Real Estate Journal — Owners, Developers & Managers — January 29 - February 11, 2016 — 29A


M id A tlantic

P roperty M anagement

Dennis Kowal is a practicing architect with projects in ten States and one foreign country. Besides thirty years of experience with sustainable, new commercial, renovation and historic preservation projects, Dennis is an expert witness and forensic architect who helps others solve difficult problems. Dennis is serving as the President of NJIFMA and invites you to join the close-knit community of facility professionals who enjoy sharing and advancing together. Find us at NJIFMA.org

“My roof is leaking!” When is it time to call an expert? By Dennis J. Kowal AIA SFP LEED AP President NJIFMA

NJIFMA is filled with members who are expert at many things. Most are very willing to answer any question or give a reference as an act of friendship; this is the value of a professional association. We know how hard it was for us at various points and we just want to help others. But when do you need to call an expert to help you with your problem ? First, what is an expert? Some will say it is someone who knows everything there is to know about a topic. Others give talks about some topic and after they have been asked to give the talk enough times, they are labeled an expert. Still others write a book, write an article or continuously post a blogs about the issue. Today, if those blogs have a large following or if you are famous, you are what marketer’s call “an influencer”. Influencers appear to be experts about something and many accept their opinions. But a true expert is often neither 150% proficient in the topic nor authentic just because others follow him. An expert usually has a methodology and not just an opinion. For example, your wall has a continuous wet spot on the outside and you fixed the coping above but this didn’t fix it. Frustrated, you are hoping an expert can tell you what to do next. At first, an expert doesn’t know why the wall is wet any more than you do. But the expert arrives with a methodology to discover that cause. Also, an expert has enough experience to guess in what order of priority to apply the investigations; starting with non-invasive and working to invasive. A good expert may offer a list of things they have encountered in the past that has caused this problem, but will rarely announce an opinion without first performing a physical observation. When you have a persistent problem that defies the normal remedies, an expert will guide you through the differential diagnosis after observing the conditions. When you want to save time and save throwing away money on the wrong solutions, it is time to call an Expert! Find us at www.NJIFMA.org the issue Today if those blogs have a large following or if you are famous you are what marketer’s call

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