Calendar icon June 20, 2023

Pet Policy For Renters: Best Practices for Property Managers

Did you know that well over half of U.S. households (66%) own a pet? But, according to the Humane Society of the United States, problems finding and keeping rental housing is a leading reason that dogs and cats end up in shelters. Building a pet policy for renters is an important decision for property management companies. 

Promoting a pet-friendly listing can be a fantastic way to fill units more quickly – and retain good residents over time. Pet owners are less likely to leave a good pet-friendly home. 

So, how can you build pet-friendly policies that create a welcoming space for pet owners but protect your business and your property investor’s assets?

We sat down with an expert on the topic: Victoria Cowart from PetScreening. We asked her about the key components of an effective pet policy, how to dial in on protective restrictions, how to structure a lease agreement, and more. 

Read on to learn with us about best practices when building a pet policy for renters. 

Meet the Expert: Victoria Cowart, CPM, NAAEI Faculty, PetScreening’s Director of Education and Outreach

With an early start as a leasing agent, Victoria Cowart built her career in the industry managing apartment communities and a diverse portfolio. Thanks to her years of management experience, Cowart is now a property management instructor and graduate of both the NAAEI Advance Facilitator Training and the NAA Lyceum Program. She has served in the NAA as President of local and state affiliates, the Regional VP for Region IV, and chaired four committees. She joined PetScreening over two years ago and says she has found her “joy zone” there, focused on education, legislation, and sales. 

 

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Standard pet policy and rules 

We started by asking Cowart to talk about the key components of an effective pet policy. Her rule #1? Consistency.

“The best policies are the ones consistently applied,” Cowart says.

When building a pet policy, property managers need to be decisive and apply the rules fairly and consistently – and in compliance with the law – with every unit. 

With that in mind, a pet policy should have standard rules and statements, including:

  • Pet Restrictions: Any breed or other restrictions
  • Pet Requirements: Licenses, vaccinations, leashing, etc.
  • Pet Charges: How to charge for pets in a fair way
  • Tenant Responsibilities: What is the resident responsible for?
  • Pet Agreement: How to get it all written down and stay compliant

Cowart warns not to make easy assumptions about each of these pet policy components. To build a pet-friendly, safe environment, you need to carefully asses what risk means to you, to your investors, and to your residents. 

“Of course, there’s risk bringing pets into your rentals,” Cowart says. “Bites, property damage, etc. But many companies want to add arbitrary rules thinking it will dial back their risk. For example, breed and weight restrictions, if you’re relying only on that, are very arbitrary without context. If you do want to include breed or weight restrictions, rely on that in combination with other factors. Alone it is insufficient. In combination with other data points and information, it does have relevance.”

So, let’s dig a little deeper into each of the key steps in building a strong and resident-friendly pet policy. 

Components of an effective pet policy for residents 

A Forbes study found that 85% of dog owners and 76% of cat owners consider their pets to be part of the family. Animals contribute to mental, emotional, and physical health and can be one of the best parts of life. 

But, of course, pets also introduce risk. A new kitten can do some serious damage to a home, or a frightened dog off-leash could potentially bite a neighbor. 

That’s where your pet policy comes in. An effective pet policy can support residents with furry family members, minimize your exposure to risk, boost your ancillary income, protect your investors’ assets, and even help increase your occupancy rate. 

Cowart helped us break down the individual components of an effective pet policy for renters. 

Pet Restrictions 

The first thing you need to do is consider and document any restrictions around pets allowed on your properties. This includes considering a no pet policy. Cowart strongly opposes a no pet policy for a multitude of reasons, many of which we’ve discussed here. 

But let’s say you are going to allow some pets. You can start with what types of animals you’ll allow. Most property managers will stick to the typical domesticated animals like dogs, cats, birds, hamsters, fish, etc. 

State or federal laws will prohibit certain animals – obvious ones like leopards or tigers and perhaps less obvious ones like ferrets, hedgehogs, monkeys, or even turtles in some states. 

Breed and weight restrictions

Many property management companies also impose breed restrictions and weight restrictions for pet dogs, as Cowart mentioned. But Cowart encourages PMCs to consider that, without more context, those restrictions aren’t sufficient – they may disqualify perfectly safe dogs with good residents and may not protect you from unusually aggressive or problem animals that fit within your weight and breed limits. 

In fact, a 2022 study published in the journal Science found that breed only accounts for 9% of the variation in dog behavior. The rest is determined by factors such as environment, owner behavior, training, socialization, and more. 

Behavior restrictions 

Cowart recommends basing restrictions on a much more holistic view of each individual pet. At PetScreening, they use a proprietary scoring system called the FIDO Score that uses over 35 distinct data points to evaluate the risk any type of animal or pet poses for a home. The scoring system involves 23 questions and then runs it through an algorithm to score a dog from 1 (the lowest) to 5 (the highest). 

These scores are based on the animal’s unique profile. Then, you can make decisions based on the unique animal’s profile. 

Cowart says, “No company should welcome a one- or two-paw FIDO-rated pet into their community without thoroughly analyzing the pet profile as to why they scored this. I personally recommend to clients that if an animal has ever bitten a person, they should not welcome that pet into a rental. Should they bite someone again, it could be said you knew or should have known they posed a risk.”

Pet Requirements

The next part of your policy should include what is required for any pets on your property. This might include a certain level of FIDO score or similar rating. That’s up to individual property management companies. 

They should definitely include requirements such as:

  • Proof of up-to-date vaccinations
  • Requirements to wear collars with ID tags
  • Municipal license receipt
  • Number of pets
  • Types of pets
  • Etc. 

It’s important to be familiar with any requirements mandated by your state or local laws, as well. 

 

download rental inspection checklist template

 

Pet Insurance

Nine out of 10 professional property managers require residents to carry insurance on the lease, but only 41% of residents maintain compliant coverage. 

Insurance is key to protecting your residents and your properties in the event of an issue. Dog bite insurance losses alone cost $882 million in the US in 2021. According to the CDC, over 4.5 million Americans are bitten each year by dogs. 800,000 of them require medical attention, and over 1,000 per day require emergency care. 

And yet, many insurers don’t cover certain breeds, like pit bulls or Rottweilers, despite the fact that breed plays little role in behavior, as we’ve discussed. 

To take matters into their own hands, many property management companies are turning to a Resident Benefits Package that includes a renter’s insurance program. At Second Nature, our renter’s insurance program has 100% compliance – and we cover all dog breeds with no exceptions.

Pet Fees

Allowing pets at your properties is also a great way to drive ancillary income. Deposit fees or monthly fees – called pet rent – can help hedge your risk and protect you, the resident, and your investor. So, what’s the best way to set up your pet fees?

“Number one, know the laws in your area,” Cowart says. “Municipalities and states have certain regulations. For example, one state recently passed a law where their pet rents could not exceed $35 a month, and the pet deposit was limited to $300. One or two states may have rules like that, so the first thing is always to know the laws where you are conducting business.”

Once you’ve got your local ordinances straight, Cowart says she is an advocate of installing a pet entry fee and a monthly pet rent fee vs. charging a pet deposit. This protects you in case of needed evictions or other unfortunate circumstances.

“You don’t want to be constrained to having a pet deposit only applicable to pet damage on the property,” Cowart says. “Meanwhile, this person is evicted and owes you thousands of dollars of rent, and you have to give back the pet deposit if it’s not pet-specific damage.”

Instead, Cowart says, include the “pet deposit” in your regular security deposit. “I would suggest if you want a pet deposit, just increase your base deposit and don’t call it a pet deposit. You don’t want to be out money just because you've delineated the deposit for a particular use.”

Tenant Responsibilities 

Cowart says that at PetScreening, they ask 23 questions across several categories. For example, three of the questions are on bite history alone. But the main breakdown of these questions is to sort out liability and responsibility. 

Liability has to do with what we’ve covered above – bite history, risk, etc. Responsibility has to do with, according to Cowart, “how your potential resident, as a pet owner, is going to ensure that their pet doesn’t have an adverse impact on the rental property or the community.  

Cowart recommends asking questions like:

  • Will they pick up after their animal?
  • Will they walk the animal on a leash?
  • Do they take the animal for routine veterinary care? 
  • Is it up to date on its vaccinations?

Your pet policy should clearly define and outline the responsibilities on the part of the resident. 

Cowart says, “Identify core responsibilities that you expect from the owners: keeping them under control, leashing, never outside unattended, basic vaccinations up to date, etc.”

“Most often, the problems aren’t with the animals, they’re with the owners,” Cowart says. “If you have a Belgian Malinois, and you think you just have a skinny German Shepard, you are wrong. If they’re some sort of herding animal and they’re used to having a whole communal group that they’re nipping the heels of, but now they’re in an apartment. Now they don’t have that job, and they’re feeling unemployed, and so they’re going to find a job.”

In short, pet owners need to be responsible for ensuring their animal’s behavior is safe. 

Pet Agreement or Pet Addendum 

You should absolutely incorporate a pet agreement in your lease. You want to put all of this work we’ve discussed in writing. Include all the fees, restrictions, violation penalties, etc. The pet section of your lease should be included in all leases because anyone could become a pet owner at any time.

When it comes to a pet agreement, Cowart’s strongest advice is to follow the best practices of your local property management association, apartment association, etc. 

“Make sure you’re educated on the laws in your area,” Cowart says. “Associations involved in property management in your area – NAA, NARPM, AHMA – can help educate you on what you need to know.”

The biggest area of risk and confusion for the lease agreement is assistance animals. Let’s take a whole section to examine assistance animals. 

What about assistance animals?

The restrictions we’ve discussed above, and charges, etc. – most do not apply when it comes to assistance animals. Fair housing laws apply strictly to assistance animals.

Cowart’s most important piece of advice? “First and foremost, understand what Assistance Animals are because that’s the biggest area of confusion for property managers. What you can or can’t do, what you can charge owners, and what you require they do before you admit them to the community. There is a massive difference, by law.”

There are two types of assistance animals: service animals and support animals. Service animals and support animals or emotional support animals are handled totally differently under the Fair Housing Act. An assistance animal is NOT classified as a pet.

Cowart emphasizes that you should never have an assistance animal owner sign off on anything with the word “pet” in it because it’s not a pet, it’s a disability device. 

“I facilitate a 45-minute session on this alone,” Cowart says. “Property managers should look at the FHEO-2020-01 Assistance Animal’s notice for additional information on HUD’s guidance.”

Tools to help manage your pet policy

It can be daunting to take on the challenge of simultaneously managing risk and creating a welcoming environment for residents with pets. But with the right approach – and the right tools – property managers are creating pet-friendly rental policies that protect both their business and their investor’s assets. 

PetScreening.com, where Victoria Cowart is a leading educator, provides a holistic approach to preparing your properties for pets. Their proprietary FIDO scoring helps take the guesswork out of assessing risk and revenue. 

And here at Second Nature, we provide a fully managed Resident Benefits Package that provides services your residents want and need without adding a burden to your team. We focus on creating an experience so good that residents never want to leave. 

Our RBP includes one of the country’s most robust pet policies in our Renter’s Insurance Program. The policy is friendly to all breeds and supports responsible residents who want to find a warm home for their furry family members. At the same time, the insurance ensures that you and your investor are covered in case of any risk event.

Have thoughts or questions about building a pet-friendly, risk-intelligent pet policy? Share them in our Triple Win Community.

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Your Guide to Property Management Agreements (with Free Template)

With a renewed focus on rental income as an investment trend, the popularity of property management is on the rise. Busy professionals and out-of-town real estate investors increasingly rely on property managers to handle the day-to-day operations of their rental properties. When they come to you for the first time, one approach to establishing clear differentiation with respect to your competitors is through the clarity and comprehensiveness of your property management agreement. In today’s guide we’ll cover the essentials of a property management agreement that provides a foundation for transparency throughout this critical relationship, as well as peace of mind for the investors relying on you to manage their investment. A Step-by-Step Guide to Building Your Agreement Crafting a solid property management agreement doesn't have to be daunting. Here's a breakdown of the key components: Parties Involved Property owner: Clearly identify the legal name and contact information of the property owner(s). Property manager: Do the same for the property management company or individual. Property Details Address: Include the full address of the property being managed. Legal description (optional): For added clarity, consider including the legal description, particularly for complex property ownership structures. Property type: Specify whether it's a single-family home, multi-unit building, or commercial property. Unique features/limitations: Mention any unique features (e.g., pool, historic designation) or limitations (e.g., zoning restrictions, HOA rules). Term and Termination Effective date: Define the start date of the agreement. Termination clauses: Outline the grounds for termination by either party (e.g., breach of contract, property sale). Notice period: Specify the required notice period for each party if they wish to terminate the agreement (e.g., 30 days, 60 days). Termination mechanisms: Explain how the date of termination should be communicated (written notice, specific format [e.g., certified mail]), along with any applicable indemnification measures. Manager Responsibilities Resident screening: Detail the process for resident screening, including applications, background checks, and credit checks. Rent payments and security deposit collection: Outline procedures for security deposit collection, rent collection, late fees, and eviction processes. Maintenance oversight: Specify the property manager duties and roles in overseeing maintenance requests, repairs, and independent contractor/vendor selection (approval thresholds, cost limitations). Financial reporting: Define the frequency and format of financial reports provided by the property manager (monthly statements, annual reports). Communication protocols: Establish communication protocols regarding occupant inquiries, maintenance emergencies, and routine updates. Availability: Consider outlining the property manager's availability for emergencies (24/7 hotline, designated contact person). Owner Responsibilities Repairs: Specify the owner's responsibility for major repairs beyond normal wear and tear. Providing access: Outline the owner's role in providing access to the property for maintenance or showings when residents are not present. Major decisions: Define how major decisions regarding the property (e.g., renovations, capital improvements) will be made (joint agreement, owner approval). Property inspections: Address expectations regarding the frequency and purpose of property inspections conducted by the owner. Insurance coverage: Clarify the owner's responsibility to maintain appropriate liability insurance policy coverage for the property. Fees and Compensation Management fee: Detail the structure of the property management fee (percentage of rent collected, flat fee). Additional fees (optional): Address any additional disbursements for specific services, such as resident placement or lease renewals. Dispute Resolution Process: Explain the process for resolving disagreements between the owner and the property manager (mediation, arbitration, legal action). Governing laws: Specify the governing laws that apply to the agreement in case of disputes. Free Property Management Agreement Template (Basic) This contract template is for informational purposes only and should not be considered a substitute for legal advice. Please consult with an attorney to tailor the agreement to your specific needs and to ensure that the provisions of this agreement comply with local and state laws. Property Management Agreement This Property Management Agreement ("Agreement") is made and entered into as of [DATE] by and between: [Property Owner Name] residing at [Property Owner Address] ("Owner"), and [Property Management Company Name] located at [Property Management Company Address] ("Manager"). WITNESSETH WHEREAS, Owner is the legal owner of the property located at [Property Address] (the "Property"); and WHEREAS, Manager desires to provide property management services for the Property; and WHEREAS, Owner desires to engage Manager to provide such services for the Property NOW, THEREFORE, in consideration of the foregoing premises and the mutual covenants contained herein, the parties agree as follows: 1. Services Manager agrees to perform the following services for the Property (Services may be added or removed based on specific needs. Consult with a lawyer.): Resident screening and resident selection (application processing, background checks) Collection of rent and late fee enforcement Maintenance oversight and coordination (up to $[AMOUNT] per repair) Move-in/move-out inspections Monthly financial reporting related to management of the property 2. Term and Termination This Agreement shall commence on [DATE] (the "Effective Date") and shall continue for a period of [NUMBER] year(s), unless earlier terminated as provided herein. This termination of this Agreement may be effected by either party upon [NUMBER] days' written notice to the other party. 3. Management Fee Owner shall pay Manager a monthly management fee equal to [PERCENTAGE]% of the gross monthly rent collected. 4. Legal Proceedings In the event of a legal proceeding arising out of this Agreement or the management of the Property, the following provisions shall apply: Authority: The Property Manager is hereby authorized to initiate and prosecute any legal action deemed necessary to collect rent, enforce the terms of tenant leases, or protect the Owner's property interests. Owner Approval: Prior written approval from the Owner shall be required for any legal action exceeding $[Dollar Amount] or involving potential litigation. Costs and Reimbursement: The Property Manager shall keep detailed records of all legal expenses and attorney’s fees incurred. The Owner shall reimburse the Property Manager for all reasonable and documented legal expenditures associated with authorized proceedings. Representation: The Owner shall have the right to be represented by their own counsel in any legal proceeding. However, the Property Manager shall have the right to participate in the proceedings and may retain separate counsel at the Owner's expense if a conflict of interest arises. Communication: The parties agree to cooperate fully and share all relevant information in a timely manner throughout any legal proceedings. 5. Dispute Resolution (Optional - Replace with preferred method if applicable) Any dispute arising out of or relating to this Agreement shall be settled by [METHOD OF DISPUTE RESOLUTION, e.g., mediation] in accordance with the rules of [NAME OF MEDIATION PROVIDER] (the "Rules"). The decision of the mediator shall be final and binding on the parties. 6. Waivers The Owner acknowledges and waives any and all claims, demands, or causes of action against the Property Manager arising from the following, unless such claims arise from the Property Manager's gross negligence or intentional misconduct: Acts or omissions of any resident of the Property. Loss or Property damage caused by reasons outside the Property Manager's reasonable control, including natural disasters, acts of war, or civil unrest. Unexpected repairs or maintenance issues beyond the scope of normal wear and tear. The Owner further agrees to indemnify and hold harmless the Property Manager from any and all claims, liabilities, damages, losses, or expenses (including attorney's fees) arising from the Owner's violation of this Agreement or any applicable laws or regulations. 7. Entire Agreement and Governing Law This Agreement constitutes the entire agreement between the parties with respect to the subject matter hereof and supersedes all prior or contemporaneous communications, representations, or agreements, whether oral or written. The terms of this Agreement shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the State of [STATE]. IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the parties have executed this Agreement as of the date first written above. [Property Owner Signature] [Property Owner Name (Printed)] [Property Management Company Signature] [Property Management Company Name (Printed)] Optional addendums For specific situations, consider adding supplementary documents like: Bed bug addendum Pool addendum Pet lease addendum These addendums can address unique requirements and regulations related to these aspects of the property. Legal Considerations and Customization Consulting with a lawyer is crucial to ensure your property management agreement is legally sound and reflects your specific circumstances. An attorney can help you with: Specifying maintenance coverage: Clearly define which maintenance issues are the responsibility of the property manager and which fall to the owner. Pet policy details: Outline a comprehensive pet policy including pet restrictions, fees, and deposit requirements. Local legal compliance: Ensure your agreement adheres to all relevant laws and regulations in your area, such as resident rights and fair housing regulations. FAQs: Helping Potential Investors Demystify Your Property Management Agreement Q: Is a property management agreement legally required? A: While not always mandatory, a property management agreement is highly advisable. It protects both the owner and the manager by outlining expectations and responsibilities. Q: Can I use your template for any property management situation? A: The provided template is a basic framework. It's best to consult with a lawyer to customize it for your specific property type, location, and desired services. Q: Do I need a lawyer to draft the agreement? A: While not mandatory, legal guidance is highly recommended. An attorney can ensure the agreement is legally sound, protects your interests, and complies with local laws. Q: Can I use this template for agreements outside of property management, e.g., for lease agreements or rental agreements? A: No, this template is specific to property management agreements. For other types of agreements, consult with a lawyer or use appropriate templates designed for those purposes. Q: What should I do after finalizing the agreement? A: Once both parties have signed the agreement, keep a copy for your records and provide one to the property manager. Familiarize yourself with the terms and communicate openly to ensure a smooth and successful working relationship. Conclusion A well-drafted property management agreement is the cornerstone of a successful relationship between owner and property manager. By using the provided template as a foundation and consulting with a lawyer for customization, you can establish a clear and comprehensive agreement that provides full transparency and fosters a smooth rental property experience. On top of your agreement, consider rolling out a resident benefits package (RBP). It’s a powerful way for property managers to create a Triple Win – for residents, investors, and themselves. An RBP like Second Nature’s is designed to be simple to use and easy to implement. All the services included within it are managed externally by Second Nature, meaning there is no day-to-day upkeep required from the manager. You plug it in and Second Nature keeps it running. The value creation an RBP generates – with such little work required from the PM – is an incredibly easy way to grow your business and create great experiences that residents will pay and stay for. Don't get left behind in the evolving world of resident experience. Learn more about our fully-managed Resident Benefits Package and how we can build ease for you, your investors, and your residents.

Calendar icon May 14, 2024

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How to Reduce Employee Turnover in Property Management: A Guide to Retaining Your Valuable Team

The property management industry faces a significant challenge: high employee turnover. In the US, the national average employee turnover rate measured in 2023 across all sectors was 17.3%. With highs of nearly 33% in some sectors, and lows of 12% in others, turnover is a pressing issue. Indeed, the National Apartment Association (NAA) reported that multifamily industry turnover rates in the last decade were up to 40%. While numbers for single-family home property management companies are harder to measure, the bottom line is that employee retention is often a casualty of the stresses that come with the high stakes of simultaneously managing people’s homes on one hand, and substantial real estate investments on the other. A revolving door of staff creates a ripple effect of negative consequences: residents face disruptions in service and communication, while companies struggle with lost productivity, increased recruiting and training costs, and a decline in overall morale. This comprehensive guide will equip property management teams with the tools and strategies to build a happy, engaged workforce and keep valuable co-workers on board. Understanding the Reasons for the High Turnover Rate Multiple factors contribute to the high property management turnover rate, particularly during inflationary periods, when low wages and benefits may fail to match the demanding workload. Team members face long hours, stressful interactions with residents, and the constant pressure of handling emergency situations. Many may feel undervalued and underappreciated, with limited opportunities for career advancement. Poor communication within the company, coupled with an unsupportive culture, will further fuel feelings of dissatisfaction and disengagement. Another factor may well be the cultural fallout from the recent pandemic, which catalyzed large changes in labor market behaviors, particularly among the so-called millennial generation. This has driven an upending of traditional wage-earning paradigms, giving rise to an endemic “gig economy” that industry and governments are still grappling with across sectors. Building a culture of retention Shifting the focus to a positive and supportive work environment is key to stemming the tide of staff turnover of property management employees. Here are several strategies to help cultivate a culture of retention and employee satisfaction: Competitive compensation and benefits Analyze local market wages and offer salaries that reflect the responsibilities and demands of the job. Provide comprehensive health insurance plans, paid time off, and other benefits that demonstrate your commitment to employee well-being. Consider offering perks and incentives such as gym memberships or fitness equipment subsidies to further enhance the compensation package. Work-life balance Promote healthy boundaries by offering flexible scheduling options whenever possible. Explore remote work opportunities for certain roles, especially those suited to administrative tasks. When dealing with difficult resident issues, encourage employees to take breaks throughout the day to prevent burnout. Implementing a core-hours policy, where employees are guaranteed to be available during specific times for urgent matters, can help maintain a sense of work-life balance. Investment in training and development Investing in your employees demonstrates your commitment to their growth and success. Offer ongoing training programs encompassing property management software, tenant relations, conflict resolution, fair housing laws, and industry certifications. This not only enhances their skillset and knowledge, but also empowers them to perform their jobs more effectively and confidently. Clear communication and recognition Establish consistent communication channels to keep employees informed and engaged. Hold regular team meetings, conduct performance reviews, and encourage open communication from the bottom up. Address concerns promptly and professionally. Most importantly, recognize and celebrate employee achievements publicly. A simple "thank you" or a public shout-out goes a long way in boosting morale and fostering a sense of appreciation. Building a team environment Foster a sense of teamwork through team-building activities, mentorship programs, and encouraging collaboration. Promote a supportive environment where colleagues can rely on one another for help and share best practices. This creates a sense of community and belonging which helps reduce feelings of isolation and discouragement. Strategies to Reduce Stress and Burnout High levels of stress can lead to employee burnout and ultimately, turnover. Here are some practical solutions to address this concern: Workload management Analyze workload distribution within your teams and identify opportunities for better balance. Consider cross-training employees to share the burden and alleviate pressure points. Utilize temporary staffing solutions to handle peak periods or unexpected vacancies. Technology and automation Embrace technology to streamline tasks and free up employee time for more strategic endeavors. Implement property management software to automate tasks such as rent collection, maintenance requests, and lease renewals. Consider online portals for residents to submit service requests and access property information, which reduces the burden on leasing and maintenance staff. Stress management resources Offer access to Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs) to provide confidential counseling and support for employees dealing with personal or work-related stress. Consider offering on-site mindfulness training or wellness programs to help employees develop healthy coping mechanisms for managing stress. Retention through Growth and Opportunity Providing a clear career path is critical for retaining top talent. Here's how you can promote employee growth and development: Create clear career paths Map out advancement opportunities within the company and establish clear performance benchmarks for promotion. This gives employees something to work towards and motivates them to invest in their long-term success with the company. Mentorship programs Establish mentorship programs that connect experienced employees with newcomers. Mentors can provide guidance, answer questions, and offer support during the onboarding process and beyond. This fosters a sense of community and helps new hires feel more integrated into the team. Cross-training Invest in cross-training opportunities to broaden employee skillsets and increase job satisfaction. This allows employees to gain exposure to different areas of property management, keeps their work interesting, and prepares them for potential future opportunities within the company. Empowering Your Team: Fostering Ownership and Engagement Empowering your employees fosters a sense of ownership and engagement, leading to a more motivated and productive workforce. Delegate tasks and decision-making Delegate tasks that match employee skill sets and provide them with some level of decision-making authority. This demonstrates trust in their abilities and encourages them to take ownership of their work. Encourage feedback and suggestions Create an environment where employees feel comfortable sharing their ideas and suggestions for improvement. Hold regular brainstorming sessions and actively solicit feedback on company policies, procedures, and resident services. Recognize and value employee ideas Acknowledge and value employee ideas, and whenever possible, implement suggestions that can enhance efficiency or improve resident satisfaction. This demonstrates that their input matters and fosters a sense of ownership within the company. Conclusion Reducing employee turnover in property management requires a multi-pronged approach that prioritizes employee well-being, professional development, and a sense of belonging. By implementing the strategies outlined here, property management companies can cultivate a happy, engaged workforce that delivers exceptional service to residents and contributes to the company's long-term success. Remember, a strong team is the foundation for a thriving property management business. Invest in your employees, and they will invest in your company's success. Learn more about property management company best practices, marketing, and more in our Second Nature Community,

Calendar icon May 14, 2024

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