Property Management - Topsail Style
Posted On Wednesday, July 1, 2015
The Names Have Been Changed to Protect the Guilty!
Middle of the night. I sit bolt upright in bed; did I remember to deliver the shower curtain liner and the round white vanity bulbs to the house on Topsail Road??? Did the garbage disposal on Island Drive get installed??? Did the lock on the back door of the cottage on Shore Drive get replaced and did we leave a new key out for the guest arriving after hours???? It's true, the devil is in the details. As a property manager there are always a million and one things to do.
It's not rocket science or brain surgery, but coordinating all of the things that have to be fixed or replaced and coordinate the folks going in and the folks going out can be a little bit hectic, to always have a flawless flow so that everything goes as we plan is our aim. We don't always hit the bull's-eye on the target. Housekeepers and maintenance personnel must work around traffic, late departures, early arrivals as well as carpet cleaners as well as agents showing properties for sale. And then again, there is always that special set of circumstances that pop up from time to time, some valid some not so.
As a property manager I want my guests' vacation to be as close to perfect as possible. That goal keeps my guests coming back year after year. Some guests have vacationed with me for 30 years. I've watched their kids grow up, and give them grandchildren. Not a bad way to work a fulfilling job and love what you do.
On Saturday mornings my office looks like a cross between an air traffic control tower and a 3 ring circus, all in a hurry, some sad to leave others happy to have finally arrived.. (people going out, people coming in . . . .) I understand, truly I do but, many guests already here want to check out late and almost everyone arriving wants to check in early!!!!!! That's impossible. I don't mind the excitement and the exuberance in the air. In fact I excel in it. But, we've got to get the houses cleaned and ready for the newly arriving guests. I wish I could just twitch my nose like Jeanie as in "I dream of Jeanie", but it doesn't work that way.
True Story: Several years ago I had a guest (vacationer) call me at 5:30 am on a Saturday morning. (Yes Virginia, there really is such an hour) Woke me up out of a DEAD sleep, they had driven through the night and got here several hours before they planned. He wanted to check in early....... 3 things (printable things) come to mind.
#1I am not very nice at 5:30 in the morning when you wake me up. That slow talking, sweet southern lady is nowhere to be found.
#2The guests (vacationers) from the week before are still fast asleep in their beds.
#3There is obviously not enough room in the cottage for both families at one time. We all, here on Topsail Island, get friendly fast, BUT not that friendly and not that fast. Housekeepers will not clean around people asleep in beds. (They are funny that way!!!)
Still in a partial sleep induced coma, without thinking or missing a beat I retorted, "If you can get the other folks in bed to move over and you want a dirty house for the week, it's O.K. by me. I'm still not sure who hung up first. I understand, he had probably been in the car with a spouse, kids, a dog and maybe even the in laws for 13+ hours. He just needed some relief. We all, (myself included) from time to time put our mouths in gear before our brains. This time I think we both did.
Hours later, when he checked in, I didn't remind him about waking me up sooooo early and he didn't remind me about my being soooooo sarcastic to him. It was as if we had called a truce, someone had a white flag. However I called Dominoes and had them deliver 2 Extra Large Pizzas later that afternoon with the compliments of Island Real Estate and Cathy Medlin. 10 years later he and his family still vacation at Topsail and rent from my company.
Seriously folks, check out time is 10am and check in time is between 3-5 pm. We'll call you if the cottage is cleaned and ready early, I promise. (I've got your back Jack.)
Did I remember to have linen delivered to the cottage on Ocean Drive????????????? hmmmmmmm
Cathy Medlin is one of the founders of the Topsail Island Association of Realtors. She is the owner of Island Real Estate located at 405 Roland Ave in Surf City on Topsail Island. Most days she can be found lurking around her office (after 11am) trying hard not to have to cross the swing bridge. She loves life and it obviously loves her back.