For the most part, this is due to the number of stakeholders that they have to keep happy. Putting internal stakeholders aside (Line Manager, direct reports, colleagues, or Principals), PMs face the never ending requirement of keeping their tenants, suppliers and landlords happy, too. After all, without a happy landlord, tenants and suppliers, an agency ceases to exist.
In the industry, we hear a lot of stories about ‘bad’ landlords. They refuse to pay for maintenance, or perhaps they’re a little overbearing or pedantic about the property. No matter which end of the spectrum your landlord sits at, there are a few things that Property Managers can do to make sure they’re keeping their landlords happy. A happy landlord will result in higher levels of trust between the Property Manager, tenant, and landlord, and when the relationship is healthy, a healthy work life is likely to follow.
Communication is the secret to any long-lasting relationship. Make sure that the landlord is kept in the loop with what’s going on at their property – after all, it is their investment. Do your best to make sure that maintenance work is caught early. More regular, small maintenance jobs can often reduce the risk of a Property Manager needing to make a call to the landlord requesting larger sums of money to rectify an issue that could have been solved earlier. If you stay on the front-foot, and keep the landlord updated regularly, they’ll trust that everything is on track and not feel the need to follow up with you themselves. This way the communication is in your control.
This one is a no-brainer. Most landlords will hold a mortgage over the property they have up for rent, and like rent payments, they also have mortgage repayments that come every month. Keeping on top of your tenants to make sure you’re receiving rent on time, and subsequently disbursing the rent to your landlord is key to making sure they remain a happy landlord. If you’re using Console Gateway, tools like Console Pay are excellent for putting Property Managers back in control of collecting rent.
While it’s important to set boundaries so you aren’t taking calls late at night, and working around the clock, it is important to be flexible. Like Property Managers, landlords will usually have a 9-5 as well, and being present to attend inspections (if they want to), isn’t always be easy. A Property Manager who can be flexible and who goes out of their way to make their landlord feel special from time-to-time will show a landlord how much their PM cares about their business, and why they should keep them on board!
Document everything. Even though record-keeping in some cases is a requirement of the job, it’s important to make sure that the information that a landlord wants kept about the property, is the information you are actually recording. Of course, for compliance reasons there are always reports that need to be sent the landlord’s way. To go above an beyond, perhaps try asking them if there was anything else they would like recorded and sent over. If it’s within reason, and it isn’t adding too much to your workload, why not oblige and keep a happy landlord?
Good tenants are obliging, and the last thing a Property Manager needs is an extra pain in their side. Keeping tenants on side means less painful interactions all round. They will report maintenance or any issues early, keep you in the loop about the property, maintain the property well and be respectful. A tenant who is respectful of the property is 1. One you want to keep around! And 2. One that will make your landlord happy, too!
Unfortunately in life, things just don’t work out. It’s important to realise when the relationship between a Property Manager and the Landlord is strained and beyond repair. Perhaps in a situation like this, that landlord would be happier with their property managed by someone else, and is that such a bad thing? If the landlord is taking more time from your day than they should be, then it might be time to reassess the relationship. We’ve gone into this topic in depth in another blog here, talking about when it’s okay to fire your landlord.
If you’d like to know more about how Console can help Property Managers better service their landlords, tenants and suppliers, using our Property Management solutions, get in touch today.