Property Management Functions:
» Agency » Maximizing Occupancy » Financial Reporting » Communication » legal Compliance » Maintenance Coordination
The property manager’s primary task for successful management is a comprehensive understanding an owner’s goals and expectations. As agent or fiduciary for the owner, the property manager makes it an absolute priority to remain loyal to and honest with the owner at all levels of the transaction management process, including property management.
Occupancy levels of properties determine their income. The financial implications of vacancies for owners are the number one concern. Therefore, maximizing the occupancy of all properties is the primary goal of any management company. Yet depending on the amount of upside potential of a property versus the cost of obtaining new tenants, the strategy employed for maximizing occupancy may vary considerably from one property to the next. An outstanding manager excels in determining the best course of action, either for retaining existing tenants or finding new tenants. If finding new tenants is the chosen objective, after a careful evaluation of market rents, the manager uses every means of advertising at its disposal to get results: on site post and banner advertising, creative and aggressive custom web campaigns with videos, or newspaper advertising — with the aid of publicists if necessary and within budget.
A key responsibility of the property management company is the preparation of financial reports for the owners. Since financial reports are designed to meet the specific accounting needs of owners, the frequency, format, and detail level of financial reporting required is dictated by the owners. The number of reports issued and timing of reports also varies depending on property ownership structure and the accounting or supervisory needs of owners. State-of-the-art property management software to achieve the most proficient custom financial reporting is a must.
Owners expect their real estate managers to know more about their properties than anyone else and, more importantly, to communicate that knowledge frequently and in detail. The frequency of communication expected will vary from owner to owner. Different levels of ownership experience, varying property types, conditions, and locations all make for varying degrees and frequency of reporting required. A great management company is expert at working with owners to determine the right amount and frequency of reporting required to achieve expert communication whilst maintaining the highest level of management productivity. Best of all, with the online owner information portal, owners can easily access property information, rent rolls, and property financials anytime.
A management company has to be careful to fulfill all legal requirements-federal, state, or local – for managing and operating their property. Key legal issues to be dealt with include Landlord-tenant law, lease negotiation, evictions, and property specific concerns pertaining to various property types (common interest realty associations, multifamily, commercial, office, shopping centers, etc.).
Time and use take their toll on property. Owners expect their real estate managers to protect their investments by maintaining the physical aspects of the structures and common areas. Because a carefully maintained property keeps residents and tenants happy and preserves the property’s appeal, it is also critical to ensuring continued occupancy and, ultimately, cash flow. A good property manager therefore approaches maintenance with the following objectives in mind: achieving optimal functioning of property; reducing operating costs; extending the useful life of equipment; achieving tenant satisfaction; increasing tenant retention; and maximizing property income and value. But the degree of maintenance required, spanning from cosmetic repair and preventive maintenance to corrective or emergency repairs, depends on many factors such as property cash flow, investment horizon, and degree of pride of ownership.