A Busy Day at the Co-op & Condo Expo

Last week many members of the DEPM team attended the Cooperator’s Co-op & Condo Expo at the New York Hilton in Midtown Manhattan. It was a day spent meeting and talking to dozens of board members and apartment owners about their management concerns and questions.

Hundreds of visitors streamed into the three-story Expo space to meet vendors, learn about the latest products and services, attend educational seminars, and visit the free advice booths for a chance to speak to professionals about their current property issues. Douglas Elliman was positioned right near the main entrance, the perfect spot to view all the action and greet attendees.

It is always a pleasure to have the opportunity to chat with current and prospective clients, and to hear about the challenges that boards and residents are facing in their buildings. With so many new technologies developing to help run buildings more efficiently, this is a great time in our industry to help properties improve their operations and the quality of life and services for all residents. At Douglas Elliman Property Management, we strive to offer our clients the most up-to-date services available, from online financial statements, budgeting and invoice approval, to a pre-screened database of approved vendors who are licensed, insured and certified to work in our buildings. Since 1911, DEPM has been dedicated exclusively to property management, providing the best services in the City. That’s why so many of our clients and managers stay with us for decades.

Thank you for stopping by! And if you couldn’t make it this year, we hope to see you at the Expo next spring. We look forward to speaking with you about your property management needs. Please call us at 212-370-9200.

Below: Manager Melissa Bass, Senior VP of Accounting Sara Geirloff, Manager Yury Forde, VP of Management John Janangelo, Manager Karel De Boer, Administrative Assistant Mallika Rasicott and Assistant Manager Daniel Kilduff welcoming visitors to the DEPM Booth at the Co-op & Condo Expo.

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Come Visit Us at the Co-op & Condo Expo

If you want a full day of information on all aspects of co-op and condo ownership and management, come visit us at the Cooperator’s Co-op & Condo Expo on Thursday, April 26th. The Expo takes place at the New York Hilton on Avenue of the Americas and 53rd Street, and runs from 9 am to 4:30 pm. Attendance is free, and you can register online at coopexpo.com. More than 300 exhibitors will be there with information on everything from property management to energy-saving products to a full range of products and services for your property.

In addition, there is a full program of educational seminars, on topics ranging from air rights to underlying mortgages, “smart” homes to legal issues. All seminars are free, and you can view the schedule at coopexpo.com/Events.

We will be located on the main floor, right in front at Booth #200. We looking forward to seeing you there and discussing your management needs, questions and concerns.

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Cooling Tower Safety

Our January Managers Seminar focused on Cooling Tower Maintenance and Regulations, reminding all our property managers what City Regulations govern this important area of safety. After a deadly outbreak of “Legionnaire’s Disease” in the Bronx a few years ago, NYC implemented strict requirements for the annual inspection, cleaning and reporting for all the cooling towers in the City.

Cooling towers, which can be seen atop most buildings in the City, function as part of the heating, ventilation and/or air conditioning (HVAC) system, acting to “cool” the system. Because these towers hold water, they can potentially create an environment where bacteria can grow. While situations like the Legionella outbreaks are rare, they can be extremely dangerous, and thus must be prevented through vigilance and regular preventive treatment.

To meet these requirements, all properties must hire a qualified company to clean and inspect their cooling towers each year, and must file a Maintenance Program and Plan (MPP) annually with the City’s Department of Buildings. Failure to do so may result in considerable fines.

At DEPM, we keep our managers up to date continuously to ensure that all the properties we manage are maintained safely and meet all NYC housing requirements. Not only does this address the health of all residents, but it helps to avoid any fines and penalties for failure to comply with safety regulations.

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David and Mark Drozdov of Creative Environment Solutions spoke to DEPM managers about ensuring the safety of cooling towers at their properties.

 

A Brass Plaque Signifies A Great Manager

As you walk down the streets of New York, you probably notice the buildings that look well-tended; their perfect landscaping, crisp awnings, and beautiful architecture stand out in a City filled with lovely architecture. Many of these properties display elegant plaques indicated which company handles their management.

Douglas Elliman Property Management has cast brass plaques available to be mounted on your building’s facade or displayed in the lobby. These signs are custom made and can be created in whatever size and shape works best: 8″ x 10″ rectangle, 9″ x 9″ square, or similar. Let the world know that you have New York’s top property management company taking care of your building. Speak to your managing agent to get one today!

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Speak to your Managing Agent to get a beautiful cast brass plaque to display on your building.

Mayor Passes New Smoking Policy Rule

On August 28 2017, Mayor de Blasio signed Local Law 147/2017, requiring all multi-family properties in New York City to create a smoking policy for the building. The law does not dictate the contents of the policy, leaving it up to landlords, Boards and managers to do so. Once created, the written policy must be distributed annually to all residents. Building owners must comply with this new law within one year of the enactment date. Now is the time to discuss this issue with your property manager, so that the Board has plenty of opportunity to create and distribute the smoking policy by the August 28, 2018 deadline in order to avoid fines for noncompliance.

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All multi-family buildings in NYC are required to distribute a smoking policy to all residents by next August.

New Law Requires Bed Bug Reporting

NYC’s new Local law 69/2017, effective on November 6, requires multiple dwelling
property owners to obtain the bedbug infestation history from all tenants and unit
owners, including whether eradication measures were employed for a bedbug
infestation. Starting in December 2018, owners will be required to report information
for each unit to HPD for the previous year (from November 2017 through November
2018). Such reporting will be required every December for the previous year. Your property manager will be working to ensure that your building is in compliance by next year’s deadline.
For more information, visit: http://www1.nyc.gov/site/hpd/owners/Pests-owners.page

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Individual Unit Management: Additional Service Now Offered for Unit Owners

We are pleased to announce that DEPM has recently launched a new division, the “Individual Unit Management” program, offered exclusively to apartment owners in DEPM-managed buldings.
The “Individual Unit Management” program is a full-service apartment concierge designed for investor-owners. Our highly trained staff specializes in managing
properties for foreign or absentee owners, as well as local investors in the NYC
real estate market.
Our customized management services for investor-owners provide comprehensive
oversight to ensure the security of each unit, as well as the building community as a
whole. Our investment property managers oversee all operational aspects of the
investment, from applications and tenant screening to rent collections and procuring
insurance. Our staff will oversee leasing, provide cleaning, painting, and
repair services, and ensure that applicants submit the proper forms and meet building requirements. We coordinate any work performed inside the unit, and approve and
pay invoices for work done, and interface with building management if necessary. We
pay all bills related to the apartments, including common charges, mortgage payments, insurance premiums, and real estate taxes. Our financial package provides
monthly statements that include all income and expenses, and provide owner’s with
professional financial accountability. We also provide a year-end report that can be used for tax purposes. Our management fee is five percent of the annual gross rent of the
managed unit, billed monthly. For more information, contact Sara Morvay, Investor
Relations Manager, at sara.morvay@ellimanpm.com.

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DEPM’s “Individual Unit Management” program is
offered exclusively to apartment owners in DEPM-managed buildings.

Seasonal Reminders

• As the weather gets colder, pest sightings increase. Take full advantage of the
exterminating service programs in place in your building: Speak to your resident
manager/super for details.
• Daylight Savings Time ended Sunday, November 5th. This is a good annual reminder to change your Carbon Monoxide and Smoke Detector batteries!
• Starting this year, Local Law 86/2017 changes the City’s Heat Season temps.
From October 1 through May 31, nighttime interior temps must be a minimum of
62 degrees, regardless of the outdoor temperature. Daytime indoor temps remain
unchanged, at 68 degrees when outdoor temps drop below 55.
• Schedule year-end service for central AC and pre-season inspection of heat systems.
• Close, service and install insulation covers on through-wall and window A/C units.
• Secure all items on roofs and balconies to immobilize them in the event of a
wind storm.
• Inspect all-weather carpets and runners to ensure good condition.

• Check supplies of calcium chloride and snow shovels.

• Tune up snow blowers, check/insulate sections of plumbing that could be prone to freezing.

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As temps drop, it’s time to take action to get your building ready for winter.

Budget Preparation Time: 2018 Drafts Are on the Way

As budget time approaches, DEPM property managers are consulting with resident managers, superintendents, and our financial analysts to prepare the 2018 Operating Budget drafts for our client boards to review. Preliminary and general observations reflect that real estate taxes continue to outpace normal indexes of inflation. Utility costs have increased at a pace second only to taxes while, interestingly, labor and related costs are trending just above inflation indexes. Supplies and services have generally marked lower than inflation. DEPM unfailingly works its portfolio clout wherever possible for our clients’ financial benefit. We do our best to reduce the financial impact of our managed buildings’ supply purchasing, fuel and other utility charges, and contractor competitive bidding processes. Please reach out to your building’s Financial Analyst if you have any 2018 budget-related questions.

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As budget time approaches, DEPM property managers are preparing the 2018 Operating Budget drafts for our client boards to review.

Business Credentialing Services Ensures Vendor Insurance Compliance

How many contracting jobs are underway each day in your building? There may be an
exterior maintenance company working on the façade, a unit owner renovating a kitchen, repairs being made on the boiler, an installation going in on a rooftop deck, and
potentially a host of others at any given time. Verifying that every vendor, contractor, sub-contractor, supplier and service provider working on your property has proper insurance certificates in place can be a non-stop task. Obtaining, filing and tracking these important documents is a time-consuming prospect, yet one that is essential in order to protect the property and all its residents from risk.

DEPM has begun working with Business Credentialing Service (BCS), a risk management company that screens vendors to ensure that they are in compliance with all of DEPM’s requirements BEFORE they begin any work. Requirements may include a
Certificate of Insurance detailing the compliant policies and limits, a Hold Harmless Agreement between the contractor and DEPM, a copy of the contractor’s W-9, a Contractor’s License if they are required to carry one in New York State, the company’s
Federal Employer Identification Number, and Office of Foreign Assets Control watch list
screening.
We are continuing to expand our database of vetted suppliers, contractors and vendors—all of whom pay an annual fee to BCS, so this service does not add to your
building’s expenses—and intend to require all businesses working in DEPM buildings to
be certified by BCS. Your property manager is working with our executive management
team as we continue to implement and expand this important new service.

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Nick Zoppi of Building Credentialing Services addressed DEPM’s managers at our June in-house Seminar to explain how BCS can help protect client buildings when hiring contractors.