Inside Housing – Sponsored – What small landlords need to consider for public markets to work
How else could joint purchases help small associations? How should they think about this?
As a practical example, consider that a small housing association – one with, say, 1,000 units – will not be able to employ the services of a licensed building expert or building services engineer. approved construction, but she might be able to afford it. by sharing this resource with two or three other organizations.
Or, if you’re going to check out the work the contractors do, if you’re going to make sure the payments and things like that are done correctly, then instead of paying for a contract administrator five days a week, you can split that cost. 50-50 with another organization and employ a better qualified contract administrator. This makes the costs manageable.
When it comes to contract costs, you may get a better deal from a particular contractor because you have better resources. If you have someone dealing with 10 properties scattered over a large area then there is a lot of downtime to move between these properties. But if you can work with another organization and double that number of properties, there is less downtime because the contractor can go next door rather than a few miles away.
This is one of the very big benefits – the improved quality of supervision that collaborating organizations can afford to pay. This is where many small organizations miss out. They may have a housing manager who manages a construction contract, who is knowledgeable in their area but may not know the details of construction, procurement or regulations.
How much opportunity do small organizations have to work together in this way? What are the challenges?
The biggest challenge is that different organizations have very different ways of dealing with things. Learning to do things collaboratively means to compromise on the way things are done. Everyone loves the idea of working together because they can see the benefits of doing so. The barrier appears when one party thinks, “Well, if everyone does it my way, it works”, but then the other organization has the same point of view!
What is the solution ?
It’s not just about the principle of working together, it’s about understanding the mindset that in order to get these benefits, it’s the tradeoffs you need to talk about. This can be done on a project-by-project basis, and very often it’s easier for organizations to navigate their way on a smaller project rather than trying to shoot for the stars. So try to break it down into pieces; start with something a little simpler. Make it work. And once they are convinced that it can work, they can take the next step.
It can be difficult, and it often takes the essential friend role I mentioned earlier to sit down with them, describe the benefits and ask, “Are you really up to these challenges?” “
But the benefits are certainly worth it.