What’s your property management reputation rated at these days? While you get ready to celebrate your personal relationships this Valentine’s day, don’t forget about all the relationships that need tending in your property management business!
Owners, tenants, vendors: they’re all in relationship with you, and you have the ability to improve your business by building trust with them.
How to Build Trust in Property Management Client Relationships
Marie from Fourandhalf shares her strategies and tips today on how you can build trust and strengthen your property management customer relationships.
#1: Get Feedback
Putting yourself out there by asking for feedback isn’t easy – especially in property management – but it’s vital for the growth of your business. If you never ask for feedback, you won’t have a clear picture of what’s working and not working in your business. You may only be getting positive testimonials, or hearing nothing at all, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that everything is working as it should be.
Plus, without knowing what your owners, tenants and vendors are experiencing, and you may end up making important business decisions based on what you imagine is happening, instead of real, solid data.
❤️ Heart Tip! Emails and/or Office Hours
There are plenty of ways you can use email to ask for feedback from your property management clients, including direct messages, surveys and testimonials. Or, you could set up weekly “Office Hours” that your clients can use to contact you directly. For example, you might announce to your tenants, vendors and owners that every Friday from 10-12p you will be available to chat with anyone that has an issue they’d like to discuss.
But reaching out for feedback is only the beginning.
#2: Get to the Root of Negative Feedback
Make sure that when it’s time to go over all your collected feedback, you do it with another member of your team. Having someone else there to review things with you can make you feel more supported and keep you clear-headed as you process.
In our blog “What Our Data Shows About Negative Property Management Reviews (& What to Do About Them)” we take an in-depth look at some of the most common complaints property managers deal with, and what to do about them! Start there to get a sense of how your feedback measures against our data.
Find the Root.
At the root of conversations with clients who are expressing themselves emotionally is potentially valuable feedback for your property management company. Don’t shrug off their comments because they’re frustrated. See interactions like these as an opportunity to make your client feel truly heard and supported by you. Use reflective listening to get to the heart of their issue.
❤️ Heart Tip! Reflective Listening.
Reflective listening is a technique you can use to ensure that you’re understanding the other person correctly and make them feel truly heard. How can you do this? Well, once the other person has spoken, take a breath and start with “So what I hear you saying is…”then use your own words to summarise what they just said to you. This gives the other person the opportunity to clarify what they said and it minimises any misunderstandings on both ends.
Once you’re clear on what the problems are, it’s time to do something about them!
#3: Create an Action Plan
Once you’ve got a sense of some of the root issues that are causing frustrations for your clients, meet with your team to come up with a plan to make adjustments to your processes and procedures. Focus on adjustments that will solve the root problem so that it never comes back.
In addition to creating an action plan, come up with a system of accountability that will ensure that these solved issues stay solved. Get the entire team on board so that everyone’s keep a watchful eye.
#4: Announce Your Changes
The work isn’t done once you’ve made and implemented all your changes. Be sure to communicate these changes to your staff, and most importantly, to your clients! Communication is key to healthy relationships, and property management relationships are no exception.
Let your clients know that you’ve heard their feedback, and that you’re making changes. Communicating this not only makes your tenants, owners and vendors feel heard, it also builds trust in your relationship.
And at the end of the day, don’t we all want great trust in our relationships?
Here at Fourandhalf, we’ve helped hundreds of property managers take control of their online reputation and grow their business in the process. We’ve been doing this since 2012, and we can help in all aspects of owner marketing — from creating a conversion-driven website, nurturing leads, content creation, online ads, you name it.
Just give us a call or send us an email, and together let’s make this year your best one yet.