Property managers bear a lot of responsibility and have a heavy workload. As the property management industry continues to evolve, the work increases, time seems shorter, and the demands for improved performance keep coming.
New property managers might not realize what’s in store for them, while the seasoned pros could ask themselves if it’s time to rethink their chosen profession.
The following list of the six biggest challenges for property managers touches on some, but not all, of the varied challenges facing property managers today.
1. Finding and Keeping New Tenants
The rental income from tenants is the primary source of revenue for a property under management and, thus, commands the top challenge spot for many property managers. The property management company has much less cash flow when a residential complex has a high vacancy rate.
With fewer tenants and less money for maintenance, it becomes harder to rent a poorly maintained property. This circular problem can become one of the biggest challenges for property managers unless they take active steps to improve matters.
Finding a steady stream of new tenants requires a proactive instead of a reactive approach. Understand the qualities of good tenants, have adequate screening to find good prospects, and offer longer lease terms to keep them around as long as possible.
If existing tenants cause a lot of damage to units, destroy common areas, or create other costly maintenance problems, perhaps the new tenant applicant criteria need to be re-evaluated and revamped to find more tenants worth keeping.
2. Increasing Return on Investment (ROI)
Growing revenue while cutting costs produces a more significant ROI for the property owner. If the property manager cannot increase revenue and maintain a stable ROI, the property is doomed as a profitable business. This task can be challenging because of all the “moving parts” that generate a positive ROI.
When tenants pay late or don’t pay at all, their actions severely strain cash flow. Increasing the property’s ROI could be as simple as automating rent collection. Software or online solutions can send out rental invoices before the due date, automatic reminders for late rents, and messages that state the tenant’s next steps if their account has fallen behind.
Installing high-quality fixtures in each property unit is another way to increase ROI. Higher-quality fixtures cost more upfront but break down less, last longer, and keep tenants happier.
3. Property Maintenance
According to the website iPropertymanagement.com, 80% of property managers list maintenance and repairs as their most common duty, with the work involved in rent and fee collection coming in a close second place. Property maintenance is critical to attracting and keeping tenants.
It’s not a matter of if maintenance problems will come up, but when. Staying on top of repairs and maintenance preserves the property’s value and prevents unexpected maintenance events, such as clogged storm drains that flood the property after a big rain storm.
Fortunately, typing “stormwater management near me” into an online search can turn up professional help in flooding emergencies and regular ongoing stormwater management system maintenance to prevent future floods and other related problems.
Property maintenance often ranks as one of the top challenges for older properties with a good amount of deterioration or those with more units. Typically, performing routine maintenance on a property will cost less over time than waiting for something to go wrong.
This issue also ties in with having a good tenant-selection process in place. If managers do not screen prospective tenants well, they can wind up with occupants that damage the units and cause many other expensive maintenance problems.
4. Time Management
If you haven’t already guessed, property managers have their hands full with a diverse set of ongoing challenges. This laundry list of tasks can take much time to work through. If the property manager does not have strong organizational and prioritizing skills, they might find themselves quickly overwhelmed with the workload.
Efficiency and problem-solving abilities are critical because each minute the property manager spends on one-off problems takes away from finding new tenants, reviewing and lowering costs, increasing satisfaction for occupants, and other core business objectives.
5. Lowering Costs
Hiring quality staff, maintaining the property, and fixing unexpected problems cost money. To maintain the property’s profitability, the manager must control expenses. The only way to increase the ROI besides maintaining a high revenue-generating occupancy rate is to cut costs.
While finding good staff is already difficult, many property managers feel their hands are tied because offering higher wages as an incentive cuts profits. This dilemma requires making some creative changes and tough decisions.
There is hope, though. Managers can cut utility costs by using more sustainable lighting, such as LED bulbs. They can also switch units to energy star-rated appliances, and over time, insulation can be improved in the units to save power and lower costs.
Some property managers have also started using custom software to automate some of their many tasks. This tool can save time and may also reduce the need for some administrative staff and related payroll costs.
6. Hiring and Retaining Quality Staff
Hiring the right staff is essential, especially because they need to interact with occupants and possess many other working skills to manage the job successfully. The market lacks quality candidates and has high competing demand for these workers.
Retaining existing staff is another common challenge, which places additional pressure on the property management to provide incentives to retain good team members.
Get Your Time Back with CatchAll Environmental’s Help
The biggest challenges for property managers include a long and varied list of tasks and problems. Worrying about the quality of contracted service providers is another thing that makes the job challenging.
Look no further when you need a quality storm drain company to handle maintenance for your storm drains and the rest of your stormwater management system. CatchAll Environmental has successfully helped many property managers and other customers with all their stormwater system maintenance needs.
Our qualified staff can save you time and effort by providing ongoing, scheduled maintenance for an economical price. This means that unexpected floods and other related problems can become a thing of the past. Call us today to inspect your stormwater system to see how we can expertly manage the system and take the work off your hands.