A property manager is responsible for the maintenance and management of a physical building or property. There are two types of managers: residential and commercial. The specific tasks required in these two types of roles are different, but the overall position requirements are the same.
In order to become a property manager, most employers require post-secondary education in architecture, business, or property management. Candidates with this type of training are able to review detailed drawings, work with the construction trades, and make decisions about the long-term care of a building or property. Communication skills are also very important for the job. These skills can be obtained through courses or seminars.
Many people gain valuable experience in property management through a position in a building trade. These roles provide valuable experience working with other trade professionals, determining the project needs and ensuring the project remains on budget. On average, adults change careers seven times in their working lives, so cross-functional skill sets are a great way to switch career paths with minimal disruption.
Residential property managers have a combination of business and property-related responsibilities. They are typically responsible for tenant applications, collecting rent, and managing the building budget. The property-related responsibilities include resolving emergency calls, scheduling maintenance, inspecting the property, and managing renovations and other large-scale projects. This role often requires on-call hours to respond to emergencies.
People who work for commercial properties tend to have a specific budget and staff that they are responsible for managing. The primary tasks of this job usually focus on preventive maintenance, renovations, and scheduled property maintenance. The standard of service expected in a commercial building is typically higher than in a residential one.
Commercial properties can range from office towers to sprawling retreats in the country. Each type of property requires ongoing maintenance and management to ensure that it is running properly. The effects of time, weather and people mean that property management will always be a necessary function.
Historical buildings often have a property manager who is responsible for restoration and maintenance. In this role, the person needs a background in architecture to ensures that the appropriate combination of modern and traditional techniques is used to maintain the property.
There are many opportunities for career advancement in a large property management company. These roles are typically office-based, removing the fieldwork aspect of the job. Someone who is interested in such a position should talk with his or her manager about the education and experience requirements to qualify for these jobs.