Property managers believe that interpersonal skills are significantly more important than financial knowledge.
According to a recent RPM poll, 50.4 per cent of respondents said that interpersonal skills is the most important attribute needed in property management.
That was followed by time management on 32.8 per cent, market knowledge on 13.4 per cent, financial knowledge on 0.8 per cent and other on 2.5 per cent.
Coronis Real Estate senior property manager Kelly Parr said interpersonal skills can help build strong, trusting relationships with clients, tenants and tradespeople.
“Interpersonal skills are extremely important as there is an element of what you could call ‘counselling’ or adapting to each individual’s personality, needs and wants, which will help you to be able to service your clients in the best possible way,” she told RPM.
Ms Parr noted that interpersonal skills can be taught but it is dependent on a person’s character and drive to learn.
“People with real life experiences or enjoy learning or developing personally will always be able to relate better to clients than someone else who is set in their ways and can be seen as unapproachable or unhelpful,” she said.
“I also believe that putting your team in situations which get them out of their comfort zone whether it is in life or business, will help them to improve their interpersonal skills and will benefit them within their job role as they will be able to handle any issue or situation that could be presented to them throughout their career.”
BDM Coach director Deniz Yusuf said that despite the poll results, financial knowledge is a vital skill for a property manager to have.
“Having an understanding of returns on investments is pretty important, especially when dealing with new investors in the market who want to know what a percentage return would be for a property, and then educating owners on the percentage of loss they receive if their property is vacant for too long against seeking a higher weekly return.”
According to Mr Yusuf each week a property is sitting vacant the owner is losing approximately two per cent of their annual income and this is often because the owner wants an extra $10 rent per week.
“It’s better if a property manager can explain that marketing a property with a lower asking price and then renting it faster can give a better overall annual income on the investment.”
Mr Yusuf recognised that it can be a difficult call to make for property managers, but being equipped with financial knowledge can help educate landlords.
“The agents that are educating owners from day one are the ones that are leasing properties quicker and being successful because they’ve been educated on the financial side.”