I hired South Lake Associates a few years ago to help me rent out and manage my Belltown condo.
Their services were mediocre at best, but I didn’t mind it too much since the unit pretty much rented itself (due to the quality of the space and location) and also managed itself (very well-kept, nice high-rise building).
When the renter who had been living there for 3 years moved out, I tasked South Lake Associates to put the condo back out on the rental market. It didn’t get rented for the 3 months, until my boyfriend stepped in, wrote some ads, and then rented it within a week. What we learned from our experience is this:
1) South Lake Associates does very little work when it came to renting out or managing the unit. After the 3-year renter moved out, I emailed him and asked him if there was any feedback he could provide on his experience.
He told me the property management company was very slow and many times unresponsive.
He also let me know about a couple items that needed attention, that he had advised the property management company about, but which they never relayed to me.
2) South Lake Associates did not get the unit professionally cleaned at the end/start of a new lease, even though that is part of the rental contract and what the renter pays for.
We know this because when my boyfriend took the initiative to help me rent out the unit, we visited it and saw that it was pretty dirty.
Also, there were holes in the walls and other things that needed repair before putting it out on the market.
3) South Lake Associates would ask us each year if we wanted to sell the unit, and if so, they would love to help us do this (and get the commission).
I think they just want to pocket as much money as possible (while they can still stay in business), versus build a long steady stream of income based on a solidly-run business of satisfied clients and customers.
4) South Lake Associates sent their least experienced agent to try to rent out our place.
This agent was an inexperienced salesperson who failed follow-up adequately with prospective renters.
We actually responded to an ad they put out, and never got a call back. We even tried to reach them a few times (if you read some of the lower starred reviews, you’ll see see this is a general issue with this company).
Avoid these guys. They seem nice on email and in-person, but seem to be masters of the bare minimum.