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PM workload a ‘contentious issue’

10 September 2014 Elyse Perrau

The question as to how many properties a single PM should manage is always a “contentious issue” and is difficult to answer, according to a specialist property management business.

Speaking to Residential Property Manager, Rental Express director Chris Rolls said it is a hard question to answer because it depends on so many factors.

“In terms of the ratio, it is always a contentious issue, and the reason is, first of all, it is very hard to measure,” he said.

Mr Rolls said if you were talking to his property managers right now they might say they manage 130.

“What they are not taking into account is that they are managing relationships of 130 owners hypothetically, but they are not doing all the work on those 130 properties,” he said.

“They might get leasing support or administrative support, or whatever it happens to be.”

Mr Rolls said, to add more complexity to the matter, in different states the workload differs because of legislation.

“So, for example, in the Queensland market it is very common for agencies to do three or four routine inspections in a year,” he said.

“In Western Australia, it is standard across the board that everyone does at least four.

“Whereas in New South Wales it is very common to do two in the first year and then in a lot of cases just one routine inspection in the years thereafter.

“So if you picture someone managing 150 properties in Queensland, they might have to do 600 routine inspections a year, but someone in NSW only has to do 150 - that is a massive workload difference,” he added.

Mr Rolls said the other factor that is significantly relevant for the number of properties a PM can manage is their skill set and skill level.

“Even in the system that we have, we have property managers that can easily manage 180 and have got time to spare because they are very efficient, and we have others that can only manage 130-140,” he said.

“[However] if someone is doing everything - apart from the trust accounting - I believe the figure for the question is somewhere between 110-140 - somewhere around those figures as a ballpark benchmark,” he added. 

PM workload a ‘contentious issue’
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