The property management industry is dynamic and fast-paced. It’s an amazing opportunity for people who like a diverse set of responsibilities, have excellent communication skills and are good “people persons.” Here are four key steps to becoming a successful property manager in Canada.
Step 1: Certification & Licensing
As the market gets more and more competitive, many property managers are looking towards improving their credentials to stand out from the competition. Property management certification helps property professionals to gain skills and become experts in their field.
In an industry that is bound by many local laws and bylaws, you need to know what you are doing. Across Canada there are various requirements relating to licensing. Organizations like the Real Estate Board of Canada offer comprehensive training, for example, the Certified Property Manager designation. Here is a sampling of some of the regulations across Canada
Alberta: A person who manages property on behalf of the property’s owner requires a licence from the Real Estate Council of Alberta (RECA). Learn more here.
British Columbia: Real estate professionals licensed for rental property management provide real estate services to or on behalf of owners of rental real estate. Learn more here.
Ontario: The Ontario government has announced mandatory qualifications and licensing for condominium managers and management firms. Learn more here.
Nova Scotia: In Nova Scotia, the Investment Property Owners Association of Nova Scotia offers courses to navigate the waters of becoming a property manager. Learn more here.
No matter what the industry, top leaders and performers are always learning how to improve their skills and abilities. This can be formal industry educational courses or the habit of reading leadership books and industry news. Ultimately, knowledge is what separates the great from the good.
Step 2: Create Long Term Strategies & Goals
No matter where you are in your property management career, fortune favours the prepared! You need to have a clear strategy and defined goals to meet your professional objectives. Do research on the market and check out your competition.
Here are some questions you need to ask yourself before setting a long-term strategy.
• How has your property management business performed in terms of tenant retention?
• Can you reduce (or eliminate!) manual tasks and streamline your business processes?
• Is there a way to reduce costs and expenses?
• Are tenants and property owners happy with your services?
• How can you become more efficient at collecting rent?
• What’s your plan for finding new clients, how will your retain existing clients?
Surround yourself with mentors and experts, as they can help you see the bigger picture and offer tips and insights. When you have a plan, with set goals and a timeline, you give yourself every opportunity to succeed.
Step 3: Stay Organized & Communicate Well
The property management industry has so many moving parts. From ensuring vacancies are filled to overseeing a building renovation and routine inspections to staying on top of upcoming lease renewals. Depending on the size of the property portfolio, a single manager can be juggling a lot of tasks. Their organizational skills and time management abilities need to be on point.
If we’ve said it once, we’ve said it a million times: The property business is a people business. You must be able to easily talk with a variety of people in a way that is clearly understood and professional. Being able to connect with people and build relationships (with tenants, landlords, contractors and many others) will be critical to your success in the business.
And, don’t forget to optimize how you communicate. When you use a communication portal, and templates for tenant repairs, you not only keep all important correspondence in one easy-to-access web-based repository, but you make things like tenant requests simpler, more consistent and easier for everyone.
Step 4: Use (the Best) Tools of the Trade
Using dedicated, purpose-built property management software is a bit of a no-brainer. It helps property management firms to run their business in real time. The use of technology can create efficiencies, eliminate redundancies and organize – and automate – multiple tasks. It gives property managers time back in their day so they can focus on showing properties or delivering superior customer service to tenants.
Even if you are only managing a handful of properties, property management software will save you time and money. You’ll be able to automate many manual tasks, including marketing your properties, accounting/reconciliation, much of the leasing cycle, maintenance and reporting.
It also boosts your credibility with owners and tenants. Owners will be able to access reports and see how their properties are doing at any time, and tenants will be able to pay their rent online, and use a portal to communicate with you. SaaS solutions are not expensive and you will see your return on investment.
How Property Vista Helps
Here at Property Vista, all our solutions are built upon one very important philosophy; all of our property management software must be accessible to and benefit all of a property’s key stakeholders.
That’s why everything we do is designed to help property managers improve efficiencies while improving the various stakeholders’ experience. To learn more about our solutions for marketing, leasing, communication and operations, check out pricing and book a demo here.