Believe In Your TOP QUALITY RESIDENCES Skills But Never Stop Improving

Resident retention is normally the forgotten element in property management, while the art of apartment marketing and leasing to new prospects continues to be studied, sliced, diced and pureed by the apartment industry to get optimal strategies of getting people in the door. In fact, the better a community reaches apartment marketing and leasing, the more it can mask its shortcomings on the resident retention side. So much effort is made on the leasing side of the business enterprise our front line troops are called “Leasing Professionals.” Focusing on Leasing is not a negative idea; however, neglecting the other half of your business can alienate your residents, cause high turnover, and severely impact your important thing.

That is more important: Resident Retention or Apartment Marketing?

Ki Residences Singapore When we discuss the value of Resident Retention, it is not to say that apartment marketing isn’t also vitally important. In other words, to improve retention, we should not sacrifice leasing. That said, a rise in retention is vastly more beneficial than a rise in leasing. This will not be a surprising concept. When you compare a new resident to an existing resident, the existing resident is much more profitable, with almost no make-ready costs and no loss because of vacancy. Additionally, a long-term renter is much more prone to refer friends and coworkers than a new renter would.

When you start to see the difference in profitability between your two groups, it really is shocking just how much more we spend on prospects. While prospects and new residents obtain the benefit of cheaper rent and extensive marketing, existing residents, those who pay the bills, often obtain the short end of the stick. This difference can lead to alienation of one’s current residents, a situation you should strongly avoid.

Why is resident retention not on the radar?

Even though most of us understand the idea of resident retention, surprisingly little is known about how to perform it. Therefore, most communities elect to either ignore everything together or choose methods that do not achieve the expected goals. Let’s first consider a few of the most typical mistakes made in current retention “techniques.”

Customer Service and Maintenance

Let me be clear about this: Customer service and maintenance aren’t resident retention programs. We constantly hear how important these two items are, which is completely correct. However, instead of going above and beyond, these things are an expectation, not a perk. Especially for Class A and Class B properties, residents do not see strong maintenance and customer support as a luxury item that they should be impressed with. They instead see these items as a required part of living at your community. Look at a restaurant advertising that its food is served warm. Isn’t that expected at a restaurant? And if that is the best trait the restaurant can offer, would you really expect the meals to be that great? For a community to advertise a feature that needs to be standard, they are actually implying that the others of their service is not too impressive!

The infamous summer party…

Summer parties can be quite a fun perk, but are rarely an excellent investment. To begin with, summer parties could be very expensive if food emerges, generally ranging from $1,500 to $3,000 for a 300-unit community. Ironically, you save money when you get yourself a low resident turnout at these events. Imagine the price if 100 percent of your residents attended! However, more than likely, you’ll only have around 25 % of your residents show up. Of those, it’s likely that no more than 25 percent includes a lease coming up to create the feeling on the renewal decision. Therefore, you’re impacting only 6 percent of one’s “target audience.” This means for an average community of 300 units, you’re spending roughly $2,000 to reach 18 residents – that’s $111 per resident! Even though the party influences a few others that renew later in the year, investments in these parties usually do not justify the reward.

So what are some programs we can implement?

For starters, know your community. Fair Housing laws limit how much demographic information we are able to keep about our residents, but you should at least have a good idea of the different faces of your community. Additionally, rather than having one giant one-size-fits-all party, it is possible to coordinate several smaller, targeted parties over summer and winter. Having more frequent parties permits you to target different demographic groups in your community at different times instead of “putting all of your eggs in a single basket” approach of large summer events. Spacing these events over summer and winter will also guarantee your events coincide with all your residents’ renewal periods, this provides you with you the biggest impact possible. Here some ideas that can you can explore that are less costly:

Older Residents

Bridge or Mah Jongg Night
Dinner Rotation – This could be quite popular! Have an indicator up period for singles or couples. These groups then take turns rotating amongst their apartments hosting small dinner parties for each other.
Singles Crowd
Poker Night at the Clubhouse (for prizes rather than money)
Networking Night
Dance Classes
Sporting events
Children Friendly
Ice Cream Social
Kite Day
Scavenger Hunt
Also, remember that you have purchasing power! Most events around town offer group rates you could pass along to your residents. This may make them feel a part of an exclusive club with money saving deals all the time!

The continuing future of resident retention

Have you heard the word “Resident Portal?” In the event that you haven’t, continue reading! A Resident Portal is actually a website for the residents, adding a genuine social element to your community – contemplate it a “digital clubhouse.” If you haven’t noticed, the vast majority of residents have a social presence online. Resident Portals take that concept and merge it with traditional apartment properties to create a true “community” environment. A basic Resident Portal includes a community calendar of events, utility sign-up features, maintenance requests, and online rent payment. However, several resident portals offer a lot more in terms of a community social experience. These expanded resident portals range from about $125/month to $200/month for a 300 unit community, meaning you can get an entire year of service for the same price of 1 summer party. When done properly, resident social interaction can make strong emotional bonds between your residents, leading to impressive improvements in your retention rates.