Monday, December 4, 2017

Is Poor Key Security Scaring off Tenants?

Agent giving keys to tenant
Having a list of amazing amenities and well-maintained units is great for attracting new tenants to your multifamily property, but what they see on the surface might not be enough to get them to renew once they've experienced how your property is managed.

If you're not doing enough to keep your tenants and their property safe or to provide them with good, efficient service, they could be looking for somewhere else to live when their lease is over.

Here are a couple tips for making your property a place tenants want to stay.

Keep Tenants and Their Keys Safe


How you treat keys to your units plays a big role in providing both security and good service. If your key security is falling short, you're leaving your tenants vulnerable to potential thefts and violent crimes. Employees misusing keys can also be a problem. For example, a Seattle woman recently caught a property's assistant manager stealing cash from her apartment.

Your property needs a secure and efficient way to manage your keys. Whatever method you choose to keep your keys safe, be sure you have a way of tracking who has keys and when. Handwritten logs are one way to track keys, but an electronic system that automatically records that information based on login credentials would give you a more accurate and easy-to-manage audit trail.

Reduce Your Liability


Poorly maintained or nonexistent key security and access logs can leave you open to lawsuits. It can also send a message to your tenants that you don't care about their safety — or your own liability. In the event that an access incident does happen, such as an employee who used a key without a proper reason or authorization, you need to be able to respond.

By tracking every key and all access to your property, you can answer any concerns about access that a tenant might have and reduce your liability. With a key control system that automatically logs access, you'll have a verifiable audit trail to determine if an employee had the key at the time in question. Having access to this information will also help hold your employees accountable for what they do with keys when they have them.

Manage Packages Better


The winter holidays are here, and your office is probably already inundated with boxes and boxes of online orders piling up in a back room (or worse, in the middle of your leasing office). Your staff already has their normal daily duties, but now they have to keep track of who's been notified about their packages, if a package has been retrieved and who needs to be notified again — all on top of making sure packages don't go to the wrong people or get lost.

Consider using a system that easily tracks packages as soon as your office receives them. You should be able to quickly create a record of the package, scan its information and have the system automatically notify tenants via email or text message. Then the tenants must sign for the package, ensuring the packages go to the right people. this will keep you from having a pile of boxes disrupting your regular office functions during the holiday season.

Managing properties, especially multifamily communities, requires juggling a lot of different components. How do you keep your property running smoothly and your tenants happy?