When you think of working in the lettings industry, it’s likely that the first role that comes to mind is a lettings negotiator. However, these negotiators wouldn’t be able to do their jobs if it wasn’t for the crucial work of a property manager. You may not be too familiar with exactly what property managers do, so let us guide you through what’s involved in property management, and why it may be the lettings career for you.
So, what is Property Management?
In short, the main priority of the property manager in the lettings industry is to act as a third party between the landlord and the tenant, and to make sure properties are maintained to a high standard. This is a diverse role; a job in property management can include anything from getting involved with the pre-tenancy requirements to organising building maintenance and repairs.
The property manager deals with all tenant related issues on behalf of the landlord and is seen as the first port of call for both parties. A good property manager will handle everything from dealing with complaints, organising maintenance and repairs and carrying out administrative tasks, all while managing and keeping to a budget.
What are the benefits of working in Property Management?
Not only will a career in property management guarantee a highly varied role with plenty of scope for development and growth, but the perks are pretty good too. Working weekends is extremely rare within property management, and the flat basic salary is generally higher than that of other roles within lettings, such as that of a lettings negotiator.
What can you do in Property Management?
Property Management Administrator
Property Management Administrators are key members of any property management team. They are responsible for co-ordinating all administration relating to building repairs and maintenance work organised by the property manager. They may be required to liaise with contractors, organise for inventory clerks to attend check in’s and check out’s, as well as updating systems, records and databases accurately.
Property managers are responsible for the physical management of the property throughout the term of the tenancy agreement. This includes regular maintenance, emergency repairs and payment of rents. Not only will property managers need to maintain a positive relationship with tenants, they will also need to be on good terms with landlords too. Working directly with the owner of the property, communication is key. Property Managers will usually have a designated portfolio of properties that they are responsible for, with the average number of properties within that portfolio being 100-150. Property Managers are responsible for keeping the landlord informed of any general maintenance and repairs to the property, as well as other information including; tenants wanting to vacate, business policies, and legal legislation issues. They need to ensure the property is kept in top condition at all times and will often be required to carry out property inspections periodically throughout the length of the tenancy. At the end of a tenancy they will be responsible for handling deposit releases, disputes and submitting cases for arbitration via the TDS if, and when required.
Senior Property Manager / Team Leader
Senior Property Managers / Team Leaders have all the same daily responsibilities as Property Managers, but they generally have a smaller portfolio of properties to manage. They often oversee the other property managers in the team and assist them with any bigger issues that might arise within their portfolios. They tend to take on other duties away from regular maintenance, including refurbishment projects or insurance claims. Senior property managers / team leaders will usually be required to have ARLA qualifications to ensure they are up to date with current legislation and compliance.
Head of Property Management
Heads of Property Management are responsible for managing anywhere from 5 to 40 property managers and administrators within their departments. They ensure that all teams and individuals carry out effective management and adhere to compliance regulations. They will be expected to constantly review existing procedures to ensure the smooth running of the whole team and make suggestions for the implementation of new procedures within the department. They will work very closely with Lettings Managers, Area Lettings Managers and Regional Partners to ensure staff in front and back office departments are providing the best service for the both the tenants and the landlords.
What skills do you need to work in Property Management?
You don’t always need experience to work in property management, but there are certainly some skills that are beneficial.
Most importantly, you’ll need to be a great communicator. Communication is integral to any role in property management, as the job is primarily based on liaison between the landlords and the tenants. You will need to have a calm, but firm and assertive demeanour.
The diverse role and multiple responsibilities of a property manager also require a high level of organisation. With the amount of paperwork involved, as well as the ever-changing daily tasks that make each day different, you’ll need to be very efficient and organised to keep everything running smoothly.