Even if it feels like you’ve spent the last three years fighting with landlords over the state of your student accommodation, there’s no reason to let a grudge over some chipped paintwork stop you from setting off on a career in property management – even if it was absolutely there when you moved in.
A career in property management can be a great choice for grads looking for their first move. It’s a diverse sector that can offer a lot of responsibility early on, with a decent average salary of about £32,500. Plus, it’s also a pretty stable industry – because after all, people are always going to need houses to live in.
What Do You Do As A Property Manager?
So, what does the gig involve? First things first, it’s worth knowing that the sector isn’t just about managing homes, even if that is a large part of the market. Yes, we know we were the ones that just made the gag about houses to live in.
As a property manager you could end up working in the retail, leisure, education, heritage, or transport sectors, to name but a few. In short, it’s anywhere where there are properties which might need to be managed.
While the job itself sounds quite self-explanatory (you’re basically the person responsible for the day-to-day running of the property) there’s quite a lot that could fall into the job description. Depending on the structure of the company you’re working with, you could be:
- Liaising with tenants about complaints, rent, or the management of the building,
- Assisting with the buying and selling of the building and relevant paperwork,
- Overseeing maintenance and repairs as well as general health and safety,
- Involved with the development, designs, and planning of new build properties,
- Organising valuations or surveys of the property.
In terms of actual tasks, you’ll probably find yourself:
- Meeting with both clients and tenants to talk through their needs,
- Preparing reports, surveys, and other relevant documents,
- Spending time on site with prospective tenants or for building surveys,
- Prioritising and managing repairs, safety checks, and other maintenance.
So, Who’s Hiring And What Do They Want?
You’ll find plenty of graduate gigs within property over on our own jobs board, with employers including everything from estate agents and global property firms to Government bodies or charities such as the National Trust.
Big estate agents such as Foxtons and Savils run regular graduate schemes, which offer a structured route to progression. In fact, Savils claim that 40 percent of their board joined them as graduates. Similarly, international firms like CBRE also have an annual recruitment drive for students looking for their first job out of university.
Don’t overlook the smaller companies either – property management roles at all levels can be found across the country and a gig at a smaller firm could mean a more varied, hands-on role.
Wherever you end up working, the key skills you need are broadly the same. Hiring managers will be looking for:
- People who have strong attention to detail,
- Good communications skills both in person and in written form,
- An ability to get along with a wide range of people,
- Confidence in challenging situations and an ability to make quick decisions,
- A creative, problem-solving attitude,
- Good time management and forward planning.
Starting out you can expect anything from £20-27,000pa, which rises as you gain more experience. Experienced, mid-career property managers will probably be earning £30-45,000pa, while senior managers could be earning in excess of £60,000pa. So yes, perhaps your property management career could indeed fund your own property purchases too.