Reserve Funds and Reserve Fund Studies

April, 13 2023 Published by Grand River Chapter - By Corey Sargeant

Planning For Big Summer Projects

When a corporation is moving towards a large repair project it can become a daunting process at times. Below are some best practices when undertaking a large project such as paving, building envelope restoration, and or infrastructure replacement.

When a corporation is moving towards a large repair project it can become a daunting process at times. Below are some best practices when undertaking a large project such as paving, building envelope restoration, and or infrastructure replacement. While it is likely your reserve fund study or some other indicator (hopefully not failure) such as a condition survey that has identified a capital item that is need of repair or replacement, the challenge is just beginning. Many would agree that it is the initial steps of a project can really set the tone for success.  Please consider the following:

  • Determine the scope of a project, make use of the Reserve Fund Study and or any condition assessments, repair recommendations and such that may have been provided prior to, or seek the advice of professionals related to the overall project scope.
  • Look to engage a professional/expert to work with the Corporation throughout the project process from scope of work to tendering/estimating, inspections etc., in today’s competitive world these professionals will greatly assist a corporation in securing competitive viable estimates, reduced liability, a comfort level for the Corporation as well as any contractors which can lead to better value and results overall.
  • For simpler or more straightforward projects a professional/expert may not be required and in those cases a corporation should be prepared with the assistance of their manager to identify the scope, obtain competitive estimates based on the scope, select and manage the work directly with the approved contractor.
  • Timing of larger projects should always be reviewed; keep in mind you may have other annual maintenance items that could be completed while undertaking a large project that will result in savings for the Corporation from an operating standpoint. A simple example, have the roofers scope include cleaning the eaves when roof replacement is being done. Consider repairing adjacent items, such as curbs and sidewalks when doing asphalt replacement.
  • Quoting/tendering and contracts can be challenging in today’s environment for varying reasons.
  • Volatile marketplaces, surplus of work and increasing inflation have made this process far more challenging as of late. Much of the time, contractors when given the opportunity for future business, will provide firm pricing and/or annualized increases for multi-year commitments.
  • All have seen large variances with pricing, ensure requests for quotations are clear and simple ensure the key points are captured such as what (service, supply), when (frequency, urgency). Contracts and purchase orders need to clearly reflect the approved scope, pricing, and timing expectations.
  • Communication with residents is always vital for a successful project, try to be informative but general in nature with respect to the scope, timing, specific needs such a relocation of vehicles etc., and what to expect for residents such as noise, vibration, traffic. Be prepared to provide updates as projects progress, this will ensure residents have what they need information wise. Clearly identify who concerns should be brought to in the event a question or issue arises.
  • As a project moves forward look to keep all parties updated through progress reports prepared by whomever is managing the project and ensure all participating contractors are sent updates as well to ensure all are in agreement at each phase.
  • At project completion ensure full project reviews are undertaken, any holdback, warranty, future maintenance requirements etc. are discussed and recorded.

Corey Sargeant
President
G3 Property Solutions Ldt.

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