Sunday, October 16, 2016

Do You Always Follow Company Policy?



You how when a person dies without a will, it is said the person died “intestate?” That may be bad enough, especially when there are heirs who stand to inherit money, family heirlooms, items of sentimental value or the quilt Grandma made. What happens to our Residents when they are no longer capable of making decisions for themselves, including what items they should eat, or what to do so the electric doesn’t get shut off, and not to mention whether or not they paid rent for the month. The basics should be a given. Or, they should be unless there is something wrong with the Resident.

In property management, it is seemingly drilled in our heads that this is a business and not to take things personally. Over and over, we are told to collect the rent, issue eviction notices, and make the tenants follow the rules as set forth in the lease. What happens when the business side takes over? 
Does it leave room for the personal?

What happens when your resident suddenly isn’t coping, or didn’t pay rent, or needs help? How far does your management company want you to go to get to the bottom of the problem? Dare I say, about as far as a phone call and then a walk to the door to post a notice?

It causes me to question life. When things like mental illness, dementia, Alzheimer’s, cancer, and death affect our residents and my hands are “tied” I am so torn by doing the right thing versus taking care of business that it makes sleep hard. So, I throw it out there to those in the industry, do you follow your own moral compass, or not?

I will. I do. But it doesn’t mean it is easy. And it always means there are consequences.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Does Common Sense Exist Anymore?



My daughter and I saw the movie, “Sully” this weekend. It was a nice mother-daughter way to spend a Saturday night: dinner and a movie. There were a couple of moments in the movie that “hit home” with us. The most telling was a scene where the passengers were exiting the plane. Coming out of the theatre, my daughter and I BOTH looked at one another and Lauren said, “I can tell you one thing. I’d be telling everyone to just go ahead and pass because …” and we said it at the same time – because we’d be reaching up to the compartment above to get our carry on!

I KNOW that sounds absurd, but it cracked me up that we both thought the same thing at the same time and I could definitely picture us sitting there with our feet tucked up under us to stay dry (as the water was pouring in) and waiting. To get our carry on. Just sitting there. Purse on lap. Waiting to exit. Crazy, right? 

So, why does it comes as any surprise when our residents do something that is so without thought or care that I shake my head? I mean, do you think they don’t NOTICE that the trash is spilling out all over the dumpster and that is why they just keep piling more bags on top?

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Don't Let Residents Steal Your Happiness!



Here’s the truth. Sometimes Residents are just mean, or mean-spirited. I received a text the other afternoon from a leasing consultant who was distraught after a rather nasty interaction with one of the residents. She texted that she didn’t think she was “cut out” for this kind of business because she is treated so poorly by many Residents and she is unprepared when people walk into the office and just start with all their negativity.

Onsite Office Teams shouldn’t be subjected to this; however angry residents are going to vent. It’s also the truth, and if your Leasing Consultant is the first person (or only person if it is small property) a Resident sees coming into the Leasing Office, they often take their anger out on that person. Besides telling our Teams to grow thicker skin, how do you think most Property Managers handle this, or should handle this?

I texted to the Consultant to not let one person who is having a no good, very bad, horrible day ruin her positive disposition and steal her sunshine because – the truth is – that person is not worth giving that power to! You ROCK it every day you work at this property and take a deep breathe. Lock the door, clear your mind, take a quick walk, and if you are still upset, simply close the office since there is only 20 minutes left anyway. The world will not come to a crashing halt if the office is closed 15-20 minutes early on a Friday afternoon.

And to the Resident who tried her best to humiliate, denigrate, and strip the joy right out of this Leasing Consultant, well, just wait till Monday ….