Every manager needs to live in the park – not off-site. They need to be there 24/7 so they know what’s really going on. That being said, if you “import” a new manager, you’ll have to have a home for them. In addition, it’s hard to “import” a manager if the park is not large and does not pay much. So many times – particularly with smaller parks – you have to pick a candidate that already lives there. Normally, your best prospects are the tenants who have the cleanest yards, nicest houses and best cars – the people who are responsible and care.
You want to have the new manager hired before you fire the old one. You want to have flyers already made up for every tenant telling them that the old manager is history, and introducing the new one, and reminding them not to pay rent to the old one. You want the new manager to pass these out, door to door, within 5 minutes of firing the old manager.
As far as the old manager continuing to live in the park, the reality is that you can’t get them out for probably 90 days anyway if they own their own home (via non-renewal) and even then they might file a landlord retaliation lawsuit, so we just let them stay. To date, it’s not been a problem, as they quickly change focus to other things that they are mad about (like their new employer).
Of all the things I just named, the most important one is to never fire a manager until you have the replacement signed up. It’s a terrible idea to ever have a park without an on-site manager for even one day – no different than a chemistry class with no teacher present.