What is a steward?

What is a steward?

Real estate is often seen as a form of passive income. However, when you manage and rent out real estate yourself, you will soon find out that it is not so passive after all. In a nutshell, a steward ensures that you have to spend little to no time on your real estate yourself.

Is steward mandatory?

In addition to the questions "what is a steward?" and "what does a steward do?", people sometimes ask whether a steward is compulsory. Therefore, we clarify here that it is not mandatory to have a steward for your real estate. Depending on how much real estate you have and how much time you can/will spend on it, you can keep everything under control.

Difference steward and syndicator

Flat owners sometimes wonder what the difference is between a steward and a syndicator. The first difference: unlike the steward , the syndicator is a legal obligation

Simply put, the syndicator takes care of the common parts of the building, while the steward deals exclusively with your flat. This also means that a steward cannot take over all your obligations and responsibilities as a co-owner. For example, you cannot send your steward to the annual general meeting of the co-ownership association in your place.

Finally, the steward and syndicator do not have a figurative ban on contact. If a tenant reports to steward that the light in the entrance hall no longer works, they may of course report this directly to syndicator . 

What does a steward do?

Now that you know what a steward is, let's briefly go over what it can do for you. This is not to say that every steward will do all these tasks. There is no minimum set of tasks that must be completed before someone can call themselves a steward , so always discuss this fully.

To start with, the steward takes care of all communication with tenants. All mails, text messages and phone calls go to them so that you do not have to have direct contact with tenants. 

Usually, a tenant only contacts you when there are problems. You can also pass on these problems to the steward. Do you need an electrician? Then the steward will arrange for an electrician. Of course, the costs of the electrician are still for you as the owner.

In addition, the steward can follow up on recurring inspections and certificates . Think for example of the renewal of the EPC certificate or the installation of new smoke detectors in Brussels.

The steward is then responsible for all finances, both income and expenditure. In this case, rents may be transferred to the account of steward. This is useful, for example, so that the latter can contact the tenant in the event of late payment. The annual indexation is also done by the steward.

Finally, the steward takes care of everything that is involved in the search for new tenants, including the departure of the current tenants. This can be the entire process, from placing an advertisement and organising visits to the property description and signing the tenancy agreement.

How much does a steward cost?

The cost of a steward is almost always based on the rent of the house and depends on the tasks. A percentage of the rent is usually deducted monthly as salary from the steward.

That fixed rate can vary between about 5% and 15%. The average rate is somewhere around 7.5%. Because this percentage is based on the rent, most stewards also do not charge when the property is vacant. 

On the other hand, there are often extra costs when there are new tenants. This is logical, as there is a lot to do with the transfer of a lease. Think of the key transfer, location description, drawing up the lease, establishing the security deposit...

In addition, some stewards have different rates depending on their tasks. If, for example, you prefer to look for new tenants yourself, you can sometimes save on costs. Keep in mind that not every steward works this way and that some only offer a complete package.

Do you need a steward ?

We conclude with the question you might be asking yourself at this point: "Do I need a steward ?" Of course, everyone wants to make money from their real estate without spending a lot of time on it, but not everyone wants to give up part of their rent every month. Some also find it difficult to entrust their precious real estate completely to someone else.

That's why SNDQ can be a good interim solution. The platform can automate a lot of tasks for you. Think of the rent indexation, the follow-up of maintenance, rent money, administration... SNDQ's price is a fraction of the price of steward, which means you get more out of it.

Are you ready to turn your property into a passive income and still be in control? Try SNDQ free for 14 days!

SNDQ is the cloud platform for private and professional landlords, stewards and syndicators.

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