In today’s economy, the need for affordable housing has skyrocketed. That has fueled the need for specialists who can bridge the gap between people who need affordable housing and building owners seeking clients. One local expert filling this need is Evelyn Edwards, owner of Primary Property Management LLC. The Savannah native launched the company three years ago.
Edwards is one of the top local experts in the property management industry. But this was not her original career plan.
“I’m from Savannah, Georgia,” said Edwards. “After I graduated from high school, I went to Border Fashion College. My dream job was to be a boutique owner and design clothes. As you can see, I’m far away from that.”
After college, Edwards got a job in the retail industry that required her to travel extensively. She frequently traveled to South Carolina, and on a trip to Columbia, she met her husband.
“That’s when I decided I wanted to come out of retail,” she recalled.
Changing careers was an easy decision for Edwards.
“Throughout the years, things change,” she said. “I majored in marketing, which always helped me in what I did. Most of my background was in retail merchandising. Retail can bring you down, so I started looking into other areas of management. I started out looking into real estate sales, and I found out that didn’t really want to sell because it’s commission only. I wanted a better foundation. So I looked into the other arm of real estate, which is property management. I saw the bigger need for housing in property management. So that was the area that I looked into and became successful in.”
Edwards worked extensively in the property management industry. But she eventually realized that she wanted to work for herself. So in 2018, she launched Primary Property Management LLC.
“What inspired me to start the business was that I was already working in property management and working for affordable housing,” Edwards said, “but I wanted to do property management kind of in a different way.”
Primary Property Management fulfills Edwards’ objective to do things differently.
“We are a full-service property management company,” Edwards says. “And when I say full service, I mean, we manage different types of properties, such as single family, multifamily, condominium, homeowners’ associations, different type of program properties under HUD, the low-income housing tax credit program. and home funding. We specialize in affordable housing.”
When asked what makes her company unique, Edwards says that it is because she can emphasize with her clients.
“We kind of put ourselves in the shoes of the client or the population that’s in affordable housing. It is really inspiring to help because affordable housing is a huge need. It’s kind of set up to now to where if you’re in affordable housing, you’re kind of made to go into a different zip code or zip code — all the affordable people over here and all the other conventional people over here. I kind of want to change that so everybody can have affordable housing everywhere,” Edwards said.
Edwards says that she also works hard to make sure that the property owners are happy.
“I know I will be working for the owner,” Edwards says. “So my mission statement is that your properties are my primary concern. This is why you hire me.”
By Nathaniel Abraham BUSINESS OF THE WEEK