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4 mistakes principals make when hiring PMs

13 January 2015 Elyse Perrau

Experts in real estate recruitment divulge the top mistakes principals make when hiring property managers.

Recruiting inside the box

Real Plus business manager Hermione Gardiner told RPM that principals can “pigeon-hole” themselves by only looking for stock-standard PMs with five-plus years of industry experience.

“We are seeing a strong emergence of agencies hiring PM staff from outside of the industry with huge success,” Ms Gardiner said.


“Property management functions and transactions on their own are not overly hard to learn. What is hard to learn and train is the customer service, conflict resolution and problem-solving.

“We are seeing very positive results from hiring PMs with experience in fields such as hospitality and retail,” she added.

Slow on the uptake

Urgency is something some principals fail to grasp when recruiting PMs, said Real Estate Career Developers GM Daniel Gonsalves. 

“Particularly if you look at the Sydney market at the moment, there is such a huge shortage of good-quality property managers. They just disappear in literally 24 hours,” he told RPM.

“So I think if you are lucky enough to come across a great property manager, if that CV crosses your desk, grab them and get them in within 24 hours and be ready to make your decision.”

Expecting too much

Real Positions owner Paulette Steele told RPM one of the biggest mistakes principals make when recruiting PMs is expecting them to automatically bring in new managements. 

“Great property managers, generally speaking, are not wonderful at business development,” she said. “Most will say they hate selling and can’t do it. The majority won’t even ask their long-term landlords if they have any other rental properties. 

“This is because the skill set to be an excellent PM is strong organisational skills, attention to detail and proficiency in administration. 

“The best ones get new managements because their landlords think they are the greatest and refer them to others,” she added. 

Preconceived notions

Mr Gonsalves also notes that principals often make too many assumptions about a potential candidate.

“A lot of principals will tend to get a CV in, look at it, and in three seconds they have got a picture of what that person looks like in their head,” he said.

“So it is important to try and look through that a little and not have too many preconceived ideas on exactly what that person is like. You need to keep more of an open mind.” 

4 mistakes principals make when hiring PMs
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