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Renters in America

How the Pandemic is Affecting Multifamily Property Management

The multifamily rental industry is facing daunting challenges in the wake of COVID-19, from supply shortages to labor shortages. We spoke to John Daniell, senior vice president of sales at Chadwell Supply about these hurdles.


John Daniell

Senior Vice President of Sales, Chadwell Supply

How can owners and managers find, train, and retain on-site employees, especially in maintenance?

Within the multifamily industry, current staffing challenges go beyond recent economic factors. Over the past decade, we have witnessed a noticeable decline in qualified maintenance technicians entering the industry and COVID-19 has amplified that trend. Once an inexperienced technician is hired, management must do everything possible to provide focused training, encouragement, and a healthy work environment. Our Chadwell University training programs offer basic skills training, industry certifications, and higher-level troubleshooting classes that are vital to both new and seasoned maintenance personnel. Management and property-level support combined with skills development and confidence can help ensure a long and successful career path. 

How can owners and managers best navigate supply chain challenges and maximize fulfillment success?

The nation has faced months of supply chain difficulties which have created new challenges for multifamily properties in their efforts to keep community pools maintained, A/C units running, and basic supplies stocked. It is key for management teams to have strong relationships with suppliers who will work with you to identify new sources and options to keep your properties running and ready to lease. Chadwell Supply continues to work with manufacturers and vendors to find substitutions and workarounds to minimize the impact and meet customer needs throughout our distribution footprint. While we are beginning to see relief in some product categories, others could likely remain affected well into 2022. 

What will the phase-down of 410A refrigerant mean for the multifamily industry in the near future?

As the EPA puts new energy regulations in place, the HVACR industry continues to innovate to meet requirements. Refrigerants that were once commonplace, such as 410A, will still be produced. However, as production is phased down, servicing existing equipment will become increasingly more expensive. Manufacturers are being required to phase out the production of equipment that uses certain refrigerant types in favor of more energy-efficient, environmentally friendly refrigerants with a lower global warming potential. While there is no one standard new refrigerant yet, most of the new options, such as R32, are classified by ASHRAE as A2L, A2, or A3 which means they are slightly flammable. The impacts of these regulations go beyond the capital expenses of new equipment. Training will be a necessity as these new refrigerants will require considerable changes in handling protocols and servicing practices to protect the safety of your properties, residents, and employees. To stay up to date on refrigerant restrictions and rules, visit

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