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12 Ways to Reduce Liability on a Multifamily Property

shutterstock_215430139The risks of lawsuit are great on a multifamily property.  There are a lot of ways that you can be held liable for other people’s mistakes.  It’s time to protect yourself.  There are a lot of easy ways to significantly reduce your liability when owning and managing an investment property.  Here are just some suggestions below: 1. Don’t Allow Pets on the Premises For some landlords, allowing pets on the premises is a risk worth taking to have happy tenants.  That said, injury and death has been known to occur due to pets being on the premises.  Although the pet is under the responsibility of the tenant, the landlord’s decision to allow the pets on the premises is considered part of the fault for the injury or death that occurs from an attack on another resident. 2. Require Renters Insurance of Tenants If a tenant’s guest injures themselves in the tenant’s unit, the tenant is held liable, but only as long as they are able to pay.  Let’s say that you have a tenant that can barely afford rent as it is, let alone a lawsuit.  Then somebody else is going to have to take up part of that bill.  That sometimes can be the landlord’s insurance.  If you require that your tenants have renters insurance, then they will be more likely to afford any accidental damages that happen to their guest. 3. Require that Vendors Have Insurance too There is high potential that a vendor working on your property may injure themselv......
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DIY Advice for Making Accessibility Home Modifications

Despite the disability, there’s no reason that your loved one shouldn’t be able to be safe, comfortable, and independent in their own home. In order for this to happen, however, it’s likely that you will need to make some strategic home modifications. If you’re the do-it-yourself type, you’ll likely want to tackle these home modifications without the help of professionals. Here are some tips for going the DIY route (and when you might need to contract a little help). Where to start It makes sense to start your home modifications with the easiest and the most beneficial to your disabled loved-one. Many home modifications are incredibly simple but have a major impact. You should prioritize these tasks. ● Improving lighting – it’s easier to get around and avoid injury in properly-lit spaces. This is a no-brainer. Making sure that every room has both overhead lighting and auxiliary lighting in the form of floor and table lamps are crucial. Consider LED lighting to reduce glare.● Getting rid of obstructions on floors and in pathways – make sure your loved one has a clear path to navigate all through the house. Tape down rugs and make sure they aren’t too tall. Rugs with large lips are tripping hazards.● Putting items in lower positions – this is especially important for those in wheelchairs. Make sure commonly-used items like the telephone, microwave, and other electronics are accessible. Next steps After you do all of the easy stuff, it’s time to move on to some projects that actually take a little bit of install time.......
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Supplier Insights: For Long Term Sales Success, A Focus On the Future Is Just As Important As a Focus On the “Now”

Large organizations have a great habit of remaining as market leaders because they do one thing very well:  They dual market both to today’s decision makers AND to the decision makers of tomorrow.  This means they have set up their success metrics to properly analyze how they are doing with those target prospects in today’s world, but then at the same time plan ways to build a base of loyal followers in the future. Everybody has a plan to reach decision makers, so I’m not going to cover that aspect right now.  Instead, I’m going to talk about nurturing relationships with future leaders.  One of the best examples of creating early loyalty and brand awareness comes from the computing world.  Apple and Microsoft have battled for years to get their computers and programs into schools - Back in the day, you could get the entire Microsoft Office suite for something like $15 if you were in school.  Was that just because they wanted to support students?  Of course not!  They realized that once someone was indoctrinated into their ecosystem, they were much more likely to stay with it. When thinking about creating a strategy to reach future leaders, three things are key: Everybody remembers their first!  When someone is a new leasing consultant at a property, every brand they see will be vastly more potent in making an impact, as those are the first they will see in their  career.  Their property management mind is a blank slate, and those first brands ......
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The All-In-One or Best-of-Breed Dilemma: Which Technology is Best for Multifamily Companies?

The All-In-One or Best-of-Breed Dilemma: Which Technology is Best for Multifamily Companies?
In the property management industry, there is a technology to solve almost every problem.  From paying rent online to managing packages, the industry is bursting with solutions that tackle all the tedious aspects of being a property manager. But first, you have to find the vendor that’s right for your company, and that can be a tough task. The best way to whittle down your choice of vendors is to determine if you want to use an all-in-one or a best-in-breed solution. You may not be sure which one is the best fit for your business, so here are the pros and cons of each. First, let’s take a look at all-in-one solutions. All-in-one providers catering to the property management industry offer a combination of management, investment, marketing, leasing, and resident tools. All-In-One Pros An all-in-one solution can be an easy sell for some property management companies. The idea of a single platform being able to solve multiple challenges at once sounds very appealing, especially if you have limited internal resources. The IT requirements required to use an all-in-one provider may be reduced when a single vendor is used because there are fewer programs to maintain. If your team is not particularly tech savvy, only having to learn one platform can help avoid confusion among users of the software and shorten the learning curve. Plus, users will only need a single login to manage each application. Only having one technology vendor to juggle can be convenient, too. You’ll only have one ve......
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How to Fix Slow Internet, Generate Revenue and Ditch the “Cable Guys” With a Multifamily Internet Service

An Educational Series for Apartments, HOA’s and Co-Op’s: Part II “Pure Internet”   Pure Internet, the refreshing, no hassle experience of fast, fiber backed“Internet That Just Works”. It flows like the crystal clean rivers in the Glacier Mountains, unpolluted by the impurities of the big cities. It rushes to its destination, shimmering off the rocks with a turquoise clarity. Pure Internet is an unadulterated network of low latency paths, moving data directly and efficiently to its endpoint. Traveling unobstructed by bottlenecks or inefficiencies; safely and securely arriving to its destination.  The pipes are bountiful, clean and safe; the obstacles that litter most networks have been removed. The end-user is left with a great sense of freedom, ease and gratitude from the Internet experience, so much so they may even begin to take it for granted.    In contrast, in part one; we discussed the current “Dirty City Water” Internet experience that most Americans are accustomed to. In short; you have been sold Internet speeds that are not really speeds at all but rather capacity, on an oversubscribed network.  Speeds that are asymmetrical, transmitting over antiquated wiring technology, first used 100 years ago. You have “hired” yourself to configure your network, trying desperately to fend off dirty data and professional hackers with an over-the-counter router. You call for support and reach your, “not-so friendly” monopolistic ISP who has no financial incentive to improve the situation. For an “arm-and-a-leg” they promise they will give it their “best effort”; however they seem to be having a hard enough time fix......
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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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Parking still a necessity of foreseeable future, even with self-driving cars

Image result for self driving carsMany people who live in cities are electing to forego car ownership these days. But city dwellers aren’t hitting the brakes on vehicle custody so hard that it will render parking lots obsolete in the foreseeable future, despite claims to the contrary. With the increase in utilization of ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft and advanced technology ushering in the era of self-driving cars, some apartment developers in the U.S. have been preparing to revamp parking structures into other uses for when car ownership becomes sparse and parking places expendable. Whether it’s a private, shared or self-driving vehicle, it won’t be on the road 100 percent of the time, and parking will still be a necessity.  The International Energy Agency forecasted the number of cars on the roads worldwide would reach 1.7 billion by 2035 – which is doubled from 2012. But a recent LA Times article contends the magnitude at which people are renouncing car ownership is leading to extraneous parking lots that will soon be repurposed. Based on the increasing overall car ownership numbers, can things actually get to the point that parking garages are so unutilized they can be rehabilitated to serve as shops, gyms and movie theaters instead? Yes, some new apartment developments have reduced their parking space to as low as 0.6 spaces per unit in urban areas, but a further decrease doesn’t appear imminent for the foreseeable future. It’s true the world is amidst a transportation revolution. But cars aren’t going away altogether. Why should parking facil......
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Delivery Madness: Are you ready for Prime time?

Many who deal with package management on a daily basis breathed a hefty sigh of relief in January. The holiday season had passed, which presumably meant it’d be another 12 months before another rush of that magnitude. Well, hold on a minute; there are a few hidden holidays that impact the number of packages delivered but what about “self-created” holidays? Prime Day is Prime Time One wouldn’t think a self-created holiday would create such mayhem. Well, unless that holiday is all about packages. Introducing the third annual Amazon Prime Day, which absolutely fits that billing.  Delivery carriers and managers are advised to gear up for this one, which begins at 9 p.m. ET on July 10. Amazon hypes the event as a “one-day only global shopping event for Prime members.” It’s essentially an online version of Black Friday, and you better believe it makes an impact. The e-Commerce giant launched its second ever Amazon Prime Day on July 12, 2016, and it resulted in the biggest sales day ever for the online retail giant, according to CNBC. Amazon declined to disclose how many people signed up for Prime to participate in the sale, but U.S. orders rose by more than 50 percent compared to the first Prime Day a year earlier. Now that Prime Day is fairly established, it’s a reasonable expectation that the numbers will continue to rise. Last year, our customers experienced a 30-percent increase of package deliveries two days after Prime Day. Here’s hypothesizing that the increase will be even sharper t......
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#1 Question Salespeople Should Ask in Every Sales Presentation


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Show Me The Money! 4 Ways Fiber-Backed WiFi for Apartments Will Create Internet Income

Show Me The Money! 4 Ways Fiber-Backed WiFi for Apartments Will Create Internet Income
Internet revenue is fast becoming the new ancillary income for multifamily apartment owners. Many apartment owners have known for years that Internet is one of; if not the most important amenities prospective residents are looking for. What may not have been so intuitive is how many Internet choices are available to property owners that were not in the market place until now. Additionally, they may not realize all the new business opportunities that are now available by maximizing the “Internet Real Estate” they own. What’s the Current Market Place Like? Up to this point it has been common place to allow the “Big-Box Internet” companies to provide antiquated infrastructure and services to residents. In some cases the property owners are even incentivized to “push” or market the services for financial gain. Although this model has been the norm for years in the multifamily industry, it has fundamentally disregarded huge advances in technology, namely ones dealing with Internet delivery. Compounding this issue are the huge amounts of profit left on the table by property owners. The current model enables monopolistic “Big Box Internet” providers to offer inferior services while making a majority of the revenue from YOUR residents. Unfortunately, there are no good reasons for this mentality to change. They will go on offering inferior residential services for astronomical prices mainly because it makes financial sense FOR THEM.  Think about it…Why cannibalize your billion dollar infrastructure with upgrades, when there is really no push-back from the marketplace to do so?  When you think about it this......
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