Resolutions for Property Managers (You'll Actually Keep)
The end of a year is a great time for all of us to step back and review our accomplishments. It's also a great time for reviewing our mistakes or failures, and resolving to remedy them.
Property management, by its nature, is a reactive role. You're putting out fires, literally and figuratively. But thinking proactively and setting goals is one way to keep your properties in great shape, and your tenants happy.
Here are a few ideas for New Year's resolutions for property managers and management companies. With a little planning and maintenance, you may save yourself countless hours, and dollars, over the coming year.
Create or Review Emergency Response Plan
No one wants to think about the worst case scenario. But we live in Los Angeles, which means we're at risk of a variety of disasters, from wildfires to earthquakes to floods. We can't prevent them from happening, but we can be as prepared as possible to mitigate the potential for injury and property damage.
The most important part of your emergency response is your evacuation plan. Ensuring the physical safety of your residents during an emergency is vital and, dare we say, of greater importance than protecting property. We can restore buildings or replace stuff, after all. Post clear, up-to-date evacuation maps (and here's a free tool to help you create one) in visible locations. Phone numbers, for first responders and emergency contacts for your property management company, should accompany them.
Once immediate danger has abated, you'll need a plan to inspect and repair any damage. You'll also want to control your tenants' access to the building and secure your property. Partnering with a trusted restoration company, like SERVPRO of North Hollywood, can help.
One way you can streamline the process is by signing up for a SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile. We'll complete a no cost assessment of your property and create a concise profile document for use in an emergency. In the event of a water, fire or mold disaster, you can contact us using a convenient mobile app. We'll be on site fast to offer the experience and expertise needed to mitigate further damage and manage reopening. And we'll have key details about your property and decision makers so work can begin right away.
Proactively Inspect for Moisture & Mold
Benjamin Franklin said “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” He wasn't referring to preventing water damage or mold growth, but he should have been. After all, it doesn't take much more than an ounce of moisture to create a heavy problem.
One way to spot a potential problem is by reviewing your utility bills for the past year. Were there any unexpected spikes in water usage? That may indicate there's an unknown or unreported water leak. When pipes under the sink drip or there's a puddle by the water heater, the problem is obvious. But that doesn't mean your tenants will be prompt in reporting it. More likely, the leak is hidden to the naked eye. If that's the case, here are a few signs of hidden water damage you should look for while inspecting your facility.
Another place to inspect for signs of excess moisture or mold is your HVAC system. Give your air ducts and ventilation systems a once over to clear out dust, debris and other contaminants. Such maintenance improves your residents' air quality and the performance of your system, especially during the next, inevitable Los Angeles heatwave.
If you do spot mold or suspect you have water damage, call SERVPRO of North Hollywood to help. Because when we say faster to any size disaster, we mean it!
Test Fire Suppression Systems
Fires are one of the most expensive, disruptive disaster emergencies a property manager can face. Insurance claims need to be made and processed. Tenants may be forced to relocate for days or weeks during the cleanup process. Even if flames spare your building, lingering odors from smoke and soot may need to be addressed. There could even be water damage or mold growth concerns after first responders depart.
One thing you can do is educate your residents about the common causes of fire damage and how to prevent them. With wildfires an annual, seasonal worry, prepare your property now to mitigate the risk of wildfire damage in the future.
Having fire suppression systems, including smoke detectors, fire extinguishers and sprinklers are, of course, mandated by the state. But they're often out of sight, therefore out of mind. Your residents may not take responsibility for testing themselves, so here's a fire suppression inspection checklist you can follow. Regular inspection, testing and maintenance will reduce the risk of loss in the event of a fire.
Property Managers, SERVPRO is Here to Help!
We understand a property manager's responsibilities can be overwhelming. SERVPRO of North Hollywood is here to help! From biohazard or vandalism and graffiti to water, fire and mold, we are your trusted partners in the cleanup and restoration of your property. Call us, 24/7, for a fast response to any size disaster.