Enter your email address for weekly access to top multifamily blogs!

Multifamily Blogs

This is some blog description about this site

Lifestyle Services: The Unsung Hero of Strong Property Performance

Lifestyle Services: The Unsung Hero of Strong Property Performance
In the battle to attract and retain residents, apartment communities – especially those of the Class A variety – have incorporated ever more elaborate on-site amenities.Many of today’s residents have access to fitness centers that are the equivalent of an LA Fitness or a Planet Fitness. They might be able to unwind in a rooftop lounge with dazzling panoramic views or socialize with friends in a pool area dotted with fire pits. Co-working lounges are not uncommon; neither are pet spas, package lockers and car washes, to name just a few once-unheard-of features. Some higher-end properties even have wine cellars.The purpose of these amenities is obvious: to build a community’s brand, to compel prospects to sign new leases and to encourage current residents to renew. In so doing, a community is then able to maximize revenues and NOI.But today’s apartment operators should realize that offering lifestyle services – things like dry cleaning, dog-walking, and house cleaning – is an effective way to achieve these goals as well.Building Resident LoyaltyThere’s no doubt that physical assets like fitness centers, business centers, swimming pools and appealing courtyards can help in the effort to convert apartment shoppers into apartment residents. In fact, today’s prospects typically expect a community to have these kinds of features and may not sign a lease if it doesn’t.But once they sign that lease, there’s a strong chance that today’s ultra-busy, overextended working professionals won’t use those particular amenities all that often - which can negatively impact their propensity to renew.However, lifestyle services, throu......
Continue reading
931 Hits
0 Comments

Your Online Reputation Could Be Costing You 5-6% in Occupancy


 

 55% of Residents Confirmed Reading Positive Online Reviews Led to Contacting a Community; Only 46% of Property Managers Manage Online Reviews Daily

 

According to a national study, 43% of residents stated a community rated at a 3.0 on a 5.0 scale was too low to be considered a desirable place to live, with the majority of residents focused on a community’s curb appeal, unit condition and rent price when writing an online review.

More break-down on how reviews are impacting renter-decisions and the factors that are considered when residents go to write reviews:

  • Over 90% of residents will read at least one review before touring an apartment.

  • Apartment condition, property curb appeal, and cost were the top three factors residents considered when writing an online review of their apartment community.

  • 55% of residents will either visit a property or contact the community for additional information after reading a positive review.

  • While 95% of property management companies found value in investing resources into managing online reviews, only 46% dedicated time daily to managing their online reviews.

 

 

Continue reading
3625 Hits
6 Comments

Showing Tenants Some Love - The Rise of Tenant Rewards & Perks Programs

Showing Tenants Some Love - The Rise of Tenant Rewards & Perks Programs
In recognition of Valentine’s Day tomorrow, we thought it would be fitting to discuss a clever new way for landlords and property managers to show their tenants some love.   A relatively new trend in the rental industry is the introduction of tenant reward and perk programs, whereby accommodation providers offer discounts, incentives, and prizes to their tenants.   Tenant satisfaction and retention are two central aspects of maintaining a successful rental housing business, which makes these reward programs an excellent way to help keep tenants happy. Tenant retention is a particularly tricky issue in student housing, as the average turnover rate is about 50% per year, according to Centurion Apartments.So what are some examples of these tenant reward programs?   While there are certainly no shortages of tenant reward programs that have popped up over the last few years, the following are a few of our favorites.  Killam Perks – Killam Properties operates several student housing locations across Canada which offer a program known as Killam Perks. Tenants receive a perks card which grants them access to discounts and special deals from a huge list of retailers.Our favorite offer at the moment? Save the tax at a fast-growing fresh food chain, Freshii.  MoolaPerks – One way or another, tenants have to pay rent; so why not get rewarded for doing it? RentMoola’s MoolaPerks program does just that. This third-party rent payment company allows their users the ability to be rewarded with a slew of discounts, freebies and perks from a plethora of retailers.Our favorite offer at the moment? A free $3......
Continue reading
3015 Hits
0 Comments

I Miss Apartment Living: 5 Things Would Be Homeowners Need to Know

I Miss Apartment Living: 5 Things Would Be Homeowners Need to Know
This month marks my second year as a home owner and I truly miss apartment living.  Buyer’s remorse? More like the apartment blues.  Don't get me wrong, I love my home but I jumped into things with all of the wide eyed exuberance of a first time buyer.  I had big plans for my new home; remodeling, painting, hardwood floors – the works.  Now that all of the work has been done and the newness is wearing off, the reality of what it means to own a home is overwhelming at times. Articles abound describing the pros and cons of renting versus buying and while arguments can be made on both sides, highlighting the cons of home ownership could sway residents into staying a bit longer at your community.  Beyond the move-out calculator, here are 5 things to impart upon residents who are considering the switch. 1. Maintenance – kind of a no brainer.  Maintenance is usually our go to defense when residents talk about home buying.  But let’s go a bit further.  Do residents have a full understanding of what entails a professional service call?  Plumbers, electricians and the like incorporate additional fees such as trip charges and diagnostic testing on top of labor and material costs.  Some companies often do not have the proper licenses and insurance coverage – things apartment residents may not know to ask. ACTION ITEM: Create an itemized list of costs associated with common household repairs.  2. Neighbors – where to begin.  If there is one sticking po......
Continue reading
5511 Hits
6 Comments

The Moveable Middle – Get off the fence already!

The Moveable Middle – Get off the fence already!
Dear resident, bless your heart but why do you wait until the absolute last day - 24 hours before your lease is scheduled to go month-to-month, to sign your renewal?  Do you know how absolutely aggravating that is? According to the 2015 SatisFacts Insite Pre-Renewal Index, residents 120 days prior to lease expiration gave the following answers when asked, “How likely are you to renew your lease when it expires?” 33% Very Likely 29% Somewhat Likely 22% Not Likely 16% I Don't Know So, one third say they are “very likely” to renew, check.   Another 22% seemingly have one foot out the door, got it.  That leaves 45% of residents who are undecided.  Let’s consider these residents to be our Moveable Middle.   Perched precariously on the renewal fence, these residents have the power to make or break your renewal efforts.  Can anything be done to sway their decision in your favor?  What exactly are these residents waiting for?  The Moveable Middle is waiting on management to make the first move – the renewal offer.  Once the offer is in hand, it’s their turn.  Accept or decline?  Stay or go?  We all know rents are going up – in some markets, way up.  Your residents know it too – in fact, they expect it.  And honestly, most of them are okay with it. You may be the most expensive community in the area or you may have the tiniest amount of leeway when it comes to concessions.  I say, OWN IT!  “Of cou......
Continue reading
2254 Hits
0 Comments

RX: A Prescription for Better Resident Service

RX: A Prescription for Better Resident Service
We are officially in the age of the customer. Why’s that? In the tech industry there are two things that you can count on when you build a great product: your competitors will (eventually) catch up with you and someone will come in at the bottom and disrupt price. Apple is no longer the only company out there that builds a “cool” smartphone. The same is true for multifamily housing—a new development rolls in and suddenly your community is no longer the only good option in town. Now, more than ever, customers are empowered and informed by a little thing called the internet... A potential resident knows everything about your property before they even think about filling out an application. They've seen your ratings and reviews on Google and Yelp. You can bet they've also Facebook-stalked your property to get an idea of what their future apartment and community looks like. I’m not joking—they know everything. This is why “customer experience” has become the sexy new term in the SaaS industry, and it's why “resident experience” or “RX” will have the same appeal in the multi-housing industry. Resident Experience (RX for short) is the sum of all experiences that your residents have with a community throughout the duration of their relationship with that community. Notice I didn’t say, “throughout the duration of their lease” — the RX begins long before residents sign their lease. Additionally, the focus of RX is all about the customer’s perception of those experiences. It doesn’t matter how well you think you are doing something—it's how your residents interpret the......
Continue reading
3903 Hits
2 Comments

Five is the New Fifty

Five is the New Fifty
Anyone who has a 5 year old cell phone knows a couple of things are true.  First, the phone is considered an “antique” and second, it’s not very “smart” compared to today’s standards.  A 5 year old cell phone simply can’t compete.  Yes, it may be able to take photos, but can those photos be edited, looped into a streaming video and posted for the world to see?  Can that older model view attached email documents, deposit checks into your banking account and most importantly, get you to level 400 of your favorite game? Over the next 24 months, new apartment communities coming to market will cause a major shift in our industry.  These communities will begin opening their doors and competing for residents, adding an interesting dynamic to current leasing and retention efforts.  Imagine a 5-year old community becoming a proverbial relic, a virtual has-been in the eyes of fickle apartment renters.  And if a 5 year old community is considered a dinosaur, what is to be made of a community which is 10, 20, or 30 years old?  Now is the time to shore up your retention program, strengthen the bonds of resident loyalty and close your back door.  Sure, there will be some residents who are swayed by the latest and greatest, those who have always wanted to be the first resident to live in an apartment home.  There will also be those who wouldn’t think of going anywhere and are truly happy with the things your community does have to of......
Continue reading
2112 Hits
2 Comments

The Post-Dated Notice To Vacate

The Post-Dated Notice To Vacate
According to urban legend, there are teachers who will address their students on the first day by stating “As of today, you all have F’s.  It is your job to work your way out of the cellar to the grade you truly deserve.”  Urban legend or not, I had such a teacher – AP English…senior year of high school.  For fear of a 25-year grade reversal, I won’t mention said teacher’s name.  Let’s just call him/her, The Professor.   The Professor was a piece of work; hard, brash, and unyielding in every sense of the word.  The Professor treated everyone as if we were already in college.  Students with excuses were often ridiculed and those who outright lied were made to exit the class altogether.  The Professor had extremely high standards and very little patience.  Everyone dreaded their daily encounter with The Professor and thought of graduation more like prison release day.  So, imagine the collective groaning when The Professor was tapped to represent the faculty and give a speech during the graduation ceremony.  The Professor, really?  In the past, the faculty representative was always the “popular” teacher, the one who got the most screams and cheers from the graduating class.  The year before, when my sister graduated, the faculty speaker quoted Run DMC.  That’s what we wanted – not some long, drawn out soliloquy by The Professor.   The Professor began with, “I want to open by stating three important facts.  Yes, I was tough.  Yes, I demanded a full effort from each and every one of you......
Continue reading
3948 Hits
6 Comments

Renewal Status: "It's Complicated"

Renewal Status: "It's Complicated"
A good friend of mine recently sent shockwaves through our circle of friends by changing the relationship status of his social networking page from “it’s complicated” to “in a relationship”. Now, you’d have to know him in order to understand why this was such big news to all of us. He is the epitome of a “non-committer” – the kind of person who floats from one thing to another; whether it be career, relationships – you name it. This man, my dear friend, is usually all over the place – jack of all trades, master of none. So, to affirm to the world that he had finally committed to something, or in this case someone, was truly phenomenal – and refreshing. For whatever reason, I tend to apply general life experiences to the property management industry. And this one is no exception. Imagine if your residents had to publicly declare their renewal status. Let’s say they were required to post a sign on their front door, choosing from the following options: “Weighing My Options”, “It’s Complicated” or “In a Relationship”. What percentage of your residents would commit with confidence, another year at your community? Would there be more residents on the fence? It’s no secret that residents are a fickle bunch. Some have no problem moving year after year, searching for the next deal or newest community in the area, despite the pain of moving. And with so many options available to renters these days, residents are hesitant to commit to another 12 months. Some even wait until t......
Continue reading
2188 Hits
0 Comments