As a property manager, you must own specific traits to manage different tasks simultaneously just like a skilled juggler. Keeping both landlords and tenants happy is not easy and requires a certain set of skills. In addition to all of these, you have to keep a close eye on the properties you manage maintaining them in a good shape. You are the person responsible for not only conserving a property’s value, but also increasing it.
In this ever-changing market that faces a new dilemma every day, many property managers have failed to succeed. However, there are many others who could not only survive, but also thrive. Despite the hectic demands of this job and the long hours you need to devote to different tasks, there are certain property management tips you can implement in order to prevent failure and boost your efficiency.
Property Management Tips
1. Communication Is Key
This might sound like a no brainer, but to be honest, being a good communicator is the first thing you have to do as a property manager running short term rentals. Whether you run a team of only a few people, or you manage a large-scale company, you have to interact with different people, from your clients to any employee of yours, on a daily basis. If you’re a good people person, you’re one step ahead from others in the industry. If not, you should seriously work on your communication skills.
Be a good listener. Respond to your customers’ and employees’ concerns and requests with sensitivity. You should relate to them and their issues and understand them. If you do so, you’ll build loyalty, respect and trust, which are the foundations of any successful business.
It may seem easy in words, but in reality, it is much more difficult. Some days you have to deal with unhappy guests, or dissatisfied landlords. Work on your negotiation skills as you have to be able to persuade people with various personalities. Everyone does not share the same logic as yours. So, be prepared to handle any points of view.
2. Don’t Take Online Marketing for Granted
People are looking for products online now more than ever before. You might find this number surprising, but over 50% of consumers search for businesses on the Internet. So, as one of the most important property management tips, it is vital for your vacation rental or serviced apartment business to have a website, where you can showcase the properties you manage and get more direct bookings. The better you market your properties online, the higher visibility you’ll gain for your business. You can start by having a direct booking website. So, you should either know how to build a direct booking website or hire someone to do that for you.
If you want to be in charge of preparing content for your website, you should at least have a basic knowledge of SEO and its dos and don’ts. Keep your website up-to-date, and make sure it contains the information that your niche is looking for.
There’s also another free tool that’ll enhance your hospitality business. Google My Business is an easy-to-use tool provided by Google that helps local businesses appear on the Google Search Result Pages with their full contact information. It helps you compete in the saturated market of vacation rentals and serviced accommodation more vigorously, get more reviews, and last but not least, it equips you with a free website. Here’s a complete guide to how to create Google My Business for vacation rentals.
Alternatively, you can check Zeevou’s Evangelist Plan (free plan) and get a free direct booking website.
3. Assemble a Good Team
To cut a long story short, every employee you hire is an investment in the path toward the success of your property management business. As your business grows, you need more people to assign more tasks to them so that you’ll have time to work on new strategies to handle operational tasks and implement expansion plans. Take this as one of the top property management tips from us; you want to scale your business, so you need a powerful human resource backing you up!
Property management is a stressful job by itself. If you have to bear the stress of your employees not being able to do their job sufficiently, you’ll collapse mentally. You need people to take the load off your shoulders. Be strict while interviewing new staff members. You need to persevere with people who are organised and responsible. Take hiring employees seriously as it’s not a thing to joke with.
Moreover, you play a significant role in inspiring your team. Define your mission, vision and values from the very first day and be loyal to them.
When there are enough resources in your group, your business can respond to guests, landlords and investors in a short time. Fast responsiveness is the key to your clients’ hearts. Happy clients bring you more business and success!
4. Pick the Right Property Management Software
Whether you’re new in the business or you’ve been working as a property manager for some time, you need property management software. If you haven’t used one yet, no wonder you’re wasting a lot of your precious time doing mundane tasks that can all be done with the help of an effective system.
Choosing the right PMS for your business is a time-consuming, challenging task as there’s a long list of PMS providers who all claim to offer the best services. Looking for the property management software that best suits your needs is tricky, but at the end of the day, you know it was worth the daunting search. Moreover, you can always get help to understand what are the main factors you should look out for while choosing the best PMS. You might not find the perfect PMS, but this checklist will help you find the one that comes in handy the most.
As your vacation rental business evolves and you develop your company, you need to choose management software that is tailored to your new requirements. For instance, at first you may start with one or two properties in one location. But as you move forward, you’ll expand your business in multiple locations. In most PMS and channel managers, you need to create separate accounts for each location. In the best case scenario, you’ll be given a central login, but still need to keep switching between accounts. This is definitely one of the first property management tips you should pay attention to if you’re determined to succeed and grow.
Using a multi-location property management system, you can manage all your properties from one central login. Imagine the time and money you can save on this!
5. Be Available
You’re working in a fast-paced industry. If you don’t want to lose your customers, BE AVAILABLE. People don’t want to work with someone who keeps them waiting. Your job requires you to keep your clients satisfied by being responsive as soon as they need you.
Yes, handling several people with many different characteristics is not a job anyone can do flawlessly. That’s why not everybody can be a successful property manager. People expect you to reply to their emails and phone calls in a timely manner. If you’re busy somewhere else and can’t get back to them immediately, offer your sincerest apologies and assure them you’ll call them back as soon as possible. This indicates your integrity, how you respect their needs and care about them.
You’re working in a highly competitive niche. If you don’t satisfy your clients, they’ll find another person who responds to their needs in a blink of an eye, and that’s not what you want.
6. Learn How to Work with Technology
According to a survey by Buildium, 81% of property owners said property managers should use technology. By not learning to work with technology, you deprive yourselves from its benefits like keeping up with maintenance issues, as for instance, there are mobile apps you can communicate with your housekeepers. With technology, property managers can do things like finding good tenants, keep up with maintenance issues and track landlord-tenant disputes.
Even if you’re a good property manager, learning how to use technology makes you a great one. Yes, it’s difficult to change the way you have always had and start doing everything differently, but at the end, when you get used to working with technology, you’ll see how many tasks can be done automatically in much less time.
7. Plan, But Be Ready for Anything
To be able to provide your clients with quality service, you have to set your professional goals and come up with well-planned, long-term strategies. However, you must be aware that even if you and your team do your jobs perfectly, there’s always a chance that something occurs and changes the industry, at least for a while.
To achieve your goals under any condition, you should also choose the tools that allow you to have a proactive approach. There are some factors that can impact on your business that are not in your control. But, with your own set of skills, you can always come up with a solution. You just need to be flexible and adapt your strategies to the new abrupt situation.
The recent pandemic has been a very good example for this case. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, an increasing number of hospitality operators have had to start taking longer bookings. The ones that could switch their strategies to offering services for longer stays were exactly the property managers who could survive.
To Sum up these 7 Property Management Tips…
Even though managing properties, long or short-term rentals, is a highly competitive industry, it is possible to stand out in the crowd and prove your strengths to your potential clients. You should just be a constant learner, even if you find yourself a pro in this industry. If you stop educating yourself even for one second, there’s a chance you might fall behind the competition. Always be positive, and keep learning. The property management tips offered here just suggestions, so make it your never-ending mission to be original and improvise as necessary.