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7 Super Reasons to Be On Top of Preventive Maintenance!

7 Super Reasons to Be On Top of Preventive Maintenance!

There are probably a million good reasons to stay on top of your property’s preventive maintenance program, but here are a quick few:

1.Reduces day to day maintenance calls AND after hours emergency maintenance calls!

2.Prevents safety concerns, like fires, by verifying equipment like smoke detectors are operational.

3.Let’s you be proactive and manage your time and do the work on your schedule rather than reactively have maintenance needs manage you.

4.Keeps the asset in more consistently good shape, keeping costs down and owners happier.

5.Allows you to anticipate problems or resident issues by getting the inside view on a regular basis.

6.Sometimes lets you catch extra occupants, even the furry ones!

7.A big bonus reason is that generally residents will stay longer if they are satisfied with the maintenance of their apartment homes! So fewer apartments to turn!

No matter how busy you get, you would be busier still if you fell behind on your preventive maintenance, so stay on top of it!

These are my Super 7! Now yours?

Mary Gwyn, CPM

Making the World a Better Place One Lease at a Time!

 

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Maintenance Apprenticeship Program - How Great Is This?


For several years, there has been an incredible shortage of qualified maintenance professionals, and people going into the trades overall.  Fortunately, more and more apartment associations and other organizations are creating training and apprenticeship programs to draw in wonderful, excited individuals into our ranks. 

I wanted to share the latest from the Apartment Association of Metro Denver - Love seeing the enthusiasm from the graduates!  (Here are more details about the program)

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Creating Sense of Community in the Aftermath

Creating Sense of Community in the Aftermath
With the Atlantic hurricane season drawing to its yearly close, the damage done by this natural phenomenon has yet to be entirely evaluated. Recovery actions can take at least a few years, but this can be a time to shine. Property managers become instrumental in these times. So much can be done to improve upon the lives of those affected. Especially in the multifamily property management market.  A prepared property management team is crucial. Having a plan of action that coordinates grounds keeping crews  to assist with tenants needs . In times of crisis most services such as waste management become in-operational. It is the responsibility of the property management team to keep residents informed.  By having a plan in place provides this basic need to the renters. A commitment of services provided brings forth the we are in this together approach. The property management team  can become a more efficient network.  A team dedicated to the assistance of their renters  in times of crisis . A team that works directly with local state and federal emergency agencies for a more efficient resolve.  Share the knowledge by updating the residents with all emergency relief agencies  information.  These are some recommendations that any property management team can implement. Organize Gatherings to Cultivate the Sense of Community There is no better way to cultivate a sense of community with your multifamily property than to host gatherings and organize events.  Take full advantage of the holiday seasons and impart a better sense of community. ......
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Can Great Service Include Residents Fixing it Themselves?


One of the best benefits you can give a resident is control.  While you may provide phenomenal, quick service, sometimes residents simply prefer to handle an issue themselves.  So giving them control gives them the option of using your fantastic service, or empowering them to handle it on their own!  (Update:  To clarify in response to a comment below - this is not advocating large-scale repairs - More like troubleshooting common, simple problems that would be reasonable for a resident to take a look at.) On Wednesday, Kristi Fickert shared a ton of great ways to use social media to engage with residents and prospects to drive renewals and new leases, and she touched on this great way to get the maintenance team involved by providing residents information on how  to tackle issues in their own apartment!  Take a look: Kristi also included a tip about showcasing the leasing team, and I'd like to expand on that just a bit.  Not only is this important for when residents first move in (or are considering moving in), but it is also vitally important when a team member leaves!  When a leasing consultant secures that lease, they did it in large part because of the connection they made with the prospect, now resident.  That connection is the tether between the resident and the property, so if that leasing consultant ends up leaving, that relationship is at risk!  By using videos in social media featuring the on-site team, a community can rebuild those connections with......
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The Hidden Truth Behind Maintenance Expenses

maintenance expenses“Here’s the list of the supplies that we need.” Maintenance Expenses is often the expense area where there always seems to be more month than dollars in the budget. Every week a stock of supplies is ordered, often overrunning the budget established for resident repairs and vacant apartment preparation. Explanations for the variance report list the number of resident service orders, unit inspections and a move out with a high volume of damages.  But this is what we face every month at our communities.  I think its possible to create some structure behind maintenance purchasing.  Not only will this assist in managing expenses against a budget.  It will also provide detailed explanations when future budgets are presented for review.  Explanations to increase the maintenance budget because it’s an average of what has been spent, or an increase because surely supplies will cost more in the future; are not very effective arguments to defend expense increases. Creating a plan starts with an overview of the schedule for the property for the upcoming month. Turnover Expenses How many apartment homes will be prepared for move in? Generally there are ten to fifteen items that are purchased for every  apartment being prepped. replace the sanitary items in the bathroom. caulk for the countertops in the kitchen, vanity top and shower area in the bath. drip pans for the cook top. The list of items with pricing information is going to outline the anticipated expense for apartment turns.  This amount applied to the number of apartmen......
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A Buyer's Guide To Gutters And Downspouts

Gutters and downspouts are the unsung heroes of your property’s exterior. Although many property managers worry about keeping their roofs in good condition, they don’t always pay as much attention to their gutters and downspouts. That can come back to haunt them because of how important gutters and downspouts are for protecting a property from water damage. Out of all the components that make up a property’s exterior, gutters may be one of the most important. What that in mind, it’s important for property managers to understand how the style and construction of the gutters they choose for their property affects the level of protection they receive. The average downspout can direct as much as 12 gallons of water away from a property during a 1-inch rainfall. That’s 12 gallons of water that otherwise could end up pooling around the building’s foundation, seeping into tiny cracks where it will expand and damage the foundation as it freezes in the winter. Those 12 gallons of water also could end up getting under siding and causing mold and mildew growth without gutters and downspouts to direct that water away from the property. Although it’s certainly important for property managers to have their gutters cleaned and inspected by professionals on a regular basis, they also need to be aware of how their gutters will stand up to the rigors of protecting their homes. The shape and materials of gutters and downspouts all have distinct advantages and disadvantages, and they may impact how often they need to b......
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The Importance of a Strong Lead Maintenance Person

Over the years of investing in real estate, I have learned that building a great team is one of the key items you want to focus on before you take over a property. One position that I have seen overlooked many times has been the lead maintenance person. This person is key to your success in so many ways you really want to look high and low to find the right candidate. The lead maintenance person is much more than someone who knows how to fix a leak or patch a wall, this individual will be in direct contact with all of your residents/tenants and be the person that can take a load off your office staff by being the first line in addressing angry resident/tenants that want something fixed or changed immediately. When searching for a good lead maintenance person, I would suggest seeking someone that has all the skills you need to handle the maintenance requests that your property has, but also look for someone that can be the leader outside of the office. We have found that individuals in this position have decreased our expenses by simply having the ability to communicate with each of our residents/tenants including the children on property, especially the teenagers. Here are some other things to consider: The ability to lead their team is something to take a long hard look at, get solid references from previous employers if possible as their previous team can give you some great insight. Be sure they......
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Maintenance Communication; Is Too Much Ever Enough?

If this is the way you do business I’m not interested in any bid you may wish to submit Thus ended an interaction with a contractor that I had contacted to come out for a bid on some work at my house. (I honestly didn’t think trying to get people interested in taking my money for repairs would be this difficult!) I’m needing some pretty specific tree trimming and for my roof to be replaced. As a homeowner these would equate pretty well to a resident calling maintenance for a service request. This entire experience is a great reminder for the importance of communication when providing maintenance service. I’ve found that just getting a call back from companies is more difficult than I would have thought. Some of the contractors only want to respond by email… What if the job is more detailed than I can tell you by email? What is the method our residents want to let us know of service needs? More and more communities are looking for automated methods. Those methods only work if there is a monitoring culture in place. If the resident has sent a request to us through an impersonal means such as text or email, how is the resident assured that the request is received? Is there a responsive culture in place and does the resident know what happens next?  I can’t tell you how many online requests for a call back I’ve sent in to different companies that have yet to respond… Wonder why I’m not g......
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[VIDEO] Energy Intelligence Webinar: Part 1 Air Conditioner

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Paul Rhodes, NAAEI’s National Safety and Maintenance Instructor, offers insight and recommendations concerning onsite tasks that make smart use of energy-efficiency, presented in association with a grant from Yardi.

In this video created by NAAEI, Paul Rhodes covers various tasks that can be performed by on-site apartment maintenance technicians to ensure energy efficiency of air conditioning equipment.

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Property Management: Betting on Service

The multifamily industry is the new El Dorado for investors. Everybody wants a piece of the action. Because there is more money than action available, there are new multifamily developments popping everywhere. On a 5 mile stretch between my work and my doctor's office, 3 new properties are being built as we speak, on top of the 4 or 5 existing. Last I've heard, Silicone Valley is not relocating to Gwinnett County, Georgia. This is all about developers selling the dream to their investors. Fast forward 2-3 years from today, we are going to have a hefty surplus of apartments and an acute workforce shortage. That's when the multifamily industry will meet the real Hunger Games.There is a way to survive it: focus on service. Hiring and retaining the best talent. When it comes to hiring, nothing can replace the human interaction. If you think a software is going to do a better job than a human can, remind me how using the latest miracle talent management program improved your employee retention rate. Having somebody with service background in your talent acquisition department will give you the upper hand over competition. Pay top dollar for the right candidate. Scenario: You want to hire a great service tech, but he is asking for $1.50/hour more than you can offer. This is roughly $3,000 a year. If this guy can save you a resident a month by providing exceptional service(average cost to bring a new resident in to replace a resident that is moving......
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