The 7 Attributes of an Extraordinary Property Manager
Entering the world of property management is exciting, but it’s no secret that it’s also challenging. Rarely do two days look the same, so there’s no threat of ensuing boredom. Life as a property manager is certainly never dull, but nor is it a walk in the park.
On the other side, you have those who seem to have it mastered without breaking a sweat – but how? What are the qualities that have helped those successful property managers reach that level of excellence?
1. Excellent Time Management
Perhaps the most important trait of a good property manager is time management – the ability to prioritise. Yes, it is important to address all phone calls and emails in a timely manner, but don’t spread yourself too thin. While we all try to make ourselves available as much as possible to our clients, don’t set a standard of answering those enquiries after hours – we also deserve a life outside of work. Managing numerous properties and communicating with multiple clients requires a good property manager to be highly organised.
2. A Positive Attitude
Have you ever noticed that the property managers who are truly great at their jobs have an amazing attitude, not just to their career but to life in general? They never look at things in a negative way and approach each problem with a proactive attitude. This then flows onto their communication abilities, both verbal and written, which is one of the strongest qualities a good property manager should display.
3. Adaptive to Technology and Industry Changes
A good property manager will embrace technology and use it to their advantage – recognising that it provides the ability to spend more time on other tasks. While some aspects of digitisation have a steep learning curve, it’s always worth the time and effort to challenge “the way we’ve always done things”. Technology isn’t disruptive for the sake of it, and those who learn and adapt will find their processes much more efficient.
4. High Level of Professionalism
A good property manager knows the importance of being professional in all dealings, finding that fine line between being personable yet still professional. On a daily basis property managers will deal with people of varying backgrounds and need to be comfortable in doing so. Especially the case when dealing with new clients, tenants or colleagues, it’s always wise to err on the side of caution by leaning more towards professionalism than personability. Only once rapport has been established should that professionalism ease, and only if it’s appropriate.
A good property manager will focus on the detail, from the first instance of screening and approving tenants through to taking detailed notes during conversations and inspections. Having meticulous attention to detail protects not only the agency but the lessor and tenant, too. When signing off on similar forms or entry reports frequently, it becomes very easy to miss a glaring error. While sometimes such an error is innocuous, it could just as easily lead to an avoidable QCAT tribunal matter. Taking an extra five minutes to triple check is much better than the hours spent responding to a claim.
Inevitably, things will go wrong, and a good property manager knows not to assume everything will go according to plan. When the curveball is thrown, property managers need to be able to react, re-plan, and not panic. When it comes to routine inspections, open-homes, rent changes, etc., it’s all about hoping for the best while expecting and preparing for the worst. The strength of a property manager isn’t determined by their ability to avoid mishaps, but rather how to deal with them when they inevitably occur.
7. Part of a Great Team
A successful property manager is surrounded by a great team who all share in their professional values. A great team of people who complement each other’s strengths while covering each other’s weaknesses is greater than the sum of its parts. With the right team of people, there really is no limit to your company’s success.
Property management is a rewarding career that will rapidly develop your interpersonal, communication and time-management skills, among others. New property managers shouldn’t expect to embody all or even most of the aforementioned attributes in their first few months, but with time and focus they will come in abundance. The difference a great property manager makes to the lives of tenants and property owners is invaluable, and the reason why there’s always such a high demand for quality property managers.