Property management, at its core, is a guest-facing industry. Whether you’re a landlord in your own right or part of a property management company, the relationship you have with your tenants is crucial. How do you keep it from going sour? Like any relationship, with work and awareness of others.
Remember: you’re in the business of managing properties which means this is a business relationship. You need to be friendly, approachable but professional at all times. It’s a balancing act. If tending to this type of relationship is uncharted territory, we have some essential tips for you.
Start Off on the Right Foot
From the moment you receive their tenant application, you should be developing a positive relationship. Property management companies may speak to dozens of applicants a day, but if you don’t start off on the right foot, you could lose a great tenant. While there are tons of horror stories regarding nightmare landlords and tenants, there are just as many of those who have gone above and beyond. If you come across as approachable and reliable from the get-go, you’re likely to see a better, more dependable tenant in return. Make them feel welcome, provide the proper contact details in cases of emergency, and be precise in your expectations. Those who do work with great landlords or property managers are more likely to stay in their rental rather than gamble on a new one.
Business relationships work best when there’s open communication from the word go. And it doesn’t end after you’ve settled them into their new home. Keeping an open dialogue between you and your tenant can cultivate a trusting relationship. If a tenant needs repairs done, make sure you let them know you’re on the case. If you can only get an electrician in next week, it’s best to communicate that as early as possible. Be sure to let your tenant know as soon as you can if you need to stop by for any reason. Respect works both ways, and they’ll take their cue from you.
Kindness Goes a Long Way
Rules and regulations are there for a reason, but compassion can make your relationship stronger. You may own or manage the building, but that’s your tenant’s home. Emergencies and extenuating circumstances can occur and, in these instances, judgement and fairness come into play. We don’t mean that you should be a pushover. But when people talk about their home, it’s hard not to get emotional. If you’re willing to make an exception, make sure you’re documenting everything including why. This is helpful in detecting a pattern — is this a one-time thing or have they been back with the same request? Put yourself in their shoes. It’ll serve you well in the long-run.
It’s no cake-walk handling tenants on your own. If you’re ready to hand over the responsibility of sifting through tenant applications, interviews, move-in and move-out, it may be time to get in touch with us. We don’t take just anyone, either. We make sure to choose the properties we manage wisely, so it doesn’t jeopardize our service to you. Protect your financial return and choose the experts: Pemberton Holmes Property Management.