As the owner of Cal Bay Property Management in the Silicon Valley area, Scott Safadi is well aware of the fact that his tenants are some of the most tech-savvy people anywhere. Scott Safadi sees no reason that a landlord or property management company shouldn’t be ahead of the curve as well.
Q: So, does anyone in property management in your area still do things the old way—phone calls, letters, paper maintenance requests and such?
Scott Safadi: Of course they do. A lot of people have a hard time adapting to change.
Q: What is it that you’re doing that’s so much different?
Scott Safadi: Well, we’ve gone over to doing a lot of things through ACH, Automated Clearing House. That means a lot less paperwork and a lot less trouble and inconvenience for us and our tenants both.
Q: Well, that sounds like a pretty good idea. How do you implement it?
Scott Safadi: Well, we do everything through a company website. Every tenant has his own secure password and a log-in portal that they can use to access the site and ACH.
Q: What sort of functionality can the site do?
Scott Safadi: Really, about anything that involves an interface between landlord and tenant. They can pay rent, submit work orders and maintenance requests, communicate with us, or view their balance.
Q: That’s some great thinking. I’m sure it’s a lot more convenient and accurate.
Scott Safadi: Much more accurate, yes. It puts all the cards on the table for both parties to see, and reduces the chances for error or missed connections. For the property owners, they can set up their own portals to keep up to date on financials, maintenance, reports and property status.
I might also point out that we sub all of our tenant screening work to a third-party agency, which is something I highly recommend for any property manager. It takes any chance of bias or favoritism out of the equation, which is so important when it comes to staying in compliance with fair housing laws.
Scott Safadi is a graduate of Dartmouth College. When not at work, Scott Safadi is passionate about the outdoors and sports, snowboarding and disc golf in particular.