How to Become a Property Manager

Updated December 16, 2020
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Starting a job as a property manager is something that can lead to a very promising career in property management for years to come. Property managers can sometimes lead to real estate careers or even end up becoming their own property owners someday. If you ever wondered how to become a property manager, here’s how!

What Exactly Does a Property Manager Do?

Depending on qualifications, the size of the property, and company needs, a property manager may have several different responsibilities. Some property managers may simply need to be available to show units, move tenants in and out, manage tenant concerns, and basic property maintenance.

Others may manage much larger properties like multi-unit apartments or condos. They often have experience with real estate and other residential property maintenance. They may be more inclined to have a real estate or property management license. These property managers may be in charge of budgets, marketing, and other responsibilities that affect the entire company.

Property manager duties include, but are not limited to:

  • Maintaining the property with basic cleaning and maintenance
  • Market available units
  • Establish rental rates and specials
  • Collect rent, security deposits, and negotiate lease terms
  • Resolve tenant complaints and requests
  • Manage outside contracts with electricians, plumbers, and maintenance technicians
  • Collect and analyze data trends in the market
  • Confront lease violators and issue eviction notices

What Qualifications and Skills are Required?

To be a property manager you at least need to have a high school diploma, and perhaps a bachelor’s degree depending on the amount of business administration and marketing required in the role. Some property managers may also get additional certification and licensing to get a higher salary or more substantial responsibilities.

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Qualifications of a Property Manager:

  • High school diploma or GED
  • Bachelor’s degree or other relevant education
  • Experience in real estate or sales
  • Management experience
  • Knowledge of computer systems
  • Some maintenance experience
  • Marketing or social media experience

Skills Necessary to be a Property Manager:

  • Personable
  • Sales oriented
  • Good customer service skills
  • Organizational skills
  • High level of professionalism
  • Good communication and listening skills
  • Good computer skills
  • Artistic/creative to create marketing materials

Types of Property Managers.

The role of a property manager can have many connotations depending on the size or type of unit and how much work they do. Different types of property managers include:

Single-Family Homes

Real estate investors will often buy a bunch of properties in an area and rent them out to turn a profit. These properties may be single-family homes, duplexes, or triplexes that can easily be converted into rental units. They will hire property managers to manage the properties for them and for multi-unit properties they may have live-in property managers for on-site maintenance like mowing the lawn, snow removal, and showing the available units. These property managers may also be called caretakers or groundskeepers and if they aren’t paid a small hourly wage, they may also be paid by the way of free or heavily discounted rent.

Multi-Family Properties

This type of property manager will look after large apartment complexes with multiple units and families. They may not live on the property yet, but will often keep regular 9-5 hours with on-call after hours for emergencies. They will upkeep the property by vacuuming hallways, tidying up, check up on units, and overall maintenance of the property. They will also be available for tenant requests and concerns while also showing available apartments and doing move-out checklists with tenants.

Commercial Property Managers

Commercial buildings used for businesses and retail space also require property managers. They will have a much more astute knowledge of real estate and how to manage a commercial property. They may even have a real estate license and have more authority than other types of property managers. They will likely have more of a hands-off role but will spend their time managing contracted maintenance workers, electricians, plumbers, administrative workers, etc.

Tips on How to Become a Successful Property Manager.

A property manager’s role helps to protect the investment in a property while also maintaining both its integrity and profitability. There are some things they are in charge of that can make or break it and there are some key responsibilities that can ensure they are successful in their role.

  1. Respond to maintenance requested promptly.
  2. Address tenant concerns and negotiate terms.
  3. Ensure rent and security deposits are paid on time, along with any appropriate fees.
  4. Stick to lease terms and confront any tenants who break the lease agreements.
  5. Adhere to rules, regulations, and laws regarding tenants and rental properties.
  6. Properly price rental rates and adhere to a budget.
  7. Obtain the proper licensing requirements and certifications.
  8. Find reputable, reliable contractors for maintenance.
  9. Manage marketing materials and keep vacancies low.

Now you know how to become a property manager in many capacities along with tips on how to be successful. Property managing can be a great career or even a second job or just an opportunity to save money on rent. No matter what avenue you go into, it’s sure to be a good gig. Bigos has dozens of careers in property management available. If you’re looking to start a role with us, check out our available positions here and easily apply through our website.

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