What is the most invaluable skill that a property manager can have?

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December 12 2010 - Tempe
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Replies (31)

Don't you know? Is this a test? Should I have brought paper and a pencil?
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December 12 2010
To me it is accurate timely accounting for the owners you are representing.
Timely was listed first on purpose.

Good Luck!

James Callas - Realtor®
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December 12 2010
Most invaluable OR valuable? I'm confused. Maybe you should clarify your question, and to whom it was addressed.
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December 12 2010
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Being able to collect the rent on time and minimize expenses. They should know how to replace a washer instead of a faucet as an example.
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December 12 2010
Curiosity and common sense....good property managers need to find answers THAT WILL SAVE THEIR CLIENT'S $$$ when they don't know how something happened AND what caused it but they need to FIX IT.

Common sense to KNOW when they are being fed BS and the maturity to know how to handle that without confrontation.
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December 13 2010
May I add constant, consistant, clear communication always.
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December 13 2010
Good property manager should be able to collect rent from tenants on time or follow up with them to collect rents.  Update landlord with what's going on with the property - verbally or through messages.  And should be honest.
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December 14 2010
...someone who can unbolt the front door from tenants who do not pay...
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December 14 2010
A list of great plumbers, handyman, etc. ALWAYS answer e-mais and return phone calls.
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December 14 2010
Laziness would be pretty invaluable....
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December 21 2010
INVALUABLE...that great education I received.. Tenant Screening and Escrow Responsibility...not to mention a good Vendor List, Referral Network, etc. etc.  Laziness would not be good as a Property Manager.!  Also, you must be able to wear many hats in this business due to the many different personalities of people you will meet and deal with.
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December 21 2010

In this ecomony, because a large number of our clients are not landlords by choice, it is a true test of our personal communication skills. Yes we have our more sophisticated business types. All to often both clients and  prospects are frustrated with their plight that they have difficulty being objective. We need to take alot more time to listen to and to educate the public.

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December 21 2010
Profile picture for Pasadenan
"invaluable" - worth so much, that one can't place a value on it...

How about they know how to tell when a toilet flap is bad and that water is just running down the drain and that the tenant is flushing with water buckets from the tub or shower and not reporting it, PRIOR to the water bill being an extra $500 for all the wasted water?  And how about being pro-active and replacing the toilet flap and other periodic maintenance items rather than caving in to the tenant's request for a "new toilet" due to a worn out $2 part?

If water is running, you can usually hear it.  And the meter usually tells you something abnormal is occurring, if you bother to check it occasionally.

How about periodically checking the roof prior to rain season rather than waiting until a leak causes damage?

How about prompt response to reported problems?

How about keeping up with housing costs, so that rate adjustments are recommended in a timely manor?

How about setting their rates so that the property is always returning a substantial return on initial investment to the owner with the rates of the manager and the periodic maintenance not being substantially noticed?

How about "trust" so that you know they are not buying supplies for other interests with your funds, or otherwise "cooking the books" for their personal profit?
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December 21 2010
Someone who will be honest and to the point with both the owner and the renter. Sometimes you have to educate one about the other and help themunderstand the other's position.
www.bedlamrealty.com
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December 21 2010
Profile picture for Pasadenan
By the way, I want them to also know how to replace a faucet seat, and not just the washer, and how to tell if the seat is worn.  If they are replacing the washer, they should pull the seat and examine it to see if needs replacement, or at least shine a flashlight down at it to make sure it has no cracks, groves, or rough spots. Sure, people used to use bib-seat reamers to extend the life of the seat, but at about 50 cents a seat, it makes more sense to just replace it if there is any damage.  It will save dozens of unnecessary washer replacements.  And the labor time (especially the site visit) is worth much more than a few parts that any maintenance/ management person should have on hand in the first place.

If they don't have a complete inventory of all washers and seats used in all plumbing fixtures on the property, they are not being efficient at their job.

They also should know how to replace a 120 volt receptacle and a light fixture, and should be able to tell when there is a potential safety hazard and replace these items proactively before they become an issue.

And for painting, they should know how to remove device places and other "trim", and do appropriate masking for items not removed, and not just spray everything.
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December 21 2010
Profile picture for Pasadenan
As for "honesty", I wouldn't trust an agent that intentionally violates the "terms of use" of a website by posting links to their own website on a discussion thread instead of their profile page where it belongs.

An honest person should know how to read and interpret these items, and should be proactive in reading these agreements.
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December 21 2010
Profile picture for Pasadenan
A good manager should also be aware of tort liability issues, and correct them before they cause insure, and before anyone else even notices them, such as loose steps or handrails, splinters or nails sticking out, or raised sections of concrete on sidewalks and paths that can be tripping hazards.  The manager/maintenance person should have grinding equipment to provide a smooth transition on the concrete walk without relying on the city to do a temporary asphalt patch.
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December 21 2010
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device places ---> device *plates*

(the "c" is not even close to the "t", so don't ask me how that happened...)
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December 21 2010
Profile picture for Pasadenan
And the "biggest" challenge..., how do you keep a tenant from pouring grease and starch, and hair, and tampons, maxi-pads and depends down the drains?

Rotor rooter costs get quite expensive when you have tenants intentionally clogging the drain lines, even if the manager has good equipment and is quite skilled at it.  Even when the cleanouts are placed in the most strategic positions.
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December 22 2010
@Pasadenan - dude, you need to get a life.  LOL
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December 22 2010
Profile picture for Pasadenan
Just because I'm better at all those maintenance items than you, and more successful at my business and personal life than you are is no reason for you to tell me to take your life!

I'm not into murder nor NAR propaganda!

But, if you really think that I have way too much time on my hands, you could wire me $32,536,426.
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December 23 2010
Done! You do reside in North Korea - don't you??
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December 24 2010
Profile picture for Pasadenan
No wonder you don't make a good agent; you are not even capable of looking up a simple address.

Many others have looked it up.

Besides it makes no difference where I reside for wiring money; what matters it the bank routing number and the account number.

Are you just as careless with property you manage?
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December 25 2010
You're hilarious, Pasadenan. Who said I manage properties? Oh wait... you just assumed that part, just as you assumed that I'm a "bad agent." I guess that's because with over 12,000 Zillow 'contributions' compared to my measly 300+. that makes you an expert and me a bad agent? And again I say - if you're not on Zillow's payroll, you really should think about getting a life. Or at the very least, find a sense of humor, which is how I've intended every comment on this thread. But hey, have a merry Christmas anyway!   :-)
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December 25 2010
Profile picture for Pasadenan
If I can write 20,000 posts, and read 200,000 posts in the same amount of time that it takes you to write 100 posts, what does that say about my life?

And what does that possible have to do with the topic of selecting an extremely efficient and effective manager?

Besides, how do you know that I don't already have 9 lives?

And if I am already dead, than what do you care what I spend my time on?
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December 26 2010
Ms. Miller,

 Its taking the time to prepare the property to show its best. Price it right and then careful tenant selection. We manage about 150+ SFR in the  Dallas area and it has been a model that has worked for my wife and I for 25 years.

 We are really tight on who we lease to . They must have high credit scores 650+

 We attract the upper end of residents by having our units in tip top shape and most are priced just a bit below market.
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December 26 2010
Dependablity so time managment is the top skill needed assuming you have knowledge and contracts to resolve issues.
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December 26 2010
Honesty.

Then again, that's true for just about any vocation...
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January 20 2011
Being there at all times
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July 14 2011

Being available at all times and strong negotiating skills with contractors, plumbers, maids, landscapers, etc. This is where we as property managers earn our paychecks.

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July 19 2011
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What is the most invaluable skill that a property manager can have?
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