With winter bearing down on many parts of the country, dealing with cold and snow is a real issue. If you are a property owner or landlord, you should have a snow removal company or individual in place for weeks. That being said, many landlords do not. They are often left scrambling to find someone after the storm hits. By then it is too late. Procrastination will make it difficult to get someone in their neighborhood or they will be forced to pay double the going rate. Snow is one thing, but this concept may be applied to any other aspect of a team. You need to have people at the ready when you need them. Moreover, your real estate team should actually be ready before you even need them.
Many property owners have a knack for turning small problems into larger, more expensive issues. Instead of calling someone to fix a running toilet, they wait a few days until ultimately the problem gets worse and more costly. You should have a team of contractors, carpenters, electricians, plumbers and even fellow investors that you can call in a pinch. You can always find someone on Craigslist or Angieslist, but unless you have a relationship with the respective individual, you are at the mercy of their schedule and fees. You will have no idea whether or not the quality of work will be up to your standard.
These relationships can be developed at local networking meetings or investment clubs. As an investor, you should treat every new handyman and laborer as someone you may work with at some point down the road. You never know when you will need an electrician or plumber, but the odds are you will at some point down the road. The key to retaining these people as contacts and having them want to work with you in the future is to pay them on time and always keep your word.
If you have someone drop what they are doing to repair your washing machine, the least you can do is pay them on time. If you make them wait, even a few days, you can expect that they will not have the same sense of urgency to work with you again in the future. If you promise many other projects that aren’t there, you cheapen your word and people will not want to work with you. There is nothing wrong with telling them that the current project may be a small one, but you are looking for a reliable partner moving forward. If you take care of the people that do any work for you, they will remember it and be much more likely to reciprocate their appreciation.
Keep in contact with these people. If you used them only once or twice, send them a quick email every now and then. Maybe you could even give them a call to see how they are doing. The total time you will be on the phone will be under 90 seconds, but they will surely appreciate and remember the gesture. Trying to find someone to work on your property when you really need it can be a bad feeling. This is not the time to be calling. Set these relationships up constantly in your business and you won’t have to worry about this.