Do you have a property that you’re renting out to tenants? Don’t have time to act as a landlord for all the property you’re renting out? If so, you need a property manager to help you with managing your property and more.
In the US, over 100 million people rent their homes. Given that housing is expensive and can put new owners in a lot of debt, renting is the best alternative. The owners of apartments and such don’t always do the property management themselves.
However, their property managers do. What does a property manager do? We’ll give you the answer to that question and other related questions below.
Table of Contents
- What Is a Property Manager’s Role?
- Set the Rent Rates for You
- Collect Rent for Optimal Cash Flow
- Handle Budget Management and Record-Keeping
- A Property Manager Will Market the Rental Property
- Screen Tenants First
- They’re in Charge of Building Maintenance and Repairs
- Perform House Visits and Enforce Property Laws and Regulations
- He Will Handle Deal With Move-Outs and Evictions
- Protect You From Lawsuits
- How to Find a Good Property Manager
- What Does a Property Manager Do? Learn Here and Manage Your Rental Properties Well
What Is a Property Manager’s Role?
If you have a dream of pursuing a property manager career, you need to know the job description by heart. As you can tell from the title, management is your primary goal. You are in charge of taking care of another person’s leased or to-be-leased property.
You address issues, collect and budget the rent, and more. This can involve residential or commercial property management. Property managers often specialize in only one or the other.
Types of Property Managers
While they have one job description, there are different types of property managers. The most common type you’ll find is the commercial type. This manager specializes in real-estate for businesses. She is quite familiar with industrial and administrative-type spaces the most.
A multi-family property manager handles apartment complexes and similar facilities. This is the type of property manager you speak to if you’re looking to rent for residential purposes. This type is the friendliest and knows how to handle different types of people.
The last example is a single-family home property manager. They work for investors who buy homes in areas with high rates of residential turnover. Military communities are the typical target market.
How Does Property Management Work?
Property managers take care of all the big and small tasks that occur daily in a rental property. Below, we’ll discuss each of these tasks in more detail. Property managers help the property owner reach their goals.
Property managers also need to know the state and national laws on their duties. In some states, you need to be a licensed real estate broker first before you can become a property manager. Most property managers also focus on certain specialties and experiences.
As property managers work, they collect a percentage of the gross collected rent. The common rate is 10% of the monthly rent of a single-family home. Some property management companies charge a monthly flat fee instead.
Set the Rent Rates for You
The responsibilities of a property manager include setting the rent rates. Every landlord needs to know how much they need to charge their tenants each month. As you know, the rent rate is different for each city in every state.
States with higher income have higher rent rates. For example, the average rent in Hawaii is much higher than in Minnesota. Other than location, another factor that affects rental rates is the number of rooms.
An apartment unit with more rooms will have a higher rent rate. The presence of appliances like dishwashers will also increase the rent rate. The same happens if your building offers amenities like laundry facilities.
If you’re okay with your tenants having pets, your property manager must set a monthly pet fee. Allowing pets in your rental can reduce the days on the market. However, you also need to be aware of the cons of allowing pets.
Collect Rent for Optimal Cash Flow
Collecting rent is difficult, especially if the tenants often slip through your fingers. Property managers must also know how to handle people who give late or partial payments only. Good communication with tenants is the key and skill all property managers need.
Today, many property managers set up an online rent payment system with their tenants. This allows the tenants to make direct deposits to your bank account. The money won’t have to go through extra hands and mediums to reach you.
The property manager also takes care of setting a collection date for all the tenants. This way, the tenants can prepare and budget their money for their rent. If a tenant can’t pay on the day, some property managers issue late fees if it is a part of the building policy.
Handle Budget Management and Record-Keeping
If you don’t like to keep records of rental payments or building transactions, get a property manager. He will not only take care of all the mentioned tasks above. He will also take care of the record-keeping for you. This includes writing down the maintenance issues tenants bring up, complaints, and others.
The collected money won’t all go back to you, the owner. Some of it has to stay with the property manager as funds. He will also record all the transactions that use up the business’ funds, like taxes and utility bills.
This transparency will assure you that your property manager isn’t stealing from you. If you want a trustworthy and reliable property manager, we included a section at the bottom. If you want the perfect property management SEO for marketing your company, follow the link.
A Property Manager Will Market the Rental Property
If your building is closer to the outskirts of a city or town, you may have a harder time finding tenants. The weather and crime rates in the area are also factors that affect tenancy. If you aren’t from the area and don’t know how to market to the people there, you also won’t have many tenants.
Hiring a local property management company can change this. A property manager can help you reach locals and non-locals who want to live in the area. They will use traditional, digital, and local marketing strategies to find tenants.
They’ll use different listing services and talk to real estate agents. If they’re tech-savvy, they’ll even take care of your social media and digital advertising. They’ll highlight the building’s assets and amenities that your target most likely needs.
Since they’re already on the property, they’ll take great photos to use for showcasing it. Your potential tenants won’t only find your listing on Craigslist. They’ll also find it on sites like Cozy and Apartments.com.
Screen Tenants First
Like banks and money lenders, you won’t want to lease your property to irresponsible renters. Otherwise, they can up and disappear without paying their rent. They can also cause property damage or disturbance that can affect other tenants.
These types of irresponsible and inconsiderate renters can become a headache. If you’re the property manager, you’d want to nip the issue in the bud before it becomes one. Thus, a good property management company will vet and screen the tenants first.
Often, these checks include a credit check, criminal history check, and income verification. Your property manager may also confirm the potential tenant’s employment. Another smart way to make sure the tenants are responsible is to contact their last landlords.
These checks won’t only reduce the headaches that you and the property manager will get. It will also help prevent property crime in your building. In the US, property crime is more common than violent crime. After theft and larceny, burglary is the next most common form of property crime.
They’re in Charge of Building Maintenance and Repairs
The manager will keep part of the funds for emergency repairs and maintenance. The common practice is to put away some money they collect and label them as a maintenance reserve fund. This can range from $500 to $1000, depending on the building.
They’ll also use a share of the funds to pay for maintenance and, if applicable, utility bills. In these transactions, transparency is vital to establish and nurture trust between you. The property manager must insist on being transparent, so you can be sure he or she isn’t stealing from you.
The property manager will keep records of all the costs for maintenance and repairs. He will also respond to requests for repair by tenants. They must also know which repairs will get shouldered by the management and the tenants.
Perform House Visits and Enforce Property Laws and Regulations
Even if tenants are paying their rent on time and in full, as an owner, you want your people to make house visits. Otherwise, you can’t be sure that your tenants aren’t breaking or damaging the unit. Damaged units can be expensive to repair, especially if you don’t notice it until the tenants are long gone.
Most property management services include biannual or quarterly property inspections. They’ll check parts of the unit that may cost expensive repairs and security breaches. They’ll also check parts of the unit that can cause health issues or problems to the tenants.
He Will Handle Deal With Move-Outs and Evictions
Did you know that the average person in the US can move more than 11 times in his or her lifetime? At some point in their lives, your tenants must leave your rental property. Property managers will manage the walkthrough of the tenants when they move out.
They’ll make assessments on the unit. They’ll check for repairs beyond normal wear and tear or other issues. If there are any, they’ll deduct the costs from the tenant’s security deposit.
A property manager will also handle the cleaning and repairs of the unit for the next tenant.
If a tenant is breaking the building policies and rules, your property manager can evict them. Before the next tenant moves in, the manager will explain the eviction policy to them. This way, they know what behavior or antics can get forced out of the place.
Protect You From Lawsuits
Legal protection is the final item that answers the question, what does a property manager do? As the owner of the rental, you won’t be in-the-loop with the minor events and issues in it. You won’t always know if your tenants have problems with each other or with the property manager.
If the manager decides to kick out or cut off a tenant, there is a risk of housing discrimination. You can get linked to this issue if your property manager doesn’t know how to handle it. It can reflect on your record and destroy your business.
A good property manager knows the latest landlord-tenant laws and regulations of the city and state. He must also know how to protect you from housing discrimination claims. He will lay out the unbiased reasons for turning away a tenant or renter to explain his side.
How to Find a Good Property Manager
Finding the right property manager for your rental property takes effort and time. Like running a business, you want a property manager who has the experience and knows his/her duties. Look into a potential property manager’s license, especially if the state asks for it.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions to the potential property manager. Ask about their occupancy rate and what they’d do in an emergency. Their answers to these questions can tell a lot about their management style.
It’s also best to find a property management company local to the area. Locals are more familiar with their laws. They may also already have connections to people who are looking for places to lease.
Do You Need a Property Manager?
Remember that not every rental property needs a property manager. If you can handle all the work that the property manager does, you don’t need to outsource. If you have several rental properties and can’t care for them all, that’s when you look for a property manager.
What Does a Property Manager Do? Learn Here and Manage Your Rental Properties Well
What does a property manager do? With this guide, you can decide if you need to hire one for your rental property. You can also decide if you want to enter property manager jobs in the future.
Did you enjoy reading our in-depth guide on what a property manager is? If you want to see more content on the occupation, check out our other guides today.