Thank you for feedback Elliot! Great comments and we both definitely agree with Gene's post for cle...
Paul Mitchell
Thanks Donald, excellent points. An attitude of serving, helping solve problems rather than "selling...

Training Trivia

In which of the following situations should you cease follow-up with a prospective resident?

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302289806 [{"id":"232","title":"After three unsuccessful attempts at reaching them","votes":"28","pct":"26.92","type":"x","order":"1","resources":[]},{"id":"233","title":"When you hear from a competitior that they have leased with them","votes":"7","pct":"6.73","type":"x","order":"2","resources":[]},{"id":"234","title":"When they have told you they are putting off their move for a while","votes":"5","pct":"4.81","type":"x","order":"3","resources":[]},{"id":"235","title":"None of the above","votes":"64","pct":"61.54","type":"x","order":"4","resources":[]}] ["#ff5b00","#4ac0f2","#b80028","#eef66c","#60bb22","#b96a9a","#62c2cc"] sbar 200 200 /polls/vote/86-in-which-of-the-following-situations-should-you-cease-follow-up-with-a-prospective-resident No answer selected. Please try again. Thank you for your vote. Answers Votes ...
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Posted by on in Apartment Marketing
For my wife and I, attending an hour-long session at Church with our three little boys feels like trying to stuff three hungry octopuses - each born with extra limbs - into a torn mesh bag. Unless we do something to keep our boys busy but reverent, we feel like we’ve spent an hour at the gym instead an hour in Church. One of our go-to bribes to keep our boys busy during this time is their own fresh pack of Crayons and a brand-new superhero activity/coloring book. Our boys’ all-time favorite games in these books (and the ones that keeps them the busiest) are the decipher-the-message pages. For those of you who may have forgotten these little gems from your childhood, they’re basically messages that are encrypted using unique characters; one unique character represents a single letter or a sound. The messages are important to decipher because they help move the story along, or allow one to help the hero save the day. Without the key to the encryption, though, it’s almost impossible to decipher what the encrypted message says. Understandably, our boys will happily sit for hours while they decrypt messages, and then go further to write their own encrypted notes to us using the characters they learned from the game. Thinking about these games my boys play, I learned a lot about communication, as well as about life. Communication is (and really people are) similar to these encryption games. Everyone has their own unique key to the way they...

Posted by on in Apartment Marketing
A savvy and catchy headline may be the most important factor in getting a piece of content noticed and shared by readers. Internet users are notorious for having short attention spans and even if you have written the greatest article on the web, it does not mean people will see it or share it. According to surveys only 1 in 5 people make it past a headline and an even smaller percentage will actually read your article. In 2015 marketers have such a small window to grab a person’s attention that a well-crafted headline is of the utmost importance. Many sites have resorted to producing click-bait headlines which usually make a shocking or salacious claim that is nowhere to be found in the article. Click-bait headlines might get you some extra traffic, but your website will begin to lose credibility among your potential users and cause more harm than good. The headlines that grab the most attention and help bring readers into your content use numbers to demonstrate the value of what your post is about. Headlines with “Three ways to” or “Top 5” seem to draw people in and resonate with readers looking to consume and share online content. Remember headlines are one of the most important aspects of your content marketing plan, but do not trick your potential readers with false headlines. Instead write compelling headlines to improve your click through rates to boost search engine rankings!...

Posted by on in Resident Retention
a1sx2_Resized_Star-Wars-Renewal-fEjuBba.jpgI have never seen anything like this before - Customizing your renewal incentive specifically to the needs of that particular resident!  I can't imagine it would be practical for widespread use, but I thought you all would get a kick out of it. Apparently the property manager has realized that the resident has a LEGO obsession!  What a great renewal letter.   Source: "My landlord knows me too well..."...

Posted by on in Property Management
employee recognitionAll too often, the preparation teams at our properties aren’t recognized for their efforts to clean the common areas, care for the grounds and prepare apartment homes for new residents. Housekeeping and Maintenance teams are the backbone of every Property Management staff.  Emphasizing and recognizing the efforts of staff through out the community creates ownership. The Hospitality Model The hospitality industry incorporates this recognition with comment cards  left in guest rooms and signed by the housekeeper.  For apartment communities a welcome letter signed by maintenance, housekeepers and any contractors who participated in the turnover preparation of the apartment home can initiate this recognition. Included in the Welcome Move In Package should be a Team Introduction Letter.  The letter including pictures of the entire team must be revised with any staff changes.  With pictures of the team listing names, years of service and a tip or quote offers a personalized note. Posting a photo card in each hallway with the tag line, “This hallway is professionally cleaned for you by ….”  Offers another opportunity to recognize the housekeeping crew. Knowing Who To Expect I recently experienced the inconvenience of having my luggage delayed on a flight.  When my luggage was located, I received an email telling me the plans to deliver my luggage with photos of the delivery person and the vehicle.  Wouldn’t this be an awesome customer service tool when residents request after hours service! Including a column or post in the community newsletter from the housekeeping, grounds or maintenance team is...

Posted by on in Multifamily Training and Career Development
Change is hard and many of us hate it. It doesn't matter what the change is, we hate when things we are comfortable with change on us and naturally we fight it. However, if we have fair warning, or if it is something that we want to change we accept it. For some of us it is harder to adopt change than others, but there is a way to help get buy-off when a change is taking place. In the multifamily industry there has been a common thought of "If it works, why change it?" and this has plagued the industry and caused it to fall behind on the use of technology. As we start to see more change occur in the industry, the people that you need to adopt the change are those that are working in the trenches. If you want to be truly successful using a new technology you need to have the property staff buy-off on the change. Although nothing is perfect I have found that following ideas can lead you to have a great deal of success in getting change management to occur. 1. Ask the opinion of your staff. Many times decisions are being made at an ownership or corporate level, but this can cause a disconnect between the properties and the corporate leadership. When you ask your staff what they think would improve workflow or improve their job it can pay dividends when it is time to implement a new process or technology. When your staff feel like what they have to say...

Posted by on in Apartment Leasing
You work hard to make sure your community’s exteriors and model units look great. But what about your leasing office? In most cases, the leasing office is the first indoor location a potential renter will see. If it leaves a bad first impression on renters, they’ll probably opt to rent elsewhere. Don't let a chaotic leasing office be a deal breaker for renters! Keep your leasing office in great shape with these four tips. Straighten Up A messy leasing office can be a big turnoff to potential renters. When Rachel the Renter walks your leasing office and is greeted by a disorganized mess, she’s probably thinking to herself, “my rent check and maintenance requests will probably get lost in one of those messy piles too.” Tidy up the leasing office at the end of each day, and remind your staff to clean up after themselves in common areas, like the printer and kitchen. Keep Things Fresh Potential renters don’t want to smell that tuna sandwich your leasing agent ate for lunch yesterday. Make sure your leasing office always smells fresh! For starters, be sure to take out the trash every day. Then, pick up an oil diffuser or, bring in a bouquet of fresh flowers to freshen up the office and bring a bit of springtime indoors. Offer a Treat In many cases, potential renters have been out and about touring apartments all day. Help them recharge with a small snack. Providing treats doesn’t have to be an expensive endeavor. Bottled...

Posted by on in Social Media and Technology
According to the Pew Research Center, 26% of all online adults use Instagram. The photo sharing network is even more popular with younger adults, with 53% of adults aged 18-29 using Instagram. Why should you care? Because your current and prospective renters are using Instagram, too! Want to reach more renters on Instagram? Here are five things NOT to do. Post Images That Are the Wrong Size Let’s get back to the basics here, folks. Instagram photos are square. If you attempt to post a rectangular image, the photo will be cropped. That means a key element of your photo may get cut off. Post images that are 640 pixels wide by 640 pixels high to ensure your photos look great on all devices. Make It All About You Yes, your apartment community is a wonderful, beautiful place to live. But people will get bored if you’re constantly posting pictures of your apartment building. Instead, mix things up to keep your audience engaged. Keep things interesting by posting photos of: Resident events Staff Pets that live in your community The surrounding community, such as restaurants and parks Ways you’re supporting the community, such as a photo of a canned food drive you organized in your apartment community Forget to Post So you’ve created an Instagram account. Great! But that’s only the first step. If you don’t post regularly, people will lose interest and will stop following you. Make a commitment to post on a regular basis. Once a week is a great...

Posted by on in Apartment Marketing
With March Madness on everyone's mind, it's got me thinking; creating a winning college basketball team is a lot like creating a successful SEO campaign. In college basketball, teams need a great point guard to be the foundation of their team. A great point guard can make the perfect pass to the big guy down low, knock down the clutch free throws at the end of the game, break the press, and be the coach on the floor. With a successful SEO campaign, your keyword research is your point guard.  It is the foundation in which your SEO campaign should be based. As the old saying goes, “If you’re not targeting the right keywords, you might as well not be targeting at all.” Okay, so I made that one up, but there are a few tricks to follow to make sure your game plan for keyword research is successful: 1. Feed off your crowd energy; see what people are talking about.  The best basketball teams will use the crowd to give them momentum to win a game, especially during a home game (your SEO campaign should always feel like a home game). Good keyword research can also use the crowd through social media. Twitter search is a great tool to see if anyone is talking about your product or company. Another great place to look is industry specific forums. Often people using forums have no other objectives than to start a conversation, or learn new things about the your industry. 2. Be creative. Good...

Posted by on in Student Housing
Student renters are somewhat of a unique breed of tenants. Quite commonly, they have unique needs and don’t have any rental or credit history, which can make the screening process more difficult. To help landlords with this process, we’ve compiled a few tips for screening prospective student tenants.Considering most rental inquiries will come via telephone or email, a landlord can have a set of questions prepared for potential tenants to save time. In addition to the standard questions a landlord will ask such as name, contact information and preferred move-in date, the landlord should also get more detailed. The tenant’s responses could potentially disqualify himself or herself immediately. For example, if a landlord operates a non-smoking or no pet rental, it would be beneficial to ask right away if the tenant has a pet or smokes.   Landlords should also ask more student specific questions. These questions could include:   Do you already have a roommate or people you plan to move in with? How long of a lease are you looking for? When does your school term begin?   These questions are of equal importance in the prescreening process. For example, if the student renter is only looking for a one-term lease (5-6 months), but the landlord wants a one-year commitment, this wouldn’t be the best tenant. Also, if the student’s term begins in January, but the landlord needs to fill the rental for September, this also won’t work.   Most landlords ask for a credit check and previous landlord references. While these...

Posted by on in Apartment Marketing
It’s Monday at 7:00 am and, in a panic, I shoot out of bed realizing that I didn’t change my clock to spring forward. Take the world’s quickest shower, decide my hair is fine, throw on some clothes (don’t worry, they look great, I am in marketing after all), run out the door. Run back in because I remembered that I didn’t pack my son’s lunch. Out again and my day is off and running. Working with 100+ properties, there are a zillion things to do when I walk in the office. Okay, maybe not a zillion, I don’t even know if that’s a real number, but it’s a lot. So what exactly do I do? I work with everything digital marketing related. In essence, how our company and our properties look and feel to everyone online, and how can I get more people to find us. My days consist of emails, projects, Facebook, ratings and reviews, Google, lead tracking issues, vendor partners, checking ads, checking copy, Craigslist issues, photo updates, property questions, oh, and emails. Did I mention emails? The majority of our properties are out of state and I can't just drive around the block. There are days when I send out more emails than I can imagine and typically receive way more than that. “My Craigslist ads are getting flagged, help!” “Can you update my specials, help?” “Why are the photos not correct on X website, help?” “Online leasing isn’t working, help.” “How can I get more traffic,...