Computer-Savvy Residents Helping Everyone Get with the Program

If you’re one of the millions of people who have embraced this age of cell phones, BlackBerries, DSL and instant messaging, it’s hard to imagine life any differently. Access to information is instantaneous these days for most people — have a question about anything in the world? Google it, or Ask Jeeves, or text-message your friend on the other side of the country.

It’s easy to take for granted the speed and efficiency with which many of us move through the day, thanks to our knowledge and ownership of new technology. But not everyone is so connected. Many lower-income households, as well as a large contingency of senior citizens don’t have Internet access, cell phones or even cable television.

If your building is one that has tried to embrace new technology in order to run more effectively, you may have already learned that not everyone is keen on getting updates, documents or notices via your building’s website — many times this is because they don’t own a computer.

So is it really better for everyone to be online? What are the benefits? And if your tenants or shareholders aren’t online, how do you bring them up to speed? If they are willing to change and try something new, and if your board, management company or HOA is willing to help, the power of computer technology can be harnessed and might make life a little easier for everyone.

Today vs. Yesterday

Greg Carlson has been in the property management business for over 30 years and has run Carlson Realty in Forest Hills, Queens for 11. He says that the vast majority of property managers have access to e-mail — and many of the tenants and shareholders he’s worked with, do too.

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