Growing up in a family entirely full of contractors in the trades, we spent a lot of time pursuing commercial business. When working on the commercial side of things in the trades, you often deal directly with real estate property managers.

While a high-school diploma can be enough to get hired as a property manager, for good reasons, more companies prefer that their property managers have a bachelor’s degree in a related field. Often, they also need to have a working knowledge of business claims with insurance companies, insurance protocols, legal aspects of working with sub-contractors, and a firm grasp of financial management to oversee budgets and expenditures effectively.

Having a bachelor’s degree not only provides a deeper understanding of these critical areas but also demonstrates a commitment to the profession. Additionally, higher education can offer specialized coursework in real estate, marketing, and business law, further equipping property managers with the skills they need to succeed.

These qualifications can make all the difference in managing tenant relations, optimizing property value, and ensuring compliance with regulations. Advanced knowledge of technology and property management software is also increasingly important, as these tools streamline operations and enhance communication with clients.

Many property managers hold degrees in business fields, such as:

  • Business Administration
  • Finance
  • Real Estate
  • Hospitality Management
  • Accounting
  • Public administration

Hospitality is a wonderful fit for the role of a property manager as it focuses on customer service. Furthermore, these degrees provide a strong foundation in the principles of property investment, operations, and financial management.

Career strategies property management

If you’re considering a career as a real estate property manager, one of the most valuable degrees you can pursue is in business administration. This degree equips you with the foundational knowledge necessary to understand the ins and outs of running a business. By taking specific courses in real estate law, principles, and management practices, you’ll be preparing yourself to manage properties efficiently and effectively.

However, business administration isn’t the only degree that can set you up for success in this field. Degrees in finance, accounting, or marketing can also be incredibly beneficial. For instance, a finance degree will help you grasp the intricacies of managing money, making investments, and generating profit for your company. As a property manager, your job will include ensuring that the properties under your care are not only well-maintained but also profitable.

Marketing is another crucial area for property management. A degree in marketing will teach you how to attract and retain tenants, a vital skill when you’re responsible for keeping properties rented out. Effective marketing strategies can help you get the word out about the availability of your units and make them appealing to prospective tenants.

On the financial side, degrees in finance or accounting are indispensable. They provide you with the skills to manage budgets, create financial plans, and ensure the financial health of the properties you’re overseeing. As a property manager, you’ll often find yourself responsible for creating and sticking to budgets to ensure everything runs smoothly and profitably.

While these degrees are some of the top choices for aspiring property managers, it’s worth noting that finance-related degrees are prevalent in this field. This is mainly because property managers are required to handle significant financial responsibilities, answering to both property owners and tenants. A solid understanding of accounting and financial management is therefore crucial, as it forms a core part of your day-to-day duties.

How much do most property managers make a year?

Property managers’ salaries can vary widely—from as little as $10,289 to as much as $249,332 per year. The median salary sits at around $49,839, with most property managers (about 57%) earning between $49,839 and $116,324. The top earners, roughly 86%, can make up to $249,332 annually.

If you’re aiming for the higher end of that pay scale, choosing a top-notch property management degree program is essential. The best programs combine classroom learning with real-world experience, allowing you to put theory into practice. When evaluating programs, look specifically for those accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS). This accreditation signifies that the program meets high standards and effectively prepares students for successful careers in property management.

In your studies, you’ll cover crucial topics such as real estate law, principles of real estate, and property management practices. To further tailor your education to your career goals, consider courses that align with your specific interests. For example, if you plan to manage properties with extensive outdoor areas, taking a few horticultural courses could be highly beneficial.

After earning your degree, you’ll need to get licensed as a real estate broker to practice property management. This involves passing a state examination and, once licensed, completing continuing education courses to keep your license current.

While a degree isn’t strictly necessary to become a property manager, it certainly gives you an edge. It equips you with the skills and knowledge needed to excel in the field and helps you stand out when job hunting.

Top 10 rental property management software

As of this writing, below are the top ten property management software systems to consider:

  1. AppFolio  
  2. Buildium  
  3. Propertyware  
  4. Rentec Direct  
  5. Yardi
  6. DoorLoop
  7. Rent Manager
  8. RentRedi
  9. SimplifyEm
  10. TenantCloud LLC

Each of these platforms comes with its own unique set of features and perks. So, figuring out which one works best for you really depends on your specific needs. Once you have a clear idea of what you’re looking for, it becomes much easier to compare these options and find the perfect match for your business.

What degree is needed for property management?

In conclusion, while a business administration degree provides a solid general foundation, degrees in finance, marketing, and accounting offer specialized skills that can give you an edge in the competitive world of property management. Each of these educational paths equips you with different elements essential to effective property management, from financial savvy to marketing understanding, all of which contribute to a successful career in this dynamic field.