Some companies will claim they don’t have on-staff maintenance personnel because of “conflicts of interest”, or fears they will “make-work” to keep folks employed. The real reason for using independent contractors is probably more related to payroll taxes and insurance.

Let’s take a look at our program:

  • There’s no room for conflicts of interest because a maintenance man is working for us whether he’s an employee or an independent contractor. You always get a fair repair at a fair price.

  • We keep our staff lean. We routinely sub-out to our favorite independent contractors, especially when they have the best skills for the job.

  • Where California requires licenses, the workers are licensed. Yes, our maintenance prices will be higher than hiring the handyman who lives in his van by the river, but our job is to protect you; to keep you out of court.

Some of our owners want to do their own maintenance. We discourage it because the owner’s repairs might expose us to liability and, too often, the owner’s schedule causes repairs to drag-on for weeks when we would have finished the job and had new tenants inplace. But, we don’t have a strict rule against it.

As for home warranty insurance, a number of management companies don’t allow them for valid reasons. Unless it’s an emergency, home warranty insurance companies are invariably slow in response. Usually their contractor is based in other communities. They don’t know the building, the community, and they’re hard to reach if you have problems. And, their coverage has so many exclusions; you will probably hire another repairman to finish the job.

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