Essential Property Management Supplies and Tools Every Multifamily Manager Should Have

Sunlight illuminates the modern exterior of a multifamily apartment building, highlighting the balconies and windows, ideal for showcasing property management supplies.

Author: Tim Moegen
May 15, 2024 - 6 MIN. READ

Multifamily property managers are the first line of defense in overseeing repairs, maintenance, safety, and security. The ongoing welfare of residents and the value of the property depend on their diligence. They also oversee the preventive maintenance that keeps the property in good working order.

As a multifamily property manager, you need to have the right combination of property management supplies and tools on hand to be effective. Let's take a look at the essentials and how to best organize them.

Building a Comprehensive Property Management Supplies Toolkit

Now is a good time to take stock of your property management supplies. Consider the categories below and fill in any gaps—at some point, you'll be glad you did.

Maintenance and Repair Supplies

A property manager needs to efficiently handle minor repairs to avoid the cost of hiring outside help. Those include fixing leaky faucets, installing appliances like microwaves and dishwashers, replacing lock sets, patching holes in walls, replacing light fixtures, and even painting. The right tools and a well-engineered toolbox to keep them organized are vital.

Here's a list that covers the majority of the property management supplies and tools you'll need on a day-to-day basis:

  • Claw hammer.
  • Screwdriver set: flat-head and Phillips-head.
  • Adjustable wrench.
  • Utility knife.
  • Tape measure.
  • Cordless drill.
  • Pliers set: regular and needle nose.
  • Flashlight and batteries.
  • Ladder.
  • Cordless power driver.
  • Wire strippers.
  • Cordless reciprocating saw.
  • Caulking gun.
  • Multi-meter.
  • Safety glasses and gloves.
  • Paint brushes for touchup.
  • Paint for touchup.

As for toolboxes, select a highly rated one. There are several ways to organize it, but the most important thing is to make it work for you. Take a quick inventory of your tools, and discard worn or duplicate ones. Group them by type, and keep the most frequently used ones on top, with the big and bulky ones like the caulking gun on the bottom.

Inspection and Documentation Tools

Along with performing repairs, performing inspections is another key duty of property managers. These can be for regular preventive maintenance to check for issues or to confirm the condition of apartments on move-in or move-out.

Consistency and organization are critical, and easy-to-access recordkeeping is also a must. This is an area where technology enables us to save time and money. Automation streamlines your property management tasks, saves money and time, and reduces liability.

For preventive maintenance inspections, the software can provide clear and transparent records to produce if there are questions about whether you conducted them, protecting you against claims in disputes. Document any repairs you make in a readily accessible place in case any issues arise.

For move-in and move-out inspections, you need to rigorously inspect and document the conditions of the space. For move-ins, this demonstrates that the space is in good order and gives the resident a chance to flag any valid punch list items. Then, they will document that you have completed the punch list. For move-outs, your lease may hold the resident responsible for any damages, and you need to document these to avoid disputes.

Paper records just do not cut it anymore. You need to leverage technology, such as electronic checklists, digital photos (using smartphones), and computerized record-keeping. These tools make it simple to conduct and reference inspections, and there are several good ones on the market.

Safety and Security Equipment

Resident safety is a property manager’s most important responsibility, and this means having the right property management supplies on hand. Be sure to comply with code on smoke detectors, alarms, and sprinklers. Provide a good supply of appropriate fire extinguishers placed in visible spots; consult the National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA) for information. Finally, first-aid kits should be readily accessible in emergencies.

For properties without a 24-hour doorman, access control to prevent and document intrusion, and Closed Circuit TV (CCTV) systems are essential. Card-reader systems and alarms are suitable for access control at exterior entrances. Combine CCTV with card control at those entrances to monitor incidents. Intrusion alarms can integrate with CCTV to turn on the camera at the door and record. Make sure to manage the issuance and cancellation of badges meticulously.

CCTV in corridors and hallways is a good deterrent to criminal activity. Be sure to build in video storage capacity and review records frequently. It may make sense to work with a security consultant to get the right system for your needs, especially for larger properties.

Seasonal Property Management Supplies

You will need to plan and source supplies for warm and cold weather. If you have a swimming pool, stock pool cleaning and water treatment chemicals, along with appropriate cleaning tools. Shortages have plagued this market, so plan well ahead.

For cold winter climates, make sure to have an appropriate snow blower and perform regularly scheduled maintenance to ensure it runs when needed. You will also need to have snow shovels, brooms, and de-icing chemicals on hand. Be sure to keep entrances, sidewalks, and stairs free of snow and ice.

Stay on Top of Multifamily Property Management with Raiven

The property manager is central to the proper function of multifamily properties, with the security and safety of residents as job one.

  • Make sure your property manager has the property management supplies he needs and a top-notch toolbox to organize and carry them.
  • Leverage technology to streamline and document property inspections to avoid disputes.
  • Use CCTV, access control, and intrusion alarms to optimize resident safety.
  • Provide smoke detectors, sprinklers, and fire alarms according to code, as well as fire extinguishers and first-aid supplies.
  • Plan and stock seasonal supplies and tools.

Take the time to assess your current situation and start implementing the recommendations covered here. Preparation is the key to your success.

Raiven Can Help

We can give you a head start on property management supplies and tools with our Custom Marketplace. It combines our unique, easy-to-use procurement platform with fast access to a portfolio of pre-vetted, pre-contracted deals with deep discounts of 7%-30%.

Our world-class suppliers include: HD Supply, Ferguson, Lowes, Home Depot, Office Depot, FedEx, Grainger, Sherwin-Williams, T-Mobile, and more. HD Supply, Ferguson, Grainger, Lowes and Home Depot, and Sherwin Williams are notable sources for the tools and supplies you need.

Raiven makes saving on property management supplies, equipment, and materials easy for multifamily managers. How does it work? Companies like Raiven combine the buying power of all their members and negotiate deep discounts, service terms, and supply chain priorities so you pay less on all your everyday purchases. We save you precious time by handling all the supplier negotiations.

With Raiven, you get access to:

  • A streamlined platform that makes your purchasing a snap. Manage all your preferred suppliers in one place—no more jumping from site to site to compare prices.
  • Supply chain alerts that keep you updated in real time.
  • Access to our AI-powered purchasing tools, which automatically source the lowest prices for you, even when your employees venture outside the platform.

Raiven is here to take the hassles out of your purchasing. To discover what we can do for your business, contact us today.