Best Practices- Maintenance
3 Reasons to Convert to LED
by Christin D. on 5/29/2019 4:54:00 PM
Property utility expenses have become a line item on budgets that has been getting more attention in recent years. Causes of this attention include a rise in environmental concerns, focus on tighter cost controls when selecting fixtures for use in multi-family buildings, and studies showing significant time and cost savings by reduction of bulb replacements.
Together, property management teams, Buyers Access™, and supplier partners, have implemented extremely successful solutions to minimize the cost of utilities. Buyers Access™ has been instrumental in helping owners and operators complete several successful retrofits to LED lighting, and other energy conservation programs for assets built prior to the more economic and environmentally acceptable alternatives now available. LED retrofits and water conservation programs are two of the larger budgeted line items Buyers Access™ continues to see being considered across the nation.
Why fix something that isn’t broken? Here we will examine 3 reasons why you should include an LED Retrofit proposal with your next budget “wish list” items, and reasons to take the LED retrofit challenge.
Better control over electrical costs-
LED lighting lasts 15 times longer than the incandescent bulbs that were formerly widely used in new construction. Shifting to LED means less time spent by maintenance personnel changing bulbs with a higher frequency of burn out, as well as a lower cost of materials over time.
In 2008, LED bulbs were quite expensive. Since then, LED bulbs have reduced in cost by up to 90 percent. LED bulbs use significantly less energy and dramatically decreases common area electrical expenses. Substantial savings in energy consumption can be realized by properties electing to undertake an LED retrofit project with Buyers Access™.
Reduction in property carbon footprint-
Incandescent bulbs use an average of 70% more electricity than LED bulbs. Switching to LED bulbs preserves energy consumption and reduces the carbon footprint. Less waste is generated with the longer lasting LED bulbs as a result of less frequent bulb changes, which positively impacts the environment.
There are numerous grants and energy rebates which may also be available to your property if you choose to undergo an LED retrofit. Buyers Access™ and its supplier partners work diligently nationwide to plan these projects from start to finish, allowing properties to realize cost and rebate savings upon completion, and for years to come.
Reduction in property risk and increased aesthetic appeal-
Liability is dramatically reduced when areas are well lit and when bulbs burn out less frequently. Keeping up with lighting inspections and the constant replacement of bulbs gives any maintenance team concerns, especially on properties with interior hallways, or that have darker locational challenges.
Recently a variety of information has been published regarding LED lighting vs. other forms of lighting, and the potential correlation to productivity and mood. The change to LED lighting for increased productivity is something that could benefit the communities. Aesthetic appeal can also increase upon an LED retrofit project through nicely illuminated hallways and parking lots. This can potentially help to retain existing residents, and secure new prospects. Add this with the cost savings, and an LED retrofit will pay for itself over time.
Your next steps-
Buyers Access™ and its supply partners are dedicated to partnering with industry leading manufacturers specializing in LED retrofits. If you are currently a member of Buyers Access™ and would like a quote for a site wide LED retrofit project, contact your Account Manager and we will obtain a variety of pricing options and strategies to complete the project. If you are interested in learning more about how Buyers Access™ can help your team, please reach out to our sales department at firstname.lastname@example.org and a specialist will be in touch with you and start a complimentary analysis on savings.
Are you ready for emergencies?
by Christin D. on 5/21/2019 11:23:00 AM
How prepared are you?
Inclement weather and other natural disasters are better braved with a plan and preparation rather than spur of the moment actions. The past several years has exhibited many challenges in the form of natural disasters for the multi-family management industry. This leaves us asking, “What are some things we can do today to better prepare for tomorrow?”.
The information below is designed to be a guideline, and a proactive approach to emergency response planning that can be taken now to prepare for an emergency later.
Step 1: Review your Property Risk Assessment
Multifamily apartment communities not only have risks associated with daily operations, but they also have larger potential emergency situations to prepare for. Both categories can be looked at in similar ways, but may be approached differently. Performing an emergency response risk assessment outside of your typical property risk assessment will help zero in on potentially larger catastrophic emergency situations. Some of these are:
- Along with all the side effects such as power loss, high wind damages, personal safety, etc.
At Buyers Access™, we recommend that management companies have a well-rounded understanding regarding their insurance companies’ expectations and coverage's when it comes to natural disasters and emergency response situations.
Step 2: Identify Region Specific Natural Hazards
If you are in a certain region of the country, chances are there are specific natural threats that your community faces. For example, if your property is in Miami, Florida, preparing for hurricanes, flooding, and heavy winds could reveal potential opportunities for risk elimination. Those in the northern part of the country may have blizzards and snow storms to worry about in the winter months. Keeping these ideas in mind, a higher focus on potential damage and liability involved with the specific risk condition can help your team gear up for potentially larger disasters.
Step 3: Update the Emergency Response Plan
The service team and community manager along with any other support teams/partners such as Buyers Access™, should walk the property to look for all specific risks, and document all potential risk factors. Contact Buyers Access™ and work with our team to develop a specific plan for any necessary supplies needed, such as generators, first aid supplies, storm shutters, etc. Make sure to always have plenty of drinking water available in case of loss of power or damaged plumbing. What other things should you think of to include in the plan?
Step 4: Draft or Update the Emergency Response Plan
When drafting the emergency response plan, below are a few questions to ask and points to consider making your plan as complete and comprehensive as possible.
- Alarms, where are they located and how will they be shut off
- Emergency call list- make sure this is always up to date
- Command Centers- where will everyone report to, and when?
- What is the communication plan to residents?
- What community resources are available for your team to use and what is their contact information?
- What are the evacuation routes?
- Ensure hazardous materials are safely stored.
- Identify areas of relocation.
- Have a list of vendor contacts easily accessible to save valuable time in case of an emergency.
- Know where your utility shut offs are! Mark a property map with utility shut offs and electrical points of importance for everyone to know.
- Review and include a copy of any corporate specific policies and procedures having to do with emergency response.
- Finally, review the above with your entire team and ensure everyone has access to and knows where this information is kept, and how it is accessed.
Time to act!
Now that we have covered some emergency response plan and natural disaster basics, it’s time to apply some of the points at your property with your team. If you are a supplier, ask yourself what you can do to ensure the properties you call on are prepared for emergencies? Buyers Access™ assists suppliers and multifamily properties in determining their needs and solutions every day nationwide. Some of the most prepared properties are those utilizing the extensive resources of supplier management and purchasing optimization that Buyers Access™ can provide. If you are interested in learning more about Buyers Access and how we can help you and your emergency response processes, contact our Ken Miller, VP of Sales for Buyers Access™ at email@example.com.
Best Practices- Maintenance
4 Things You Should Do for Your Property Pools, Now!
by Shelly L. on 5/14/2019 4:48:00 PM
The sun is shining, the weather is heating up, and in the world of multifamily most of us know this means two things: air conditioning calls and pool season. Buyers Access™ purchasing program and dedicated team members are committed to assisting our clients, and the industry, in opening and having a happy and safe pool season. Often, the preparation that goes into swimming pool season in multifamily property management can be the difference between a fun and a frazzled summer on site. In this article, Buyers Access™ reviews 4 important things to remember when facing pool season this year.
1. Plan for the inspection
It’s is a great idea to begin planning for your pool to be inspected at least 1 month prior to opening if it is required by your local health department. This can allow enough time to address any concerns that your pool inspector may have regarding your pool prior to allowing it to officially open. Let’s look at some categories the Buyers Access™ team helps on-site managers and suppliers connect on when prepping the pool for opening inspection.
- Check pool equipment and ensure it is in good repair. Check any necessary flow rates per ordinance and make sure that pool equipment is in operating condition to meet any required flow rate criteria.
- Pool filter cleanliness and operation level. Is the filtration system taking out the unnecessary particles from your properties pool?
- Inspect pools deck and drain safety. Make sure that all main drain covers, pool deck safety equipment, and decking are in good repair. Make sure you have extra necessary pool equipment such as ropes in case something is broken or malfunctions on a crowded weekend. It is always better to be prepared!
- Ensure that you have enough of the needed pool chemicals present. Check chemical automation systems and be sure to store the chemicals in a locked and marked location.
2. Train and update the team
Training is imperative for a safe and enjoyable pool season. It is a best practice for maintenance personnel to attend training, which Buyers Access™ can offer free of charge through its Account Managers and various supplier partners. Having a team of experts on your side is always beneficial, and they are just a phone call away. Here are a few training ideas for you and your on-site management team to brush up on going into swimming pool season:
- Make sure anyone required to have a valid “CPO” or Certified Pool Operator certification has valid instatement and non-expired credentials.
- Keep your CPO certificates in a location on-site for reference.
- Get with your purchasing and procurement partner, such as Buyers Access™, and set up a training to teach and review common chemical safety practices each year.
3. Balance and perform routine checks of chemicals, and know what to do in an emergency!
Chemistry is not something to be taken lightly, and both airborne and fluid water pathogens can cause health concerns, and potentially injuries. Reiterate to all staff members who deal with chemicals the importance of chemical handling, storage, labeling, usage, and safety.
- Call your Account Manager for any questions regarding your pool chemicals and they can connect you with a preferred supplier to provide the necessary assistance.
- Keep accurate daily chemical records, whether manually or electronically, and ensure records are stored properly.
4. Safety First
Pool safety is not something to take lightly and is a potential liability every day. Ensure you are on the offense every day by completing the above steps along with daily checks below:
- Inspect pool decks for any potential trip hazards, glass, or anything else that could cause injury.
- Ensure your emergency equipment and phones are in working order.
- Check your chemicals as required by local ordinance or other requirements at least once per day.
- Maintain good records for chemical logs and know where to find the Certified Pool Operator’s certificate in case it is requested by local health department.
- Ensure you are storing chemicals safely. Do not store chemicals together or near water where they can cause injury.
Pool season is a substantial responsibility, but it can be enjoyable for all parties if prepared for properly. All of the suggestions in the above can be further discussed with your Buyers Access™ team and recommended supplier partners to ensure you have the support, training, and equipment you need at the best possible price and quality.
Let us know how we can help to make this year’s swimming pool season safe and fun!
WW GRAINGER TO PROVIDE BUYERS ACCESS MEMBERS WITH MAINTENANCE, REPAIR, AND OPERATIONS PRODUCTS DISCOUNT PROGRAM
by Shelly L. on 4/26/2019 12:45:35 PM
Denver, CO (April 25th, 2019) – Buyer Access of Denver, Colorado announced today a new relationship with W.W. Grainger Inc., the nation’s largest broad line business-to-business distributor of maintenance, repair, and operational (MRO) supplies and other related products and services. More than 3 million businesses and institutions, across many industries worldwide, utilize Grainger to keep their facilities and properties running efficiently.
Grainger distributes over 30 categories of products that encompass over 1.5M SKUs and 5,200 suppliers. This vast product offering, along with an enhanced Multifamily Housing product focus, large branch and distribution center presence, and large eCommerce capabilities allows for same day or next day delivery on over 90% of items. Grainger also offers a vast amount of services to help manage properties, including lighting/energy services, roofing services, inventory management, and safety services. Grainger, similar to Buyers Access, has vast experience in helping members to improve operations, lower expenses, and maintain the value of their assets. Members will receive significant discounts on the complete Grainger offering.
Matt Kunzler, Director of Multifamily Housing Strategy stated. “We are excited to work with Buyers Access and their members, and helping them manage, maintain, and improve their properties in order to keep resident satisfaction and retention high. Our vast product and service offer, new Multifamily product expansion, along with our first-in-class logistic capability will allow properties to find every day, and even tough to find products, much easier.”
“Our partnership with Grainger continues our mission to help our members meet their business objectives” said Jeff Peterson, Buyers Access VP of Business Operations. “Their 1.5M SKUs will help our members to source products normally fulfilled through special orders, as well provide discounts on their day to day product selections.”
About Buyers Access:
Buyers Access (BA) is the country’s leading provider of customized purchasing solutions, serving more than 600,000-member units in the multifamily space. For more information, visit www.buyersaccess.com, or contact Dan Haefner at 303-991-5577 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
W.W. Grainger, Inc., with 2018 sales of $11.2 billion, is North America’s leading broad line supplier of maintenance, repair and operating products (MRO), with operations also in Europe, Asia and Latin America.
Bidders Access Now Available! The latest Buyers Access purchasing tool.
by Shelly L. on 3/21/2019 3:01:00 PM
Free bid solicitation software is now available to our Buyers Access Members. Watch the video to learn more:
To set up a live demo please email us at: email@example.com
Buyers Access Solutions
Pennies, Nickels and Dimes, Where Can I Find More?
by Michelle N. on 2/4/2019 6:13:00 PM
As multifamily continues to evolve and mature there is ever increasing visibility, the need for speed and pressure on accountability. We know where the big dollars are, but the pennies, nickels and dimes add up! Big data is big talk, but how can it be used to drive more margin and improve profitability? What are the latest and greatest ancillary opportunities that can bring more revenue to the table, or enhanced service to our residents? What tools, tips and techniques are being used to optimize existing business processes and to drive down cost? How will Amazon and other purchasing processes impact me and my teams in the future? How can and will outsourcing be used to drive efficiencies and drive a better bottom line? Find out in this informative webinar, presented by Ken Miller from Buyers Access.
- Understand the significance of business metrics and data that help drive more margin and improve profitability
- Explore how ancillary income can boost the bottom line and increase resident satisfaction
- Learn techniques that are being used to optimize existing business processes and to drive down cost
- Learn how (big box/retailers) businesses purchasing process can impact the future of business
- Explore what best practices can be used to increase performance and set business on the right path
Tuesday, February 12
1:00 - 2:00pm CT