Anyone in property management knows how hard budget season is and utilities are often one of the most challenging expenses to do. And given how much utilities cost, they are also one of the most critical to get right.

So many things affect utility budgets―rate changes, weather, occupancy, aging equipment, conservation projects, etc. Adding X% to last year’s actuals doesn’t really provide for good budgets. Oftentimes, the expenses from last year may not actually represent 12 months of expenses. For each utility account, Flow budgets the expected usage (goals) and rates. Simply put, usage X rate = cost. This is very important to us as we use budgets to flag accounts that need to be addressed. During our budget review with clients, we often identify areas where capital dollars should be focused. Flow’s budgeting allows us to provide detailed variance reports down to the account level.