Managing a property can be a daunting task! You’re required to juggle residents, maintain the property, and ensure all hazards are cleared. The key to success is finding your routine to stay ahead of regulatory items, maintenance requirements, and communicating with residents.Adding to this stress is mandated inspections designed to guarantee your property is up to state and federal standards for residents. By knowing what is involved and needed for these inspections, you can feel confident you will pass.
Preparedness is beneficial for all aspects of managing your property. Passing this inspection is no different. Do your work to familiarize yourself with the REAC inspection, your property, when to enlist the help of a professional, and what the inspection results mean for you and your property.
To reach this level of readiness, conduct your own inspections at regular intervals throughout the year.
We recommend going through every unit and the common areas once per quarter and fixing any deficient conditions on the spot. This way, you can get ahead of any issues or needed repairs before the real thing.
The REAC inspection is a physical property inspection completed by the U.S. Department of House and Urban Department (HUD) to ensure residents have safe living conditions. This inspection is of the utmost importance for property managers. The REAC inspection is part of HUD’s mission to provide information about affordable housing and identify fraud. To provide this information HUD performs REAC inspections of properties and compiles the information into an online database for the general public’s use.
Know the REAC Inspector’s Checklist
There are a number of resources online to prepare property managers for the REAC inspection. Using the inspector’s checklist available through the HUD website as a guide, you can go through your property as a REAC inspector would.
Your main areas of focus will be in the Site and Common Areas portion of the inspection list. This includes:
- trip hazards
- pooling water in parking lots
- basement areas
The inspector has an extensive checklist to follow that spans from the scheduling of the inspection to uploading the inspection results to the HUD database. As a property manager, if you go through the inspector’s checklist you can prepare for all your day-of needs for the REAC inspection. There are several rules the inspector will go over with you on the day of the inspection. You will be aware of those by going over the checklist ahead of time as well.
On the day of your inspection you will need to escort the inspector around the property. They will go over the inspection areas and you will need to be prepared to let them into any areas requested. During this time, you will not be able to correct any issues you find, so to stress again, preparation is paramount. When showing your inspector around the property, be sure to take something to record any items that require your attention. Most of all on the day of your inspection, remember the inspector is there for the benefit of you, your property, and your residents.
Know Your Property
One of the biggest areas of focus is paved parking lots and sidewalks. These locations pose a large risk as cracks and uneven pavement are trip hazards. Trip hazards can greatly impact your REAC score.
The best way to prepare for any inspection is to get out and become aware of any potential red flags around the property. Regular inspections will help you find any trip hazards and other needed improvements.
If you find areas in need of repair, enlist the help of a professional. Concrete professionals are trained to know REAC and ADA guidelines. They can repair all concrete issues to adhere to these stringent guidelines. For example,
The ADA defines a trip hazard as any change in elevation of greater than ¼ inch in adjacent surfaces. Trip hazards must be remedied in order to make a building safe and ADA compliant.
Having familiarized yourself with the REAC inspection checklist and process, you will know what areas to really focus on during your personal inspections. You can break up the property into different regions to focus on at different times throughout the year. Keep in mind the whole purpose of the REAC inspection is to ensure the safe living conditions. Give a great deal of attention to areas that you could see as being potential issues and keep an eye out for any red flags. At the end of the day it will be much better for YOU to find these issues and start the process to correct them, rather than finding them on the day of your REAC inspection.
Getting a Professional’s Help
Once you identify the needs for your property, don’t hesitate to enlist the help of a professional team to assist with the large-scale areas. A professional team will be able to complete repairs according to mandated standards, allowing you to focus your efforts on other areas of the property. If you discover improvements needed with your paved and concrete areas around your property, a professional crew will be able to work within your timeframe and budget.
Finding the right professional crew is important. Find a crew who can assist with any of these items;
- Concrete Raising to Eliminate Trip Hazards
- Concrete Removal and Replacement
- Water Intrusion
- Spalled or Damaged Concrete
- Failing Concrete Balconies & Patios
The Kent Home Services team takes pride in being mindful of a property managers needs. We understand you have inspections that need to be passed, and are happy to offer free inspections and estimates on your needed work. This will allow you to evaluate and budget the resources necessary to be ready for your upcoming inspection. The Kent Home Services team takes pride in completing work as efficiently as possible, making the work as easy as possible on you and your residents. We will do our best to be the least intrusive to your daily lives as possible.
Property Inspection Schedules and Timelines
Your preparedness for the REAC inspection is a benefit to more than just the property and residents. Did you know your inspection score will determine when your next REAC inspection will be?
- An inspection score of 90 and above will reward you with a three year break between inspections.
- A score of 80-89 will give you a two year break
- Scores from 70-79 will result in an inspection the following year
Knowing this shows the benefit of being very prepared and ready for that REAC inspection!
To get ready for your inspections, create an internal inspection schedule that revolves around your REAC schedule. The safest timeline would be to make your rounds 3-6 months prior the real inspection. Use the time leading up to the inspection to make the repairs and improvements.
The week before the inspection do another walkthrough to make sure everything is ready for the REAC inspection. The day of the inspection ensure the grounds are clean and manicured. It’s always good to provide the inspector an designated work space to complete their paperwork. While the inspection is taking place, be sure to take notes on the inspector’s findings.
Getting this process worked into a routine will be of great benefit for you, your property, and residents. Be mindful of potential issues you spot while out around the property. For your paved and concrete areas, reach out to a professional for help on repairs.
Kent Home Services is here to help with all your concrete needs.