A property management company is a loose term used to define a company that does — exactly what you might guess they do — manage properties.
Beyond that, a property management company handles much of what an individual landlord may traditionally take care of including collecting rent, tenant maintenance requests, vetting applicants and other similar responsibilities.
Not every rental unit is managed by a property management company. Many detached homes and even apartment communities are managed by the individual or company that actually owns the property.
If you don't already know this information, you can find out whether an apartment is owned by a property management company or by an individual proprietor by simply asking your landlord or leasing agents.
Property management companies are quite different than landlords. Let's take a look at some of the major differences.
There are certainly pros and cons to renting an apartment from a property management company as opposed to an individual landlord. Having a personal relationship with your landlord can be mutually beneficial, but property management companies are often able to provide higher-end service.
In most cases, you should make a decision based on which unit you prefer instead of who owns it. However, if you find yourself needing to make a critical choice between renting from a landlord or a property management company, be sure to ask as many questions as you can and not commit before you're fully convinced the unit is right for you.