Last modified on January 8th, 2016
By Bryan Ives
The decision to invest in property management ventures is often seen as a way to build a cushion for the future. Whether you assume a dual-role of owner/manager, or you provide management services to property owners, successfully managing your assets ensures the property lives up to your expectations financially.
Turning your focus toward improving the tour experience, will help you successfully manage your assets during the leasing season. Here are a few details to keep in mind while you develop a tour that promotes your property’s unique lifestyle features.
Make it Spotless and Bright
Fine-tune your make-ready process. Often overlooked details can detract from the beauty of your properties. Overtime, ignoring dirt and grime could become a big – and costly – repair job.
- Thoroughly clean all vent covers, switch plates and interior air flow grills.
- Replace dented, rusted and poorly fitting covers – don’t just paint over them.
- Inspect light fixtures and fittings for damage.
- Examine cabinet interiors and built-ins for paint spray. Remove or replace peeling shelf liners.
- Clean window panes (inside and out) to allow ample sunlight to flood the interior spaces.
- Adjust doors; clean sliding door and window mechanisms to ensure proper closure and easy operation.
Showing an immaculate, beautiful unit creates a stellar first impression. Create a photographic record after the make-ready to document the condition and appearance of the unit. This protects your tenant and your assets.
Although this step is especially important during the leasing season, your property can further protect property investments by establishing a semi-annual inspection. Discuss your make-ready goals with on-site maintenance teams, landscaping contractors, cleaning staff and renovation/repair tradesmen to be sure everyone is one the same page. During the tour tell prospective tenants your encourage reporting maintenance issues promptly.
Embrace a Proactive Management Style
Manage each unit as though you plan to live there; this perspective ensures you consider the best interest of the property owner and the tenant. Use creativity to go above and beyond expectations during the tour. To overcome objections, think “what would I do if I wanted to live here?”
Do you have access to movers that specialize in moving large furniture pieces you could recommend – or better yet negotiate a price for tenants?
Are you willing to allow a tenant to use a block and tackle to hoist furniture to the balcony instead of navigating tight stairwells?
Liven up the Landscape
Before leasing season arrives, take a tour of open spaces and inspect landscaping with a critical eye. Yard ornaments add interesting features, but too many – or poorly maintained – pieces detract from the overall appearance.
Discuss options with your professional landscaping team or consult a landscaping architect for recommendations to de-clutter your open-spaces. Consider planting shrubs or low-maintenance ground cover in areas that perpetually develop bare spots.
Partner with Excellence
Choosing the right partners is essential for proactive property management. The cheapest tool isn’t always the best. Look for partnerships that add value to your property portfolio to maximize your cushion for the future.
AppFolio offers innovative solutions to protect assets for owners and managers.
Comments by Bryan Ives