If you ask people what property management is, you’ll get a variety of answers. Most people will not be able to say much more about property management than, “property managers collect rent”. For the professional property manager, this answer is far from a complete description.
Consider the occupation and role of the professional property manager. The property manager must:
- Have enough stable business in place to remain in business
- Equip an office to operate in a high-tech world
- Pay staff enough salary so that employee turnover will be minimal
- Be staffed so that work is not routinely overwhelming
- Be insured for the worst to happen
- Have quality marketing venues in place to market multiple houses
- Keep up with changing state and federal laws and regulations
- Maintain a quality repair program
- Screen and qualify prospective residents
- Track non-paying tenants, send notices to vacate, file evictions, and legally remove defaulted residents
- Maintain a routine inspection program
- Secure new business to outpace attrition
- Control expenses
- Plan for long-term expansion/stability
- Answer phone calls 24/7
- Expect the unexpected
- Exercise patience with anxious people
Professional property management is not a line of work for the faint-hearted. It is hard work. There are risks. Every risk cannot be cut off, but risks can be minimized by keeping focused and learning day-by-day, from mistakes and from others.
I just returned from Arlington, VA, where our annual NARPM (National Association of Residential Property Managers) meeting was held. More than seven hundred property managers convened from across the United States. All of us had one common thread: to learn from each other and to become better property managers.
I look forward to every day working as a property manager. I could not have made a better choice for my livelihood.
Until next time,