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Steps to Become a Successful Property Manager

Do you want a career in the real estate industry but don’t want to be an agent or investor? This article is for you. There are so many jobs or career in the real estate field available to choose from. A property manager is a career in the real estate industry that is so worth considering, especially for someone who wants to make money from the field without owning any real estate property.

Are you new to the real estate business and lack knowledge and experience of being a property manager? This article will guide you into being a successful one.

Who is a property manager?

A property manager is a person who oversees, manages and directs the day to day activities of a real estate property, which can be a residential rental property, a commercial or an industrial property that can generate income. A property manager is in work because the owners of the property are not able or willing to manager it. This is because some investors live far away from their properties or don’t want to get involved with occupants. These investors employ property managers to oversees their investments so it can generate revenue and ROI.

Why should you be in this field?

This section of the real estate industry is on a high demand and will generally thrive in years to come. This is because of the increase of people who want to live in apartments rather than having their own houses which property management establishments are in charge of. Also, investors of real estate properties are beginning to know more about the importance of good property management. Even the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, has stated that real estate and all inside it are bound to grow 10% from 2016 to 2026.

What will you do as a Property Manager?

As a property manager, you’re to do more than to manage. There are various tasks and services you will render to both property owners and tenants. Below are examples:

  • Determine the rental rent for the property.
  • Determine the system tenants will pay their rent.
  • Creating an ideal brand for the property, market and advertise it.
  • Screen potential tenants and display the properties to them
  • Discuss the terms of occupancy and ownership with tenants.
  • Establishing a constant communication with property owners and occupants
  • Following up on inspections
  • Paying some bills that has to do with running a rental business
  • Preparing financial reports and budgets.
  • Being accountable to the property owners
  • Handling all emergencies, complains and maintenance in the properties.
  • Visiting and inspecting properties annually
  • Performing house visits and doing quarterly or biannual property inspections
  • Keeping records of property income and expenses, complains, emergencies and maintenance, repairs and rent collection.
  • Being updated on upcoming laws, concerning landlords and tenants to protect the property owner.


How Much will you earn as a Property Manager?

This is mostly asked by all who want to begin a career in property management. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for property mangers was $58,340 around 2018. Nevertheless, your income depends on the level of education you acquired, your certifications and experiences in real estate. It also depends on the kinds and number of properties you’ll be managing, if you’re into the job full time or part time and the location of the properties.


Being a property manager can be a challenge to some, to others it is an exciting and fulfilling adventure. Having the right skills enables you to do your job so well and love doing it. Study the following skills and acquire them to prepare yourself for a career in property management.

Communication Skills

For a middle man, effective communication skills are vital. How do you communicate with others. What words do you select while making conversations? The answers to these questions can either accelerate or hinder your progress in the property management career. Your achievements as a property manager depends on establishing a high rental income. To do this, you need to bring in more tenants and keep existing ones. And to do this, you need to communicate and interact well with tenants to ensure they stay or they come to stay.

To communicate effectively, you should communicate respectfully and clearly. You have to listen attentively to the needs and complains of the tenants and prospective ones. Be friendly, study body language and show empathy. Learn to resolve issues with diplomacy and handle difficult discussions. Telephone lines where tenants can contact you are also important. All of this builds up trust that can keep tenants.

Marketing Skills

Marketing skills are essential for a property manager to be capable to find potential tenants and renters. Every property manager must have a basic knowledge of marketing strategies and tactics. Know how to give a proper description of the properties you are managing that will attract occupants. A lot of persons are going online to search for rentals. This is why, as a property manager, you should utilize social media platforms and listing service to connect to these prospective renters. You should also learn about real estate marketing to have more knowledge on digital marketing strategies and to stage the properties for lease or rent.

Organizational Skills

While managing rental properties, you may answer a dozen calls in a day, reply a hundred emails in a week, visit property every week to conduct inspections and handle emergencies. You made also meet up with the property owners to give an account of things going on. In all these professional hassle, you will have to learn how to be organized, detail oriented and manage your time, otherwise, you won’t last as a property manager.

Some organizational skills are as follows:

  • Effective day to day planning.
  • Coordination.
  • Saying no to procrastination
  • Handling responsibilities efficiently

Customer Service Skills

A successful property manager knows that he is the middle man between the property owner and the occupants. You’re not supposed to only work for the landlords alone but also for the tenants and renters. You’re to handle the maintenance and emergencies and repairs of the properties to ensure that tenants are comfortable and satisfied. Skills in this area includes being able to offer solutions, paying attention to things in and around the properties, being patient and optimistic. Having good customer service skills retains tenants and brings in more.

Problem-Solving Skills

To be a successful property manager, you must be a problem solver. Tenants come to you with problems because they expect you to solve it. How well you solve problems determine how good you are as a property manager. Before having a career in property management, be skilled in these following problem solving skills

  • Effective listening
  • Making smart decisions
  • Having an innovative way of thinking
  • Conquering obstacles.

Resourcefulness skills

Every industry and sector evolves, property management is no exception. Nowadays, there are so many modern tools, equipment and solutions that sets you apart and keeps you above competition. Figure them out and use them. Utilizing accounting software is essential. It helps you record the cash flow in the property. Providing a software that enables your occupants to pay their rents, report emergencies and damages and request for repairs from their devices is also a great innovation too. Mashvisor is a real estate software that managers use in effective communication with renters.



To become a property manager, you need to be licensed and the rules and requirements for your license differ in various states. Also, the rules and requirements may also differ according to the type of house or property you intend to manage. A manager of an estate or a government public housing needs a special kind of license or certification. You are the one to decide what rules and requirements works best for you.

To begin your journey as a property manager, first find out ways and measures to be a residential property manager in your neighborhood. As you begin to learn what works in your area, start applying such knowledge to get your desired license and work towards it.

Put in mind that in some states or most, a real estate license is necessary before obtaining a residential property manager license. This happens due to the similarities of the roles between a real estate agent and a residential property manager.


Although, you can get employed as a waiter in a café with just a high school degree, to be a leading residential property manager, you need a bachelor’s degree. Most organizations choose property manager with a bachelor’s degree in real estate, business administration, public administration, accounting and finance.

Some organizations, in addition to the degrees, require property mangers who have been trained and certified in the real estate field. Having the knowledge of real estate business, management, finance and development, urban and regional planning, property and housing administration and management is of high importance.

But what if you detest the idea of going back to school? There’s a solution! ONLINE COURSES. Online courses gives you more knowledge of the required fields and will eventually certify you. Moreover, don’t jump into or aim for the best position. You may need to start from the bottom, learn the business in every level and gradually work yourself to the top. Yes you can do it!


A certification is a professional way of saying that you’ve been committed to whatever you’ve learned. Therefore, it is sage to be certified whether as a real estate agent, a real estate salesperson or a real estate broker. Being certified, brings in many opportunities and raises a platform for you as a property manager and beyond.

Below are some specialized certification you can obtain:

  • National Apartment Leasing Professional (NALP) certification
  • Certified Property Manager (CPM) certification
  • Master Property Manager (MPM) certification
  • Certified Apartment Manager (CAM) certification

To obtain these and most others, you can start by applying, complete their requirements, sit for test and exams and PASS. Such certification makes you stand out from other job applicants.


Whenever you’ve done all of the above, getting a job is next and paramount. You can now become a residential property manager. But that’s not easy as said, is it? You actually need to get a job especially in this era of unemployment and competition everywhere. How then can you find a job?

Do you have a network or connections? Use it. Include your friends and contacts. Let them know you are pursing a job or position. Let them use their own contacts and influences to get you a job. You never know who is made to help you unless you ask.

Get acquainted with real estate personnel: Intern with and learn from them. They will know more of the opportunities and limitations around you. Ask questions, set up interviews, learn tips, step, pros and cons of the job, the business and the field. You will get loads of knowledge easily from relating with those who have mastered this field already.

Now search for jobs online: Be sure to keep checking frequently. Whenever you find one suitable, do not hesitate to apply correctly.


Do not relent now that you’ve gotten a job. Keep learning, keep asking and keep network with great minds. You’ll gradually go from a property manager to a good property manager and to a leading property manager and even BEYOND! Engage with others in your field and stay updated on best methods about the field. And yes! Read. Reading gives you so much knowledge that experience would have taught you through so much time. Read books and blogs on property manager and remain updated .
Blogs you could visit:

  • 30lines: You’ll learn s much about technology used in field to please residents.
    Appfolio: Gives you news on the industry.
  • Multifamily executive: Gives you all breaking and trending news on housing market.

Hope these tips on how to become a successful property manager answered your questions. Endeavor to share the article with friends using social media buttons below.