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How do I love my residents? Let me count the ways.

It’s Valentine’s Day, the day of love and courtship with the bonding of relationships through the gifts of flowers and candy. Husbands and wives, girlfriends and boyfriends, sons and daughters, neighbors and property management are celebrating this Hallmark holiday all across our great land. Did I just say neighbors and property management?  Yes, I did, is there a more important relationship with those of us in multifamily communities? Not if we want to keep working there isn’t. Below are 10 of my thoughts on how to love your residents in your community and maintain the relationships because without those wonderful relationships, well, who knows where we would all be.

  1. Giving treats, coffee and donuts, at least a couple times a year, stand outside where they are leaving for the day, usually at the entrance and provide a donut and a cup of coffee as they are leaving for work. Chocolate in any size shape or form given at the mail kiosk declaring your love and gratitude that they call your property home.
  2. Excellent communication, question, your staff, the residents, everyone, find out what is going on in the community, stay current, talk with your residents, walk the property and make yourself available. You will hear all the gossip and probably more than you want to know, but at least you will be current and know who loves who.
  3. Keeping the pool clean and the property litter free is a no brainer. Nothing says I love you more than a properly maintained community.
  4. Doggie Park, yes, including pets is a wonderful addition to all communities. I don’t think there is another animal out there that loves us unconditionally. Dogs are men’s and women’s best friends. Don’t forget the doggie bags.
  5. Crime watch on the premises. Keeping crime low and inviting patrolman to live onsite gives residents a feeling of security. Everyone loves the idea of being safe.
  6. Recognize birthdays for each of the residents, create a Microsoft Outlook birthday card reminder, it works, everyone loves their birthday and if they tell you they don’t, don’t believe them. 
  7. Understand the courtship never ends.  Just because your resident now resides with you, that can change.  It’s important to be nice, always be polite and professional, and always be friendly. Like dating, relationships need to be maintained, everyone wants to feel loved.
  8. Planned community events all year long.  Make a plan, stick to it, and like I said before, question your residents, what would they love to do throughout the year. If you engage them, you will find lots of volunteers to help implement your plan. Make sure the events are relevant to the month and the season.
  9. When their lease is coming up, they know it and they want you to keep them here at home, sending a notice is one thing, and following up with a phone call is one more connection. FOLLOW UP, again, the love/courtship never ends.
  10. Be you, be authentic, more productive relationships grow and prosper when they are naturally occurring. Property Managers, Leasing Specialists, Maintenance Technicians and Supervisors are people oriented. If they struggle with this, they are in the wrong industry.  Bring a fresh perspective, a new idea, but be yourself always and your residents are sure to love you.

In the end, it really is about creating community, showing your love-ness. Don’t forget, the more you give, the more you will receive.  So, love your resident today and every day, and if you don’t have chocolate in the office, then shame on you, it’s Valentine’s Day for heaven’s sake, go to Wal-Mart at get some love in a box to share,  your residents will love you for it...

 Alison Voyvodich

WRH Realty Services, Inc.

Director of Communications

 

 

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