One of the biggest responsibilities property owners and property managers face is maintenance. Not only is it a big responsibility because, well, no heat in January can send your tenants into a fury, but effective maintenance management also contributes significantly to the overall profitability of the property.

With nearly 40 percent of a property owner’s expenses going to maintenance, it’s clear you need a plan. Having key processes and procedures in place to standardize and optimize all aspects of property management maintenance can ensure greater success for your real estate investment. Here are some strategies for doing so if you own a single- or multi-family rental property in Columbus.

Strategies for Streamlining Maintenance as a Property Owner

  • Track your maintenance expenses – Hopefully you’re already doing this, and if you’re not, what are you waiting for? If you want to spend less on maintenance, you have to know where your greatest areas of spend are occurring. Diligently track all expenses, including maintenance expenses, and review the data regularly to identify trends or discrepancies.
  • Standardize and optimize maintenance processes – Owning real estate offers plenty of learning opportunities – and unfortunately many of those learning opportunities present themselves in the form of mistakes. We’ve certainly made our share of mistakes, but when you look for the silver lining, you see them for what they are – a chance to do better next time. This is how we’ve developed many of our processes and continue to refine them every day.

Take the time to develop and implement standard and repeatable maintenance processes that can be applied to all the rental properties you own. This will help reduce mistakes and save time and money because you’ll be proactively tackling maintenance issues before they balloon into expensive problems that have gotten out of hand.

  • Spell out your maintenance policy in your lease – Just because you own the property does not mean you are responsible for all maintenance-related items in the unit. While yes, you must keep the unit safe, habitable, and sanitary, does that mean you have to send a maintenance crew out every time you get a call about a garbage disposal? The answer could be no depending on how you’ve written your lease agreement.
  • Understand the importance of service – Lastly, when it comes to maintenance, it’s not all about just getting the leak fixed or the clog cleared, there’s also the service side of the story – and the service side can have a bigger impact on your investment success than many people realize. Specifically, your approach to maintenance can influence a resident’s likelihood to renew. When you respond to maintenance requests with empathy and care, your residents will feel like they’re truly being heard. This can make all the difference in how they view your property. Being empathetic and communicating about your maintenance plan is an easy way to reduce vacancy rates.

To hear more from us about how your maintenance philosophy informs a resident’s experience, watch our webinar replay on how to reduce vacancies in your rental properties. You can also ask us your questions about owning and managing rental properties in the greater Columbus area anytime. Give us a call at 614-725-3059.