As a property manager, you have a multitude of tasks on your plate. On any given day, you’re showing properties to potential tenants, collecting rent, scheduling repairs, finding properties for your clients, and the list goes on. This would be fine if you were managing only one property, but what if you’re overseeing several properties spread across different cities, counties, and states?
We’ve compiled a few time-saving strategies to help you maximize your productivity, allowing you to find success, regardless of how large your portfolio grows.
Start your day with a solid plan
Creating a to-do list may seem simple and old-fashioned, but it’s one of the best tricks in the book. Strive to welcome each day with a solid plan by writing down what needs to be done based on priority. That way, you can get everything done, reduce the risk of forgetting certain tasks, and use your time more efficiently.
Note that more items may get added to your to-do list as the day progresses. Tenants may have concerns that must be addressed within the day, contractors may want to jump in on a call to discuss a project’s details, and clients may want you to prepare a report. A to-do list gives you an overview of your tasks and keeps you from feeling overwhelmed, no matter how long it gets.
If you only make mental notes of your to-dos, you’ll constantly be worrying about the things you still have to do, and you won’t be able to concentrate on the task at hand.
According to Glean’s Hybrid Workplace Habits and Hangups report, employees spend 25% of their workweek searching for files and information – that’s a lot of wasted time! It may take you even longer to find your files, considering the piles of paperwork that property managers have to maintain for years, from rental contracts to invoices.
Proper record-keeping is a must for property managers as it allows you to quickly find files when you need them. When you sort your files and store them in one place, you won’t have to waste your precious time, and instead, use it to execute more critical tasks. Consider investing in tools that let you and your team retrieve and update data on the go, such as Google Drive, OneDrive, or other cloud solutions. Not only will this make you more efficient, but it will also enable you to do more during the day.
Multitasking is a myth. It doesn’t work and can even impede your productivity. Once you’ve written your to-do list, group work tasks together according to their nature. For example, checking rent payments, paying contractors, and creating financial reports can be grouped because they’re all related to bookkeeping. Grouping your tasks is one way to get things done more efficiently, as you’ll need the same or similar resources for all of them.
Tasks that require your full focus should be done when you’re at your best. For instance, if you’re more productive from 9 AM to 1 PM, devote that time to your most pressing concerns, and then assign the not-so-critical tasks from 1 PM onwards. That way, you won’t waste time as you try to figure out what to tackle first.
Automate rent collection
Collecting rent is, perhaps, one of the most time-consuming tasks you have as a property manager. It may seem fairly straightforward, but in reality, rent collection involves a constant back-and-forth between you and tenants. Not only do you have to remind them that their rent is almost due, but you also have to check if they paid the correct amount, calculate any late fees and penalties, and chase after them for overdue rent.
Rent collection software frees you from this burden, allowing you to focus on more business-critical duties. Rather than collecting rent, calculating fees, and following up with tenants in person, the software does this for you. Plus, it makes it easy for you, your clients, and your tenants to track their payments, and provides all parties with peace of mind, knowing that the records are accurate.
Use property management software
If you have hundreds of properties under your belt, it would be impossible to manage them all without the use of tools. Your properties may have distinct amenities that need to be maintained a certain way and be in various neighborhoods with their own rules. Noting these details is doable if you only oversee one or two properties, but as your portfolio grows (which it inevitably will), it can be a burden.
To run multiple rental properties, you will have to leverage property management software. Not only will you be able to group your properties based on certain criteria (e.g., location, short-term rentals, long-term rentals, etc.), but you can also create maintenance schedules, note what you have and haven’t done to each property, and much more.
This can be especially useful if you craft custom property management plans for your clients. With the use of software, you can save yourself the time of recalling each property’s requirements and ensure they’re all managed to the client’s unique needs.
Outsource tedious tasks
The more properties you manage, the more you’ll have to do. Juggling too many things at a time will eventually cause burnout, so you might want to outsource some of your tasks, such as the ones you don’t enjoy doing or are too tedious.
Get an assistant to deal with time-wasting administrative duties such as answering calls, responding to rental queries, and reviewing rental applications. Just remember to be clear about what your team can and can’t do.
Use services for personal errands
Property management may not be a 9-to-5 job, but it can certainly take up most of your time. Problems can crop up at any time, even when you’re trying to wind down for the day. You’ll be busy from sunrise to sunset (and sometimes, even beyond that), which means you may not have time for personal matters, such as cleaning the house, going to the grocery store, and walking your dog.
Fortunately, there are plenty of service providers that can help with day-to-day errands, from laundry-proofing your life to deep-cleaning your home for you. With these chores out of the way, you can stress less and focus on the things that are truly important to you.
Time management leads to well-managed properties
Property management is a fast-paced career that requires you to manage your time wisely. Once you master the art of time management, you’ll be able to work more efficiently and effectively, allowing you to meet your targets and your client’s goals. By managing your time, you can be confident that your properties will also be well-managed.