Although the economy has started to trend upwards (a little), it’s still a pretty tough economy out there. The question property managers may be asking themselves is “Where are easy places I can save a little money?”
The good news is that there are plenty of places to save money without impacting the quality of your business. It’s also important to understand where it’s okay to skimp a little, and what areas you never want to skimp in, which will be covered in Part II. Below are just a few you might want to consider.
Reduce traditional advertising while strengthening your web presence.
Large magazine ads and Yellow Page ads may have been effective ten years ago, but most people begin their property search on the web. Instead, consider doing the something like creating and optimizing a Facebook page, or opening a twitter account, where you can post daily tips and trends related to property management while highlighting your business. Another great option is starting an e-magazine or newsletter. All of these can be done at a fraction of the cost of traditional print advertising, and will likely produce better results.
Cut down on the paper.
One of the biggest money wasters in any office, particularly the paper-driven property management office is an over-abundance of paper. Larger property management offices can find themselves spending the equivalent of a full-time position on cartons of paper and peripheral items such as ink and toner. If you recycle paper in your office, you know exactly how much is wasted daily. Consider investing in document management software, which typically costs far less than purchasing a year’s worth of paper supplies. You’ll be more organized, and will save money in the process.
Reduce your gas expense, along with the wear and tear on your vehicle by simply arranging property visits geographically.
Divide your week into sections; North, South, East, West, or however your properties are divided and schedule visits accordingly. Due to the nature of the property management business, this won’t always be possible, but even property showings can be arranged according to your schedule. While unscheduled visits will sometimes be necessary, if you stick to your schedule for the most part, the time and money saved will be impressive.
Lower your thermostat in the winter and raise it in the summer.
Adjusting the temperature by just a few degrees is unlikely to make anyone uncomfortable, and it will both conserve energy and lower your utility bills.
Next: Where you should never skimp.