PBSA end of term: How to prepare for leaving students

It’s that time again, PBSA end of term. Students are preparing for their finals and going home for the summer. Now you need to prepare your team!

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PBSA end of term: How to prepare for leaving students

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It’s that time again - PBSA end of term. Students are preparing for their finals and dreaming about going home for the summer. But how prepared is your PBSA to make that transition smooth for the client and your team?

In today’s blog post, we’ll take a look at how you can start planning ahead of time to make many of your processes and tasks easier to complete. 

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When to start planning for PBSA end of term 

Most PBSA contracts end between 40-45 weeks, so you will want to start planning in advance to ensure a smooth transition for the end of term.

While many tasks will need to be done as this time approaches, there will also be plenty of tasks you can automate. This will help your team keep up during a busy period and relieve stress.

We always advise our clients to go into each year prepared. That means preparing for what on-boarding and off-boarding look like, plus everything in between. Preparedness to us isn’t just about understanding what happens and when, but also how you’ll automate and make the work easier to complete.

We’ll guide you through that later in the post.

Once you’ve set up your system, having your team meet a few months before the contracts end is always good. This allows you to dedicate time and manpower to admin and logistics while keeping up with the day-to-day. 


What should you include in your PBSA end of term prep? 

Let’s imagine this is your first student end of term; here’s what we would recommend you include in your process.


A tenant communication plan 

You will need to notify all tenants well in advance about what end of term looks like. That means giving them a plan of action you’ll take and a plan they will need to follow to get deposits back.

Ensure your lead communication is automated so students have everything they need and the reminders to take action. This leaves your team handling the support queries. 


Clear documentation 

Cut down on the paperwork by streamlining your documentation. Make each document purposeful and easy to find.

When it comes to PBSA end of term, you’ll need a document that clearly communicates expectations around returning keys, unit condition and dates for inspection and property vacation.

Online portals are a great place to store important documents and give immediate access to students throughout their tenancy. Include automated documents that appear towards the end of the rental period so that students already have access to reference letters or payment history as they leave. 


Coordinated moving-out logistics 

Plan when tenants leave units in blocks, giving students clear departure windows. This allows for less panic on the ground and less need for support.

It will also give your team the opportunity to organise other supporting services, like unit inspections, clean-up and grounds maintenance. 


Provide extra help moving 

While most students will have been dropped off at college by mum and dad, the chances are that they are on their own when it comes to moving out. This is when the moving process gets delayed - all because a student forgot to order moving boxes.

Make things simpler. Provide boxes or recommend moving companies and have volunteers help move limited personal effects. 


Systemised inspections 

Every unit will need inspection after a tenant leaves. Creating a systemised approach to documenting unit state will help reduce paperwork and red tape with releasing security deposits.


Timely refunds on deposits  

Much of the process after inspection can be automated, making deposits easy to refund for those who pass inspection and flagging anything needing attention. Remember, there will be local guidelines here, so make sure you understand your financial obligation to repay tenants on time.


The review process and change implementation 

After completing the departure phase, thoroughly review your end of term process. What worked well and what didn’t? How did your staff cope, and what do they think could improve future deliverables? How did it go for students?

Feedback is a great way to get to grips with how your process works and where you can make adjustments.


How your tech stack can help you automate your PBSA end of term 

Your tech stack can make or break your PBSA end of term, so it’s important you understand what you need and how to integrate it.

We’ve got a list below, which will help you consider what to look for, but remember, we can do this for you (contact us here).

Here’s what we think you need to include: 

  • Property management software (PMS) - Implement a solution allowing you to store and access tenant information, track lease agreements, and manage tenant communication. Your PMS should streamline the entire process, from move-in to move-out. It should also provide key reporting data. We recommend MRI Living. 
  • Online tenant portals - These portals can make tenant management much easier if you look for one that includes efficient communication tools, accessible document storage and simple support ticket systems. In our view, StarRez is a great tool for this, as is Spike Global. 
  • Deposit protection scheme integration - Integrate your technology stack with the approved tenancy deposit protection scheme's APIs or systems. This will allow you to provide easy and compliant deposit registration, verification, and refund processes. 
  • Automated move-out inspections - Utilise mobile inspection apps or software that allow property managers to conduct move-out inspections efficiently. You can preload checklists and digital documentation. The best examples also help you capture and annotate photos to record the condition of the property. We always recommend Inventory Hive. 
  • Cloud-based document management and storage - Cloud-based systems will help you securely store all relevant documents, such as tenancy agreements, inventory reports, deposit protection certificates, and move-out inspection reports. A simple system set-up will help your team manage their workload in hybrid or remote situations. 
  • Automated deposit refund calculations and reporting - Use software that automatically calculates and reports deposit refunds based on relevant variables and inspection passes. 

Enjoy a simpler PBSA end of term 

PBSA end of term doesn’t have to feel like a headache, it can be a great way to segway between longer term lets and summer rentals (like hotelling). The ease of that process is down to how you plan your team and systems.

We hope that in today’s post, we’ve been able to help you with that. 

If you need help setting up your PBSA business system, fill out the form below - We’d be happy to help. 

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