Oh! Now I am right there with you. Panic! The Waitlist should be organized in your property manageme...
Azar Mendoza
Thank you, I find myself in a panic because I have a MOR coming up and despite my recent take over, ...
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Posted by on in Social Media and Technology
Since its debut earlier this month, Pokemon Go has become a massively popular app, prompting millions of downloads and user numbers that rival Twitter. For those not familiar with Pokemon Go, the app is based off of the Pokemon franchise which features animated “pocket monsters” that users can catch. Though the franchise has covered movies, a TV show, games, trading cards and more, Pokemon Go marks the first time it has been available as a free mobile app, where users can sign up and instantly begin playing the game. Because Pokemon Go is a location-based app, many real estate companies have seen a positive flow of traffic, particularly on the multifamily side.  Pokemon Go players are now visiting what are called PokeStops, designated spots where they can collect more Pokemon. These are mainly random businesses scattered throughout each area. With the game focusing on location, apartment owners and managers have the opportunity to capitalize on this fun trend. If you’re a student housing professional, or have simply noticed your residents using Pokemon Go at your apartment communities, consider using these marketing tips to keep residents happy and attract new ones as well! 1) Have a photo contest of residents who take pictures of Pokemon at the apartment community. Since Pokemon Go is an augmented reality game, users will see Pokemon appear on their phone. This makes for fun moments when they can see Pokemon appear in places like their living room or kitchen. The most creative picture can win a prize from the...

Posted by on in Apartment Marketing
From the State of the Nation’s Housing 2016 report to NAA Education Conference sessions to Apartment Internet Marketing sessions, a lot of discussion is taking place about demand for apartment housing. The State of the Nation's Housing 2016 report proclaimed that the nation’s housing market is recovering thanks in large part to rental demand. Yet, several sessions at NAA and AIM discussed integrating marketing and revenue management to generate more demand. It may seem a little odd to talk about demand generation in a hot market. You might even be thinking: My community or portfolio is almost full and I have more demand than I need. There isn’t much need to create more demand. Is there? The short answer is there’s always a need to drive more demand, even in this hot apartment market, for two very important reasons: 1. Demand drives rent growth. 2. Demand drives brand awareness. Demand Drives Rent Growth You might be 97 or 98 percent occupied, but, eventually, some residents are going to move out. When their leases come up for renewal, the demand you have for that apartment home is going to determine the rent listed on their renewal offer. The greater the demand, the higher the rent increase you can present for that apartment home. If they choose to move out because the renewal rate is too high, you should be able to easily fill that home with someone willing to pay the higher rate. It’s really simple supply and demand economics at work....

Posted by on in Apartment Marketing
Pokémon Go Can Help Multifamily On July 6th, 2016, an event of monumental proportions happened: Pokémon Go was released. The game has already revolutionized mobile gaming and is uniting people across all generations. Niantic Inc. developed the game through a licensing deal with Nintendo, the majority stakeholder of the franchise. The deal has proven to be fruitful; Nintendo's market value jumped an astounding $7.5 billion since release! The game is simple: "catch" Pokémon with your phone in different areas of cities and towns. The game is a based on "geolocation,” GPS locations and landmarks, so one has to walk around to progress through the game. There are "Pokestops" and "Gyms" where people can get rewards, play against other Pokémon and find new Pokémon. So why should you care? This can be a golden marketing opportunity for multifamily communities. You can actually drive potential residents to your property with the game! Pokémon Go is a "free to play" style game. This means that one can play for free, but upgrades are purchasable through an online store. One of those items is a "Lure Module," which draws Pokémon to a certain location for 30 minutes. They cost about 99 cents per lure. The lures need to be set within proximity of a Pokestop (currently). Your community may already be a Pokestop or Gym; you just need to check in the game. Super geeky, right? Well, businesses have caught on and are driving traffic to them because people playing see where lures are and stop to get the free items. So how can a multifamily community benefit? Marketing With Pokémon Go If you could set lures...

Posted by on in Apartment Marketing

When you think about where you advertise your communities, do you think Yelp?  We all have heard of Yelp but my guess is that you're probably not taking full advantage of this free ad.  Yelp isn't known for being a common destination for apartment seekers, however, I'm going to make a strong argument that Yelp is the most under-utilized ad source in multifamily.  Yeah, I said it.  Listen up... First things first...can you tell me if your community has a listing page on Yelp?  I can tell you from experience monitoring community's online presence that a large majority of communities don't bother, including your competition. Yelp certainly isn't the newest  tool on the block but it's becoming increasingly valuable in the multifamily industry and you'll want to re-familiarize yourself with the platform if necessary. Now that you've been formally re-introduced, you've probably identified a weak spot in your current approach.  Don't worry just yet.  We're going to button-up your marketing strategy piece-by-piece and further detail why Yelp is more important to that strategy than you think.  Let's dive into five reasons you should be using this often-overlooked ad source for your apartment community.   1. Reach   Yelp's reach continues to expand, collecting more and more users each year.  Over the last three years, Yelp has experienced 80% growth.  Their website has seen a nice boost as well as users are staying on the page 150% longer than previously.  According to Quantcast, in the last month alone 117 million unique visitors accessed Yelp via its website or mobile...

Posted by on in Multifamily Training and Career Development
Have you ever noticed when eating at a restaurant that the waiter waits for you to order before serving your entree to you? Can you imagine if the waiter just dumped a bunch of food in front of you and expected you to eat (and pay for) whatever he brought to your table? You: “Um, excuse me…I’m allergic to shellfish and you brought me clams, mussels and scallops!” Waiter: “That’s what I’m giving you today! That will be $25.99 plus tax, please. Have a nice day.” Let me ask you another question: Have you ever worked with someone who just seemed to talk to you, whether you wanted her to or not? You know the person who seemed to ignore the fact that you have ten files on your desk, multiple windows open on your computer, the voice mail light flashing on your phone and a “to-do” list a mile long. Here’s another question . . . have you ever been that person? Are you that person now? Have you ever thought about your effect on people? I mean, we’re very aware of the effect that people have on us, but have you ever thought about the impact that your style of relating has on others? The nature of the multifamily industry means that you will have to deal with people every day! And if you’re a temporary employee the odds are good that your co-workers will change pretty often. That makes it very important for you to be able to connect effectively with a lot of different kinds...

Posted by on in Apartment Leasing
Dear Gabby, I’m really curious about marijuana and how it is affecting the apartment industry.  And what’s the deal with smoking pot in apartments? Is it ok to do?  Asking for a friend. Sincerely, #ItsAJointEffort     Dear #ItsAJointEffort, Please be sure to share this blog link with your “friend”.  This topic seems to be becoming more and more of a HIIIIIIGH priority discussion in the multifamily industry. Here’s what you need to know… If a police officer asks, “How high are you?” – don’t respond back with, “No officer, it’s ‘Hi, how are you?’”   I kid, I kid…. Most apartment complexes nowadays don’t want residents smoking anything (tobacco or marijuana) because it damages walls, carpets, etc. - not to mention that other non-smokers living in the buildings can be unwillingly subjected to secondhand smoke. The best policy for multifamily owners/managers: To have a non-smoking policy.  No matter which side of the fence you’re on regarding marijuana use, we all want the best experience possible for our residents. As most of us know, it can be difficult to identify a specific resident or apartment home that is lighting it up. It isn’t always obvious which apartment the smoke is coming from which adds to the difficulty in determining who is not playing by the rules. These days, most people have no idea what’s higher…phone bills, gas prices, or their neighbors. It can be increasingly frustrating and irritating for unwillingly exposed residents as they often times will become combative with the office staff...

Posted by on in Apartment Maintenance
All too often, maintenance team training is sacrificed as the community can't bear to have them leave for training for a few hours.  But having a well trained maintenance team is critical to a well functioning property, both in handling maintenance issues currently and understanding preventative measures to reduce issues in the future to improve profitability.  During the NAA Education Conference and Exposition, I attended the Maintenance Training Roundtable, and they shared great tips on how to improve maintenance training, which when not done, also highlight how we are sabotaging their learning path! Don't provide the time.  Yes, maintenance emergencies occur, and our maintenance teams are also busy, as is, but it is critical to simply budget time in for your maintenance teams to make that training.  Yes, this issue affects our entire on-site team, but maintenance teams tend to bear the brunt of this scheduling problem. Don't provide hands-on training.  Many maintenance techs prefer to get their hands dirty and learn by getting the tools and equipment in their hands.  Finding ways to expand hands-on training will make a big difference in application of their knowledge. Don't provide computer use training.  More and more maintenance functions are being run through a desktop, tablet, or phone, so maintenance techs need basic training on these devices to effectively utilize new maintenance planning and tracking tools. Don't provide a computer dedicated to maintenance training.  While the community office often has multiple computers to support training courses, maintenance often doesn't have this luxury.  Considering...

Posted by on in Property Management
As the summer heats up, there’s nothing better than having easy access to a swimming pool. And not only does it keep you cool in the summer sun, having one on a condo building’s property can increase property values, attract potential buyers, and bring members of the community together to socialize. But with a pool comes great responsibility -- much of which falls on the HOA’s shoulders. Before your HOA installs a pool or opens an existing pool for the summer, consider a few things.   Maintenance Pools require permits and the HOA or property management company must be sure that those permits are up to date. It’s also the HOA’s responsibility to either perform daily maintenance or contract with a company to clean the pool and adjust chemicals. Lifeguards must also be hired and trained if you choose to have them available.   Setting Rules It’s important to have clear and clearly posted rules for your pool. Some HOAs write their own and others adopt them from town pools. Some rules to consider include requiring sign-in, forbidding glass containers, and requiring adult supervision for kids under a certain age.   Insurance Pools come with risk and must be properly insured. When purchasing a liability policy, your insurance company will ask a lot of questions about your pool -- whether it’s fenced, its posted hours, and whether there’s a lifeguard, among others. Your answers will help the insurance company ensure you’re properly covered. Some HOAs choose to have an umbrella policy...

Posted by on in Property Management
We all know the benefits of having apartment-wide events. They make residents feel a sense of community, which in turn makes them more likely to renew their leases and give good reviews of the apartment. And you can use images in your advertising and social media to attract more potential renters. Plus, they’re fun. So, why not spice things up? And, unless you’ve been living under a Pokeball, you know that the hottest smart phone game right now is Pokemon Go. It was recently released, and people are projecting that it might even become more popular than Twitter!  Read the entire blog: Why You Should Host a Pokemon Go Event...

Posted by on in Apartment Leasing
As a corporate trainer and motivational speaker I travel a lot for my business. In fact I like to say that I "commute via airplane." It has gotten to the point where I can identify what restaurants I want to eat in and where they’re located in a particular airport. I have also found myself wandering the gates of airports looking for a restaurant that I cannot find, and then realizing that I wasn’t in the airport I thought I was in! And while I travel on a few different airlines, my favorite tends to be Southwest Airlines. At first glance this may sound weird to you, since Southwest is known as a “low-fare” carrier, they don’t offer you assigned seating, the seats are all the same; a flight attendant once told me, “It’s all first class here!” There is nothing fancy about what they do, yet Southwest consistently tops flier satisfaction surveys, and continues to do well in a highly competitive industry. Why? I think Southwest continues to succeed because of these factors: They know what their customers want They give it to them They allow their people to have fun Let’s look at all of these items. The first 2 they know what their customers want and they give it to them. Southwest customers want low fares, free check-in bags, decent snacks, points that are easy to earn and redeem, free in-flight entertainment and a friendly crew. (Well, at least this is what I want!) So, Southwest gives it to...