Property Manager Vs. Real Estate Agent

Property managers and real estate agents benefit from similar skills and training and share some comparable duties. This article also explores what distinguishes property managers from real estate agents.

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Comparing Property Managers to Real Estate Agents

Property managers and real estate agents both work with properties and earn comparable incomes. There are some distinctions in their roles, however, and property managers are currently enjoying a faster rate of job growth.

Job Title Educational Requirements Median Salary (2018)* Job Outlook (2016-2026)**
Property Managers High school diploma and experience, real estate license or bachelor's degree $46,661 10% (property, real estate and community association managers)
Real Estate Agents Postsecondary courses and license $46,884 6%

Sources: *PayScale; **U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Responsibilities of Property Managers vs. Real Estate Agents

Property managers and real estate agents may both travel to different properties and show them to people. Property managers tend to focus on properties that are available for rent while real estate managers may handle rentals, sales or purchases of property. Property managers are responsible for maintaining their properties and having damages repaired. Real estate agents focus more on the sales aspect of their role and may be responsible for collecting information or materials that can be used to promote a property and preparing property listings and ads. Negotiation skills can be an asset for both professionals, although property managers may handle conflicts between tenants while real estate agents use their negotiating skills to help parties agree to the terms of a sale. Both are involved with producing contracts while property managers have the additional responsibilities of collecting money and paying bills.

Property Managers

Property managers look after properties on behalf of the property owners. They may serve as onsite or offsite property managers, which may affect their work environment because onsite property managers live and work at the property that they look after. Offsite property managers may have a separate office and will spend more time traveling to properties they are responsible for. They need to have strong customer service skills and communication skills in order to relay information effectively. Sales skills may also be an asset for property managers. They may have long and irregular work hours.

Job responsibilities of a property manager include:

  • Meeting potential renters
  • Preparing rental contracts
  • Ensuring rent is paid
  • Hiring repairmen and scheduling repairs to properties
  • Resolving issues with renters

Real Estate Agents

Real estate agents are involved with selling or renting properties. They typically work from home or from a real estate office. Their work involves frequent travel to different properties. They need to have strong sales skills and customer service skills. Those that are interested in advancement can pursue a broker's license after gaining experience in real estate.

Job responsibilities of a real estate agent include:

  • Creating advertisements
  • Dispersing promotional materials
  • Meeting clients
  • Explaining the key features and values of a property
  • Finalizing the terms of a sale

Related Careers

If you're considering a career as a property manager or real estate agent then you may also want to consider other careers that involve working with property, such as being a property appraiser or a home inspector. Learn more about these career options through the links provided here.

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