Real estate property manager greets client

How to Become a Property Manager in 2024

If you’re looking to enter a new career related to real estate, consider becoming a property manager. People of all ages are choosing to rent instead of buying, so reliable property managers are needed. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that employment in the industry will grow 5% from 2022 to 2032, so the need for property managers will continue to exist for the foreseeable future.

Benefits of Becoming a Property Manager

Embarking on a career as a property manager offers a multitude of advantages. If you’re seeking a new professional challenge or a career in the real estate industry, here’s why stepping into this role could be a smart move. 

  • Lucrative opportunities: Property management often offers competitive salaries and growth potential, especially as you gain experience and expand your portfolio. 
  • Stable employment: With the growing demand for rental properties, the need for skilled property managers remains consistent. Enjoy the security of knowing that your expertise will continue to be in demand. 
  • Diverse skill development: Managing properties involves a diverse set of responsibilities, from overseeing maintenance to handling tenant relations. This dynamic role provides ample opportunities to develop valuable communication, problem-solving, and strategic decision-making skills. 
  • Flexibility and independence: Many property managers enjoy the flexibility of setting their own schedules and working independently. Property management offers versatile options to suit your lifestyle, whether you prefer the structure of a traditional office environment or the autonomy of remote work. 
  • Community Impact: As a property manager, you play a vital role in shaping the community where you work. By ensuring well-maintained properties and fostering positive tenant experiences, you contribute to the quality of life for residents while enhancing the value of real estate investments. 

Become a Property Manager in 4 Steps

Do a decent salary, steady employment, job security—and a strong desire to work with people—top your wish list for your next career? If so, follow these steps to become a property manager. 

Step 1: Research the requirements to become a property manager in your state.

The specific licensing requirements for becoming a property manager vary by state. You’ll notice that, for many states, you must get your real estate or property manager license before becoming a property manager. That’s because a lot of the responsibilities of a property manager are similar to actions a real estate agent performs. Courses in real estate development, real estate management, real estate finance, urban planning, affordable housing administration, property management, and housing for the elderly are beneficial for this role. 

Some property managers have college degrees in business administration, real estate, accounting, public administration, or finance. 

Also, don’t underestimate the value of on-the-job training. You may need to start at an entry-level position, but you can move up the ranks once you learn the business. 

Step 2: Obtain specialized certifications.

Even if you don’t need a license to manage properties in your jurisdiction, obtaining certifications is wise because it reveals to hiring companies and potential clients that you are highly committed to the profession. 

You can also go after more specialized certifications, such as Certified Manager of Community Associations, Residential Management Professional (RMP®), Certified Property Manager (CPM), or Certified Apartment Manager (CAM). For most certifications, you must apply, complete specific education requirements, and pass a test or series of exams. While it takes time and effort, such credentials can set you apart from other job applicants. 

Step 3: Get your first property manager job.

Once you’ve obtained the proper certifications, it’s time to get a job. Easier said than done? There are a few ways to jump-start your job search and find a property manager job that’s right for you. 

Use your network.

Let your friends and professional contacts know you’re pursuing a job in property management. You never know who will be in a position to hire you for a property management job until you start getting the word out there that you’re embarking on this new career.

Get to know real estate agents.

Agents in your area will likely hear of openings in this niche first, so set up some informational interviews with agents around town, introduce yourself, and ask for tips on how to get into the business. This will help you get to know them, and they’ll most likely keep a lookout if they hear of any new jobs. 

Search online.

Job boards and online career resources can expedite your job search. Make sure you’re checking job listings regularly. When you apply online, some people find success by doing some internet sleuthing to find the hiring manager’s name to personalize their cover letters.

Step 4: Stay updated on best practices.

Once you get a job in property management, don’t view it as an opportunity to rest on your laurels. You don’t just want to learn how to become a property manager, but how to become a good property manager. Regularly engage with other property managers in the area and stay updated on best practices. Reading property manager blogs is an excellent way to stay updated on industry trends. Here are a few to get you started: 

  • AppFolio: Offers easy-to-read news on the property management industry. 
  • 30Lines: Focuses on real estate marketing and ways to use new technology to attract new clients. 
  • Multifamily Executive: The place to go for breaking news about everything impacting the housing market. 

Get Started on Becoming a Property Manager

Once you’ve figured out how to become a property manager and gained the skills and credentials, it’s just a matter of getting started. Don’t wait! If this is your dream, now’s the time to execute it. Do some investigation to find property management companies with solid reputations. Then, start networking and send out your resume until you find the perfect fit. 

If your state requires you to have a real estate license to become a property manager, Colibri Real Estate can help. We have helped hundreds of thousands earn their real estate license, and we can help you, too. You can complete our affordable, easy-to-follow courses at home on your own time. And we offer a Pass or Don’t Pay Guarantee, so you have nothing to lose! Before long, you’ll be licensed for whatever real estate career appeals to you.