7 Challenges Property Managers Will Face in 2022
Prepare for the new year with our solutions to property maintenance challenges.
Every year comes with new challenges, and property management is no exception. National trends evolve, economic trends change, and property managers must adapt. At Property Meld, we understand that keeping the pace of external factors is important as a property manager. This is why we’ve compiled a list of some of the biggest challenges that property managers can anticipate in the year to come.
1. Lack of vendor availability
In 2021, there were fascinating dynamics that affected home services. The global pandemic challenged how people live and work. As a result, the world saw an unprecedented shift in careers. And the labor shortage has directly impacted the availability of vendors and technicians for maintenance repairs in the rental market. Unfortunately for the property management industry, the labor shortage is worsening — 77% of tradespeople view this as a problem compared to 71% a year ago.
Vendors and technicians are aging, too. The average age of electricians and plumbers is 43 years old, 11% older than the general population. It’s no secret this generation of tradespeople is near retirement, and fewer and fewer young adults are joining the handyman workforce.
*Image Credit: Angi.com
Our Solution: Like most property managers we hear from, vendor networks are essential to properly handling maintenance. Imagine making the lives of your existing vendors easier with dedicated maintenance software. Your vendors and technicians have hassle-free scheduling tools, simplified invoicing, and web-based communication. With less frustration, they’ll stay longer and appreciate your involvement to improve how they do their job. Tip: We just launched our newest tool to help you and your company collect estimates from multiple vendors in a single maintenance request. (Your vendors will love having the opportunity to quote out a repair, while you have complete oversight of the process.)
2. Retaining owners in a seller’s market
Having a solid customer base in property management is vital for your company to stay in business. And if you haven’t noticed, we’re in a seller’s market — fewer homes are available, so sellers are at an advantage. Looking ahead, you may experience an increase in owners wanting to sell and essentially dropping you as their property manager. It’s essential to keep your owners happy, so they continue to trust you with their investment.
Our Solution: We encourage property management companies to audit at-risk owner churn internally. Are there any glaring at-risk owners that need attention? We believe there are three ways to retain owners effectively; always conduct honest and transparent communication, implement a property maintenance software to streamline processes, and help them make money by doing less.
3. Retaining residents and keeping them happy
One of the biggest challenges property managers continue to experience is retaining quality residents. There are many factors that affect resident happiness and lease renewals, but property maintenance takes the cake. Maintenance repairs should never take longer than 5.5 days to fix. Measuring the speed of maintenance repair is important as it’s related to resident satisfaction.
Our Solution: One of the best ways to create happiness among residents is to fix maintenance issues quickly and efficiently. In fact, 31% of residents reported that maintenance issues were the primary reason they left a property. In the property management industry, the primary reason for a negative review is maintenance issues. So, if you want to preserve your company’s online reputation to attract new residents, you should consider building a consistent checkpoint-oriented maintenance process.
4. New changes to tax forms in 2022
New 1099-K reporting will be even more time-consuming for property managers this year. According to Bloomberg Tax, “individuals, partnerships, LLCs, and corporations that earn more than $600 through various online venues will start receiving Form 1099-K, Payment Card and Third-Party Network Transactions, on which that income will be reported to themselves and the IRS.” As a result of a provision in the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, payments made totaling more than $600 in a calendar year to a payee will be required to report those payments on a Form 1099-K.
You might also want to look into the new tax situation you may face as a self-employed property manager, as your income is subject to taxes and may carry advantages. But at the end of the day, more work on taxes means more time away from managing other tasks in your process that requires your utmost attention.
Our Solution: Eliminate mundane tasks that take up most of your time. Clearing out the repetition in your day-to-day will allow more time for the extra work on new tax forms. How? Introduce smart maintenance into your daily operations through an automated, streamlined process so you can focus on what matters most: your bottom line and expanding your business.
5. Lifting of eviction moratoriums
It’s no new news that the federal government is taking steps to minimize the impact of the global crisis on residents. Resident protections include utility shutoff holds, prohibiting late fees, and moratoriums on evictions which have shaken the property management industry. It leaves property managers wondering when proper profit margins will appear since before the pandemic began.
Our Solution: Even though the CDC’s eviction ban has ended, states, counties, and cities can still ban evictions and enact other tenant protections. One of the best ways to know how your property management company may be affected, continue to stay updated on your state’s eviction moratorium status.
6. Remote employees and virtual assistants
In an era of work from home culture, companies around the globe are embracing the trend or simply leaving it. For example, there are significant challenges around business expansion and workforce needs in a virtual world. Some believe transparency and communication will falter, but based on our experience, the positives outweigh the negatives.
Our Solution: Embrace the virtual workforce. In one of our Beyond Maintenance webinars, industry leaders discussed cost savings that property managers can experience when implementing remote employees. Virtual assistants changed the way they handle maintenance for the better; saving money and time while expanding their business. Even better, you can pair virtual assistants with technology — staying on-trend of innovation and the workplace.
7. Shortage of materials and appliances
Global supply shortages are no joke. At Lowe’s, 49% of dishwashers, 47% of ranges, and 46% of refrigerators, and 40% of laundry machines were out of stock in October 2021. And as a property manager, you’re expected to get shit done regardless of the external factors. You’re in charge of your owner’s assets and your residents’ happiness… so how do you cope?
Our Solution: Imagine getting a maintenance request that stated their range is broken beyond repair — a range replacement is approved from your owner, and you’re on the hunt for a new one. But the supply shortage has a new range on backorder for months. By keeping a tab on your appliances’ life warranties and implementing a preventative maintenance program, you’ll have replacements before issues even arise. Keeping your owners happy and your residents satisfied.
Every day is a new challenge when working in property management. But with our strategies to overcome them, you can be proactive and implement new solutions to improve your day-to-day operations and prevent future headaches in 2022 and years to come.
Hungry to learn how to be more proactive in your property management company? Request a demo to learn more ways to improve your property management maintenance process with dedicated property maintenance software.
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