From the Spring 2023 Issue
Seven Methods for Building Relationships with Residents
Managing Contractors, Suppliers & Expectations
Many moving parts need to be aligned to ensure everything in the residential community runs smoothly but the critical component is to have open two-way communication. But how do you achieve communication that results in high levels of trust, satisfaction, and engagement? How do you turn daily contact into stronger relationships?
One of the easiest and most efficient ways to achieve this is to use the right tools to facilitate seamless communication and collaboration between everyone involved. With communicative tools in hand, these seven methods deliver an impressive resident experience.
Determine the preferred method and frequency of communication.
First, you learn about the people that live in the community and their needs. Nowadays, most people prefer digital tools and channels such as social media, email, and forums. However, many communities house elderly residents who prefer a more traditional approach. Think bulletin boards, fliers, phone calls, and mail. So finding the right balance between digital and traditional communication is the first step.
Next, you need to figure out how often residents want to communicate with you about happenings and changes. Some want to read news and updates daily, while others want to read a weekly or monthly digest. Even though it is best to communicate as frequently as possible, perform a survey or a group discussion with your community to establish the ideal frequency.
Implement property technology to ensure better property management.
Implementing a property management platform allows residents to access all services and make a request without having to chase down the property manager in person. It also enables managers to track and monitor daily activities and quickly answer residents’ requests.
Property management platforms offer features like managing amenities bookings, providing entry instructions, managing permission, tracking package delivery, managing resident and visitor parking, key management, payments, accounting integration, and more.
Ensure making and responding to maintenance requests is fast and simple.
Dealing with repairs and maintenance is essential for keeping residents happy and your property value up. But they are also expensive and require dedicating valuable time. Thankfully, property management platforms can centralize maintenance requests and incident reporting. At the same time, it allows property managers to organize schedules better and manage the whole maintenance process much easier and faster.
Hold community events.
Even though communicating via digital platforms is one of the fastest ways to deliver information to everyone at once, there are more effective ways to build a community. In addition to the HOA board meetings, ensure you hold community events for all residents and homeowners. Whether you retain them in person or digitally, make sure you schedule these events at least a few times per year. It will allow everyone to get to know each other and discuss things together as a community. However, for issues that require urgent attention, organize a get-together immediately. It will allow you to address problems as they arise and do so publicly.
Guarantee transparency and safety of residential data.
Managing a community also means accessing residential data, including contact details, deliveries, entry instructions, maintenance requests, amenity bookings, visitors, and more. It is paramount to be utterly transparent with residents about what data types are stored and how. And it is even more imperative to ensure complete safety.
Using a trusted property management platform with robust safety features enables you to manage resident data without worrying about any issues that can lead to data leaks. Moreover, it adds a layer of trust and security between residents, homeowners, and property managers.
Keep platforms and tech up to date.
Digital tools evolve fast. It enables utilizing new communication channels and offers more and better services to the community. Upgrading your property management platform means offering better data security, integrating third-party hardware and software, and much more. Ultimately, it means a better overall experience for residents as you can make more services available to your community, and it also allows property managers to do their job more effectively and efficiently.
Make sure everyone has access to and knows how to use the technology.
Suppose you implement a digital platform and apps through which residents can manage different services and utilize them as communication channels. In that case, you have to make sure they can access and know how to use them properly. Some people may be familiar with these tools; others might need more coaching. First, discuss the implementation of a digital property management platform with the residents and homeowners. Second, decide the best fit, and allow everyone enough time to adjust. And lastly, offer help and training for those who need it.
Open communication with residents and homeowners can be the critical difference between successful and unsuccessful property management. Happy residents have a good relationship with property managers and openly discuss their ideas and issue. While a good property manager communicates with residents, implements their suggestions, and uses the right tools to make their everyday lives easier and simpler. Are you using the right tools and methods to communicate with your community?
Peter Pietrzkiewicz, a 20-year veteran in the web development and content management sectors, established Concierge Plus in 1999 to be an all-in-one online property management platform for high-rise condos and HOAs/low-rise communities.