A manager may get a free apartment and $500 a month to oversee 15 or 20 units onsite! A big property over 100 units the manager may get a free apartment and $3,000 per month.
A property management company who oversees properties off site may get 8 to 10 percent of gross income. They make money because they manage multiple properties! The property management company may be paying the onsite management out of their gross income!
The property managers that I have spoke with complain that the salaries for their industry has declined in recent years and they struggle to survive while they are taking on more responsibility then ever before without any pay increases. They are professionals with many years of experience, non smokers, no drugs, quality employees…
A property has to be large enough to support a property manager. In general you can afford an employee for every 30 units. 30 units you get a manager 60 you get a manager and a handyman etc. A 10 unit apartment complex you are managing that puppy yourself.
If you want to know what to pay your property manager you should join the local chapter of the National Apartment Association. They have local salary data. They can tell you what you should pay your property manager, handymen, sales managers leasing agents, etc. This data is broken down by complex size and complexity.
Ten percent is about the norm where I am. I interviewed some and was going to hire one 20 years ago for my SFH till the local Century 21 office who sent someone over talked me out of it.
He came, look the place over, and said “Nice, the place is well taken care off.”, then he asked:
How many calls you get a year, and my answer “about 5 or 6”.
Do you have a landscaper, and my answer “Yes”
Do you have a plumber, and my answer, “Yes, he does the job, then bills me”
Then he tells me, "Our rate is 10%, and for 6 calls a year, hardly worth it for you. The landscaper you need when the property is vacant, you can ask them to clean up the place, like taken up things. With the plumber, you got 95% of things taken care of.
So I asked, do you handle SFH then? Answer "Yes, plenty of them, for owners out of state, widows, disabled owners. Then he looked at me, and said “You don’t look disabled”.
Says he handles a bunch of properties, SFH, multi-unit, so its not doing just one and waiting for the phone to ring. A PM just waiting for 6 calls a year?? Handles property management for the local Century 21. His wife is a sales agent.
Normally for 5 or 6-plexes in the city, you get someone where they get 50% off the rent or free rent. Full time PM’s start at around 30 units.