Three Top Complaints Your Residents Are Making
While it may not be your favorite aspect of the business, as a property manager, you know that complaints come with the territory. This blog post looks at 3 top complaints made by apartment residents and what the property manager can do to counteract.
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Okay, so we’re not mind readers- even though the title of this blog post is “Three Top Complaints YOUR Residents Are Making,” we cannot absolutely guarantee you that your residents have, in fact, made these complaints. What we will tell you is that across the board, the three resident complaints that we are about to look into are some of the most common issues that we see come up over and over again. Even if your residents aren’t currently voicing any of these complaints, they should definitely be on your radar. Let’s take a look at each and see what we can do about them.
Opposition to increases in rental rates
Let’s face it: sometimes rate increases need to happen, but it’s safe to say residents will never be thrilled about this change. How can you avoid complaints and even turnover?
- Be upfront and honest: Give your residents a fair warning that a change in rates is about to occur, allowing time for them to process the change. Be candid about why the increase must happen. Give them an idea of what their money is going toward.
- Add value: Let residents recognize the value of your property. Make sure your customer service is above expectations and really try to build a unique relationship with each resident. Update/upgrade amenities as needed. Provide that extra something that they won’t be able to get elsewhere.
Inadequate maintenance services
Residents obviously never want something to work improperly within their unit or their apartment building, but in some cases, it can be inevitable. What adds insult to injury is when the issue is not properly and effectively taken care of in a timely manner. In order to combat complaints like these, it is essential for you to have a thorough maintenance services system set in place.
Let’s start at the base: building maintenance is something that you absolutely cannot slack on. For a list of building maintenance items that you should regularly be performing in common areas, see our blog post, “Building Maintenance Checklist.” Not only should you be performing regular maintenance in your common areas, but your staff should also perform regular unit maintenance checks. Don’t wait until residents tell you they need their air filter changed or that something’s up with their water heater. Instead, regular maintenance check ups should be scheduled so that your staff can check up on units and their appliances, making it more likely that you are able to correct something before a problem arises.
Should maintenance issues arrive in spite of your precautions, make sure that they are tended to. Your residents should have a way to easily file maintenance requests. Customer service plays in here as well. Once a resident has submitted a maintenance request, let them know that the request was received and let them know an estimate of when they can expect someone to be out to fix it. In most cases, a resident should not have to wait any longer than three days. After a maintenance request has been fulfilled, it is important to follow up with the resident, not only to address that the issue has been addressed, but also to make sure that they are satisfied with the service that they received. It is vital to make sure that the issue has truly been resolved and that the resident is happy.
There’s a sad truth about the world we live in: no matter what we do to protect ourselves or what systems we put in place, accidents happen, crime happens, natural disasters happen. This is exactly why safety precautions DO need to be put in place. In a time where bad things do happen, residents need to know that their safety is a priority. Absolutely no one wants to be in a place where they feel unsafe.
The best safety strategy is two-fold: having building safety plans and procedures set in place and communicated to residents in the event that something goes wrong, and providing protection, such as security personnel and emergency help phones to provide a physically safe environment.
Upon moving in, residents should receive a copy of your building’s Emergency Action Plan. Safety signage should be present throughout the building to direct residents in the event of an emergency. You can even hold resident get togethers centered around safety tips and emergency preparedness.
Many apartments are subject to both unit and car break ins, even with precautions in place such as secured entry. If this is a common occurrence on your property, you may benefit from utilizing security personnel. Finally, don’t rely on residents to have their own means to help in the event of an emergency. It is a must that you provide emergency help phones that will connect to knowledgeable and trained operators who will get the help that is needed AND will notify you, the property manager, so that you can be aware of the situation and address any safety concerns.
By acknowledging these complaints and following these tips, you can address current complaints, prevent future ones and possibly even turn a negative situation into a positive one. For more information on how Kings III can help keep your property safe, visit www.kingsiii.com.
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