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Home » Brokerage » Property Management » How to Start Your Career as a Commercial Property Manager

When you start work as a commercial or retail property manager, the task can be confusing and challenging.  This is particularly the case if you are migrating from residential property management.  The commercial and retail property types require a different and more strategic focus; it’s not just a matter of collecting the rent monthly and inspecting the properties once every 3 months.

Perhaps this is a biased statement, however, I will say that commercial and retail property management is one of the most specialised parts of the property industry.  When you do it well you can move anywhere and get a good appointment on complex and large properties.

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Good Property Managers are Hard to Find

It is a fact that experienced property managers in this part of the industry are hard to find.  The same can be said for retail shopping centres and the relevant managers.

So, if you are new to the retail or commercial property management side of the industry and do not yet know what is going on and how to start your career, stick at it and build your experience and knowledge; watch other people and ask plenty of questions.  Over time you can rise to the level of property management expertHere is a checklist of reporting ideas for shopping centre landlord clients.


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Property Manager Controls and Focus

Here are some tips to help you with that property management momentum and control.

  1. Know the landlord’s requirements for each property.  Every landlord will have specific ways that things should be done.  Learn those facts and follow them to the tee.  If you neglect the landlord, they will soon drop you and find another manager that they can relate to.  The landlord is priority number one.
  2. Review the income and expenditure factors in the property.  Income will be driven by the tenants and the leases.  For that reason, a complete lease review is required and all leases should be closely monitored as to critical dates and tenant requirements.  The expenditure on the property should be managed in keeping with the landlord’s requirements and instructions.  Set up a budget for the property at the beginning of the financial year and get the landlord to approve it.  Over time you can then track your progress.
  3. Understand the properties that you manage.  If you manage a lot of properties that can then be a difficult task.  The landlords that you work for expect you to know what you are doing and how the property is going.  Know the tenant mix and the strategy behind that.
  4. Stay close to the tenants at all times in your properties. Build relationships with tenants so they can contact you with problems.  They will tell you so much.  Over time they will need help with lease situations, expansion, contraction, and relocation.  It is preferable that they talk to you than someone else.
  5. Maintenance requirements in properties will change from location to location and the age of each property will have an impact on the size and type of maintenance. Get to know your contractors and their response methods.  Understand the building and safety codes as they apply to the properties under management.  Compliance to all codes is really important.

The list of tasks and points of focus does not stop here, but it goes on into many other issues and events.  Keep organised and keep learning.  Over time you will build your career in the best part of the industry.



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