March 27, 2023
Adding More Doors? 6 Benefits of Scaling Property Operations with a Utility Billing Provider
If you’re looking to expand your property portfolio or break new ground on a new multifamily property, don’t overlook the value of working with a utility billing provider. They can help you save serious time and recover as many costs as possible – all while scaling your operations.
Deciding to scale your property investment is a serious undertaking. There are many due diligence processes property management groups must take to ensure they are growing their property holdings in the right way.
An often-overlooked part of this process is how to handle utility billing to ensure full cost recovery, even as you add more doors to your rent rolls.
In this article, we show how a dedicated utility billing provider (acting as a consulting partner) can enhance your utility billing cost recovery and system design, allowing you to scale responsibly.
6 Benefits of Working with a Utility Billing Provider
#1. Achieve Manageable Growth
Most property management groups in their early stages handle utility billing in house. They do this work by adding a flat rate for utilities into the rent or setting up and managing their own utility billing system.
While both methods may work when dealing with one or two small properties, as you look to add more doors, both become unsustainable. Adding a flat rate won’t recover enough cost reliably each month. Meanwhile, managing your own utility billing system (RUBS or submetering system) in house becomes more and more time-consuming as you add doors.
A utility billing provider can take that work off your plate entirely and make adding new properties much easier.
#2. Save Time
Managing a multifamily property is a lot of work. You and your team must conduct showings, manage listings and leases, track financials, process maintenance requests, screen tenants and more.
Adding utility billing to that long list adds even more time and work to your team’s plate, especially as you add more doors.
Utility billing is more than tracking meter reads and generating bills. It’s also tracking down late payments, dealing with customer service inquiries, tracking overall usage data and trends, and monitoring for leaks.
All of that takes time away from other important work your management team could be doing.
Once you sign on with a utility billing provider, you should be able to add new properties and rent rolls to your existing billing account almost instantly. Once it’s time for bills to go out, those new residents will be billed without any added work for your team.
Whether you’re managing 50, 100, or over 1,000 units, adding new properties to your utility billing system is no added work for your team.
#3. Save Money
Behind mortgage fees and taxes, utilities represent the largest monthly cost for multifamily management groups each month. While it may seem counterintuitive to add one more cost to your expansion efforts, investing in an outsourced utility billing provider can help you company save even more money as you expand your holdings or build new developments.
The earlier you sign on with a utility billing provider, the more costs you can recover from utilities as you grow your holdings.
The more properties you manage, the harder it becomes to reliably recover utility costs across your portfolio. As you scale, a utility billing provider can ensure your utility systems are accurately recording each unit’s usage and your billing methods follow best practices for generating defensible bills.
A utility billing partner also sends bills out at a predictable cadence with great customer service. All these steps ensure that bills are paid back to you on time and in full – so your company isn’t footing a growing portion of each utility bill as you add new properties under your management.
#4. Access Real-Time Metrics
Utility billing experts can help you get 24/7 access to useful usage metrics. This access allows you to fully optimize your billing systems as you grow.
As you grow, it will become harder for your team alone to see when problems are occurring. A utility billing partner will be there for you monitoring your entire system to make sure everything is running as it should. When a problem is detected, you can get it fixed before it ends up costing your group.
#5. Decrease Overall Usage
Billing back residents gives them added insights into and control over their actual usage. This feedback encourages them to save money and decrease their overall usage, which lessens your master meter bill each month.
#6. Greater Flexibility & Cashflow
Collecting more utility costs from residents also allows for greater cashflow and flexibility. Working with a utility billing partner will help your management group recoup more utility costs across more doors, meaning more liquid cash on hand for unexpected expenses.
Conclusion: A Utility Billing Provider Supports Sustainable Growth & Lasting NOI
Making prudent investments (especially in an uncertain economic climate) is key to ensuring your operations continue to grow. Don’t overlook the important role an expert utility billing provider can play in helping you grow your management or investment operations.
Working with an expert provider to manage a growing rent roll can help you save money and resources, allowing for more growth in the future. From system design to bill generation, they can help you lower costs and increase NOI, no matter what stage your property management group is at.
If you’re looking to add new doors to your portfolio, you’re in the right place. Contact Synergy Utility Billing today to see how we can take utility billing off your plate.