One of the harder things PMs have to face is dealing with frustrated clients and tenants. Is it best to hold them at arm’s length or settle the dispute immediately? Here’s how to handle the tough conversations.
Stefanie Dobro of Caporn Young says open communication is the most important factor for her when she’s dealing with client disputes. She says “listening to what they have to say and thinking about what they’re telling me” allows her to communicate effectively instead of becoming caught up in the emotions of the situation.
Hayeswinckle’s Michelle Winckle agreed with Ms Dobro. She told AREC 2016 that agents cannot be afraid “to have the hard chats”, especially if they want to avoid problems arising in the future.
Don’t take it personally
One of the most important things when dealing with a dispute is remembering to stay professional.
According to Ms Dobro, “taking it on board” and “being understanding” are two things she strives to maintain when she is dealing with a tough client. Hashing a disagreement out quickly and avoiding long-winded arguments will help you move on, and ensure you maintain a good relationship with the client and tenant.
You can’t please anyone
You need to be aware that you can’t please everyone. Remember that you are employed by the landlord to look after their investment. While tenants have rights, if the matter is clearly not worth a landlord’s time, you might need to take a hard line and provide honest feedback to the tenant.
“It’s remaining positive but delivering the information that they need to hear,” Ms Dobro said.