Many people change careers because they feel compelled to follow their dreams… starting their own business, leveraging a talent or interest, pursuing a compelling opportunity or moving to another state or country.  But for others, it’s a lot more challenging to figure out what they might want to do during the next phase of their career.  In the dynamic world of real estate, a career in property management stands out as an enticing avenue for those with a passion for both business and property. Whether you are a recent graduate contemplating your career path or a seasoned professional seeking a change, delving into the realm of property management can offer a fulfilling and potentially rewarding journey.

Why is property management growing as a real estate profession?

career in property managementAs the real estate landscape continues to evolve, the demand for skilled property managers remains robust, driving the profession's steady growth trajectory. Several factors contribute to this upward trend. Firstly, the increasing prevalence of multifamily housing and mixed-use developments underscores the need for adept property management professionals capable of managing diverse portfolios effectively. Furthermore, the rise of community living concepts, such as gated communities and condominium complexes, necessitates specialized expertise in community association management, further fueling demand for qualified professionals in this niche field.

But first things first:

What responsibilites does a property manager have?

So what is property management?  Basically, it involves managing and overseeing the day-to-day maintenance and operations of a building, property or community.  But the industry continues to evolve beyond simply ensuring the homeowners association runs smoothly, the equipment and systems are maintained, and the common areas are clean and aesthetically pleasing.  Today’s property managers must wear many hats and perform a variety of services to enhance property values and quality of life for an increasingly sophisticated client base. 

Key duties include:
  • Resident Relations: Property managers are responsible for screening owners, and tenants, and addressing resident concerns or disputes promptly. Maintaining positive relationships with homeowners fosters community satisfaction and retention, ultimately contributing to the property's success.
  • Property Maintenance: Ensuring that the community is well-maintained and in compliance with safety and health regulations is essential. Property managers coordinate routine maintenance, repairs, and inspections to uphold the property's aesthetic appeal and structural integrity.
  • Financial Management: Property managers oversee budgeting, HOA fee collection, and financial reporting for the properties they manage. They strive to maximize revenue while minimizing expenses, making sound financial decisions that optimize the community’s profitability.
  • Legal Compliance: Staying abreast of local, state, and federal regulations governing community associations is crucial. Property managers must ensure that their properties adhere to all relevant laws, including fair housing regulations, landlord-tenant laws, and zoning ordinances.
And more. Depending on the size, location and needs of the community, your role and responsibilities will vary. You can learn more about expected responsibilities in our article “The essential role of a property manager in your community”.

What is the best degree for property management?

Embarking on a successful career in property management often begins with acquiring the right education. While there isn't a singular "best" degree for this field, certain educational paths can provide a solid foundation. A degree in business administration, real estate management, finance, or a related field equips aspiring property managers with the essential knowledge and skills needed to thrive in the industry.

Courses covering topics such as property law, and finance, are particularly valuable in preparing individuals for the multifaceted nature of property management roles. A good property management company will invest in your success and support you with ongoing training and resources.  At FirstService Residential we offer associates access to our internal training program FirstService Residential University which offers courses tailored to sharpen professional skills and instill workplace safety and expectations.  

"We believe in growing talent from within. FirstService Residential University provides continuous learning opportunities, development and culture programs such as BE the Difference, Leadership Essentials, Taking Charge of Your Career and many others to support aspiring managers in their professional development." Said Claudia Eftimie Vice President of Talent and Organizational Development at FirstService Residential.

Do property managers need a license?

One burning question among prospective property managers is whether licensure is a prerequisite for entry into the field. The answer varies depending on location and specific job requirements. In many states, property managers dealing with rental properties must obtain a real estate license. However, for community association management, the licensing landscape may differ. While not always mandatory, acquiring a Community Association Manager (CAM) license can enhance credibility and open doors to a broader array of career opportunities within this specialized sector of property management.
You can learn more about licensure requirements as well as the different kinds available in our article “Why your property management certification matters”.

The challenges of a property management career

Despite its allure, property management presents its fair share of challenges. From mediating disputes among residents to ensuring compliance with ever-evolving regulations, property managers must adeptly navigate a myriad of complexities. However, perhaps the most daunting aspect lies in the delicate balance of maintaining harmonious relationships with residents while simultaneously addressing the operational demands of the community. It's a juggling act that demands exceptional communication skills, problem-solving abilities, and a knack for diplomacy.

Embarking on a career in property management, particularly within the realm of community association management, offers a rewarding pathway for individuals passionate about real estate and adept at navigating the intricacies of property ownership and management. By obtaining the right education, understanding licensing requirements, and honing essential skills, aspiring property managers can unlock a world of opportunities in this dynamic and ever-expanding field. So, whether you're drawn to the challenge of managing residential complexes or the intricacies of community associations, a fulfilling property management career awaits those willing to embark on this exciting journey.

If you’re looking for a rewarding career in property management that offers ongoing opportunities for personal and professional growth, visit FirstService Residential’s career site and see available opportunities in your area.
Friday March 22, 2024