Published on December 31st, 2013 | by Derek Markham0
Green Business Ideas: Sustainable Property Management
For potential entrepreneurs and small business owners, green business ideas can be found in all sorts of industries, and because properties and homes will always need managing, setting yourself up as sustainable property management company could be not only profitable, but also serve to help property owners and renters move in an environmentally sustainable direction.
What is a sustainable property management company?
Property management companies look after residential and commercial properties for the owners of those properties, and they coordinate leasing agreements, tenants’ issues, and processing of rents. Some property management companies go even further, coordinating maintenance and setting up other basic services like plumbing, electrical, and repairs. A sustainable property management company can help coordinate the most environmentally friendly maintenance and repair of properties, providing superior long term value and return on investment for property owners, as well as a healthier living situation for tenants (and thereby attracting higher quality, better paying tenants).
What required knowledge or skills are necessary?
Good skills to have to run a sustainable property management company are green building, remodeling, and general maintenance knowledge, which will help the company provide the best quality service to property owners. For instance, when a carpet needs to be replaced at a property, a good sustainable property management company will be able to source the healthiest, most environmentally friendly replacement flooring solution, and will be knowledgeable enough to find a green company that can provide those services.
Other good skills include account management and good people skills. You’ll need to keep good records for each property and each owner, and have a trustworthy personality that will instill confidence in your clients.
How much money is required to start?
A sustainable property management business can be started with a small amount of money, as no major equipment is needed, other than basic office furnishings and a computer. If you plan to do work on the properties yourself, an investment in tools will be necessary.
What is the income potential?
It’s possible to make a good living from a sustainable property management company, but like all businesses, it all depends on the quality and number of clients you have, and the strength of your marketing and sales skills.
What is the best location for a sustainable property management company?
Urban (best), semi-urban (very good), suburbs (very good), rural (poor). You can start this business anywhere, but locating yourself and your office near most of your customers will help establish your business presence in that community. Thus, many property management companies specializing in condos locate themselves in urban areas, whereas many that manage suburban properties like single family homes choose to locate themselves in a suburban setting.
Four best questions to ask yourself to find out if this business is right for you (if you can answer yes to all four, this business might be for you):
- Do you enjoy connecting people with a new home?
- Can you speak the language of building maintenance (i.e., do you know what a primer is, how often ducts need cleaning, and what the difference is between a traditional and a tankless hot water heater)?
- Are you organized and meticulous as a record keeper?
- Do you live in a community where green services like eco-friendly maid services, eco-friendly green building remodelers, and eco-friendly carpet cleaning services are available?