In the theater world, it’s called stage fright. In love, you might say someone has “butterflies” or “the jitters.” If you’re starting a new job, especially in a management role, you may feel nervous, excited, or anxious, too.
When we’re new to something, aside from gaining the experience ourselves, the next best thing we can do to get comfortable is to ask for tips from someone who’s been there.
Property management advice, like so much other advice, is about as common as popcorn at a movie. But as helpful as Uncle Rob tries to be with his tip about using duct tape to cover the hole in the roof so you can save money, all the advice you’re given isn’t always helpful. The property management advice shared here is gleaned from some of the best in the business to help new management professionals know what to expect, and how to prepare for a successful career in condo property management.
Real world property management advice for your new position
1. Make yourself a valuable resource
As a property manager, you already have specific job responsibilities and expectations. There is no need to tell you that those responsibilities need to be met, and you need to offer your condo community the absolute best in customer service. However, if you want to make a good impression in your community, take your position to the next level. Become the resource for whatever your condo owners may need.
A community newsletter is a simple and effective way to stay in touch with your condo community. Include money saving tips and ideas culled from your local utility company or notify your residents of sales on water-saving shower heads or other smart condo software.
2. Create great relationships
As a new property manager, advice about who you should know and what you should do is going to come at you from every direction. When you whittle down all the suggestions, you’ll find that there are some key people you should build great relationships with.
First and foremost, you want a good working relationship with the condo board, condo residents, and the property management company you are working with. These are the people you will be most in contact with, but there is a wide net of relationships you want to foster. On any given day, you’ll also work with community organizations, service providers, maintenance crews, office supply companies, and other vendors. It’s in your best interest to keep these relationships friendly, supportive, and mutually beneficial.
3. Keep learning
As a new property manager, you’ll learn on your own every day. You will make mistakes, and you will (hopefully) learn from them. It takes more than just a few mistakes to be a successful property manager, though. Fortunately, there are a lot of opportunities to learn, and there is a vast array of subject matter that can be applied to property management.
You could take a class in basic home maintenance, landscaping, communication skills, or conflict resolution. Read a good marketing book, join an online property management forum, or attend local networking events. Even interior design or event and party planning could come in handy for you as a property manager. Don’t stop learning even once you’re comfortable in your new position.
4. Communicate, communicate, communicate
This is such an important part of being an effective and appreciated property manager. Good communication accomplishes crucial tasks that help your condo community feel informed, connected, and cared about.
Is there construction or maintenance work scheduled? Let your community know so they can plan around any inconveniences. Is there a local event your community may be interested in? Sharing this information lets people know you care and think about them beyond the job description sitting on your desk. Is there an important condo association meeting coming up? Make sure your condo community knows when and where the meeting is taking place. Communication with your community also helps your residents get more involved, which should make your job more enjoyable and easier.
5. Invest in condo management software
Managing a condo property requires major organization and task management. The more you can simplify and streamline your processes, the more time you have to take care of other tasks.
A quality condo management software can help you easily stay in touch with residents through automated notifications, announcements, and messages. Condo residents can glance at the smartphone app to find out the pool will be undergoing maintenance on Thursday, or they can log in online to request a visitor parking pass for the weekend.
Property managers can use condo management software to create and track work orders without sifting through piles of papers or trying to find strings of emails. You can also monitor resident activity, which will help you better serve them and know where and when to focus your resources.
There is always more to learn, and some property management advice may or may not make sense depending on the specifics of your location and experience. But no matter how new or how experienced you are, one of the very best things you can do for your community is to listen and show that you truly care about the residents living in the property you manage.
Do you have any more property management advice to share with our readers? If so, let us know in the comments!