From rising supply-chain costs to labour shortages to the whisper of a recession, it’s a crazy time for businesses. Property management companies across Canada are looking to tighten their belt on costs and improve efficiencies. Here are five cost reduction tips to reduce property management costs without sacrificing outstanding customer service.
1. Maintenance Costs
The maintenance function can be incredibly manual and paper-based. Re-keying information from inspection reports or tenant requests into your system is not only redundant but also increases the likelihood of errors and subsequent re-work. A digital solution for submitting maintenance requests, like Property Vista’s, captures all information and even auto-generates purchase and work orders. It allows you to stay organized with real-time status updates, never miss needed repairs or upgrades, and keep your tenants informed. This can save you hours of unnecessary work per month, driving down property management costs in the process.
Pro Tip: Maintenance metrics also go a long way in enabling you to boost maintenance efficiency, reduce costs and provide excellent customer service to your tenants. Key metrics here are the repair and maintenance (R&M) costs by building or portfolio. Look for any upticks over time, as well as how the properties compare to each other. You’ll also want to be able to drill down to see the number of work orders (scheduled, completed and past due) by building or by portfolio. You should also keep track of the percentage of expenses that are R&M, if it’s too low, the buildings might be on a “run-to-failure” approach to maintenance–and this needs your review.
2. Rent Collection Costs
Still chasing cheques? Switching your tenants over to online rent payment is the key to driving down costs. No longer a “nice to have,” online rent collection is essential for doing business and staying competitive. In the years to come, those that don’t catch up risk becoming property dinosaurs.
Numerous studies have estimated the cost of processing paper-based cheques to be $1.22, which accounts for manpower and various other costs. Doesn’t sound like much, but if you have 100 tenants or more still paying by paper cheques, month after month that adds up. Factor in bank fees, charges for any NSFs and administrative costs, and the costs climb even more.
By collecting rent digitally via property management solutions like Property Vista, you’re not only giving tenants the convenience they’re looking for, but it drastically reduces the time you spend collecting and depositing the rent. With an immediate digital record of every rent payment, your books are automatically updated, obliterating a huge roadblock in your productivity. Better yet, there’s clear visibility into who has or hasn’t paid their rent.
3. Leasing Costs
Both you and the property owner lose money when a unit goes without a tenant. Savvy property managers have the numbers at their fingertips. They need to know not only how many units are vacant or filled, but also the number of leases on notice and renewals coming up in the next 90 days.
With a leasing and applications solution, you get a clear view into the number of leads, number of applications in the pipeline as well as closing ratio. It enables a property manager to have a more accurate gauge when and where they need to double-down on leasing and marketing activities.
4. Tenant Costs
The best tenants are low-cost, high-quality tenants who pay their rent on time. And, the best way to drive down tenant costs is to make sure you approve only renters who have the means to pay and a track record of paying. (Be sure to check out the 10 tenant screen questions you need to be asking.)
The application and screening process should be as seamless and thorough as possible. An automated tenant screening module takes a part of the renting cycle that’s heavy on paperwork right off your plate. Our state-of-the-art algorithm can analyze more than 30 points of interest, such as credit score and debt, income and required rent. You can simply eliminate tenant applications that do not meet your approval without lifting a finger. The faster and more accurately you can screen a lead, the faster you can move on to signing a lease – and keep that revenue flowing!
5. Operational Costs
One of the big levers in reducing costs across the board – from marketing to maintenance and beyond – is the ability to systemize and automate processes. Property managers at prosperous organizations use tech solutions to increase efficiencies, automate processes, streamline communication, and optimize processes.
Review every manual, paper-heavy process and look to digitize and automate any process that is repeatable. Automation is critical in order for a company to grow and scale its operations. For example, automating ILS listings or the applications and lease renewal process – these types of automation save hundreds of hours in labour and admin costs, and make your business more efficient and ready for growth.
How Property Vista Reduces Costs
Property Vista’s solution has been created by a team of experienced property management professionals. So, it’s specifically designed for property management organizations and landlords that oversee portfolios of properties – whether they are across a city, a region, or scattered throughout one or more provinces. Our property software can be leveraged to streamline operations and drive down costs in marketing, leasing, maintenance, rent collection and more. To see how we can help your company improve revenue and lower costs, see pricing and book a demo here.