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Last edited 25 Jan 2021
Property management is about overseeing and controlling residential, commercial or industrial real estate (property) that is owned by others in order to achieve a set of outcomes throughout the lifecycle of the property or properties. The types of property may also include apartments, condominiums, shopping centres and so on. Much of the responsibility for achieving the required outcomes will fall to the property manager who may be an individual or an organisation and will act on behalf of the property owner.
Property managers may undertake the following duties:
Maintain the integrity of the building fabric:
Buildings need regular maintenance to avoid degradation of the structure and fabric which otherwise may lead to expensive remedial action to repair things like roof leaks, rotting timbers, cracking and other movement, mould and other problems which, if left unattended, can result in costly repairs. Constant, critical observation of the state of a building can ward off expensive and disruptive repairs which may bring calls for rent reductions, vacant property or refunds for tenants.
Items associated with tenants include managing leases, screening tenants, recording and acting on complaints (e.g a broken window pane or loose roof tiles), overseeing evictions, liaising with tenants’ associations and attending meetings.
Look after financial aspects:
This can include helping owners create budgets, advertising the property for occupation, handling tenant enquiries, drawing-up leases and extensions, setting, collecting and adjusting rents and keeping records of all financial information. It may also include negotiating rents with prospective tenants as well as instigating legal action if any terms of the lease are transgressed during the tenancy.
This can include overseeing duties such as dealing with estate agents, local authorities, consultants such as architects, engineers, surveyors, contractors and suppliers, supervising other property colleagues and overseeing vacant properties.
 Association of Residential Managing Agents (ARMA)
Companies in England and Wales which manage properties may be members of the Association of Residential Managing Agents (ARMA), a trade association with nearly 300 member companies. These firms will be ‘ARMA Accredited’ (formerly known as ARMA-Q) and typically manage private residential leasehold blocks of flats.
Property management may also involve individuals overseeing their personal property, undertaking all the duties that an employed property manager would undertake. The benefit of self-management is that it does not normally incur management fees, and the individual or ogranisation is likely to know their property better than a paid manager.
 A job in property management
A job in property management can involve various occupations, such as:
- Building manager – handles additional building maintenance issues to ensure the building retains its value on behalf of the building owner.
- Property manager – oversees a client’s investment property;
- Acquisitions manager – arranges property purchases, and
- Lettings manager – acting as an intermediary between the client and prospective tenants, handling references, tenant applications and generating new business for the client.
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