As a property manager or owner, making the transition from preparing utility bills on ratio billing calculations to moving to a utility management company through the installation of smart meters is a wise choice. The utility management services can provide everything from planning the project through to installation of the meters and ongoing billing and payment services.
Choosing the right utility management services will be critical. The top companies are professional, experienced and have the crews, the systems and the technology to make this a smooth, seamless transition. A less experienced company may not create such a positive transition, which can cause disruption and frustration for tenants as well as owners and property managers.
To ensure you are getting the best utility management company, consider the following three factors which should be thoroughly checked before signing any contract.
Talk to Current Customers
The established, experienced utility management services will have no difficulty in providing references from current property owners and managers using their system. Ask about any problems with billing or bill payment by tenants as well as an overview of the smart metering installation on the property.
Check Services Offered
Some utility management companies offer very limited services, including options for online bill pay for tenants. Take the time to compare the services and the features different utility management companies offer to get a good idea of the possibilities.
Verify In-House Work on all Services Offered
Verifying all work done by the utility management service, including the installation of smart meters, water testing, and data management are done in-house by the service. Many of the smaller services outsource the installation, data management, and water testing to subcontractors, which can result in quality control issues and problems in finding the right individual to talk to if there are problems or questions.