When it comes to managing rehabs, the number one thing to always remember is “time is money.” Not only do you have the cost of capital but the sooner you complete the rehab, list it for sale, get a buyer under contract, and close on the sale, the sooner you can find another deal and do the process all over again. The goal is to be as efficient as possible.
As the boss, you’re the first to take action and set the pace. Once the offer is accepted to purchase a property, you usually have a couple of weeks to a month until you actually close on the purchase of the property. During that time, the following steps should be taken:
On the day of closing, the rehab plan is implemented immediately. The dumpster arrives at the property and the demo crew starts work.
The key to a successful rehab is constant oversight!
Not a day goes by when progress isn’t being made. Everyday counts and so everyone needs to keep to the schedule. Because of the fast-pace, contractors must work well together (play nice). In many cases, their work will overlap with two or more contractors working in the same tight quarters. One of the requirements to work on your rehabs should be a team player. A team player looks out for the good of the entire project, not only their small part. A team player sees the bigger picture.
If you’ve got a contractor that’s not being a team player it’s addressed immediately and if it’s not corrected then they’re no longer on your team. For example, recently an electrician wasn't cleaning up after himself. He was leaving his scrap wire, empty boxes, drywall debris, etc., scattered around the work site. This was affecting the other contractors. Fortunately, he is a team player and after addressing the issue, it was resolved quickly. On the other hand, a drywall contractor was terminated for not showing up on time and delaying the project, which affected everyone else.
It's not uncommon for contractors to over-commit and pick up more jobs then they can handle. When you inform your contractors ahead of time of the rehab timeline, there is no excuse for not being at your job when expected (especially if you’ve used them repeatedly). Nevertheless, it happens. If a contractor flakes out or they’re not there when they’re supposed to be or they’re not keeping to the schedule like they’re supposed to, you need to address it immediately. The old saying, “The show must go on” holds true with rehabs and a new contractor will be brought in to keep on schedule. Let your contractors know that “You're not running a day care, you're running a business.” When expectations are explained up front, problems are greatly minimized.
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Author bio: Brian Kline has been investing in real estate for more than 35 years and writing about real estate investing for seven years. He also draws upon 25 plus years of business experience including 12 years as a manager at Boeing Aircraft Company. Brian currently lives at Lake Cushman, Washington. A vacation destination, a few short miles from a national forest in the Olympic Mountains with the Pacific Ocean a couple of miles in the opposite direction.