If you’re looking to get into the field of property management business and you’d love to be your own boss at a lower level of risk, franchising is a fantastic option to consider. If property is your passion, here’s how you can go about making a career change and starting your own property management franchise.
As a franchisee with a property management company, you’ll have the opportunity to work in a dynamic and interesting field in which there is strong and growing demand. Even without industry experience, your franchisor will be able to support your career change. Find out how below.
Why start a property management franchise?
The real estate sector is a major player in the UK economy, bringing in over £68.1 billion in turnover in 2020 [Statista]. Investing in the sector is, therefore, a sensible and lucrative choice, especially considering you’ll benefit from comprehensive training and support, and you’ll have access to a proven business model. Within real estate, property management is a popular option because property managers:
- Provide tenants with an intermediary point of contact
- Reduce chance of tenant turnover
- Ensure timely rental payments
- Reduce chance of legal problems occurring
- Lower overall property maintenance costs
Beyond the evident demand across the UK for quality rental properties, and as a result, competent and efficient property management companies, there are several key advantages to investing in a franchise of this type, including:
- Ability to generate a good income from a largely future-proof industry
- Ease of marketing
- Consistent revenue generated by regular/repeat customers
- Fast franchise growth and a strong return on your investment
- Affordable investment options
- Flexible working hours
>> Read more:
Making a career change with a property management franchise
1. Determine whether you have the skills to succeed in the sector
An important part of assessing whether a career change will be right for you or not is figuring out what your strengths and skills are, and whether these skills will help you as a property manager. Even without any sector experience, there are certain useful transferable skills that it would benefit a property manager to have:
- Customer service
- Time management
If you have these skills, and you’re starting to feel you’d be a good fit for the industry, keep researching and take a look at the specific listed requirements of individual franchise opportunities to truly assess your compatibility. For example, the ideal No Letting Go franchisee would be hard-working and positive-minded, with a strong ability to deliver customer service to a high standard. Meanwhile, S.R.P. Inventories describes its ideal franchisee as enterprising and self-motivated.
2. Master the property management basics and get informed
There are some things that it would be helpful for you to know before you start. If you don’t have existing property qualification or experience, this kind of research will stand you in good stead not just to do your job, but to understand what you’re committing to. Get to grips with two keys things:
1. The basic legal rights of tenants and legal responsibilities of landlords.
2. The day-to-day responsibilities of a property manager.
Tenants have the following legal rights:
- The right to live in a safe property in a good state of repair
- The right to a protected deposit which is returned at the end of tenancy
- The right to challenge high charges
- The right to know their landlord
- The right to view an EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) for the property
- The right to be protected against unfair eviction/rent
- The right to live in the property undisturbed without due warning
- To right to a written agreement (if tenancy is a fixed term of more than three years)
Landlords have the following legal responsibilities:
- The responsibility to protect (and return) tenancy deposits
- The responsibility to provide necessary documentation
- The responsibility to make sure the property is free from health and safety hazards
- The responsibility to maintain utilities, structural integrity, appliances and furniture
- The responsibility to check gas safety, smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms
- The responsibility to give sufficient notice
- The responsibility to ensure bills aren’t left unpaid by tenants
- Managing a portfolio of properties
- Dealing with calls/emails/queries from clients (landlords and tenants)
- Sourcing contractors
- Parking enforcement
- Development visits
- Actioning items on surveys or reports
- Meeting with clients/hosting meetings
- Reading leases and legal documents
- Other administrative tasks
Obviously, you don’t need to know everything going into the role, but a basic understanding of what will be expected can only be helpful to you as you navigate your career change and start your own property management franchise.
>> Read more:
- Franchising 101: The Official Franchise Start Up Checklist (Part 1)
- Franchising 101: The Official Franchise Start Up Checklist (Part 2)
- New Year, New Career: No Better Time Than Now to Start a Franchise Today
- Franchising 101: 8 Signs You're Ready to Start a Franchise
- Starting a New Business Doesn't Always Lead to Immediate Success: Here Are 5 Ways to Change That
- It's Never Too Late to Start a New Business
3. Research franchise opportunities
Once you know what to expect, it’s time to find the kinds of opportunities that suit you within the property management world. Assess franchise opportunities based on important factors like:
- Locations available to franchise in
- Cost of investment and ongoing running costs
- Franchise network ethos
- Success rates among existing and previous franchisees
4. Research courses and qualifications that would set you up for success pre-investment
Beyond the basics, you might also consider setting yourself up for success with a qualification, even if one isn’t expressly required by the franchise network you’re looking into investing with. There are a variety of property management courses available to complete, both offline and online, including:
- An MSc(Hons) in Real Estate Management
- Level 2/3/4/5/6 Awards in Introduction to Residential Property Management Practice
- A Level 3 Award in Residential Inventory Management and Practice
5. Sign the agreement, and make use of all the training and support available to you
The final step, when you feel fully prepared to take the leap, is the investment, and the signing of the legally binding franchise agreement. Before you sign, make sure the agreement is looked over for a legal professional and everything is confirmed to be above board. This is just one part of doing your due diligence as an investor, and it’s very important.
After you’re on-board and your franchise journey begins, make sure that you’re accessing and making the most of all the training and support that’s supplied to you. Everything new that you learn will help you to succeed in the business, and asking for help should never be seen as a weakness - it’s exactly what your franchisor is there for.
It is [your responsibility as a property manager] to remain up-to-date on all legal and regulatory aspects of property management. Also, remember that sometimes it is okay to admit that you do not know the answer. A good property manager will look for the information and come back with an answer. —Mashvisor
Why not try running a franchise in the property management industry?
By now, you should have a strong idea of whether or not franchising in the property management industry is the right move for you. If you think it is, and you’d like to continue your research, stay on Point Franchise to discover the state of the real estate sector post-COVID.
Lily Sweeney, Point Franchise ©