Business Practices That Amaze (and not in a good way), Part I

Business Practices That Amaze (and not in a good way), Part I
By: Nicholas A. Dunlap, CPM

This week’s “it amazes me that people like this are in business” thought came to me while reading an article published in Realtor Magazine. The article referred to or suggested that in the years 2002-2008, otherwise known as an economic upturn, commercial property owners became more interested in the rapidly increasing revenue streams associated to their properties than the actual management and maintenance of their properties. More important than the focus of the article is what went unmentioned.

The flipside to this equation is that we have now reached a plateau following a downturn. Owners are not seeing rent growth and thus are cutting key operational expenses to improve their income. It’s all around you: shopping centers, commercial centers and especially the “mom and pop” owned apartment houses. From dirty windows to busted stucco, from potholes and faded striping in a parking lot to broken, half-lit luminescent signage, you are reminded of just how tightly some owners are choosing to operate, failing to realize the cosmetic appeal of adages such as “like attracts like”.

Mind your operating expenses, but be more mindful of the curb appeal associated with your property. Vendors and service persons are eager to bid for your business and you can likely find yourself new quality vendors, thus improving your property and saving money at the same time. Succeeding in a downturn is about maintaining and creating, not cutting back and retracting.