Park manager is stealing

We have a park manager that through a very sneaky way has been stealing from us for the last 2 months. We just caught
it and need to fire her asap. I do not have a backup manager in place and we are out of state. What is the best process
for handling this? Im sure if I contacted everyone in the park I could find a good replacement but how do I do that before I go out. Also, if I wait to fire her until I go out, how do I find a replacement in such little time. As I know this is a fairly common occurance Id love to hear some tried and true methods.

On top of a trip out there to find your new manager I would adjust the Manager responsibilities to prevent this from happening again. If tenants are giving the Manager cash for rent collection, you need to adjust that process so that they take it to your local bank account directly, or you stop accepting cash if that’s allowed by the law.

yes, we are going to adjust manager responsibilities. and we dont accept cash but I believe this manager was able to conviince some residents that cash is ok. Is there anyway to find a replacement manager before we go out there? Maybe fire the manager and then send a letter to all the residents asking them if they would like to apply to be manager.

Craigs List will be your friend here. Place an ad for a manager position and list off all of the responsibilities you desire your new manager to have. Personally, in this situation, I like to bring in someone outside the park. Do a phone interview first with each applicant. Then, go up a day early when you visit your park and personally interview the applicants who made it through the phone interview. Some things I would focus on:

  1. Experience: We’ve interviewed a number of people who have experience in the management of apartments and self storage. These are good people to move into phase 2 of your hiring.

  2. Computer Skills: Make them prove they have this prior to physically interviewing them. We like our managers to have the ability to use rent manager and drop box so figure out some way for them to prove they are proficient enough to be trained on this.

  3. Background/Evictions/Credit: You need to require that they meet the requirement to live in the community. Even though they are rent free here. We do this after the phone interview and we don’t charge them to run the report. Our hope is to eliminate one or two after they’ve said all the right things on the phone.

Great ideas from @CharlesD. The other way to do this would be to advertise for an “Assistant Community Manager” by having your Community Manager post the notices. Once you hire the Assistant, you can let go the original manager.

BTW, It will help to give out the park’s city location so someone in this group may be willing to help you out.

Out of curiosity, did you not verify the actual collected income with the amount the manager claimed to receive? Not accepting cash goes a long way but a shady manager will still try to find workarounds. Corroborating the balances each month should stop any potential theft before it can happen in multiple months. That said, discovering the theft after only 2 months is still relatively quick, all things considered.

edit: I’d be careful with the “Assistant Community Manager” idea. It could work really well, but it also has the potential to backfire if and when the existing manager starts to wonder why the proposed task list for the Assistant Manager is strangely similar to the tasks they already do themselves. Plus, it could be difficult to keep them distanced from the hiring process when you claim to be looking for their on-site assistant.

I’m very curious how sneaky could sneaky be? What is the story?

Brandon@Sandell

I’m curious to know as well how she was stealing. Was she convincing them to pay cash, pocketing a portion of the rent, and then booking the rest as bad debt? I discovered that scam on an apartment complex I brokered last year.

@steven , as per your post:

  • “We have a park manager that through a very sneaky way has been stealing from us for the last 2 months. We just caught it…”

Steven, you indicated that you were going to adjust the manager responsibilities. That is great!

I would highly recommend that you as the owner collect ALL Rent.

The MHP is your investment and only you can be the best candidate for overseeing the money collection.

As @jhutson recommends you can have the Tenants take their Rent to your local bank and deposit it directly. You can also just have the Tenants mail the Rent to you. A manager should not have the responsibility of Rent Collection.

Several people indicated that they were curious to know how the Park Manager was stealing.

I do not know your particular situation.

However, on one of the MHP that we had placed an Offer on we found out that their Park Manager had ‘Sold’ some of the actual dirt MH Lots in the MHP.

This was a true MHP (not just MH Lots adjacent to each other on separate parcels) where selling a portion of the property was not legal (especially not legal when the Park Manager did not own the land to sell).

All kinds of wild and crazy things happen in a MHP.

MHPs are indeed a wild ride.

We wish you the very best!

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A park manager is also a money collector?? Why??

We got away from managers collecting for this reason. Have tenants send rent direct to your office.