Photo Courtesy of Eric
So you’re planning a stay with a corporate housing service provider? Before finalizing your plans, we at Dharma Home Suites have made this checklist of questions you ought to have answered before signing that contract. Knowing the answers to these questions may save you some money, needless trouble, and stress.
1. What exactly am I paying for?
Find out all the amenities, services, and accommodations included in your bill. Read all papers requiring a signature carefully to avoid surprise charges. Ask about what is included with your payment and what things would be considered additional fees during your stay for business.
2. What are your Accreditation?
Ensure the corporate housing service provider is a member of the trade organization Corporate Housing Providers Association (CHPA). Members of CHPA must abide by the professional Code of Ethics and achieve industry standards of professionalism, customer service, and ethical standards. Such accreditation is a sign of a quality corporate service provider. Ask if any staff are certified corporate housing professionals (CCHP). Such employees are experts of excellent commitment to the industry and their clients.
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3. How long have you been in business?
Experienced corporate housing service providers tend to know their way around the block and will probably have customer reviews available. Duration in the business is a good sign. Gather and check references of people before you commit to a contract.
4. Are you a direct, third party, or blended provider?
Direct providers offer suites that are managed directly by the company you are booking with. Third-party providers essentially sub-lease suites from another temporary housing company. Blended providers use a combination of both renting directly and third party renting. Know with whom you are staying and where to direct inquiries and issues, should they arise.
5. Where is the office or to whom do I talk to for help?
Check for the presence of a local office or on site contact. Know who to talk to or where to go for assistance. How are client requests and property issues handled? Outside of office hours, who do you contact and how? Such information will help you to find the right people to resolve issues in a timely manner. A lack of people present for the purpose of helping clients may be a red flag of a lack of organization and management.
6. How are you protected?
Is the company and all the vendors insured? Are the housekeeping and maintenance staff bonded and insured? A lack of liability insurance leaves clients at a huge risk, so find mention of proof of insurance in the corporate housing contract or ask if unsure. Bonding and insuring the staff with access to your room means the company will have full financial coverage from damage, or theft. Such information is important to know when working with management companies managing properties offered by individual homeowners.
7. What are your policies on satisfaction?
If there is no satisfaction guaranteed, ask about it. Inquire about accommodations for clients, refunds, relocation, or otherwise, when dissatisfied with the service? It is much better to ask any questions you may have than to be worse off for not knowing or asking the housing service provider.
8. What’s in the area?
Knowing what recommended attractions or places to eat and shop gives you time to plan stuff on your down time. Maybe you won’t have to pack as much if everything you could need for your corporate stay is within the neighborhood. You could even try planning a vacation adventure or a corporate outing if need be.
9. What’s the transportation situation?
Will you need a car? Or would a bike be better? Maybe everything is within walking distance or the area has really reliable public transportation. Transportation can be a crucial arrangement and having that information may help you or those you may be doing business with figure out how to get around and make the most of the area around the corporate provider.
10. What does the research say about your services?
There is no detriment to doing your research before choosing a corporate housing service provider. Search for reviews, find ratings, examine photos, and read the comments. With the power of the Internet, well-known corporate housing providers cannot hide their business. If the corporate housing provider says they have reliable Wi-Fi, see if anyone who lived there says otherwise. Seeing what past tenants have to say about what to expect and how the experience went offers valuable insights.
As they say, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” These questions will guide you in making a safe decision in selecting a corporate housing provider and spare you the hassle of a service provider gone wrong. Dharma Home Suites hopes you’ll consider these questions for your next planned corporate housing stay.