The management of residential and commercial properties is similar in some ways and very different in others. If you happen to be a landlord of residential properties, either single family homes, town homes or apartment buildings you will want to consider hiring a property manager who is familiar with managing residential properties. There are various bylaws and government laws that are specific to residential property and you need companies that have the experience and knowledge on what is required and how to deal with these requirements. The tenants are also very different and have many different needs, come from various income strata’s and there are also many more of them as well.
Commercial Property Management
Commercial property management can be anything from large corporate malls to large office buildings that require building upgrades and modifications to meet the customer’s professional requirements. Long term leases with rental guarantees etc would be the order of the day and competition ruling the rent levels and the services provided. Managers deal with far fewer tenants. In some cases the building may be rented by one large tenant, while in others floors may be subdivided to accommodate multiple tenants.
Residential Property Management
Residential property management on the other hand is governed by the rent levels that the market will bear along with what increases the government will allow in many cases. Many more tenants to deal with per building and perhaps even many owners if it is a multi unit condo for example with many owners for the individual units. In some cases there may be a group of investors who purchase a building and then hire a management company to manage the rental building for them. With multiple objectives on one side and multiple needs on the other, the job of being a residential property manager can be quite complicated and time-consuming. This leads many property managers of residential homes to charge more per door than they would for a single owner building.
In both cases professional level cash flow tracking systems, asset tracking systems and a method of reporting that meets the needs of the owners and / or the board of directors of a condominium board. Condominiums represent another type of property management, were the property manager is hired to manage all of the common elements of the building and has virtually nothing to do with the interior of the units. Some units could even be rented and managed by different property management companies all together. This also adds complexity in terms of finger pointing on some issues.
Hire Experienced People
A property management company must have the right people in place to manage all different sorts of situations and buildings. If you are a customer, paying attention to the kinds of buildings currently managed and the level of skills, reporting etc is important. You may also want to talk with current customers of the property management company to confirm satisfaction levels and ensure that their customers are satisfied with the services provided.
The type of information that is needed and provided may be quite different depending on the owners and the property management companies. the number one objective is to provide excellent customer service to both tenants and owners. But sometimes you cannot satisfy everyone and that then becomes the biggest challenge of all. Property managers must first make sure they are following the laws, they must be fair and honest and they must answer to the person or group that pays them. Ultimately that is what it comes down to . Doing what is right, what is fair to all parties and making sure that to the extent you can everyone’s expectations are met. If they are not met, you had better have a good reason and a good explanation to explain why it is not the way they would like to be!