Estate Managers take care of maintenance, appraisal, and coordination of staff, functions, and events in private or commercial estates. They oversee and supervise the day-to-day operations of the estate. This role offers great opportunities in the property sector. A degree in Real Estate, Business Management, and property management or a similar field will come in handy. Experience in real estate and project management will boost your chances of getting this role. Here we outline 25 questions that will ensure you ace your next interview.
1. Why Are You Interested In This Role?
I am interested in this role because of my background and interest in the real estate sector. I have been in the industry for close to 15 years and I enjoy the work has developed great knowledge and expertise. I have friends working in this organization that has informed me of the culture of the organization and its commitment to employee development. The culture aligns with my personal beliefs and therefore I will make a great addition to the team.
2. What Are The Roles Of An Estate Manager?
The roles associated with this position are preparing budgets and presenting them to the directors. The estate manager also reviews plans, general estate requirements, and events. They manage the day-to-day operations of the estate and its resources including staff, events, and any available functions. They also check on any maintenance issues and organize for the repairs and renovations to be done. They are also involved in marketing the estate to the public through different channels including social media. They also liaise with the required stakeholders to ensure that events run smoothly by coordinating clients, caterers, groundsmen, and event planners. I have executed these roles well previously and will use that experience to ensure excellent performance in this organization.
3. What Are The Qualities That An Estate Manager Need To Be Successful?
Estate Managers should have great communication skills as it will enhance their relationships with landlords and clients. They should have a keen eye for details as it will enable them to discover the required renovations and repairs before they go out of hand. They should be highly organized and great time managers as they may be required to handle multiple properties. They should have strong investor mindsets as they scout for opportunities and advise landlords so they can grow their investment. They should be efficient negotiators as issues may arise from time to time and they need to be assertive and firm with the tenants on the requirements as stipulated in the agreements. These are qualities I have worked at growing in the past years and I believe that they will make my work here easy.
4. What Major Challenges Did You Face During Your Last Role? How Did You Manage Them?
In my previous role, increasing revenues was a challenge. This was due to the effects of the economic downturn caused by the Covid Pandemic. Organizations conducted massive layoffs and this led some of our tenants to vacate in favor of cheaper places. We had to create discounts on the properties to reflect the economic situation which offered relief to the tenants and enabled us to be able to fill out all the vacant units. The field offers many challenges but being decisive comes in handy in generating fast solutions to respond to any issues that may arise.
5. Describe Your Daily Routine As An Estate Manager?
No typical day is the same; the routines keep changing depending on circumstances. In the morning I start by reviewing the house manager’s reports for any maintenance issues that need to be handled. I then coordinate with the required staff to ensure any repairs are done within the day. I also address any complaints brought to my attention. I then handle my administrative tasks such as meetings, replying to emails, and placing any social media advertisements as required. I also attend any scheduled meetings within the day. In the afternoon I make out time for spot checks on the promises and to inspect any repairs that were done. Before the end of my workday, I review any pending tasks and schedule them in my diary as well as any meetings that need to be held. I then make my t do list for the next day. I leave the office mostly at 6 pm but I am available on call throughout in case some issues need my attention.
6. Describe Briefly About Your Experience?
I have 15 years of experience in the property sector. I rose through the ranks over the years to get to the estate manager position. I have managed both private and commercial estates and have a wealth of knowledge to bring into this role. I have bought and sold houses, supervised property development, and managed rentals. I have also managed teams and steered them towards meeting company objectives and strategies. The experience I bring on board was earned in urban areas which will be instrumental in my success in this role. I also follow industry trends and can advise landlords on where to make their investments for maximum returns.
7. What Kind Of Strategies And Mindset Is Required For This Role?
You need an investor mindset to be able to discover the needs of the investors and advise accordingly. You need a growth mindset as your role will also involve motivating your team for excellent performance. You should be committed to continuous learning since this sector is fast-growing and changing fast. You also need a great sense of commercial awareness in this role as you will be involved in marketing and ensuring maximum returns are generated for the landlords. A keen analysis of industry trends is also beneficial to ensure opportunities are exploited early and any threats are mitigated before the company suffers.
8. What Is The Biggest Challenge You Foresee In This Job?
The main challenge I foresee in this role is attracting and retaining quality tenants. The current consumer is characterized by changing needs and may need to move from time to time to satisfy a certain aesthetic need. I will work on ensuring that appraisals for incoming tenants are thorough to attract the high-quality ones whose management will be easy. I will also ensure that we keep abreast of the changing consumer needs and change accordingly.
9. How Do You Stay Motivated At Work?
To stay motivated I think about the impact I am making on tenants, landlords, employees are other stakeholders associated with the business. I realize that I have the mandate to grow revenues on behalf of landlords and offer the best services to customers. This keeps me going as I need to be a great example of excellence for staff to follow suit. I also get my energy from managing teams that get to follow through on set strategic plans to realize great results.
10. Describe A Time You Failed In This Role And The Lesson You Learned?
In my previous role, we had a team of contractors that we would call to handle repairs. We trusted them to handle the sourcing of any required parts and as a result, we ended up with some cheap products fixed. This led to frequent repairs of the same items. We decided to be sourcing for any replacement parts as an organization and it has saved us the headache of repairing the same things over and over.
11. Why Do You Feel You Are Qualified For This Role?
I am qualified for this role because of the wealth of experience I bring to the organization. I hold a bachelor’s degree in property management and 15 years of experience in the real estate sector. Besides, I am organized, and a great negotiator with excellent communication skills. My wealth of experience in project management will ensure that I deliver excellence in this role. I also fit in well with the culture of the organization and therefore will make a great addition to the team.
12. Share With Us Your Greatest Achievement
My greatest achievement was being tasked with the management of an empty estate that was still under construction. I managed to steer the team and we filled out the property in a record three months. When stating the role I second-guessed my ability but through resilience, we witnessed great results which earned all staff members bonuses. I believe that having a committed team and a drive for results can lead to great results.
13. What Kind Of Estates Have You Managed In Your Work-Life?
I have worked both in the private and commercial sectors and gained a wealth of experience in it. I have been involved in property development, purchasing, and selling, as well as managing rental units. I believe with my 15 years of experience, I will deliver great results if selected for this role.
14. Where Do You Derive Your Satisfaction As An Estate Manager?
My satisfaction comes from keeping the clients and the landlords happy. I am a people person and when I see they are satisfied with the services offered, I feel that we have delivered well as a team. I also derive satisfaction in the growth of my staff members as a chain is as strong as the weakest link. When I see them improve and endeavor to continuously learn, I know I am making an impact in their lives too.
15. How Do You Make Sure Client Needs Are Met?
I like to engage clients and ask as many questions as possible. I let their answers guide me on the questions that follow. I always want to understand their budgets and their requirement. This assists in ensuring they are offered what will satisfy their needs and keep them long staying in the property.
16. Describe An Effective Way Of Communicating With Landlords And Tenants.
To pass information to landlords, I call them and also send an email of the same to document the communication. For tenants, if it is a piece of general information, I send a MEMO as an email and I may also add a printout to the community notice board. This has worked great so far but I am also open to implementing other ways that work.
17. How Do You Choose Contractors To Handle Repair And Maintenance Work On The Property?
I use referrals and read reviews for each individual or company that bids for the services. This has enabled me to go with only the best services as it avoids repeating the same job over and over again.
I implement a rigorous system for screening all the applicants and ensure that nothing is missed in the process. I realize that you can minimize the costs of repairs by having the best candidates do the work.
18. Describe Your Experience Handling Budgets.
I have extensive experience in preparing and presenting budgets. I can come up with accurate forecasts that can assist the organization to plan effectively. I realize that budgets are crucial in the management of the affairs of an organization and that is why I focus on ensuring that workable budgets are prepared.
19. What Is Your Preferred Management Style?
I like to build a team based on trust and clear communication. Each member of the team is clear on the role that they are supposed to play. Trust is enhanced and people are accountable such that each team member knows the other will deliver on their work. This has fostered the smooth running of the organization’s processes.
20. How Do You Handle Pressure At Work As An Estates Manager?
I like to stay calm as possible when facing pressure. I keep my focus on the tasks that need to be accomplished. When needed I take a break to decompress and recharge. When I get back it becomes easier to face the task and most times I do not realize there was pressure in the first place.
21. In Terms Of Personal Development, What Have You Done In The Past Year That Will Influence Your Performance As An Estate Manager?
In the past year, I have taken courses on digital marketing. My focus was to learn these skills so that I can use them in my work. I realize that the internet has revolutionized business and therefore these skills are important in marketing the business. If selected for this role, I plan to make use of my skills especially in running social media advertisements.
22. Share A Time You Were Held Accountable For A Problem That You Didn’t Create.
As a team leader, I take responsibility for the ultimate performance of my team. However, they are instances where something happens and you are not privy to the information but you are called on to answer. One time, I had taken a leave day and one of the staff members absents himself, and when asked he said he had communicated to me. The HR department held e liable for the staff member’s absence that I did not pass the information to them. I explained to HR that I was not available at work and had no access to my emails either. When the staff member was asked to provide evidence of the communication, it turned out they did not have any.
23. Based On Your Research, What Do You Think We Need To Improve On As A Company?
In my research, I found that the company’s social media interactions are limited. This is characterized by the organization taking long to answer information requested by the potential clients. I believe the organization can do more on social media, especially in this era of digital marketing.
24. If Given The Role, What Do We Expect In Your First Year?
I will get to know and understand the team I will be working with. I will also build on my network and know who can assist with what as I go on. I will analyze the business process to understand what is working and what is not. I will set realistic expectations for the team and communicate my expectations effectively to the team.
25. Share The Key Trends In The Real Estate Industry As Of Now.
There is increased demand as a result of remote and hybrid working arrangements. Individuals are looking for functional spaces where they can set up their workstations. This has also increased demand for country homes since people have access to work from anywhere they want. Due to inflation, demand for homes is high as people see homes as a way to preserve their purchasing power. As the dollar inflates, individuals and corporates are closing in on home deals. This may go on for a while.
The above questions give pointers on what to expect in an interview. Do background research on the company you will be interviewing with. Practice with the above creations and have examples ready that you can use in your interview. Dress for success on the interview date and do not be afraid to close the deal.