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  • Photo du rédacteurChloé Rayssac

Property management and CAPEX plan : avoid the information tsunami !

Dernière mise à jour : 11 sept. 2023

The period of CAPEX plans is always a busy time for property managers and their asset manager clients. Taking place during the busy September season, amidst budgeting phases, there is a strong temptation to spend as little time as possible on it. However, this is a crucial moment that can make a difference!

Property management et plan de travaux : évitez le tsunami de l'information !

The CAPEX plan is this exercise where asset managers and property managers come together to take a step back from a building: its pathologies, its technical stakes, but also its adequacy with the objectives in terms of marketing and use. But is it worth to taking a step back in September, at the most intense time of the year?

Between setting up a backward schedule and understanding the needs of your clients, we have prepared some testimonials that we hope will help you.

A CAPEX plan can be anticipated!

First of all, our experts will tell you, the essential thing to know before starting any CAPEX plan is to know your building well...

“On this point, I think the secret is quite simple, it is to know your building well. This is really the feedback we get from our customers today. I also believe that this is something that emerged in an APROMA survey where customers consider that we PMs do not know enough about our buildings. We would be managers too distant in general, whereas at SOLARIS Gestion, we are convinced that you have to be on the ground and know your buildings well.” shares Patrice Cailly, Managing Partner at SOLARIS Gestion.

… and for that, they will also say that you need daily monitoring of files throughout the year and spending time on it.

“The good property manager is the one who will immediately consider that, to achieve a complete and exhaustive CAPEX plan, he will inevitably need several elements. It will be necessary, to request the technical due diligence carried out for its principal, […] to the multi-technical its comprehensive report, aimed at the intrinsic condition of the building and its equipment, to define the resulting multiyear work plan, before analyzing it (the building), from a strictly operational point of view, and this is where it really concerns the property manager,” says Rémy Vanwalscappel, Senior Director – Asset Management at Real I.S. France.

Apart from this first essential point, one of the first tips we hear to avoid the September tsunami is... to start the CAPEX plan before. As Rémy Vanwalscappel advises:

“The first piece of advice would undoubtedly be to ensure early preparation. Generally, asset managers will request validation of a CAPEX plan in October to incorporate it into the budget for the following year (N+1). Therefore, property managers should proactively anticipate all these steps, starting as early as January, by requesting an up-to-date CAPEX plan from their provider. This allows the property manager to verify its comprehensiveness, ensuring that all previously mentioned aspects are included. It enables them to conduct an analysis and benchmarking in relation to the mentioned costs.”

And for that, don't hesitate to work with tracking tables or checklists per asset!

When it comes to CAPEX plan, one term recurrently comes up: the costing.

“There are several ways to do it. There is of course, the costing done by the companies, but when we saturate the requests for quotes, after a while, it can be boring for the companies, especially if they are not sure to do the work behind.” says Patrice Cailly.

The tip is therefore not necessarily to ask for precise quotes for everything but rather to first identify envelopes that will help the asset manager to make decisions.

Knowing your building, starting your CAPEX plan upstream and optimizing the costing are therefore tips to consider, but what about the basic strategy of the CAPEX plan?

The secret: find out what the asset manager wants to do with his assets

Helping the asset manager to make decisions is one thing, but it often all starts with an element – not always well shared – the strategy of the asset on the building. Indeed, understanding the strategy and the vision in the short, medium, and long term, is an element that must be kept in mind, and in particular the objectives to know how to achieve them together. And don't hesitate to ask! How many plans have turned out to be unsuitable because they are not aligned with the strategy! So, the property manager, who believing he was doing the right thing, had costed, and developed major renovation work for a building that the asset considered to be non-strategic and to be sold within six months…. But the exchange goes both ways, the property manager must also inform sufficiently early on the leeway:

"Does he want to greening his heritage, does he want, conversely, to have a very minimalist vision... it's important to know this so as not to be off topic and to put the energy where we are going to be relevant and impactful to the customer. », says Patrice Cailly.

When reading the CAPEX plan, the asset manager may be disappointed by its content if he does not quickly see the priorities and if the challenges by line of work are not explained. He needs to project himself over 3 to 5 years to make the best decisions and a complete document allows him to save time and be sure of his choices. Of course, reading an asset manager is simplified if meetings, for example quarterly, have been scheduled throughout the year to both look at progress over the current year and prepare for future work. These upstream work meetings make it possible to minimize the back and forth to come during the validation of the CAPEX plan. Moreover, it is advisable to plan a point of validation of the CAPEX plan with the asset manager to further minimize exchanges by email. This is also what Rémy Vanwalscappel shares with us:

What I expect from a CAPEX plan is that it be comprehensive, clear and allow real planning. It must bear the mark of the various speakers who will have followed one another on the subject: that of the design office which will have carried out the technical due diligence, that of the maintainer in charge of the equipment daily, all checked and consolidated by the property manager who remains the main actor, and responsible for the implementation! Naturally, major works will deserve special attention, and a distinction between "renovation" and "improvement" will have to be made. What is certain is that a CAPEX plan is never fixed!".

The CAPEX plan is a key element for the life of a building. It is above all the moment when the property manager will be able to show his knowledge of the building and enhance his work. Just like for the asset manager, who will be able to influence the strategy of the asset. A good way to create value!


Find Patrice Cailly's interview here:

Find Rémy Vanwalscappel's interview here:

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