On this week's FMF, Bob discusses the concept of lagging indicators and considers if there might be a maintenance surge coming for those of us managing rental properties. As a quick definition, a lagging indicator is a data point that tells you what has already happened. Most of us in managing our rental properties focus on lagging indicators in the form of financial statements to track rent collected, revenue, bank balance, and profitability.
Bob explains that a lagging indicator he has been watching lately is the number of worker orders (maintenance requests) being received monthly. His company tracks this, along with other data points, on a monthly report that is produced by our accounting department. Maintenance request volume has been trending down starting in February and continuing down by 20-30% in March, April, and May. This is an interesting anomaly but it is logical to assume that the service issues aren’t disappearing… they are waiting to be submitted.
He encourages listeners to be prepared for what could be a surge of maintenance requests in the coming months. Assuming things start to return to normal this summer or fall, you can assume your maintenance team will be working hard to catch up to bring your properties current. Bob also describes some methods he has implemented at North County Property Group to get ahead of the curve. Check those lagging indicators and make a prediction to be ready for increased maintenance requests in the second half of the year.
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