Maintain Resident Common Areas Efficiently and Effectively
From pools and lounges to landscaping and sidewalks, every property manager or community association has had to deal with maintaining resident common areas. Some residents don't respect the cleanliness of common rooms, cleaning staff doesn't give 100%, and sometimes communities just don't have the budget to properly maintain common community areas. It's not easy to do your job correctly when there are so many outside factors that have an effect on the outcome, but with a little organization, maintaining common areas in your community doesn't have to be a challenge.
We've put together a list of 4 steps to help you organize your common area maintenance program:
- Figure out a budget: The first thing you need to do is figure out how much money you have to spend on resident common areas. With an unlimited budget, anyone could easily keep common areas clean and welcoming, but an unlimited budget is a rarity. Do not just start putting money into the pool because you got complaints from residents. Make sure you can afford any renovations and the future upkeep that may go along with them.
- Make a list of priorities: So you know how much you have to spend on community maintenance, but now what do you spend it on? Is it more important to paint the walls of the resident lounge or replace the gate to the pool? You need to figure out what is most essential to the growth of your community and start making a list of priorities. Having a list will keep you organized and make sure you're spending your budget wisely.
- Develop and implement a maintenance schedule: Once you have your budget and priorities set, it's time to develop a schedule and plan. Who is going to clean the lounge and how often is it going to happen? Develop a schedule now to avoid future mishaps and misunderstandings.
- Hold people accountable: You set a schedule and know who is responsible for what, but you also need to hold those people accountable. If Joe is supposed to mow the lawn and doesn't, don't just let it go. As a property manager or community association, it is your responsibility to manage the people under you, and that means it is your responsibility to make sure that they are doing what they are supposed to.
Living in a community with common areas is great. They foster a sense of community and offer a safe environment for residents outside their homes, but if you're going to have common areas, you need to make sure they are properly maintained. Don't build a tennis court just to let it turn into a dirty empty waste of space. Remind residents to be respectful of shared areas, and constantly review all maintenance policies and practices in place. A great community is one which cares about the residents and the areas they occupy, so use these tips to help make sure that you are effectively and efficiently maintaining resident common areas.