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To the letter: let’s talk about recovery patterns


V, U or even W. If you’re a business that has experienced a change in trading conditions thanks to Covid-19, there will be a letter of the alphabet used to describe your recovery pattern. This week, the Bank of England jumped on the bandwagon and claimed that we, as an entire country, are heading for an ‘incomplete V’ shaped recovery. 

But first, let’s explain what a complete V-shape recovery is – a sharp decline followed by a sharp recovery. Our incomplete V refers to a recovery pattern that’s thrown off track before recovery is complete – in our case, blamed on a forecast rise in unemployment in the latter part of 2020, together with continued social distancing and persistent corona-phobia.

Some of us will actually have a W shaped recovery. In Covid times, this refers to the pattern of first wave, recovery, second wave, recovery. It’s especially applicable in localised areas where there are town- or county-centric lockdowns, as we have seen in Leicester.

And how about the U shaped recovery? Although a less angular pattern than the V, the U-shape charts a prolonged period of recession before recovery starts to build – a shape that can be more damaging to the economy than the V or the W.

Now, how about letting agents? Will you let wider conditions dictate your recovery letter or will you act now so you can follow your own pattern? Here at ARPM, we prefer to move in the realms of special characters, and not letters, and are confident you can follow the pattern of the tick – ✔ 

The small downwards stroke of the tick is fairly accurate, reflecting the decline brought about by the tenant fee ban and the change to mortgage interest tax relief. The lowest point represents March 2020, with the rapid enforcement of social distancing and travel restrictions, which will, no doubt, have hampered business flow.

With the right support and attitude, letting agents can set their own recovery path. There’s an opportunity to regenerate to create a fresh modus operandi and form the upwards stroke of the tick. After all, we are always chanting the mantra ‘people will always need to rent properties’ – now is the time to build a lettings agency that meets the needs of those modern tenants.

It won’t be ‘business as usual’. You can’t recover from a pandemic and go back to how it was before – we know that’s just not possible. In fact, now is the time to embrace what you thought was impossible – or unthinkable – in 2019 and include it in your recovery for 2020 and beyond.

If you’d like to know the role outsourcing property management plays in your tick-shaped recovery, get in touch for free advice. We will help you look at your property management division with fresh eyes, work through your fixed overheads, crunch your numbers and help devise a strategy that ensures you’re not part of an ‘incomplete V’. This Forbes article also makes good reading about post-Covid recovery patterns.

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