Copy to clipboard


Most property managers say the same thing ... “We look after our owners’ properties like they are our own.”

Sure, some do. Some – not so much.

But if everyone says the same thing – how do you tell the difference between property managers?

How do you know which one is excellent and which is more middle-of-the-road?

In this article, you’ll learn who Dunedin’s top 5 property managers are. You’ll also learn the unique points about each of them.

Just so you know, we’ve chosen not to include our company, Venture Management, in this list, even though we think they’re pretty good.

Why? Because if we put them on the list, you’d think, “You're just biased!” So even though you might like to check them out, they’re not on this list.

#1 – Otago Flats

First on the list is the mother-daughter operated Otago Flats, an independent property management company operating out of Dunedin.

It’s got a bunch of glowing, 5-star Google reviews.

Suzi and Libby Price (the owners) started managing residential properties in 2008. They now offer everything from 1 to 7+ bedroom properties across the region. This includes student accommodation.

A big point of difference for Otago Flats is how they do their inspections.

Instead of a 15-minute scan, their routine inspection takes at least an hour. They also bring a bucket of cleaning supplies with them.

So, they don’t just look and take notes. They also clean aspects of your rental.

For example, the checklist includes:

- Wiping mould off surfaces (e.g. shower drains, sinks, window sills)

- Changing the filters on dishwashers, washing machines and heat pumps

- Checking the oven and re-foiling kitchen elements

- Taking marks off walls

The team at Otago Flats says this extra cleaning keeps maintenance costs down. It also keeps the properties in good condition for the owners.

They charge a $50 fee for this inspection. But to be fair, many property management companies charge inspection fees.

Otago Flats offers competitive prices on their fees.

For example, they charge 6.9% + GST on rent collected. This is cheaper than some of the other options on this list which charge 8-9%.

They do charge a letting fee of $150, but they don’t mark up maintenance bills like some other property management companies. That’s cheaper than some others on this list, which charge a 10% margin on maintenance and repairs.

Otago Flats also runs all tenancies through an online portal. That means owners can see current photos and keep up to date with their properties.

Otago Flats

#2 – Property Scouts

Property Scouts is a national franchise network. They have 16 offices around the country.

Each location runs as a separate business, so there can be some variation between the quality and management of offices.

The Dunedin office is a small team of 10.

One difference with Property Scouts is that they have a “rental guarantee”.

For example, if your tenant doesn’t pay the rent, Property Scouts will pay you anyway (up to 4 weeks).

Like others on this list, Property Scouts charge extra fees. That’s things like property inspections and finding a new tenant.

Property Scouts usually charge between 7.5-8.5% + GST on rent collected. The exact price depends on whether you take the rental guarantee.

Property Scouts

#3 – Edinburgh Realty

Edinburgh Realty started in 1995. Three local property consultants founded the company. They are Peter Wilson, Mike Elford and Jim Columb. All are still involved in the company today.

Edinburgh Realty’s focus is Otago, so they have a deep understanding of the local Otago property market.

The team of 25 covers all property types. This includes residential homes, units, apartments, student flats and studio rooms.

Edinburgh Realty charges 9% + GST on all rent collected. They also charge $50 for each inspection (first and final inspections are free).

There is an annual property fee of $225. They also charge 10% on top of all maintenance costs.

The company has excellent Google reviews and 1.3k followers on its Facebook page.

Edinburgh Realty

#4 – Metro Property Management

Metro Property Management is another locally-owned company. It focuses solely on properties in Dunedin and the surrounding areas.

A small team of 4 runs the business out of the historic Post Office building.

Recently, they’ve given their website a revamp. This includes showing all the rentals they offer.

Metro Property charge 9% + GST on all rent collected, a $350 letting fee, and $50 per inspection. There are charges for extra odds and ends.

One review said working with Metro Property Management was an “amazing experience”.

The investor said: “We rented two different properties with Janette and Tom. They have been extremely helpful and understanding as our property managers.” The review was in May.

Metro Property Management

#5 - Ray White Dunedin

Last up is the well-known Ray White. It’s a large nationwide business with 196 offices throughout NZ.

Ray White offers a full service. This includes dealing with buying and selling properties (real estate agents), but they also provide property management services.

A small team of 4 make up the Ray White Dunedin office. But while small, they bat above average in their online reviews.

One review said: “Andrew, Jo and the team look after my rental properties and do a fantastic job from choosing the best applicant to making sure I get paid”.

Management fees are 8.5% + GST of rent collected, and inspections are an extra $50 a time.

Ray White Dunedin

Do I really need a property manager?

Many property investors see hiring a property manager as “another expense.”

That’s why some wonder if managing their own properties is a better option.

Well, the short answer is: it depends – on you.

Some investors are happy to hand the commitment and stress onto a property manager, although this comes at a cost.

Others prefer to look after things themselves. They take the money they would have paid a property manager and spend it on something else.

If you’re on the fence, read our article: Do I really need to use a property manager? You’ll get an unbiased view of the reasons to (and not to) use a property manager.

Opes Partners
Laine 3 001

Laine Moger

Journalist and Property Educator with six years of experience, holds a Bachelor of Communication (Honours) from Massey University.

Laine Moger, a seasoned Journalist and Property Educator with six years of experience, holds a Bachelor of Communications (Honours) from Massey University and a Diploma of Journalism from the London School of Journalism. She has been an integral part of the Opes team for two years, crafting content for our website, newsletter, and external columns, as well as contributing to Informed Investor and NZ Property Investor.

View Profile

Related articles