We mapped out all 27 of our regular business processes and one by one we are looking at how we can improve each one. Which technologies are available, when efficiencies can be made and where we can offer more sustainable/environmentally friendly solutions. The first one we looked at was our tenant finding process. How to give both property owners, existing tenants and prospective tenants “the greatest rental experience in NZ”. Here’s a brief look at the changes we made;
- Property Readiness – Work it, work it…
We work with the existing occupants (either owner/tenants) to ensure that the property is “ready”, decluttered and we also have a small amount of props (throws, plants, jugs, towels and fruit) to add some flair and colour.
- Adverts – Attract interest early
Our adverts give prospective tenants enough information about the property to be confident enough to apply in advance of the viewing (not mandatory of course).
- We stand-out – We use our own template frame with a logo in order to stand out from other adverts
- We only use professional photography
- We have embraced technology and have a 3D walkthrough on all listings (where permission is granted) in order to showcase the property.
- Viewing – Get close and personal
All attendees interested must book in for one of our twice weekly viewings and we keep in touch. They receives a links, texts and phone call reminder to attend and meet us! During the small viewing we CHAT. We establish who would like to proceed quickly. By using our 2 person team structure coupled with evening working it means the PM can be at the viewing and whilst their partner at the office will following-up and starting to process applications for the interested parties. All this can happen within 30 minutes of the viewing and it does!
- Instant Feedback – Faster approvals
Contact with the property owner enables faster approvals. After every viewing, from the viewing, the owner receives a video about how the viewing went and when to expect completed applications.
- Strategic Planning – As per the plan!
At the end of each week, we have a quick report that summarises the week of the campaign and identifies the pre-agreed strategy for the following week for the owner. We have a 4-week strategic plan for every listing (which aligns with a tenant’s notice period). The customised plan includes changes, tweaks and incentives to keep the campaign hot!
We’re so happy that this simple but effective idea has been recognised and as such we are proud to have been announced amongst the finalists in the 2022 Westpac Awards for Excellence in Innovation.
It is now more important than ever to make sure your property is as appealing as it can be to attract great tenants, who are willing and able to maintain the rent and take the best care of your property. Properties need to be presented flawlessly in viewings, and we know from experience that this can often mean investment is needed to tidy up between tenancies. Clean, uncluttered, cared-for properties will rent more quickly, so talk to us about ensuring that your property is rent-ready in order to maximise your investment. Here are our top 5 recommendations for property readiness between tenancies.
- Professional photos taken
- Video walkthrough of the property
- Clean and decluttered
- Gardens and lawns have been maintained prior to photos and viewings
- Any wear and tear fixed where possible and all maintenance completed
From our experience when a property owner works alongside us and enables us to action all of the above the turnaround time between tenancies is minimal and attracts a high calibre of tenant.
***Watch this space for how we’re bringing exciting changes to your marketing.***
Do you ever get to the end of the day and wonder where all the hours have gone? We do too, so we thought we’d look into it a bit. Here’s a little glimpse into the work we do day-to-day to manage our properties.
- Negotiating lease renewal between owners and tenants – this can mean several email exchanges, and often upward of two hours in total time spent just on one property – and we manage more than 200! That’s a lot of emails and hours.
- Chasing rent arrears and negotiating payment plans for tenants who may have fallen on harder times can easily take more than one hour, for one property. We do pride ourselves on having low rates of rent arrears though.
- Completing thorough online rental appraisals for prospective owners can take us around an hour, and that’s with all our experience and access to the right tools.
- Letting a property takes on average four to five viewings, and of course there is travel time involved, not to mention all the behind the scenes work with advertising, organising photography, and managing submissions.
- Completing a thorough property inspection report, including travel to and from the property takes on average between two and three hours.
- A move-in/move out negotiation can take us a whopping six hours on average!
- Diagnosing and arranging maintenance requests from acquiring quotes, to receiving owner approval, through to assigning the work and invoicing can take at least an hour and a half for even the smallest job.
If you add in tribunals and mediations, owners selling, fielding general enquiries, counselling, and the mammoth task that Healthy Homes compliance added to the mix, there’s no wonder our days here go so fast.
Why are we pointing all of this out? Sometimes, it can be easy to underestimate the work involved in managing a rental property, as many first-time property investors find out very quickly. If you know anyone struggling to manage this while holding down a full-time job give us a call and let our award-winning team ease the load!
How will this change what we do for you? It won’t actually change much at all, we were already self-regulating many of the things that are very likely to be be put in place industry-wide. Here’s are some insights as to what property management may look like post regulation…
- Gain a license to practice – Hurrah!
- Be trained and qualified (all our PM team are fully trained to NZQA level)
- Follow a professional code of conduct (we’re already registered with REINZ)
- Have insurance (we have always operated with insurance)
- Have a separate client trust account (yes, of course, we already have this)
- Have accounts independently audited (we already do this annually)
There will also be a formal, independent complaints process in place – Hurrah!
So in a nutshell, we whole-heartedly welcome the changes for the industry and really hope it means we will start to see fewer of those unscrupulous PMs on the scene. For TRB however, we’ll just continue doing what we have always done to give you the best rental experience. Rest assured – you are in good hands.