There are pros and cons to Professional Management as well as pros and cons of Self Managed.
There are significant advantages to professional management with the trade-off being cost. Professional management costs money.
No headaches with dealing with the property
Easy to have things done, one stop shop
They have professional contractors on hand
Ability to perform a reserve study easily
History of managing other properties
It costs some money for professional management
Sometimes slower to evaluate new contractors
Depending on the association, they can be slower to respond to requests
Sometimes you don't get to know staff since they usually are not on-site.
The main reason for self-managed associations is that it generally costs less. If you have a small association, this is usually fine as there isn't as much work to do anyway. On larger association properties, there is much more to managing the association that being self-managed usually doesn't work.
Having the ability to move very quickly
Having more control over evaluation of sub-contractors
Knowing the people that managing the property
Keeping costs down.
Getting overloaded with paper work or busy work related to the property
Not having people volunteer to run portions of the association
Keeping track of funds (accounting)
Dealing with non-payments
Dealing with law enforcement
Having to evaluate sub-contractors
Having to do repairs on the property
Relying on others in on the board that don't know anything about maintaining a property
Having to issue HOA paperwork for purchase agreements