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We're Moving? Tips on the Transition

Whew! We’re now coming through another heavy leasing season for those of us in the multifamily industry, anyway. We’ve grabbed and garnered leases left and right. We’ve been able to hold onto a lot of current residents. We’ve gotten leasing bonuses and everyone is finishing up vacation time, even though we are secretly trying to harbor a couple of days to use at Thanksgiving for Black Friday or the holidays.   For me, I have noticed that the hardest “sells” have been those families with school age children. Honestly, it brought me back to the time when my husband was rapidly moving up the corporate ladder, which necessitated many different moves all across the country. I remembered that apparently my husband’s preferred method of informing his family that we were moving was to take us to a restaurant and make the announcement. It seemed his favorite restaurant to do this in was Pizza Hut. Probably because the kids loved the pizza there (and he did, too.) However, after the fourth time it happened, it kind of ruined the idea of going to Pizza Hut for me and the kids.   It has occurred to me that the actual moving experience does not have to be horrendous. It’s the fact that, if you are not the decision-maker, it can be very stressful. After all, if you’re the child, you really get very little input in the decision. Most of the time, your parents make the announcement and start discussing all kinds of......
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Can the Security Deposit Convert Into Additional Income?

Note:  This is a conceptual blog that does not account for legal ramifications – please seek legal advice before implementing. Many a shady landlord have tried to unfairly keep security deposits from their residents moving out, which is not only unethical and illegal, but also a guaranteed route to negative ratings and bad word of mouth.  But what if that money could be used for the benefit of the resident, as well as be a profit generator for the community? Ryan Green recently wrote about making the resident move-out experience a positive one, and one of his suggestions was essentially offering cleaning services to residents as a hassle-free option as they move out, allowing them to “pay” for the cleaning using part of their security deposit.  Not only is that a beautifully elegant way to provide value and ensure a clean apartment, but it also uses already spent money.  By allowing residents to use their security deposit, there is no additional cash outlay for that resident.  On the opposite side of the transaction, the community can either have its own housekeeping staff provide the service, or pay a 3rd party at a negotiated lower rate, thus earning the difference between the supplier cost and the amount charged to the resident.  Either way, a portion of that former security deposit gets converted into income. In this way, we stop seeing the deposit as money that is “stuck”, but rather money that can potentially be used on transactions.  And if those transactions can......
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