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Hi, Todd Ortscheid here with GTL Real Estate.

In this video I wanted to talk briefly about the structure of our company, how we have everything set up for communications for you as our client, and also just who you should be expecting to speak to at various stages of us leasing and managing your property. Because sometimes there’s some confusion on this, since you talk to one person when you sign up and sometimes you’re talking to different people later on. So we wanted to clarify how all that works.

So first thing to kind of go over is the structure of the company and the various ways property management companies can be structured. Generally there are two different structures for property management businesses. Almost all of them fall into one of two categories. And those categories are called either departmental or portfolio. So what that means is, for example, portfolio: a portfolio-based company usually assigns a single point of contact to deal with each property and that property’s owner.

So that would be usually the person that you first speak to when you sign up with that company. Now there’s some pros to this kind of structure and obviously there’s some cons also. The pros obviously are it’s very easy for you to know who you should speak to. You just call up the person you first started talking to and that’s your point of contact. The obvious downside with that structure though is what if that person is sick? What if that person is on vacation for two weeks? What if that person leaves the company? Which we see happen at a lot of other property management companies (and it’s why we get a lot of clients that come to us from other management companies) is they were working with someone at that company, that was their single point of contact, and then that person left. And now they’re unhappy with who their new single point of contact is. Or the transition didn’t go well.

So, for a lot of different reasons, we think that it just doesn’t really make sense to have that single point of contract, portfolio-based model that some smaller property management companies use. We used to have that when we were a much smaller company and a smaller staff, but we found as we grew that it wasn’t the most efficient way to do things. And a lot of owners weren’t happy because if someone was out of the office, and they were trying to call that person, they basically didn’t have anybody to speak to until that person came back. So we just don’t think that’s the best way to run a property management business.

So the other way is departmental. And what that means is when you call into the office to speak to someone, you’re not just dependent upon having that one person that you usually speak to being there. You’ve got the entire department that deals with those issues able to help you out. So this is just like dealing with any large company; you have many different people you can speak to when you need to get an issue resolved.

So when you call into our office it really depends upon the stage at which your property is in the process. So if you’ve just signed up with us and we need to get your property rented, then the person you’ll be speaking to most is your leasing agent, which is the person that you first spoke to, most likely, when you signed up with our company. That person is the one responsible for getting your house leased out and getting it listed on the internet, taking care of all of that stuff at the beginning stage.

So at that point you do have that one person you can speak to because they’ve listed it for rent … Of course all of our other agents in the office and assist with that also if that person’s out because we are departmental. We have a call center where tenants can call in and get information about the property, so we have all that kind of stuff going as a larger management company that makes it a lot more efficient and easier to get your property leased out. But as far as your single point of contact at that point, the best person for you to speak to is your leasing agent. Now if you can’t reach your leasing agent for some reason, call into the office, speak to us. Anybody here can help you out. But that would be the person most knowledgeable about what’s going on at that early stage when we’re just trying to get your house leased out.

Now after that, after the property is leased and we move in a tenant, that’s when everything switches to where you no longer call that real estate agent anymore. Now you call the office. And we have lots of people here who can help you; usually we can get you answer to your questions same-day. If we don’t answer the phone and you get a voicemail then you’ll have someone get back to you same-day. At the latest, usually, is within 24 business hours.

So you never have a situation like you could with those single point of contact companies where, let’s say six months into a lease you get a repair notification and then you try to call that single point of contact at some of these other management companies, and they’re busy because they’re managing 100 houses by themselves and their portfolio structure. So they can’t get back to you for three or four days. That’s not an issue with us because we’re the departmental structure; someone in our office will be able to get back to you promptly to answer that question. Like I said, usually same-day, if not immediately, but certainly within 24 business hours.

So that’s the delineation to keep in mind there is when the property is leased, that’s when you no longer call the leasing agent and they’re not really involved in the management of the property anymore at that point. Our office staff handles all of that centrally. We got lots of people dealing with that and we’re able to take care of that.

We actually have overseas staff that does work overnight for us, so we’re really going 24 hours a day, able to work on keeping your property managed properly. We have a 24-hour maintenance call center. We have a leasing line where people can come call after hours to get information on leasing your property. We have back-office staff in India, who do a lot of our paper processing overnight, doing a lot of computer work and that sort of thing.

So we’re working around the clock, very different than what you see with those portfolio-based companies where that’s that one person who’s working on your property, and if they’re sleeping your property’s not having anything done on it. If they’re on vacation there’s nobody really helping with your property at that point. They might have handed that off to somebody else but that person that they’ve handed it off to while they’re on vacation, that person has their own portfolio of properties. So now instead of managing 100 properties themselves, now they’re managing their own 100 plus the 100 that that person handed off to them so they could go on vacation. And it’s just a bit of a mess. So that’s why we don’t structure our company that way; we use the departmental structure so you always have a whole company working to manage your property instead of just a single person who’s responsible for your house.

So that’s the important thing to keep in mind. After your house gets leased make sure you’re not calling your leasing agent. They’re not really the best point of contact for you anymore at that point; the office is. Our main office number is 678-648-1244. But the best way to reach us is at our email account, support@gtlrealestate.com. Anything you send to that email address goes basically to the entire staff that is able to receive that and work on your request as quickly as possible. And that’s how we’re usually able to get back to you within a couple hours, most times, unless it’s a more complicated issue.

Sometimes we have to call the tenant, ask some questions, talk to a vendor. In that case it might take a little bit longer so we can get the information for you. But in most cases we can get back to you very quickly if you send an email. But you can also call that phone number, just press the option on the menu that says you’re a current owner and that’ll get you to somebody. And that way you’re not having to rely on that one person to manage your property; you have an entire company at your disposal to make sure that your property’s being taken care of correctly.

I just wanted to go over that and let everybody know because there is always that confusion and that transition from when they sign up and they’re talking to that one person, the leasing agent, who prices the property and puts their sign out and that kind of stuff. There’s some confusion usually when we transfer over to the house is leased, now who do I talk to? So I wanted to get that all clarified and help everybody understand exactly what resources you have at your disposal and how it’s best for you to get in touch with us.

Again, if you have any questions send us an email at support@gtlrealestate.com.

Thanks.