Asset Tagging: How Does It Boost the Bottom Line of Multi-Unit Properties?

How do multi-unit property owners track all their physical assets? Just think about all the appliances, equipment and tools involved in operating multi-unit properties: movable assets like vehicles, power tools and smartphones, as well as fixed assets such as bridges, buildings and HVAC equipment. That’s a lot of inventory to track. When assets slip through the cracks, expensive inefficiencies, repairs, as well as dissatisfied tenants are sure to follow. Without asset tagging, a property owner might not even know when a theft has occurred. 

Asset tagging is an integral element of facilities management, and it occurs when physical assets are labeled with unique identification numbers, QR codes or barcodes in order to better track and monitor them. Asset tagging doesn’t consist of labels alone. The tags and equipment details are entered into a database, and specialized software organizes the physical inventory, tracking details such as age of equipment, applicable leases, warranties and insurance, usage, efficiencies, and scheduled preventative maintenance. Some even predict needed repairs and replacements before malfunctions put assets out of service. 

What is HVAC asset tracking?

In terms of HVAC assets, asset tagging helps property owners and operators organize the usage, history and maintenance requirements of property furnaces, air-conditioning units and ventilation systems. Not only is the equipment labeled, but asset tracking and management software provides valuable insights that help to improve efficiencies and minimize costly malfunctions. 

When HVAC assets are tagged and tracked, each piece of equipment will be assigned a number or other label, and a profile will be created, including details such as:

  • Make and model of equipment
  • Location of the asset
  • Date asset was deployed
  • Serial and model numbers
  • User and repair manuals
  • Current state of equipment
  • Date of last preventative maintenance
  • Dates and types of any repairs made
  • Testing criteria and results
  • Product specifications
  • Photos


What are the benefits of asset tracking?

Asset tracking is valuable to property owners for a variety of reasons, including cost savings, improved tenant satisfaction and added value to the overall business. 

Specifically, HVAC asset tracking boosts multi-unit property’s bottom lines in the following ways:

  • By documenting the details and histories of physical assets such as HVAC equipment, asset tagging helps ensure preventative maintenance is competed on schedule. Improved preventative maintenance results in better HVAC efficiencies and fewer malfunctions, both outcomes that make for happy customers. 
  • Asset tagging improves the safety of HVAC systems by organizing preventative maintenance schedules and predicting needed repairs. Poorly maintained HVAC equipment can be prone to dangerous gas leaks, frayed wires and electrical shorts, while well-maintained assets are safer for both occupants and the overall property. 
  • By tagging HVAC assets, multi-unit property owners and operators can better manage equipment costs. After all, while repairs are usually less costly than replacements, too many repairs can accumulate to more than the HVAC unit is worth. Likewise, poorly functioning equipment can result in high energy usage and associated costs. At some point, it is more cost effective for the property owner and the tenant to replace faulty assets. 

How does Motili asset tracking benefit HVAC customers?

Motili launched its own asset tagging service with a 2020 update to its mobile app. The Asset Tagging Wizard walks contractors through the entire process of tagging and inventorying HVAC and hot water assets. By cataloguing all of a multi-unit property owner’s HVAC properties, Motili clients gain access to valuable insights through the company’s Motili Asset Condition Index reporting. 

“Motili’s new, updated mobile app with the Asset Tagging Wizard provides contractors with the ability to more easily and quickly complete work orders and SLAs for Motili’s customers,” Motili President Karl Pomeroy said in 2020. “We look forward to seeing how the new wizard enables the time savings to accrue and how that will translate to hours and dollars saved.”

An HVAC asset indexing system proprietary to Motili, MACI examines various data indicators, including age, condition, energy efficiency and refrigerant type. Based on those details, the app assigns each physical asset a score that determines when equipment will need preventative maintenance and repairs. When HVAC assets are running efficiently and effectively, property owners save on energy costs and repairs, and they also enjoy improved tenant satisfaction. In fact, multi-family communities have been known to experience 20% increases in resident satisfaction after implementing Motili’s Asset Management program.

MACI has been shown to increase tenant satisfaction based on:

  • Proactively replacing aging HVAC and hot water assets before they experience downtime
  • Creating an executive overview of a client’s full HVAC portfolio, which facilitates improved planning and scheduling of capital improvement.
  • Determining which HVAC and hot water assets need replaced and when the replacement is needed.
  • Asset tagging isn’t the only way Motili boosts multi-unit property owner’s’ bottom line and increases tenant satisfaction. Proactive preventative maintenance provides a variety of benefits, particularly more efficient and effective heating and cooling. This increases comfort and reduces energy use and costs. Motili’s HVAC Efficiency Tool goes a step further by calculating carbon emissions associated with HVAC operations. The tool also calculates the ROI time needed to reflect energy savings as compared to the costs of equipment and installation. 
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