Being a professional property manager goes a little beyond hanging a “for rent” sign, collecting monthly rents, and being on call to fix appliances. To be a successful property manager, you will need to understand state laws, be good at record-keeping, be knowledgeable of relevant software, enjoy marketing and sales, and possess excellent people skills.
Understand the relevant legislation
You need to determine if your state requires any professional licensing. You will need to know about landlord-tenant law and keep apprised on any changes. If the building accepts Section 8 Housing vouchers, you need to understand how to work with the local housing authority.
The most sought-after property managers keep excellent books. You will want to be on top of who is behind on their rent, how much you paid to fix the washing machines last, and when all the fire extinguishers are due for an annual check. Details are essential to ensuring both the fiscal and physical health of the buildings in your charge.
Information technology skills
Computers are everywhere. Up-scale tenants will want to pay their rent online or set up automatic deductions. Even if you only accept checks, you will need to check the bank accounts online to make sure they all are cleared and, when required, get copies of canceled checks. And larger management companies will require Yardi training – the software most real estate and property management companies use for marketing, accounting, and maintenance requests.
Marketing and sales extraordinaire
Property managers are always marketing and selling. You will need to understand what renters are looking for and how your property fits the bill. Social media skills will be necessary to capture people’s attention. And you will need to know the art of closing the deal. These are all essential skills to be successful in the property business.
Be a people-person
Do you remember the name of everyone you have ever met? Are you a good communicator? Can you engage with people from different walks of life? Do you know how to listen to a complaint and be both compassionate and responsive? Can you successfully negotiate between neighbors who don’t get along? If all of this sounds like you, a job in property management could be a great fit!
Property management can be a fulfilling and lucrative career. Think about all the skills you will need to be successful and get started on perfecting them to get a new career started on the right foot.