Frequently Asked Questions
Will PREDICTOR save my Association $$$?
A long-term prediction of anticipated fee increases and/or assessments can be expected to incentivize Association members to better prioritize, defer, or eliminate certain expenses, thereby reducing total costs and/or scheduling them further out in the future. Beyond that, while all necessary expenses must ultimately be met, PREDICTOR gives the user the choice of a “just in time” strategy, a long term fee minimization strategy, an assessment only strategy, or any combination of these approaches. (See the System Capabilities section for more details).
Will PREDICTOR save my Property Management company $$$?
If time is $$$, get ready to reap the value of meeting with your clients and creating a plan for the future in a matter of hours rather than multiple meetings spent listening to often repeated concerns and paging through client specific spread-sheets
What likely impact will the use of PREDICTOR have on the community as a whole?
In trials at Board meetings and meetings of an entire community where the graphic results are projected onto a screen, the instant display of the impact of audience suggestions has been shown to quickly lead to consensus and a sense of comfort that there are many options to meeting the future financial needs. Here is a quote from an age 80+ member during a meeting where the resident owners participated in solving future financial shortfalls while PREDICTOR graphically displayed instant results of their recommendations:
“This is fun!”
As a Property Manager, can I share Predictor with my clients?
Predictor is licensed software for a single user, so while the results can be shared by transferring a PDF file to others, the analytical capabilities are only available to another licensed user. (See the Software License). However, if Property Managers or organizations that conduct capital reserve studies wish to include Predictor as a value added service to their clients, it is possible to separate the license purchase process from the download & installation processes. Check the Technical FAQ for more details or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
How many Predictor licenses does my organization need?
Property managers are likely to need a license for each of their key people who deal with the financial matters of the Associations that they manage. Associations may be satisfied with a single license, but because Predictor can be used to generate an exceptionally wide range of acceptable solutions , it is useful to have key financial recommendations coming from more than a single source.
Predictor may forecast out to 20 years, but how reliable can the results be?
While there will always be uncertainty about future projections, forecasts based on the best information currently available provide a context for today's decisions. A plan for the future does not imply a firm decision as to how the future will be accommodated; that will come much later when the uncertainty is much less.
Realistically, our condominium Association is only interested in the next 10 years ,so why should we bother trying to solve the problem over 20 years ?
Choosing to focus only on the next 10 years and accepting deficit projections beyond 10 years is a reasonable alternative considering that as the years progress, continued use of Predictor will ultimately highlight the deficits that were ignored earlier. The fixed term of 20 years was selected to accommodate the needs of those Associations who might be interested in that longer time horizon.
My Capital Reserve Study extends to 30 years but Predictor limits me to 20 years. Is there anything I can do about that?
YES. Put the first 20 years of cost projections into Predictor and develop a solution for that period of time. Using the results in year 20 (total fee, capital reserve ending balance) enter the data into a new START page, and enter the expected capital costs in years 21 to 30 into years 1 through 10. The solution you now develop becomes your year 21 to 30 solution.
Estimating inflation rates is an uncertain art, so how believable are the results of Predictor?
Predictor allows the user to easily evaluate the sensitivity of the forecast to inflation changes. As to the overall credibility of Predictor , there are numerous alternative computations that take place within Predictor and if there is disagreement with what Predictor is displaying, an error message occurs.
My primary interest is in the forecast of capital expenses and possible solutions and not in the operating expense forecast . Can Predictor still help me?
Predictor was designed to allow for separate analyses of capital costs versus operating costs. After ensuring all data is removed from the category that is being ignored, complete the section that deals with the category of interest. In the case of capital expenses to be met ,Predictor will compute the fees and/or assessments necessary above and beyond the current average aggregate fee level shown on the Start page (the average monthly fee level that .is supporting both operating and capital costs).
My Association manages both annual expenses and capital costs with a single "pot" of money. Can Predictor handle that situation ?
Yes. Clearing all data from the operating expense side of Predictor and devoting one capital expense data entry column to annual expenses will achieve the desired result. More details are provided in the Technical FAQ.
How often should Predictor be updated?
Once one is satisfied with the operating and capital expense forecast and proposed solutions, it is advisable to keep Predictor updated regularly. Beyond a fresh look during each budget season, updates in future capital cost estimates, changes in anticipated inflation, storm damage, changes in loan interest rates, changes in the competitive fee environment among neighboring condominium associations, etc. are reasons to update the comprehensive view that Predictor provides.
What makes Predictor better than other planning software?
Predictor adds significant value by its ease of use and its ability to quickly create readily understandable solution options in both tabular and graphic formats. The flexibility to enter ad-hoc suggestions during a community meeting and instantly display the results has shown to lead to rapid consensus on the most appropriate plan to fund future expenses.