Studies show that people trust reviews more today than ever before. “How important are customer reviews to shoppers? Very important, as it turns out. The fact is, 90% of consumers read online reviews before visiting a business. And 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.”- invespcro.com Though we are quick to search for and trust the reviews we read, most reviews are written out of anger and frustration after a negative encounter. In general, people are slow to write reviews of their positive experiences. Since businesses know the importance of reviews, they often will offer incentives to customers for writing positive reviews such as discounts or giveaway entries.
What Reviews Really Tell Us
This means that the majority of the reviews we read are either negative from extreme experiences or written out of a desire to receive said incentive. Though we want to read honest reviews from a variety of customers and experiences (both good and bad) in order to make our own judgment, that’s often not what we get from a quick internet search. When it comes to Specialized Property Management Fort Worth and the surrounding areas, reviews of our business aren’t any different. Here’s how you can better look at the reviews for property management companies as well as any other company and wisely judge for yourself what to do:
- Don’t pay too much attention to reviews that seem too good to be true. They could be real or they could be planted by a paid customer.
- Same advice goes for extremely negative reviews. If they seem over the top, they were probably written by a competitor.
- Look for businesses or products with a lot of reviews. The more reviews, the better.
- Notice the similarities. If lots of reviewers have the same opinion, it’s a good sign that you can trust them and what they’re reviewing.
These tips will help you think more critically about the reviews you’re reading and the businesses you’re interested in. The following information will help you understand the property management industry and how reviews should be regarded when specifically trying to find a property manager.
Understand the Property Management Industry
Emotions run high in any property management industry because we are dealing with one of mankind’s basic human needs – shelter. There is a heightened sense of need and impatience when it comes to repairs and rent payments. Landlords and tenants are stereotypically known to be at odds with each other because of the responsibilities, emotions, and finances involved. Adding property managers to the mix usually helps ease the tension involved in this difficult industry, but it doesn’t always solve the occasional and expected frustrations that come from renting or owning a home. Fort Worth property management company, Specialized Property Management, can ensure that tenants and repairs are taken care of as quickly as possible and through tenant vetting, can create consistent income for property owners. However, there are some things that are out of everyone’s control.
In single-family homes, repairs and maintenance just take longer than they do for apartments where there is often on-site maintenance staff and same-day repairs. Single-family homes are strictly regulated by the Department of Real Estate, which decides whether a repair should be completed and whether the tenant or property owner will pay for it. This is something that Specialized Property Management Fort Worth has no control over, yet renters will often go online to report a negative review in order to dispute a tenant responsibility specified by the DRE or in hopes of receiving a faster response. At Specialized Property Management Fort Worth and other surrounding areas, we try to set clear expectations for our clients of what we can and can’t control. It’s crucial that tenants are informed as well of certain issues that can’t be easily solved through an online complaint. There are regulations to follow and processes to go through.
Managing Normal Frustrations
It’s frustrating when things are out of our control, take longer than we expected, or require more money than we were planning on spending. These kinds of situations are unfortunately common when owning or renting any property. Part of living anywhere requires occasional repairs and unexpected financial matters. Certain laws and regulations that we are all required to follow can also be frustrating, especially when we don’t understand why. Tenants often expect immediate relief from their frustrations and are quick to report a negative review in their frustration and confusion. At our Fort Worth property management company, our clients enjoy quick responses and corrections. We take responsibility and make our customers a priority. We try to help our clients understand the laws and regulations they must follow and have a clear expectation of how long repairs and maintenance may take, especially in single-family housing situations.
“SPM’s reporting and accountability is excellent. I have been impressed with the courteous, professional and efficient manner in which the affairs of my properties have been conducted. I recommend Specialized as an agent for handling rental properties.”- William M., Owner
Specialized Property Management Fort Worth offers the following services to ensure that our customers receive the quickest and highest quality service out there.
- Inspect properties regularly to ensure they are “rent-ready” and well maintained.
- Market your property across multiple websites and platforms.
- Show your property and post tour videos.
- Screen tenants through vigorous background checks.
- Make the signing process easy because we prepare and execute all leasing documents.
- Collect rent payment through enforced rent collection and a quick deposit to you.
- Maintain repairs inside and outside the property.
- Renew leases and create less turnover.
- Help tenants with a smooth transition during a move by processing notices and collecting deposits.
- Report weekly about activity, maintenance, and year-end tax statements.
“Looked around the DFW area for the perfect home for two weeks. Our home came on the market on a Friday afternoon and we were in that following Thursday thanks to Jon Beaman. Hands down the best leasing agent I have dealt with since my move from California. Very personable and thorough. Kept me updated every step of the way. We love our new home!” – Nicole P., Tenant
We may trust reviews just as much as a personal recommendation from friends and family, but in some cases, it’s not smart. Recent studies show that a customer with a perceived negative experience is 50% more likely to post an online review. Happy customers usually don’t take time to post. Specialized Property Management Fort Worth enjoys a 99.8% customer satisfaction rate, but can be negatively impacted by the 0.2%. Multiple lawsuits have ensued toward Yelp for its ineffective algorithm that has suppressed authentic positive reviews and the company is being called out by consumers and businesses alike who just want an honest and varied representation of businesses to rely on.
Fake reviews unfortunately can happen on any review platform, and there are limited ways to ensure that they don’t happen or to have them removed. They usually involve someone making up a very exaggerated version of either a negative or a positive review, affecting a business’s overall review score significantly.
In some cases for Fort Worth property management companies, if a review isn’t “recommended”, it can’t be seen. Even if the review is a very positive one, the algorithm can decide if it’s going to be displayed or not, thus damages your business’s online reputation.
Yelp’s algorithm uses filters to try and stop fake reviews from happening, but often ends up filtering out legitimate reviews. They take into account certain review characteristics, like if the review is written by someone with a small online presence or who is from out of town. You can read more about what is happening with Yelp and other disreputable review forums at Original Review.
What to Do
Now that you know the realities of the property management industry and the overall problem with online reviews, what can you do? Reading reviews from several different platforms, including testimonials from the property management company’s website will give you a broader sense of what to expect. Next, choose the top 3 companies that you were most impressed with based on online reviews and then call them. Ask them about their policies, their guarantees, and what they would do in hypothetical situations. Specialized Property Management Fort Worth executes a customer-driven business model and would have no problem discussing their policies, guarantees, and services with you. Any company that is not upfront and transparent with you about their promised services is one you should consider taking off your list. We understand that you are trusting us with your property and your tenants. In order for us to succeed, it’s vital that you and your property succeed as well. Do your research, call around, read the reviews and take them into consideration along with all the other research you’ve done. In the end, trust your gut-you will know what to do.
“The Specialized Property Management team is a great group of willing workers and try to do the best job possible for everyone they are associated with.” – Nellie L., Owner