Tips for Appointing a New Commercial Property Manager

In commercial real estate property management, it is likely that you will be involved from time to time in appointing a new property manager to the agency management portfolio.  On that basis, you should have an induction program or system to help you with the appointment of the new person to the team.

An induction program within a property management team is quite special given the complexity of the workload and the existing management portfolio.  You need the right person to join your team.

Here are some ideas to help you with that staff change:

  1. The experience of the new person will have a lot to do with the portfolio that you appoint them to.  If they are highly experienced, they will not need very much guidance or monitoring.  They will however need to understand the portfolio, your systems and your agency operations.
  2. If on the other hand the person is inexperienced or lacking in some respect, you will need to match them to an existing property manager within the team.  Over the following few weeks, the existing manager can share operational information on the management portfolio and how things are done within the agency.
  3. Introduce the new property manager to your business by establishing an induction program.  The program should continue for a period of two months during which time you can ensure that the key issues within the portfolio are covered and explained.  Most particularly the induction program should include portfolio operations, landlord information, tenant communication systems, property maintenance processes, reporting issues, and arrears controls.
  4. Every commercial real estate agency will have a dedicated and specialised financial reporting system to be used in reporting to the landlords that are served as clients within the agency.  Some landlord clients will have specific reporting requirements needing special attention.  Take the new property manager through the property management reporting program and show them how it controls income, expenditure, and budget activity.  Pay particular attention to the method of handling arrears within the managed properties.
  5. A successful property management system will also involve good lease control and tenant management.  All of the leases within the portfolio should be accurately captured into the property management lease tracking system.  That system should be accurate and up to date.
  6. A special note should be made regards the inspection processes that apply to the managed properties in the portfolio.  Some properties will need more attention than others when it comes to regular inspections.  Inspection records should be maintained for future reference if any problems or tenant issues arise.  Accuracy in the process is therefore critical.

Given the above issues, a question usually arises as to when you should introduce the new person to the clients that you serve.  If the property manager is experienced, then the introduction can occur sooner rather than later.  If however the property manager has a number of things to learn, it would be wise to have a transition period before they are exposed to the landlords that own the properties in your management portfolio.

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