Caroline Reaves, CEO, Mortgage Contracting Services spoke with DS News about the upcoming challenges, trends, and the role technology plays in property preservation as 2020 draws near.
Last month, Reaves participated in the 2019 National Property Preservation Conference in Washington D.C. The event included collaborative discussions about topics including code violations, vendor management, hazard claims, and other challenges and hot topics facing the property preservation sector.
"I’m always energized by this conference and what it provides for our MCS team as well as the industry," Reaves said of the conference. "It’s the one time each year when we all get together and focus solely on property preservation. The MCS team always looks forward to this conference, as it provides an opportunity for open, honest dialogue with our peers in the industry."
Below is more from her interview with DS News.
What are some of the trends changing the property preservation industry?
We have had some catastrophic natural disasters that have taught us as an industry to better prepare. We are now using some amazing technology that allows us to get to work before the natural disaster occurs. When we are better prepared, we are able to service our clients more efficiently and effectively.
I think we have all learned that in our industry we have to prepare for the unexpected and plan for the worst-case scenarios so that we are able to respond quickly and appropriately.
What is the role technology plays in how property preservation is done today?
We are definitely facing more requirements and stricter regulations in property preservation. When these challenges arise, we always look for ways to leverage our technology. Our AI initiatives, robotics, and advanced automation make life easier for our vendors and clients. We continue to look for ways to take technology that is available to us as individuals and use it to improve our business communications.
What are some challenges facing the industry today and how can they be overcome?
We are not able to change the fact that defaults are down. But we can take advantage of this time to be leaders in innovation. When business slows a bit, we funnel our resources to process improvement. And of course, when your focus is on process improvement, that goes hand-in-hand with your people development and technology. We are confident that when defaults begin to rise, we will be ready with the very best people, processes and technology.
We also recognize that many of our vendor partners are being pulled away from the industry to work in the high-demand home building industry. We value our vendor partners, and are very committed to doing everything we can to keep them in property preservation with MCS. We have been working hard to bring innovative technology to our vendor management processes, improving our work order process as well as communication within our vendor network.