We sure hope you never got to be that person. You know, the one that got replaced by their landlord because of some dissatisfaction you did not address properly. Landlords can have various reasons why they become unsatisfied with their property managers. At time, this can lead them to change their property manager and look elsewhere.
Typically, there are 3 main reasons why landlords are changing property managers: issues with transparency, issues with fees, and inexperience. They are all tied to two perceptions:
- landlords either don’t feel valued and respected, or
- they feel that their property manager doesn’t really give them the most for their money.
So try to avoid the following 3 mistakes, and you will be well on your way to become (or stay) your landlords’ favourite.
The issue of transparency is a big one. Landlords come to despise sneaky and salesy behaviour. This is showing a lack of respect on your part. And with them now having more property managers to choose from, alongside the chaos that this dynamic market is bringing to their minds, they prefer your punctuality, candidness, and no BSing.
Of course, occasionally things simply get sour. Toilets break, floods happen, servers crash. If you are straightforward with your landlords about issues that pertain to them, they will appreciate this and turn down the heat.
So, if they really need to know something, let them know. Of course, always announce that the problem is taken care of, and will be fixed soon and thoroughly. If they ask how is this being done, tell them. You have nothing to lose, and only their respect to gain.
Being candid and being there for your landlords also means avoiding to incur extra fees that they didn’t agree to, at least knowingly. Yes, we know you can put all sorts of obligations in your contract—but is it the right thing to do?
Try to avoid imposing unexpected fees in most situations to show them that you can be someone of trust. Or, you can simply make them anticipated by clearly including them in your contract or overview process. This is also part of the good CX (customer experience) that we’ve spent so much time advocating for.
Imagine having a landlord that went through 10 property managers on their 5 properties in the past 5 years. Do you see them appreciating someone inexperienced coming and learning the trade on their property? Of course you don’t—and we see them changing such property managers in the blink of an eye.
When landlords decide to employ you to manage their property, what they’re after is a someone qualified and competent who will increase gains, cut down on expenses, and let them feel at ease with entrusting their property to a property manager that knows what they’re doing.
Accordingly, leaving high-value landlords in the hands of inexperienced staff is a big no-no, and so is changing their assigned staff too often, lest you want them to lose trust and look elsewhere.
Of course, new staff has to come in and learn the trade—but make sure they are thoroughly trained internally, and that they are under the supervision of experienced managers when entrusted with real-life projects. You don’t want them ruining your hard-earned status with your landlord.
What you can do
For example, do you have an after-hours number where they can call you in emergencies? If not you can think about setting it up now.
Do you have dedicated staff dealing in day-to-day communication with your landlords, staff that’s also trained in how to respond to emergencies and demands with quick turn-around? This is also something to pay attention to. You don’t want to be dealing with every single emergency if you have capable staff that you can delegate it to. Landlords want (and pay) you to care about their needs and emergencies, quickly and efficiently.
Finally, you can use a cloud-based property management service, like our own Console Cloud, to manage the whole property management process in a streamlined fashion. This also saves you from developing the whole approach in-house and on your own.
For example, did your tenant go in arrear this month? You are notified and offered a custom message to send them. Are there any current property maintenance issues that you need to take care of? Just open the app and find out. You can do all of this and much more either from your PC or from your phone.
And at the end of the day, it all comes down to avoiding these 3 typical mistakes as a real estate property manager. The landlords you manage will find that you contribute tremendous value to their inflow, and they will be willing to pay even more to have you around. Imagine them going unsatisfied with their current property manager—and then picking you to replace them.
When they do, remember: it’s all about respecting, valuing, and giving them their money’s worth. Now go on and show them who does these things best.