One of my favorite parts about my role as RHAWA’s grassroots organizer is the amount of time I get to spend meeting with members. I’ve always liked meeting new people and it is incredibly valuable for me to learn from the wide range of experiences and perspectives. In my interactions with many of you, I have learned more about the struggles each of you face, I’ve learned what aspects of our work is the most valuable and even some areas where we can make improvements.
Because of all this I want to emphasize the importance of our in-person events that we host more frequently than people may realize. First off, I must give a shout-out to our larger events such as our housing provider workshop we hosted earlier this year. This event provides a great opportunity to get to know staff, learn more about RHAWA, and meet other members. But I also can’t overemphasize the importance of our smaller, member facilitated events such as our monthly LINK meetings.
Currently we have four groups meeting across the Puget Sound area. We usually arrange a standing reservation with a restaurant or café, with the understanding that our members will order food during the meeting. There is no other cost to attend. Meetings currently take place in:
- East King County
- Pierce County
- Snohomish County
- South King County
LINK meetings are hosted by some of our most engaged members who can help you navigate some of the unique aspects of the rental housing market in your area. Not only that, LINK meetings also provide a great opportunity to meet some of our staff. Although a staff member isn’t currently able to attend every meeting every month, we are working to restructure the meetings so we can have even more staff engagement than ever before. I will personally be attending as many LINK meetings as I can, and I hope to serve as a source of information for our members as well as a resource to communicate your needs back to the organization. For example, I spoke with several members over concerns using the support center so we will be reformatting the support center to be slightly more straightforward. Feedback like this is essential to RHAWA being able to provide the level of assistance our members deserve. We receive feedback in emails as well but being able to sit down and really discuss things is always helpful for us to give you the assistance or advice you need. Navigating the rental housing market can be hard, but we’re here to make it as easy as we can.
Not only do LINK meetings provide an opportunity to meet staff such as myself. They often provide an opportunity to meet with some local lawmakers or candidates currently running. This last month Senator John Lovick joined us at our Snohomish meeting to speak with our members and give them some insight into the upcoming legislative session. It was incredibly valuable for both our members and Senator Lovick to be able to sit down and have a dialogue about the needs of small housing providers in Washington state.
Additionally, attendees of the Pierce County LINK meeting were able to chat with Robyn Denson who is currently running for Pierce County Council. The members of our Pierce County meetings were able to ask questions about her campaign and her priorities and Denson took the opportunity to ask our members some questions as well.
Meeting with those running for office is again greatly beneficial for both members and the candidate. It allows our membership to get a better idea of who they are voting for, and it provides insight into our industry for the candidates who may have limited experience in rental housing.
These informal monthly meetings are welcome to all rental property owners, managers, investors and associates. Take advantage of this great opportunity to learn a thing or two about how to run your rental business, ask questions of industry professionals, share your own experiences, and potentially meet a candidate or lawmaker. Hop online to find the next scheduled LINK meeting at: RHAwa.org/events/link-meetings.