.

4. What do you do during a home inspection?

Ask the company to talk you through a typical inspection. They should be able to show you the checklist that they use, which will give you a clear picture of their services. If you feel that the list is incomplete, raise the issues that you would like added to it. If they already have everything covered, that’s a great sign. If they don’t and are willing to expand their service or be more flexible, then you can still work with them. Look for a company that thinks of things you don’t.

5. How will you handle any damages or other problems when they arise?

It’s easy to offer home management services when all you have to is inspect the home and report back to the owner. The real test is what happens when a problem arises. Your home watch service should have the expertise and the network to respond to issues promptly. When there is a need to make repairs, they should contact you immediately with a report of the problem, the measures that need to be taken, and an indication of the cost. They can then proceed with the work once you give the go-ahead. If there is an alarm activation, your home watch service should respond immediately, in collaboration with the authorities, and then contact you with a full report afterward.

6. Can you provide me with references?

A reputable home service company should have no problem providing you with great references on which you can follow up and get honest feedback regarding their services. If they hesitate, that is a major red flag.

7. What are your fees and how are they structured?

There is considerable variation in the way in which estate management service companies charge. Ensure that, whatever their fees are, they are upfront about them, and there are no hidden costs further down the line.

If you need a reliable, professional estate management service that offers home watch services, handyman services, and more, contact Garden Home Management today.