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What Incentives do your Residents have while moving?

It seems like everywhere I look I see advice on how to get residents into your property and how to keep them there.  What I don't see is articles about how to make an impact on your resident right after they sign the lease.  The period after they sign the lease and begin moving in is one of the most difficult times.  They have to go through the headache of moving, transferring all accounts, informing people of their new address, and then they still have to adjust to a new home.  Adding value to their life during this period may make more of an impact than any other time.  Here are some great ways to improve their transition:

·     ♦ Leave them a move-in present: Have a welcome package waiting on the kitchen counter for when they begin moving into the premises.  Contents of this package could include a package of water bottles, a change of address form, some snacks such as trail mix or beef jerky, picture frame hooks, etc.

·     ♦ Create a moving box recycling program: As residents move in, offer them the option of recycling their broken down moving boxes in your office. Over time this can become a ‘take a penny, leave a penny’ type of option for movers.

·     ♦ Contract with local small businesses: Talk to some local cleaning business, moving companies and truck rental business.  See who might be willing to offer some form of discount or compensation for referrals from your property.  Keep a list of these businesses to give to residents after they sign the lease.  Between having to clean a prior property and move into a new one, it can be quite a tiring ordeal.

The little extra you add to make their life easier when it is at its most difficult may make more of an impact than anything you can do during their whole residency.  What other ideas do you have that could help a new resident while they are moving in?

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Love the moving box recycling program!! And in general, this whole process is a huge value-add.

  Brent Williams
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Also, keep a "emergency box" of toilet paper, paper towels and soap in your office. Some people pack these up and can't find them. Have pizza delivered for them on move in day.

  Donje Putnam
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The emergency box is a fantastic idea. I know I've made late night trips while moving in to get supplies that weren't thought of before packing.

  Ryan Green
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I grew up in the moving business, so I learned a thing or two about the process. It is a stress-inducing experience. I provide coupons for child care through a licensed facility located right down the street from our community and boarding service for pets through the vet clinic also located nearby. These are offered weeks prior to move in day, so the future residents can check them out for themselves. They can then choose to use them or not. I personally do recommend the Vet because I used them too. We like to place a basket in the unit with some essential items, including a snack and water. Brent, we've offered recycling service here for years. Residents place their boxes outside their door as they unpack and we remove them for them. We offer the used boxes to others who may also be planning a move as well. I enjoyed this post.... Whatever can be done to lessen the impact of this event will only help the new Residents feel more at home.

  Mindy Sharp
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Instead of a move in concession; I have offered Wal-mart gift cards(usually $50-$100) as move in gifts so new residents can go and get those last minute essentials. Additionally; I have made sure that there is a 6pack of bottled water in the refrigerator, a roll of TP (important paper) in each bathroom, travel/trial size bottles of shampoo, soap and dish detergent. I also include a chew stick or toy for the furry resident; and a litter box for the cat.

I have even bought 'Entertainment' coupon books for the area through a local school. I buy 10-12 at a time, it benefits the school; and it gives the new resident options for food the first few days after move in. Nobody wants to THINK about cooking while moving!

When asked about move in specials (and they will ask); I say we have no move in specials, then I show them the kit of items that goes into each unit before move in. I do this when I do the final walk through inspection to make sure I am happy with the quality of the turn and make sure that all issues are addressed; This is done 3 days before scheduled move in without exception to give time to address any issues. I also have my exterminator do a preventive treatment 4 days before move in.

This is more memorable than a stinking move in special!!

  Johnny Karnofsky

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