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Community Association Managers vs. Property Managers

Property Management

When it comes time to hire a manager for your rental property or apartment community in Maryland, you may be confused about what type of company you should choose. Many times, people use the terms “property manager” and “community association manager” interchangeably. However, there are many important differences between the two.

Here’s a comparison of the roles property managers and community association managers play. With this information, you’ll be confident that you’re hiring the right management company for the tasks you have in mind.

Property Managers

The responsibilities of property managers primarily involve meeting the needs of individual property owners and tenants. Property owners request specific tasks from their property managers that they themselves don’t have the time, skills, or resources to complete. Essentially, property managers take on all the responsibilities of being a landlord.

Tasks that a property manager may perform on a given day include:

  • Showing a vacant unit to a prospective tenant
  • Drafting a lease agreement in accordance with Maryland law
  • Arranging for maintenance and repairs inside individual units from a network of carefully screened technicians and contractors
  • Inspecting a rental unit after the tenant moves out to determine how much of the security deposit to refund
  • Serving an eviction notice to a tenant who has violated the lease agreement
  • Collecting rent on the first of the month (and issuing late notices by the sixth)
  • Fielding tenant complaints and maintenance requests

Property managers are licensed by the state and required to maintain their license to stay in business.

Community Association Managers

The responsibilities of community association managers rest not with individual property owners and tenants, but with the community on the whole. As such, community association managers work with the Homeowner’s Association (HOA) or Condo Owner’s Association (COA) Board of Directors.

The precise responsibilities of community association managers vary depending on the needs of that community, which are stated in the management agreement that both parties sign. These might include:

  • Hiring a landscaping company to maintain common areas in the community, such as green belts and parks
  • Preparing bid specifications and proposal requests for construction projects in the community
  • Monitoring various companies, such as trash collectors, that serve the community
  • Paying vendors and associations as work is performed and dealing with any issues that arise
  • Recruiting, selecting, hiring, and firing HOA and COA staff
  • Drafting an annual budget for the association, including operating expenses, capital improvements, and reserves
  • Developing and implementing an administrative calendar of association meetings, events, and activities

Community association managers aren’t required by state law to have a license, so it’s important to carefully select the company you work with to ensure quality services.

Property & Community Management Services in MD

At Tidewater Property Management, we offer both rental property management and community management. We are fully licensed, insured, and qualified to provide these services to our clients in Maryland.

Our experienced team is proud to offer affordable, customizable services to property owners and associations to meet your precise needs without going over budget. With over 28 years of industry experience, we have had plenty of time to master the ins and outs of property and community management.

Come to us whether you own an individual rental property or you serve on your HOA’s Board of Directors. We’ll take care of the complicated, time-consuming tasks you’re responsible for to free up your time and lift this burden off your shoulders.

To learn more about the differences between community association managers and property managers, or to arrange services for your building in Maryland, please contact Tidewater today.

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Since we opened our doors in 1989, Tidewater has been offering personal customer service throughout Maryland, Virginia, Delaware and West Virginia. Due to our dedication to helping homeowners buy, sell, rent, and maintain their properties, we have become one of the largest family owned full-service real estate management companies in the area.

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