Recently, Alaska Public Media reported that the University of Alaska Anchorage is almost ready to open the floor to a brand-new undergraduate program for Property Management and Real Estate. The course, which will allow students to gain a degree in property management and real estate, is expected to be popular with students.
But what is property management, and is it for you?
What it Takes to Be a Good Property Manager
A property manager takes care of everything you would expect the owner or landlord of a rental property to deal with. They are there to provide support for the homeowners as well as act as the go-to person for the tenants. The role of a property manager is a wide and varied one with each day rarely being the same as the one before. Property management calls for people who possess:
— Excellent communication skills – You’ll need to be able to effectively communicate your thoughts and wishes on paper, in person, and over the telephone. Shyness is not an option in this line of work. Calls to and from customers, emails, and face-to-face meetings are all part of the average day for a property manager.
— Empathy – It’s important for a property manager to understand what it is that people need without them necessarily being able to convey it themselves. Matching people with the right home for them can be more of a challenge than it seems.
— Detail driven – Property inspection is a large part of being a property manager. If there are small maintenance issues with a property, the property manager should be the first one to pick up on them. It’s their job to notice the small details.
— Excellent organization skills – A disorganized property manager is … a fired property manager. It’s impossible to be a scatterbrain and be successful at property management. They say that the phrase “multi-tasking” was made for the property manager, and they weren’t wrong!
— Tough Skin – Dealing with tenants on the homeowner’s behalf can sometimes mean that property managers will have to deal with people who are at their very worst. They may have to evict people or obtain rent arrears. Being in the middle of unpleasant situations such as this can be upsetting, but it’s part of the job and something to expect at one point or another.
— General administration skills – Reports will need to be written for the homeowners. Also, as property manager, you will more than likely be in charge of certain financial factors. Maybe you will have to collect rent, etc.
— General maintenance knowledge – It’s unlikely that property managers will have to carry out maintenance tasks themselves. However, the more they know about building and maintenance tasks, the more confidently they can deal with subcontractors for any tasks.
Take the Next Step
If this combination of skills and attributes sounds like you, then you could well have found your calling in life with a career in property management. So what’s the best way of breaking into the biz?
Finding out the laws in your state when it comes to property management should be the first port of call. Some states require property managers to be certified or work for somebody who is.
Once you’ve found out about the law of the land, taking a trip down to the local real estate agents and having a chat with them could prove fruitful. Expecting a job straight away as a property manager might be asking a bit too much, but there’s nothing to say that they won’t be able to give you some other helpful advice – or even another position where you can learn on the job.
How to Be a Better Property Manager
Property management is a hot career path at the moment. With so many managers out there and all of that competition, it’s vital that you get whatever kind of edge you can. Employing different techniques that will help you to organize your day better and increase your productivity could give you that extra boost you need to beat the competition. Always be on the lookout for problem-solving solutions, whether it be the latest property inspection software or a new marketing app.