Written by Heather Filgo & Laura Bo Sherman
How Property Managers and Tenants Came Together in Year One of the Covid-19 Pandemic
It was a typical day in March of 2020. Which then turned into a year that no one will ever forget, and while we are still dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic in various aspects of life, no one really believed that a 2-week quarantine would linger for more than a year, but as we approach the 1-year “anniversary” (as many are calling it), we wanted to share how our property managers and tenants reacted over the course of the past year
Grocery lines were backed up and grocery shelves sat empty. Toilet Paper was being stockpiled, Hand Sanitizers and cleaning supplies were nowhere to be found, and it seemed like people were beginning to panic globally. It was then we realized we were faced with a worldwide pandemic and things as we knew them were about to change.
Many began working from home and others found themselves without a job due to nationwide closures. In a state of shock, we sat watching the news daily and hearing COVID-19 over and over and wondering if it will ever end. We had to adapt.
With so much unknown, we knew we had no choice but to adapt to this “new normal”.
Our tenants and on-site teams bonded together and began to help each other in ways never seen before. Whether it was offering words of encouragement or food from their own pantries, the bond of a community began to grow stronger than ever. Layers was created to create thriving, one-of-a-kind communities, where people from all walks of life come together– The term “community” became a key component to survival.
We pulled together in a crisis and turned negative into positive. Determined to continue life back to “normal”, not knowing exactly what that “new normal” would be.
Our management teams adapted and became front liners. Working to ensure we continued to provide a welcoming place to call home, amongst the chaos of everyday life. We had to hit pause on our larger community events, but the teams found other ways to support members and tenants through activations like weekly “movie-night” giveaway baskets, food drives, etc.
An eviction moratorium was put in place, and our team had to quickly pivot to find ways to handle payment delinquency without the threat of eviction. The team took initiative on making sure tenants had the support and guidance they needed in a time of financial hardship and uncertainty through government rental assistance programs (the CARES act). We highlighted some of our additional findings for operational success in this free case study
We do not know what the future holds, when this will end, or even what the end will look like– What we do know is that when people come together, and leaders can pivot, rethink and adapt quickly to a new situation and/or crisis, then success will be the only possible outcome.