How will COVID-19 affect the property management industry

How Will the COVID-19 Pandemic Affect the Property Management Industry? Putting Your Fears to Rest

We recognize that the COVID-19 pandemic has had a major impact on the economy at large. The vital need to avoid congregating in large groups has alternated radically our reality. This led rapidly in markets being less stable than they were even a few months ago worldwide. Property management is one of them and it’s understandably worrisome for the property managers of the world. You want to know that your work is secure and that you’ll continue to have a way to earn your livelihood.


Property management is an essential service


There is some positivity among the somewhat-dismal news that fills the Internet these days, however. Property managers are in a positive position. They provide an essential service as part of one of the most key elements of human life: housing. Food, water, and shelter are some of our core needs, and rental “shelter” continues to be a need, even when economic downturns happen.

The IBISWorld Industry Report on property management in the United States from 2018 pointed out that economic upswings and downturns have semi-predictable effects on the need for property management. While it is true that, in the very near term, some renters won’t be able to pay their rent due to a sudden loss of jobs, this should be very temporary. 


Predictions for increase in rental properties


As our nation recovers from the impact of the pandemic, rentals will actually be a preferred option for many people. This is because they offer the chance to avoid a big financial outlay that homeownership involves. If, for instance, a family moves due to new employment related to economic shifts of late, they are more likely to pick rental housing at least in the near term. Economic downturns, as the report reminds us, cause more people to pick rental housing.

The report also points out that landlords look to save money and employ economies of scale that are available with a property management company. Therefore, they are more likely to outsource during unstable economic times. And this means, your property management company may see some new potential contracts. Landlords who had previously managed their own properties shift into outsourcing. They now see the value in letting experienced professionals who have many doors under management take the reins.


New opportunities after COVID-19 in commercial property management


The outlook for commercial property management is perhaps less rosy, given the uncertain future of some of your tenants. Realistically, however, even in economic downturns, innovation and new companies do arise to take the place of those who may close down. An important step at this point is to reach out and learn more about how they are doing. If, for example, any federal or state relief programs exist to help them pay bills during this period of uncertainty. Sharing that information with them may help you to retain them as clients.

Ultimately, even with the obstacles that COVID-19 poses, the need for property management will persist. Offering excellent service to your clients can help you to stand out as a bright spot during a tough season. And of course, winning you loyalty for many rental cycles to come.