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Bringing property management in-house can unlock a world of possibilities for affordable housing providers. It has the potential to give providers more control over properties and the ability to ensure operations align seamlessly with their mission and values, while meeting financial targets. 

It’s also an opportunity to transform treasury teams by upgrading technology, enhancing processes and fostering better integration.

“Navigating the transition from third-party property management to in-house can create operational challenges and requires a significant time investment,” said Robin Tarkanick, Treasury Management Officer at JPMorgan Chase. “Treasury teams must establish new legal entities, configure banking structures, open new accounts, reconcile transactions and ensure staff alignment. It’s important the right stakeholders, processes and end-state are identified early, so everyone can work together toward the same goal.”

6 essential steps to prepare for in-house property management

There are several critical tasks facing treasurers making the shift from a third-party property management service to in-house property management. Your bank will be a key player in this journey. From managing transactions to facilitating financial integration, involving them early ensures a smoother transition.

1. Perform due diligence

Thoroughly review current property management processes and systems, including:

  • Account structures
  • Bank management
  • Enterprise resource planning (ERP) and property management systems (PMS)
  • Available resources, such as banking partners, third-party vendors and other personnel

Evaluate the impact these have on treasury operations and understand how they operate. 

Treasurers should also analyze lease agreements, resident turnover rates and maintenance schedules to understand how they will affect cash flow and treasury operations during the transition.

It can be helpful to work with a bank that specializes in commercial real estate and is experienced in supporting property managers with best practices around bank and account management, PMS connectivity, reconciliation and managing rent payments

Critical success factors:

  • In-depth analysis of current property management practices
  • Risk assessment and mitigation strategies
  • Comprehensive understanding of existing resources and technology


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2. Proactively design your organizational structure

Define the organizational structure for your team. Clearly outline roles, responsibilities and reporting structures.

The organization should also establish a dedicated cash management team that focuses on cash flow optimization, rent collection efficiency and risk management. This team also needs clearly defined roles, such as cash manager for overseeing liquidity and financial risk.

Critical success factors:

  • Clearly defined organizational roles and responsibilities
  • Transparent reporting structure for effective communication

3. Assess legal and compliance requirements

Work with your banking team to understand your financial compliance requirements. That may require conducting a comprehensive legal landscape analysis. 

Consulting legal experts can help you establish a solid foundation for lease agreements and make sure your processes for handling residents’ security deposits meet all regulatory requirements. They can also help ensure you are in compliance with regulations specific to affordable housing, such as guidelines for the Housing Choice Voucher program, also known as Section 8.

Critical success factors:

  • Thorough understanding of and adherence to compliance requirements
  • Robust legal foundation for in-house property management

4. Transition your vendors

Communicate with your current property management vendors regarding the shift.

You’ll also need to notify other vendors, such as landscaping and maintenance providers. Clearly outline revised service scopes and negotiate terms, discounts and payment methods.

Critical success factors:

  • Transparent and effective communication with vendors
  • Seamless transfer of contracts and responsibilities
  • Secure and accurate data transfer

5. Communicate with residents

Make sure residents are aware of the upcoming change and any steps they will need to take. Provide a detailed notice specifying your new rent payment procedures, including payment dates, late payment fees, accepted payment methods and updated contact information. It should also cover any changes in property management procedures.

Critical success factors:

  • Clear and timely communication with residents
  • Comprehensive information on procedural changes
  • Resources available for resident questions and troubleshooting 

6. Conduct a parallel run

Test your readiness for the transition in property management with a parallel run, where you run new systems alongside existing ones to ensure smooth operations. For instance, testing financial data migration for a specific property can ensure the new systems integrate seamlessly without disrupting resident billing and financial reporting.

Before beginning the parallel run, identify critical success factors, such as seamless data migration. Coordinate between treasury, IT and bank resources to address any issues. 

Critical success factors:

  • Seamless billing and payment processing for residents and vendors 
  • Effective coordination between treasury, IT teams and your bank

Considerations for executing a successful transition

  • Identify and understand the skills your organization needs to handle property management in-house. Where gaps exist, make a plan to fill them, whether that means finding the right candidate or training your existing team.  
  • Develop a strategic training plan to address identified skill deficiencies and enhance the team’s capabilities.
  • Facilitate cross-functional training to help team members develop comprehensive understanding.

  • Assess the current technological infrastructure and compatibility.
  • Develop a phased plan for integrating ERP systems that accounts for potential disruptions and training needs.
  • Discuss ERP system integration possibilities with your bank.

  • Work with your bank to integrate financial transactions with your ERP system.
  • Consider using digital tools to automate financial processes.
  • Tap into your banking team’s expertise to identify other ways your organization can streamline operations—especially if they have experience working with other affordable housing owners.

  • Collaborate with your bank for support during transition phases.
  • Keep your bank informed to ensure they are aligned with your operational changes.
  • Use your bank’s digital platforms to streamline exchanging and safeguarding financial information.

  • In-house property management allows your team to respond quickly to resident needs, which can improve overall satisfaction.
  • Work with your bank to offer residents digital services that help you communicate and resolve issues seamlessly.
  • Consider using automation to handle rent payments, maintenance requests and other resident-related processes through your ERP system.

  • Evaluate current governance policies and identify areas for improvement.
  • Collaborate with stakeholders to enhance or create new governance policies that align with the new in-house property management structure.
  • Implement treasury policies and procedures to meet in-house management needs.

Creating a transition service agreement

A transition service agreement (TSA) is crucial to streamlining the shift. It ensures transparent communication with the current property management team and outlines services, roles, responsibilities, service level agreements, costs and resident communication strategies for a specified duration. 

A TSA can help you meet deadlines for transitioning to in-house property management, reduce costs and provide stability during the transition. But a TSA is strictly temporary—it’s a bridge rather than a permanent solution.

From a treasury perspective, integral elements to incorporate in the TSA include:

  • Funding of payments 
  • Rent collection
  • Cash visibility/forecasting and bank account management
  • Procure-to-pay/order-to-cash processes, including reconciliations
  • Historical resident data access, including types and channels of payments

A TSA should include thorough documentation that: 

  • Covers included and excluded services
  • Identifies your banking team and other third parties affected by the TSA
  • Addresses indemnification needs
  • Describes the process for managing issues that arise
  • Transparently details costs and charging methods

Ensuring the TSA and the future-looking plan are in sync is crucial for seamlessly transitioning functions and processes. All parties should understand the timelines and costs, capability assessments, approach to unravelling third-party processes and plan for keeping residents informed.

Key takeaways

Making a strategic shift to in-house property management can help affordable housing providers operate in alignment with their mission and values, creating positive impact on communities while meeting financial goals. But it takes time, resources and a solid plan. 

The process outlined can help treasury teams understand the factors critical to success, including collaboration with banking partners, skill development, legal compliance, technological integration and a resident-centric approach. Financial institutions like JPMorgan Chase can support teams with insights and digital solutions for a smooth transition.

JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. Member FDIC. Visit for disclosures and disclaimers related to this content.

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