The Value of Finding the Right Rehab Partner
When it is important to quickly complete a renovation, accurate quotes and on-time delivery are important.
Mia Lancaster knows that when it comes to rehabbing apartment properties today, time really is money.
As a Project Manager at Dallas-based Knightvest, which operates 22,000 units at 60 communities in major markets across Texas, Arizona and Oklahoma, Lancaster needs to get in, and out, of each of her apartment community’s renovations as quickly as possible to meet Knightvest’s NOI and return criteria.
To achieve Knightvest’s goals, she partners with Houston-based Maintenance Supply Headquarters (MSH) to make sure her crews have all the product they need, at the exact moment they need it, to do the job right.
“Given the volume of renovations we do, it’s really important to have the right partner that can help you get each and every one of them done on time,” says Lancaster. “They help us execute in a timely manner, with a system that can be repeated again and again.”
At the heart of MSH’s ability to get the right products to Lancaster and her crews on time is the firm’s industry-leading quote process.
For each project the firm bids, MSH puts together a price for the entire project, as well as individual, per-unit quotes so Lancaster knows where her money will be spent. To top it off, those quotes are illustrated with pictures of the updated products that will go into each apartment, such as pot-filler faucet fixtures, curved bathroom shower rods and glass tile backsplashes for the kitchen.
“What we try to do is break down the process so it’s as easy to understand as possible,” says Phil Denton, Vice president of project support at MSH. “There’s a big difference between having words on paper, and having a picture of what the faucet actually looks like. It lets you know what you’re buying from the get go.”
One of the reasons MSH puts so much time and energy into its quote process is to help customers gain from its experiences working across the industry. “For me, on any one day, I might be supplying hundreds of different apartment community renovations,” Denton says. “But depending on the size of the management company, a project manager may do a total of just five or 10 ground-up rehabs in an entire career. So, what we try to do is leverage that volume of experience – and seeing the trends of what’s happening in markets all over the country – to help our customers where they are.”
For example, while MSH’s dedicated Project Support Department puts together whole-project and unit-level quotes, it also works with managers to help them pick the right products to begin with.
“Sometimes, managers will come to us with a new project, and they might not always know where to start,” Denton says. “That’s fine, we’ll come in, walk the units, count up the materials and produce a comprehensive quote. If they don’t know which products they want to use, we can present them a list of options, and say, here are some choices that three other major management companies have selected this year. From there, we can even help give them an estimate, based on other similar projects, for how many units per month they’re likely to complete, so they can keep on schedule and get things done on time.”
Once that process is complete, MSH can then deliver each unit’s supplies in its trademarked Project PAK, which contains all the items needed to upgrade and renovate one unit. Project PAKs are labeled by unit number, and can be moved by one person using a hand truck into the unit itself, helping on-site crews track, organize and manage all renovation inventory.
“When you do as many renovations as we do, you need to have a scope of work and a repeatable process to execute on every time,” Lancaster says. “Maintenance Supply Headquarters’ Project Support Team helps us do that by having the right products, in the right place, at the right time, so we can finish our current project and move on to the next.”
Now that’s a partnership based on value.