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Real Estate Office Manager: Job Description and Career Info

Learn about the education and preparation needed to become a real estate office manager. Get a quick view of the requirements as well as details about degree programs, job duties, and certification to find out if this is the career for you.

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It is possible to begin a career as a real estate office manager with a high school diploma or GED; however, many employers do prefer postsecondary training in business. Real estate office managers may oversee the financial and legal aspects of buying, selling, or leasing property. Other duties may involve addressing tenant complaints or negotiating contracts.

Essential Information

Managers of real estate offices deal with financial and legal matters for individuals or organizations that buy, sell, lease, or manage property. A college degree in business may be required by employers, and obtaining optional certifications may lead to greater career prospects.

Required Education No formal postsecondary education requirements, though a bachelor's or master's degree in a business-related field may be preferred
Other Requirements On-the-job training and related work experience may be required
Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)* 8% for property, real estate, and community association mangers
Median Salary (2015)* $55,380 for property, real estate, and community association managers

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Real Estate Office Manager Job Description

Real estate office managers may handle administrative, clerical, and financial duties. For example, while some managers may focus on resolving tenant complaints, others may be required to help coordinate the sale or rental of properties and homes. Accordingly, duties may range from inspecting grounds and contacting repair companies to collecting rent and negotiating contracts. To do so, managers may need to visit properties, meet with prospective clients, and maintain a database of service providers, such as plumbing or electrical contractors.

Office Management Duties

Real estate office managers may also have office management duties, such as dispersing information and supervising staff, which may include receptionists, sales agents, and other employees. As such, these professionals may also be responsible for training new hires, explaining compensation benefits, and evaluating job performance. Other duties may include keeping cost and sales records, presenting property budgets, and generating real estate financial reports.

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Real Estate Office Manager Career Info

While a college degree is not required for real estate management positions, it may be preferred by property management companies, especially for those in asset management. In this case, a bachelor's or master's degree from a business-related program is adequate. Additionally, real estate office managers often receive on-the-job training, and prior relevant experience may be required. Those involved in buying or selling properties are typically required to be licensed by their respective state.

Certification

Some individuals in real estate management positions may elect to become certified in order to demonstrate knowledge and skill to potential employers, thereby increasing the chances of advancement. For instance, the Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM) offers several credentials, including the widely recognized Accredited Residential Manager (ARM) certification and the Accredited Commercial Manager (ACM) certification. Some combination of IREM coursework, education, and experience, in addition to passing a final exam, is required to become certified.

Salary and Outlook Info

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), as of May 2015, the median annual income for property, real estate, and community association managers was $55,380. The BLS notes that employment in the field was expected to rise by about 8% from 2014-2024. The Bureau also indicates that individuals with college degrees and professional certification will have better opportunities over those who don't.

A postsecondary degree may not be required to become real estate office manager; however, applicants with advanced education or training will have a higher number of job prospects and more opportunities for advancement. The duties of a real estate office manager can vary from employer to employer.

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