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10 Signs Your Property Management Company is a Success

While profitability is one great sign of success, there are also many other less tangible indicators that your property management business is doing well. Following is  a list of ten signs you’re running a good property management shop. How many items on this list apply to your business? 1. Your vacancy rates are low. Low vacancy rates can mean any one (and often a combination of) several good things: 1) that you’re doing a good job marketing your property to new tenants; 2) that you’re maintaining existing tenants; and 3) that your units are generally sought-after. 2. You receive new property management clients from referrals. In business, referrals are the sincerest form of flattery. When existing clientele are referring potential clients your way, it is a sure sign you’re doing things right. 3. You receive new tenants from referrals. Chances are tenants who are displeased with your property aren’t going to recommend your property to their friends. As with client referrals, tenant referrals speak kindly of your work and may also indicate that you’ve successfully instated a good tenant referral program. 4. Your tenants stay put. They like you, they really like you! As with all business, it costs far less to keep existing tenants than it does to find new ones. If your tenants tend to remain in your units for multiple lease periods, chances are you’re pricing your units right and making tenants feel well cared for. 5. Other property managers contact you for advice. While it’s nice to......
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This (new) American Life: mobile drives deeper relationship and experiences

Here are some interesting facts about the world of mobile and how it affects "this American life" (fyi...I am a huge fan of Ira Glass and WBEZ  This American Life  broadcast--which happens to cover this week people's fears of sleeping, including bed bugs) These stats were drawn direct from Pew Research: Nearly half of all adults (47%) go online with a laptop using a Wi-Fi connection or mobile broadband card (up from the 39% who did so as of April 2009) while 40% of adults use the internet, email or instant messaging on a mobile phone (up from the 32% of Americans who did this in 2009). This means that 59% of adults now access the internet wirelessly using a laptop or cell phone—that is, they answered “yes” to at least one of these wireless access pathways. The use of non-voice data applications on cell phones has grown dramatically over the last year. Compared with a similar point in 2009, cell phone owners are now more likely to use their mobile phones to: Take pictures—76% now do this, up from 66% in April 2009 Send or receive text messages—72% vs. 65% Access the internet—38% vs. 25% Play games—34% vs. 27% Send or receive email—34% vs. 25% Record a video—34% vs. 19% Play music—33% vs. 21% Send or receive instant messages—30% vs. 20% African-Americans and English-speaking Latinos continue to be among the most active users of the mobile web. Cell phone ownership is higher among African-Americans and Latinos than among whites (87% vs.......
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Net Neutrality, Digital Islands, Google Instant and what this means to your social and online efforts

We, in the United States, have been blessed for the last fifteen plus years of enjoying essentially free internet. As a business, a company could purchase a domain for a few bucks and upload some html and the business was "in business". Initially, we had some digital islands, or groups, like Compuserve and AOL that made you purchase access to their hubs. Then Yahoo, MSN and other free hubs came around and eliminated the need to "pay to play". We started to once again enjoying free access to explore and search the internet. And then we fell in love with Google. Google over the last ten years gave us the power to quickly explore the millions then billions of websites just by adding in a few key words to a search. This search became very powerful, so powerful that Google realized their ability to "sell" keyword searches and bought out groups like DoubleClick to better understand the people that clicked through. Adwords, Google's primary revenue source, auctions keyword phrases that made sense to business for a certain dollar amount and business, realizing the opportunity, gobbled it up and started hiring companies or people to handle their new online ad spend. Well, this happy marriage between Google and business continues, but then emerged social and mobile technologies.  During this time period, MySpace, Napster, Friendster and eventually Facebook sprung up and created social networks, or new versions of digital islands, to connect people to each other b/c of like mindedness. As you are......
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What are the top 5 ways to manage my leads?

Finger Pointing ManAlright... just one more time with the gimmicky top 5 title.  I promise.  For those that didn't read my post last week I talked about ways to generate more leads.  If you followed my advice you should now be seeing a significant increase in your web leads and any vacancy troubles have all but evaporated.  (Okay that might be overstating reality somewhat). I hope you'll come along with me over the next month or so while I talk about all the steps from lead generation to move-in.  I think I have some insights to offer and hope you will agree.  At the minimum I can help you waste 5 minutes now before you do something that might be considered important later.  Driving leads is nice but without a good way to manage them, working them can be difficult.  Today I'd like to ask you the following question: What are you doing to manage your current leads?  I hope by now everyone is utilizing a centralized structure for your lead management.  If you aren't here are just 2 reasons out of thousands why you should be: Where are your advertising dollars going?  Sure you can login to every ILS site you use (what are there 400 different ILS sites to choose from?  Sure seems that way doesn't it?) and look it up.  You can pull your reports in your accounting system but how accurate can those be?  If emails are going to each property's email address who is making sure they are......
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STOP ask yourself do you do your follow up calls or thank you cards?!?!?!?

  STOP ask yourself do you do your follow up calls or thank you cards?!?!?!?  By Jolene Sopalski Leasing Specialist WRH Realty Services If you answered no to that question then I want you to hold up your right hand and pledge the following “ I will  start following up with my prospects no prospect will go un-followed up”. Good now if you are one of the ones that said yes I do my follow up calls and thank you cards I want to give you a big hug so just picture me giving  you a hug.  Why are follow ups with prospects so important to you and your owners? They are important to us because our prospects are the key to our success in this industry with out them leasing our apartments there would be no need for us. So why would you let them walk out of your office and never make contact again with money? All to often we use the excuse there's just no time to follow up. I really don’t like hearing there is no time to follow up on a potential lease because that is our job. I want to share with you some tips on following up on prospects that will hopefully increase your leases, make your owners happy and make it easier for you to follow up.  Always keep in mined that you are not the only property that your prospect is looking at so you want  to stay in the game by......
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Social Media tip: Chicago Tribune article on how consumers find the home they love through social media.

Social networking tools like Facebook, blogs and Twitter can help keep home buyers connected with builders, real estate agents and what’s going on in a potential new neighborhood.

Social networking tools like Facebook, blogs and Twitter can help keep home buyers connected with builders, real estate agents and what’s going on in a potential new neighborhood.

Interested in how REAL real estate prospective buyers are finding the home they love through social media as well as wanting to learn ways companies in real estate are using social media and mobile applications to create compelling reasons for consumers to choose them over their competitors? Then please click here to read the full article published by the Chicago Tribune on Friday, September 10, 2010. In it you will find great tips and pointers from industry leaders including some from myself (Carmen Krushas: Fetch Plus). 

I hope these points help further your methods to marketing to those wishing to find their perfect (apartment) home!

 

 

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Mobile Application: marketing to the digital Do It Yourself (Prosumer) Group NOW

We love the do-it-yourself group. This is you and me going to the Home Depot and picking up our favorite gardening supply to either change up something easy and fast in the garden or home. We also are seeing more and more of this group springing up digitally, especially through smart phones and mobile applications. Quantcast, a company that directly measures more than 200Bn requests for internet content notes the significant shift from web based to mobile based applications in 2009 with trends pointing even greater shifts for 2010-15. This includes: North American mobile web share up 110% (Dec 09 vs Dec 08).  Given the mobile web islands that are being created because of apps (yes, mobile apps need to be considered singular digital experiences that separate users out of the internet and away from your websites--[which is a totally different yet very important discussion on how to market and maintain brand control in this new digital and non-internet world])  the do-it-yourself group (also called the Prosumer) seeks apps to control and maintain a "do it yourself" approach to their lifestyle, which includes everything from buying tickets for a favorite show, checking routes on which way to drive due to traffic crunches and/or determining where to eat because of other's feedback and even if the restaurant is at the moment too full or too empty. So, with that being said, the multi-family housing industry has a great opportunity to determine just what are those do-it-yourself applications they can build to ......
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Mobile Commerce Segment Growth: Things to consider prior to deploying a mobile application

 

The percentage of growth in mobile commerce applications is very healthy and very significant across all segments, and realizing commerce growth in certain segments helps the multifamily housing company determine how to properly keep their residents top of mind. Based off this graph provided by John Levett of Juniper, a multifamily housing application that makes sense to develop is one that offers residents the opportunity to engage with the apartment community about local events as well as the opportunity to pay rent through their mobile application.  As mobile app use continues to develop it is important to stay focused on consumer behavior usage of these apps and design accordingly.

Should you need further clarification on consumer behavior, please feel free to contact me direct at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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Fetch Plus: Mobile and Social Media Application Blog for Multifamily Housing

The apartment industry is getting very savvy towards employing social media and mobile marketing into their media/marcomm mix and why shouldn't they? The industry has a structured revolving door of customers coupled with the fact that they sell lifestyle, a perfect marriage when it comes to running positive returns from social media and mobile marketing efforts. 

In this Blog, you will find weekly (and spur of the moment) updates on mobile and social media tools that are becoming available (i.e. anyone here of augmented reality tools and how this plays into mapping and community tours?) as well as research on usage and redemption rates.

This blog will not discuss why you should be social, how to be social or other points addressed in other blogs regarding social media team level techniques as we specialize in mobile and social media applications.

Final note, we are builders of social media and mobile applications for the multifamily industry as well as the hospitality, membership, retail and real estate (residential and commercial) industries. We build both proprietary and commercial use apps for these industries.

To learn more about our company you can visit us at www.FetchPlus.com. To visit our company blog, please go to www.FetchPlus.posterous.com.

To contact me direct please email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by telephone at 312-985-7668.

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Affordable Housing: What is it? How can we, as Vendor/ Associates better serve the needs of these managers?

Affordable Housing: What is it? How can we, as vendor/ associates, better serve the needs of these managers? Recently, during a conversation I was having with a new Atlanta Apartment Association member, I was asked what exactly it means when someone refers to a Community as Affordable or Tax-Credit. This individual was under the impression that these properties were essentially low income properties in undesirable neighborhoods with like deferred maintenance issues! I am familiar with many communities which fall into the Affordable Housing category that are newer, attractive A properties in very desirable locations. I hope to shed some light on this important component to our industry. The difference between these Affordable/ Tax-Credit properties and their Conventional Market-rate competitors is that the developer/ owner of the property will receive a Low Income Tax Credit Benefit to provide housing to those earning below a certain wage. There are many variations of this; some properties may be 80% Affordable Units and 20% Market Units. Some properties may receive Government subsidies for the rent as assistance to its residents.  These communities are heavily regulated by HUD (Department of Housing and Urban Development) and by DCA (Department of Community Affairs) for their compliance within the legal guideline of the program. Many of the AAA Owner/ Manager companies across Atlanta and beyond manage Affordable Properties. A few of these are Aderhold Properties, Lincoln, Vista Realty Partners, Walton Communities, Signature Management, Ambling and Wood Partners who has management of some of their communities but also hire Third......
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