One of the biggest keys to successfully managing any property is effectively handling maintenance requests. If you don’t do your due diligence in keeping your properties in good shape, you won’t be able to keep long term tenants and you’ll end up losing money in the long run, both from high turnover and the cost of dealing with maintenance problems once they’ve gotten worse. Here are a few helpful tips for staying on top of your property maintenance in a way that will help your business remain successful.
Hire the Right Staff
Depending on how large your portfolio is, it may make sense to hire a maintenance supervisor (or a few of them) to help keep up with the day to day requests. This can help to mitigate damages by correcting problems swiftly, as soon as they occur, and can also prevent problems from happening in the first place by being proactive about maintenance issues. If you can’t be there all the time, then it’s probably time to hire someone who can.
Invest in Software
One of the most important features of property management software should be one that helps you manage both incoming maintenance requests from tenants as well as schedule and track routine and preventative maintenance tasks to help keep your properties running like well-oiled machines. If the software you’re presently using doesn’t have this important feature, it’s probably time to consider an upgrade.
Develop an SLA and Stick to It
If you want to keep your tenants happy, you must set their expectations and consistently meet those expectations. This means developing a reasonable service level agreement (i.e. turnaround timeframe) and doing whatever it takes to stick to it. For instance, a good SLA might be a promise to respond to any maintenance requests within 24 hours, and to have a plan in place for resolution within that time.
Have a Plan in Place for Emergencies
Routine maintenance requests may be no big deal to keep up with, but what happens when an emergency strikes, like a fire or flood? For those situations where time is of the essence, you should have a written plan in place of how they should be handled. The more detail, the better. Specifically, emergency plans should include phone numbers for any important resources that you may need to contact in a hurry.
– Just because you’ve handled the problem doesn’t mean your job is done. You should also be following up with tenants after the fact to verify that they’re satisfied with how you responded, and to ask for their feedback so you can determine if there are things that you can do to improve the service you’re providing.
Maintenance is one of the most important components of property management. Not only does keeping on top of this help your properties to last longer, but it also keeps your tenants much happier, making it more likely that they’ll stick with you for the long haul, which is the ultimate goal of any successful property management professional.
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