Recently we picked up a new client in the Sarasota area, whose previous home watch person had left town and they could not find him nor could they find the keys to their house (presumably the guy took them with him).
When hiring a home watch service here are some things to consider:
1. Does this person look like someone from my neighborhood? This may seem like a crazy question but do you really want someone coming to your high end home in a broken down car and ripped shorts and flip-flops? Believe me I see it all the time. What you want is someone who reflects what you are: a professional home watch service that acts like this is a serious job not a part time experience. Hire serious minded professionals who look like they belong in your neighborhood and who know high-end homes.
2. A good portion of our property management business in the early years was from Advertising. Now a good portion comes from client referrals. However it always amazed me when someone called us from an Ad that they never verified that we were who we were. What questions are you asking that makes you feel like you know who will be coming into your home? Because we have been in business 11 years and are extremely active in the community we are easily verified but do you know the people you are hiring? How long have they been in business?
3.Ask the new company if there are any clients they had last year that they don’t have this year and why? Has a client ever dumped them? Have they ever resigned a client? How they answer this question will tell you a lot.
4. DO NOT hire someone who has a sign on his or her car. The only person that is helping is THEM. Do you really want people to know when the home watch people are in your house and that you are away? I am always amused to see signs on cars shouting, “This home is Vacant”. It cracks me up. They naturally want your neighbors business and naturally they want to advertise what they do for their benefit!!! If they provide excellent home watch services they will get referral business without a sign on their car.
5. Make sure there is depth in the account management group so if the principals have to go away there is depth in the team to handle any emergency.
6. How far away do they have to travel to get to your home? If they come from another city or more than an hour away they are not the best fit for you especially in an emergency.
7. Ask how many times they have had to get up in the middle of the night to answer an alarm. This will show whether they WILL get up in the middle of the night t answer an alarm.
These are some key things to look for when sourcing a home watch service or person. If you would like to work with seasoned professionals in the Sarasota / Longboat Key area give Key Concierge and leave the worrying to us.