Tipping and bonuses typically come up at the end of the year around the holidays. Even though it rolls around every year, it still catches many buildings and residents off guard. As a building, there are ways to establish a unified or recommended approach to ensuring staff and the vendors you use regularly feel appreciated and thanked every year.
First, answer the question of who needs to be tipped. If you have regular building staff or vendors, make an inventory of the individuals. This includes the superintendent, door person, porter, cleaning and maintenance staff, garage attendant. Then, consider how the building prefers to tip—individually or in a pool. It is helpful for building management to send a list of the building staff with their names and roles as part of a reminder to prepare a holiday tip. If there is a pool, provide a recommended amount. If tipping individually, give notes on how to make sure it lands in the hands of that staff person.
The building can also take a more planned approach and bake a bonus into their maintenance fees, so that they are collecting enough year round to give bonuses to key staff on behalf of the building, and anything residents give is extra.
As far as recommended amounts? Brick Underground’s guide is updated annually and is a good starting point for urban areas like New York. For 2021, they recommend the following amounts per resident:
Maintaining a building and its services is lots of hard work, and it can often be invisible work. Ensuring your building’s staff and regular vendors receive a holiday bonus is a great way to thank them for their work and diligence, and spread a little holiday cheer going into the new year.
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