A severe storm earlier this year was the wake-up call one agency needed to introduce a methodical system for managing tradespeople.
BresicWhitney property management team leader Jess Alvial told the Australasian Residential Property Management Conference that the agency realised the importance of managing tradespeople when 2,500 of its properties were hit and it didn't have an extreme weather strategy in place.
“If you don’t have contingency plans in place to be able to support these unexpected things, there’s no point in bringing on new business,” she said.
“It’s important to make the correlation between the flow-on effect of unexpected events and the impact it has on our growth.”
Ms Alvial said the Sydney agency has since formed relationships with extra roofers, plumbers and builders.
Partnering with more tradespeople has meant BresicWhitney can handle additional maintenance work – but has also exposed it to more risk.
“We’re able to counteract that through our trade services agreement,” Ms Alvial explained.
“It’s a legally binding document that we've had drafted out by solicitor, which nuts out all of our obligations and expectations, legislation and best practice on emergency repairs, dispute resolution, payment and insurances.”
According to Ms Alvial the company’s team assistant also interviews all tradespeople and puts them through a trial period before they can be added to the company’s trade services list.
“Since introducing this particular trade services agreement, our relationships have strengthened just through the transparency that we have,” she added.
“We’ve been able to align our brand with some of the best tradespeople in the business, which further adds value for our clients.”
Ms Alvial said BresicWhitney now works closely with its tradespeople to plan for the unexpected.
“We’re not the biggest property management business in Sydney, but it takes some pretty robust systems to be able to support a department of that size,” she said.