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  • Writer's pictureWill Gage

Comprehensive Guide to Property Management Record Keeping

Why is impeccable record keeping essential in property management? This comprehensive guide dives deep into the importance of maintaining accurate and accessible records for efficient property management. From understanding the critical records you need to keep to leveraging advanced tools like Building Passport for streamlined record management, we've covered everything to ensure your property records are well-organised and secure.

1. Why is Record Keeping Essential in Property Management?

1.1 What Records Should You Keep?

In the realm of property management, keeping a broad spectrum of records is non-negotiable. From lease agreements to maintenance logs and financial records, ensuring every piece of information is accurately documented and easily accessible can make a world of difference.

Important records include tenant details, lease agreements, inspection reports, repair and maintenance records, financial transactions, and communication logs. Keeping these records not only helps in tracking the performance and condition of your property but also safeguards you legally and financially.

Pro-tip: Start with a checklist of essential records to ensure you cover all bases. This simple step can save you time and prevent oversight.

Digitisation is key in modern property management. Moving your records from physical files to a digital format isn't just about saving space. It's about enhancing accessibility, security, and efficiency. Digital records can be easily backed up, shared, and updated with minimal effort.

Furthermore, digital record-keeping reduces the risk of losing important documents and simplifies compliance with legal requirements.

1.2 How Building Passport Simplifies Record Management

Building Passport emerges as a pioneering solution for property managers seeking to streamline their record-keeping processes. By centralising all building information into a single digital platform, it simplifies the storage, organisation, and sharing of records. This means less time spent on administrative tasks and more focus on optimising property performance.

Building Passport's unique feature set includes streamlined file upload, standardised and customisable file structure, secure cloud-based storage, and the ability for multiple stakeholders to access and update information as necessary. This fosters a collaborative environment, ensuring that records are comprehensive, aligned and up-to-date.

A recent testimony from Quoinstone Investment Management highlights Building Passport’s impact: Their team has seen remarkable efficiency improvements, with critical building information now securely stored in one place, streamlining their operations significantly.

1.3 Keeping Records Secure and Accessible

Security and accessibility are two pillars of effective record management in property management.

It’s crucial to have strong security measures in place to protect sensitive information from unauthorised access. This includes physical security for hard copies and cybersecurity for digital records. At the same time, records must be readily accessible to authorised personnel when needed, without any undue hurdles.

Implementing role-based access controls, regular data backups, and employing robust encryption methods for digital records can enhance the security of your records. Additionally, choosing a platform like Building Passport ensures that your records are not only secure but also easily added to and retrievable by authorised team members.

Accessibility is further enhanced by adopting cloud storage solutions, which allow you to access records from anywhere at any time. This flexibility is essential in today's dynamic property management landscape, where decisions often need to be made on the go.

Pro-tip: Regularly review your record-keeping system to address any emerging security threats and to ensure that it still meets your accessibility needs effectively.

2. How to Organise Property Management Records Effectively

2.1 Creating a Digital Archive: Steps and Benefits

Transitioning from paper-based to a digital archive significantly reduces clutter and improves efficiency in accessing and managing property management records. Start by scanning all physical documents and categorise them into a simple folder structure in a digital filing system. It might also be helpful to adopt a consistent naming convention for files to make them easily searchable.

For example, you might want to organise file naming using an industry standard such as ISO19650 or PAS1192, but be aware that, in order for this to be a success, all current and future stakeholders of that building will need to be familiar with, and abide by, the chosen approach.

Benefits of moving to a digital format include:

  • Enhanced security: Digital records are less susceptible to physical damage and can be encrypted for added security.

  • Easy access and sharing: Information can be accessed remotely and shared with team members or stakeholders without the need for physical handovers.

  • Cost reduction: Saves on physical storage costs and reduces the need for physical copies and mail-outs.

Pro-tip: Leverage cloud storage solutions for added accessibility and to ensure that documents are backed up regularly. This will protect your records against data loss due to hardware failure.

2.2 Leveraging Building Passport for Efficiency

Building Passport streamlines the process of organising property management records by serving as a user-friendly central repository for all your building information. The platform can either be connected via API to other systems for automatic file upload, or enables a streamlined approach to manual upload using the standardised file structure which has been inspired by multiple professional organisations.

In addition to the platform’s file structure, a tagging feature enables every user to organise files such as compliance certificates, maintenance records, and lease agreements in their own particular structure, further enhancing the ease of use for each specific user.

Key advantages include:

  • Simplified compliance: Enables users to create their own templates for the information required for various use cases such as legislative safety compliance.

  • Collaboration: Allows property managers, owners, and other stakeholders to access and contribute to the building's documentation, reducing the administrative burden and ensuring information is up-to-date.

  • Enduring single source of truth: Acts as a permanent record that can be handed over seamlessly between different management teams or ownership entities.

Pro-tip: Use the analytics feature to keep a high level overview on the completeness of information in your Building Passport. You can also use this as a checklist-style information management tool to keep your Building Passport current, in line with your own standards or regulatory requirements.

2.3 Best Practices for Maintaining and Updating Records

Maintaining and updating property management records regularly is crucial for efficiency and compliance. Start by scheduling regular audits of your records to identify any gaps or outdated information. It is also important to establish a standard operating procedure (SOP) for document management, which should include steps for:

  • Updating records whenever there are changes to the property, such as renovations or changes in tenancy.

  • Disposing of old records that are no longer legally required to be kept, following data protection guidelines.

  • Training your team on the importance of record-keeping and how to use digital tools like Building Passport to maintain records efficiently and with little effort.

A recent study indicated that organisations that conduct regular audits of their digital records can significantly reduce the risk of compliance issues. This proactive approach not only safeguards your properties but can also potentially save significant time and resources in the long run.

Pro-tip: Invest in automated solutions that notify you of upcoming compliance deadlines or when documents are due for renewal. This will ensure you remain compliant and your records are always current.

In conclusion, effective property management record keeping is a dynamic task that requires a structured approach and the right digital tools. By transitioning to a digital archive, leveraging platforms like Building Passport, and adhering to best practices for maintaining and updating records, property managers can ensure their records are secure, accessible, and compliant.

Remember, the goal is not just to store information but to create a system that enhances operational efficiency, complies with regulations, and provides peace of mind for all stakeholders involved.

Looking to simplify compliance and keep your property management records in one place?


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