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TOPIC: What makes a leasing consultant phenomenal?

What makes a leasing consultant phenomenal? 4 years 6 months ago #3626

I am currently and passionately seeking a job as a leasing consultant. I am 25 years old with Sales, Hospitality, and some Marketing experience. I have been taking courses via Grace Hill, and it has help me out a lot. I recommend Grace Hill, indeed!

In general, I know what the job of a leasing consultant entails. I can see myself as a leasing consultant as clear as day. I am ready to get out there and sale, build relationships, understand the market/community, etc., etc., but I always wonder how I can be the BEST leasing consultant.

Could you guys please discuss what makes for an AWESOME/ PHENOMENAL leasing consultant?

-Darius

Re:What makes a leasing consultant phenomenal? 4 years 6 months ago #3630

Remember that when you are talking to prospective residents; you are talking about what is probably the SINGLE BIGGEST LINE ITEM ON THEIR BUDGET and treat it as such. When talking to them as prospective residents, make sure that you answer every question honestly and openly, even if it is an 'I don't know, let me find out for you.' As a prospective resident, I ask myself to judge the responses to my questions and concerns before I make a decision. If I get poor responses, or I feel they are less than 100% honest; I take that as an indication of how I might be treated as a resident and move on the the next property; assuming I even like your property, how I am treated is critical. Think about what you would consider acceptable customer service to you, and deliver BETTER, consistently!

Once they move in, you need to strive to maintain the relationship. It is not enough to respond to all concerns in a timely manner. I used to work in consumer electronics retail; in that case, you may sell them a computer and never see them again. In our environment, you 'sell' them on you and your community; and you have regular contact with them for at least 6 months. There are several books on the subject of relationship selling, just do an Amazon search (or check your local library). I used to work with corporate clients, who would follow me from location to location (even if I changed employers), BECAUSE I am good at building relationships. Many would even call me before coming in, just to let me know they were coming so I would be available to them.

Also, being a team player is important. There are 2 kinds of people in any industry: those that see a problem and WALK AWAY from it while saying "it's not my job", and those that can see the SAME problem and say "I know it's not my job, but I know how to fix it before it becomes a major issue, so let me do it (or seek advice before I do)". If you fall into the first group on MY team, you are not on it for long.

How's this for you?
The following user(s) said Thank You: Capri

Re:What makes a leasing consultant phenomenal? 4 years 6 months ago #3638

Excellent! Mr. Karnofsky, thank you for the advice. I am at a point where I am soaking up a lot of information about multifamily housing.

I am definitely going to take your advice about reading books on "Relationship Selling."

Also, I am totally open to any other suggestions that you might have in reference to being an AWESOME leasing consultant.

Re:What makes a leasing consultant phenomenal? 4 years 6 months ago #3640

Good questions and I also recommend you checking out NALP or leasing wokshops through your local apartment association. Go to NAAHQ.ORG to find the nearest affiliate.

What makes a GREAT leasing person:
(1) Knowing your product as well as your competition. Hard to sell something if you don't know it. Know your market, what is in the area (retail, restaurants, banks, etc.), best directions to give, and I recommend having a product/community knowledge workbook at your desk with everything you can think of in it (floor plans with window locations, closet sizes, number of outlets and placement of cable connections, property and building number map, local businesses, map of the primary market as well as a map of the overall market, etc. Know what things you have that are better than the comps. Never talk negative about a competitor, just know how to sell your site and your services better.
(2) Make the visit personable! We are not just selling an apartment but also ourselves, our company, our property, our team, and the services we offer. Find things to build relationships with prospects first on the phone and then at the site visit. If you ask if they have a pet, ask what kind or even what their pet's name is. They don't have to know you had written this down, but I guarantee you if they show up for the visit and you say, "Mrs. Smith if I remember correctly you have a poodle named Trevie. You and Trevie are going to love it here at ABC apartments.
(3) On the phone find out what is important to them in an apartment home and what their wants, needs, and desires are. This helps you prepare as well as focus on those things involved in the decision making process. Make sure they identify these things in the site visit, and if not point them out.
(4) If you make an appointment, be ready for the appointement ahead of time. Have the guest card, community information, application, and keys ready when they arrive. This shows professionalism and they will see you are efficient. Too many times a prospect shows up and the consultant is not ready and scrambles to get everything ready. You should have already identified what apartments to show based on their call and your questions, and the visit is not a surprise....especially made from an appointment.
(5) Always, smile on the phone. People can tell if you smile and if you are genuine in your approach.
(6) Don't walk ahead of them and remember to walk "with them." The time you take walking to the apartment or model is about building the relationship further.
(7) Let them open the door after you unlock it and enter as if it is already their home. Don't follow them around like a puppy dog, but be near to view their actions as well as be of assistance. Don't question their intelligence. If you walk into a kitchen and say, "this is your kitchen," they can usually figure that out by them selves having seen a stove and refrigerator. If they start placing their furniture, ask them about their furnishings to help them. Have a tape measure handy, and if in the model one in the drawer in the kitchen.
(8) Use trial closes. "I see you are looking as if placing your living room furniture. Do you have any concerns or would you like some suggestions?" Use closing and ask for the application. "Mrs Smith you seem to really enjoy the apartment and this floor plan. Is there any reason we can't reserve this apartment home for you to day?"
(9)Create a sense of urgency. There is only one apartment of any type in any location. Never lie, but use things like, "Mr Davis, I know you wanted a two bedroom with lots of sunlight and large closets. This is the only floor plan in this location I have at this time and I would hate for you to lose it. What about completing the application so we can reserve your new home for you today."
(10)Follow up on guest visits immediately and often. Unless they have leased somewhere else, don't give up. Also make sure your guest cards are organized so if they are looking for future dates you can make follow and following prospects easy.

There are so many more areas to cover, but these are things I thought up when I saw your post. It sounds like you have a lot of great qualities including "passionate," hospitality, marketing and sales experience. I hire for attitude and train for success. It sounds like you have what it takes. Good luck.

Lawrence Berry, CPM

Re:What makes a leasing consultant phenomenal? 4 years 6 months ago #3641

I love being a Leasing Specialist. I have been in the multifamily industry now for 2 years 5 months and never want to leave. It feels like I was born to do this. One of the great things that sets the company I work for apart from everyone else is our moto..."You Matter at Holy Cove Apartments". Just hearing someone say "You Matter over the phone or in an email makes a diffrence. You are immediately building a relationship with your prospect by making them feel that they are the only one in the world and you really do care about them. Remember we are not only selling them an apartment home but a way of life, our community. An exceptional Leasing Specialist will be able to sale, be compassionate, and able to have fun with the job. You should also check out Fabulous Apartment Leasing on Facebook. There are great tips on the site! Remember You Matter at WRH Realty!

Jolene
Leasing Specialist
WRH Realty
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Re:What makes a leasing consultant phenomenal? 4 years 6 months ago #3646

There are a number of important traits that I have always looked for when trying to find a leasing consultant who didn't just fill the role, but embraced it and succeeded. This is selling, after all, mixed with customer service. As someone said above, it is the largest purchase for many people, even if it is just another monthly bill. It isn't every day someone commits to spend $7,000 or $15,000 with someone over the course of a year. It takes empathy, knowledge, perserverance, a thick skin and a chipper attitude.

There are other things, more subtle perhaps, that are important too. How punctual is the person? This is a good sign of whether or not they respect their co-workers and employer. What sort of appearance do they make? Are they ready for work? Are they comfortable engaging in easy conversation - enough so that they can find some rapport with just about anyone? How are their computer skills? How detail-oriented are they? What are their ambitions? I once heard a sales guru say not to hire someone who didn't aspire to your own job or higher.

It sounds like you have taken some great first steps - getting online to learn more about the business and taking courses. I would spend time at your local property managers association or apartment association and try to network with supervisors and managers. This business tends to be most successful at finding people with the network, so spending time on this site, places like LinkedIn and Plaxo, and of course actual physical networking should get you where you want to be. Best of luck and welcome to the industry.

Re:What makes a leasing consultant phenomenal? 4 years 6 months ago #3650

Christopher Higgins wrote:
There are other things, more subtle perhaps, that are important too. How punctual is the person? This is a good sign of whether or not they respect their co-workers and employer. What sort of appearance do they make? Are they ready for work? Are they comfortable engaging in easy conversation - enough so that they can find some rapport with just about anyone? How are their computer skills? How detail-oriented are they? What are their ambitions? I once heard a sales guru say not to hire someone who didn't aspire to your own job or higher.

A lot of these traits come with people that have retail or corporate sales experience. I have had several retail customers convert into very valuable corporate clients in the past, even when they had corporate accounts that required them to order via phone or web; some would actually prefer to come into my location and use their procurement cards instead. When you are able to develop relationships like that; you should be able to maintain successful relationships with your residents.

Re:What makes a leasing consultant phenomenal? 4 years 6 months ago #3655

Definitely. I used to find my best leasing consultants while picking out ties. The problem with so many management companies insisting on property management experience is that you pick up a person with already ingrained bad habits. Much better to get a green person with the right attitude and temperment and then teach them the business.

Re:What makes a leasing consultant phenomenal? 4 years 6 months ago #3656

Hello to all the Insiders.

I am really thankful to get so much advice as a rookie in the multifamily housing industry. I didn't think that I would get so many responses.

Today I had an interview. I was actually given the opportunity to do a walk through and role play with the property manager. I had to actually "SALE" her the apartment. It was my first experience.

Tomorrow, I plan to go visit a few properties to see what the actual conversation is like when the consultant is showing the apartment.

Networking, networking, networking!

Re:What makes a leasing consultant phenomenal? 3 years 6 months ago #6364

Hello everyone I am startina new job as a leasing consultant onMonday and I really have little experience would someone be able to role play and give me a scenario on the beginning process. How would I begin the process as they walk in teh door. I do understand I have to begin Hello Welcome to Highland town village townhomes, How may I help you LOL
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