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Press 1 for new landlord enquiries or Press 2 for tenants moaning

Option No.2 is pressed ... here comes trouble. By the time the phone rings, there's already trouble. If someone asks for the lettings manager it's because someone is disappointed, angry or stuck. No sign of the gas man to fix the boiler, a nonreturn of a deposit, broken promises or a real urgency have led to this new conversation even taking place.

So don't start with, ‘Bloggs and Co Lettings… mumble mumble’ as if there's a blank drywipe board just waiting to be written on. There's already a lot of writing on that shiny white surface. Don't demand to know their tenant reference number or begin with doubt, a sigh, a huff and an edge of ‘here we go again’

‘Wow, it sounds like we have got a issue on our hands’ is a great way to neutralise the person you're about to talk with. They won't have to spend the first ten sentences expressing their disappointment, even anger and urgency, because in twelve words, you've done it for them. Or perhaps, you could even say ‘I'd like to help, if you'll bring me up to speed...’

It's not easy being on the receiving end of a the usual tenant daily parades of blame, but no one said lettings was easy. Landlords have asked you to manage their property, asked you to do it, why, because they believed you are good and because it's important, not because it's fun.