New Home Ombuds as a Coach
One of the office’s key responsibilities is to receive and review complaints. This means that we often take calls from homeowners who are extremely frustrated and stressed and who may not be able to clearly articulate their issues. When this happens, we try to help homeowners shape their concerns in a solutions-focused framework. Sometimes, we act as a coach.
We recently received such a call, from a very angry homeowner. Mr. B explained, in a very escalated manner, that he had spoken with several Tarion staff, and he did not feel that they had listened to and addressed his concerns. He said that his most recent interaction had ended with the Tarion staff member ending the call because he had been yelling at them.
Our office listened to and summarized Mr. B’s concerns. He said that cold drafts were coming into his home during winter months. He also said that he has trouble managing his anger at times.
We explained that Tarion has a zero-tolerance policy on verbal abuse and defamatory or derogatory remarks directed at Tarion staff. We clarified that this meant that Tarion staff would end a call if the homeowner yelled or swore at them.
During our conversation, we advised that Mr. B would need to manage his anger when interacting with Tarion staff. We suggested that if he felt that he couldn’t explain his concerns over the phone in a calm manner, he had the option to provide them in writing.
Following our call with him, Mr. B followed the suggestion to communicate through email and Tarion attended his home the following week to investigate the cold drafts.