Having the right relationship with your property management company is crucial to getting what your condo corporation needs. And as in any relationship, you may be wondering if your company is doing all that it should to keep you happy.
Of course, it’s important to receive prompt and attentive service. But there’s more to a healthy relationship than just that. To help you determine if your property management company is as committed to you as it should be, see how you answer these four questions.
  1. Does the company make life easier for your condo corporation?
The reason you’re in this relationship in the first place is to offload tasks that are too difficult, time-consuming, or tedious for your condo board to handle. A good property management company should be adept at:
  • Taking responsibility for important financial and administrative jobs
  • Negotiating with vendors
  • Managing community relations
This is just the tip of the iceberg. You also want the company to be motivated to find fresh, new ways to improve efficiency and simplify the tasks you and your other board members must still do. For example, FirstService Residential offers a web-based portal that provides you with access to community information around the clock. The portal also delivers streamlines management and tracking tools.
  1. Do you get the advantages of a large firm but the personal attention of a small one?
With a larger company, you usually get more resources, and you can often leverage the company’s buying power to get better prices. With a smaller, local company, you’re more likely to get personalized customer service and referrals to reliable vendors and contractors. But what if you want both?
It’s actually possible to find a national property management company that also has a strong local presence. This combination allows you to get the best of both worlds: the resources and experience of a large-scale company along with community managers who understand your residents’ needs, are familiar with the local landscape and rules, and have relationships with high-quality contractors.
  1. Is your company proactive?
A good property management company should know that unexpected events happen, and they should be ready for them. Anticipating challenges and addressing them before they become a problem for your community is the mark of a dedicated partner. Preventive upgrades and scheduled maintenance and modifications are just some of the ways your management firm should be thinking ahead. Planning ahead will save your condo corporation money in the long run by preventing the need for emergency services.
  1. Does your company focus as much on growing your investments as it does on reducing your costs?
Sure it’s important to get the most for your money, but earning a high yield on your investments is just as crucial. Your reserve fund can go a lot farther toward preserving your community’s long-term security if it is properly invested in funds that provide the right balance of liquidity, growth, and safety. Only a management company that has financial expertise—as well as strong relationships with national banks and investment firms—can help you achieve your financial goals.
You also want to know that your property management company can handle your operational accounts properly. A large company will have the resources to reduce fraud by segregating financial tasks (for example, accounts receivable and accounts payable) and offering financial analysis and reporting support.
How did your property management company stack up? Unless you could answer “yes” to all of these questions, it’s time to start a new relationship. Contact FirstService Residential, Alberta’s leading full-service property management company, to find out how to get all the services you deserve.
Friday July 29, 2016