While every Strata Corporation has its own unique needs, and every residential management company has a unique way of serving them, there are a handful of qualities that any great company should have. And if they don’t, steer clear.
Here is an easy checklist of the top qualities to look for in a full-service property management company.
The right property management company will help guide your community to a successful future. When interviewing potential property management companies, ask who will be supporting your Strata Manager. A skilled team of experts in various fields, including HR, building warranties, technology, and accounting should support each Strata Manager with advice and best practices in order to deliver the best service for your property.
2. Standard Operating Procedures
The best property management company should have proven operational procedures, which have been developed through years of experience. You will want to ensure the company has standard practices they put into place for every community or building they serve. These operating procedures should include preventive maintenance programs, a full audit of all contracts and vendors, a transparent financial system and budget, and solutions that enhance the value of your property, as well as the lifestyle of all the residents who live there.
3. Financial Stewardship
Look for a residential management company with an internal financial management team led by Chartered Accountants. The best management companies will follow rigorous internal review and accounting protocols to promote financial health and stability of your Strata Corporation.
4. Vendor Relationships
A property management company that has strong, long-held partnerships with quality service providers will be able to negotiate savings such as discounts on community purchases and lower rates on regular maintenance, while still maintaining a superior level of service.
Weak communication is one of the most often complained about qualities in property management. Look for companies with a 24/7 call centre and other forms of technology that allow you to communicate with a professional who can answer your questions or respond to your requests in a timely fashion.
6. Attention to Detail
From your Strata itself to the Residents who live in it, the right residential management company will provide you with a Strata Manager that pays great attention to detail. You probably know the unique features and eccentricities of your community -- a Property Manager who asks about them and seeks to understand what makes your property tick will be able to provide you with the best service.
There are a variety of issues that may arise in a community and it is nice to have a management company with the know-how to steer you in the right direction. Great Strata Managers take the time to truly understand daily life in the communities and buildings they serve. They are ready and well prepared to respond to issues that arise.
8. Commitment to Training
Expert property management and exceptional customer service can only be provided by a knowledgeable, unified and superbly trained team. Look for property management companies that are committed to providing continual educational and development programs for their Managers, including hands-on training, and seminar learning sessions This way, your Strata Manager will be on the cutting edge of industry and product knowledge, and equipped to deliver the highest levels of service to Council Members and Residents.
It is also important that your residential property management company operates under full transparency. The company should be able to provide you with disclosure on any affiliated companies it does business with. You should also ask this company about their financial controls. Another valuable asset, which your property management company should provide to its associates, is an internal ethics hotline in order to report and record unethical activities.
Great residential management companies should not rest on their achievements. They should be open-minded, collaborative and continuously looking to improve their service offerings and customer service. Ask if your company will obtain candid Council Member feedback on a regular basis about how they are performing – and whether they will take action as a result of that feedback to become even better at providing your community with the best service.
11. Ability to Listen
It may seem basic, but it is essential - and often a fault of many highly-experienced property management companies. Some companies may assume that just because they have been in the business for years, they already know exactly what your community needs. A company with the ability to really listen and collaborate with your Council will be able to customize their full-service Strata management solutions and value-added services to meet your needs, achieve your goals and realize your community vision.
If you are currently searching for the best property management company for your community, or are unhappy with your current residential management company and want to explore your options, see how FirstService Residential can best serve you.