Maintenance Over Site
Systems, People, Properties
At Real Property Management DC Metro we spend a lot of time managing different maintenance task. From turnover to fixing leaking toilets to replacing appliances to painting to repairing roofs. Real Property Management coordinates it all.
How we do it.
Managing daily maintenance and turnovers for several hundred homes in the DC area can be very time consuming. Each day we have several new maintenance requests from tenants and landlords. Items like, fixing a broken door knob, or removing an old mattress that someone left in front of the building. We have to be ready to handle emergency items as well. The weather in the DC area is constantly changing. Today we might have 95 degree weather and need to be ready to fix A/C systems and tomorrow we might have a down pour of rain and have to fix leaking roofs or flooded basements.
Overseeing the maintenance of our rentals properties is a very important job. Keeping up with the day to day maintenance of a property helps add value to the investment. While dealing with day to day maintenance, we must also keep an eye on the preventive maintenance items like servicing HVAC systems each change of season, doing quarterly property evaluations to look for clogged gutters, damage fences, or signs of a water leak.
This is why having the right people, the right systems and taking on the right properties are so important.
With the right people, systems and properties we can handle all the new service requests and make it look easy. Trust us, we are working day and night to make this happen, but because of our systems, its possible.
It all starts with taking on the right properties. At Real Property Management DC Metro we make it our goal to provide top notch service to all DC Landlords and DC Investors. To do this, we must first make sure that the landlords property and the landlords goals align with ours. We want to rent great properties to the Best Tenants in Washington DC. To do this, we must have Landlords that are willing to invest in their properties. After all a happy tenant stays longer and is willing to pay more in rent. Which means less vacancies and more money in our Landlords pocket. HAPPY TENANT = MORE MONEY
Once we start managing a property the next most important thing is the system. Our Maintenance Department works tirelessly to provide great customer service to our owner and tenants. Over the last decade we have fine tuned our systems and have tried, and tested many vendors, softwares and ideas. This has all lead to how we manage our daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, yearly maintenance schedule.
At Real Property Management we receive maintenance requests in a variety of ways. Phone call, emails, text, mail, walk-ins, at showings, or when we are out doing quarterly evaluations. As soon as we receive a new service request it is entered into our software system. The staff at Real Property Management is then notified of this new request via text, email or phone call. Depending on the urgency of the request it is then determined how to move forward.
Most of our new service request are received via our 24/7/365 maintenance hotline 1-888-293-2828. This is the best way for tenants to make a service request. This line is answered nights, weekends, even holidays. At Real Property Management DC Metro we want to make sure the tenants concerns are heard and recorded. When we receive the service request over the phone we will get as much details from the tenants and also trouble shoot the request with the tenants. If we can walk a tenant through reseting a garbage disposal over the phone, it will save everyone time and money.
When a service request is received our first job is to determine the type of the request. Looking at all request we will either determine its an emergency, or non-emergency.
If its emergency, we will quickly contact a vendor to stop by the property and resolve the emergency. In the mean time we will contact the tenants and update the owner. Once the emergency is resolved we will then proceed to collect bids to repair any damage caused by the water, fire, mold, etc. When a vendor is sent for an emergency item, they know they are to do what is needed to stop any further damage to the property and to protect the tenants from getting injured or sick. At Real Property Management we make sure our vendors know what they can and can not do. They know when they arrive at the property they need to do everything they can to limit more damage.
If is a non-emergency we then need to determine how urgent the request is. To do this, we ask a series of questions. Is the request something that if not repaired or corrected quickly could cause further damage? Is this request something that can be fixed next time we are in the area? Is this a reoccurring issues? Is the issue causing the tenant undo stress or not allowing them full enjoyment of the property? Depending on the answers we will determine how we schedule the work.
Because of our systems and people, we are able to do this hundreds of times a year.
After we have determined how to proceed with the service request we then want to update the owners and tenants. At Real Property Management we manage for hundred of different Landlords and Investors. These Landlords and Investors have to trust us to manage their properties. To help manage and grow this trust we have agreed upon three term on how we will manage the maintenance of their rental properties. First: Landlord and Investor allows us to handle any emergency work with out first contacting them. Second: If the work is non emergency we have an agreement to perform any work under $300 with out written approval. Third: If the work is over $300 and not an emergency we will get approval from the owners.
Now that we have determined that the work needs to be complete and the owner is aware, its time to schedule the repair or estimate to be complete. Using our systems and software we will connect the tenants with the vendors. For non-emergency and non-urgent items this allows the tenants and vendors to schedule the best time for both of them to handle the issue.
The system also tracks all communication between the vendor and tenants. This is really important for documentation for worst case situations. Once the work is scheduled, we are alerted and once the work or estimate is complete, the vendor and tenant will sign off that is was complete. We will then contact the owner for any updates.
The communication during the repairs is very important for everyone involved. Real Property Management understand the stress some Landlords may feel during a repair. The uncertainty of cost and time to repair can be very stressful. Since we are in constant communication with the vendor and tenants, we will be notified right away if the job cost more than expected, or takes longer than expected.
At Real Property Management, we work with a select amount of vendors. These vendors know our system and have strict rules they must follow. This helps us keep the owners cost down and also our management time for each service request is reduced. Trust is a huge part of property management. Getting multiple bids for small items can be very time consuming. It is our policy not to get multiple bids for items under $300.00. If we vendor is at your property to fix the A/C and has the parts in hand and can fix the issue that day. They will be approved.
If we have to tell the vendor to wait, we need owner approval, or we need another bid. The landlord then might have to pay a trip fee for the initial visit, plus then finding a new vendor that can address the issue the same day might be hard. In the end the landlord might save $25-$50, but then they have to pay the trip fee and also their tenant went without A/C for another day. This extra day of no A/C could make a HAPPY TENANT – UNHAPPY.
Once the repairs are complete and Real Property Management receives the invoice form the vendor we will create a charge in our software. You will see this get paid the next time we do owner draws. We typically pay our vendors on the 10th, 20th, and end of month.
If it was determined by the vendor or Real Property Management that the repair was needed because of damage caused by the tenants. We will create a charge on the tenants ledger repay the owner for the expenses. We will also notify the tenant of the reason for the charge and how to make payment to refund the Landlord.