Agencies that succeed in the post-lockdown world will need to adapt their service offering to meet a completely different set of needs and expectations. “Consumer research by Nielsen asserts that, after the crisis, people’s daily routines will be altered by a new cautiousness about health, suggesting that some shifts in behaviour could be long-term,” notes Deloitte.
“Recovery will create anxiety among stakeholders as the post-COVID world takes shape. Understanding the fears that stakeholders are grappling with—and how their expectations for safety and security have changed, perhaps permanently—will be critical for leaders as they seek to restore confidence and chart a new path forward.” What could this mean for your landlords and tenants?
For landlords, it could mean an easier up-sell to your top-tier, fully-managed package. Many let-only landlords will have spent this period navigating queries from tenants, on top of everything else, demonstrating better than ever before the value that full management brings. It could also mean placing a renewed emphasis on rent protection insurance, to reassure those who are concerned about missed rent payments during the economic downturn.
Indeed, the pandemic has “presented an opportunity for businesses to showcase their commitment to customer service and highlight the essential role for societal good that insurance still has to play,” notes Insurance Business Mag.
For tenants, this might mean offering a contact-free move-in experience to avoid further in-person contact once right to rent checks have been completed. Sound impossible? Take your cue from Airbnb hosts, who have been offering contact-free, self-check ins for years, utilising key safes and providing detailed instructions on the property to the guest in the week of their arrival. This means that both check- ins and check-outs can be conducted at the convenience of both parties.
Chris Toynbee of Redmayne Arnold & Harris says their agency used key safes during the lockdown to manage essential moves. “To make sure that they do get in, we’ll ask the tenants to take a photo of the key and send us an email to confirm that they’re in the house and everyone’s happy,” says Toynbee. “It's just a case of being creative.”
Make sure that you’re communicating the new innovations that have arisen from the pandemic, advises the Harvard Business Review. “Tell your existing customers how you are serving them in new ways. Reach out to potential customers by offering new products or services that solve a new problem.”