Resident retention is normally the forgotten element in property management, while the art of apartment marketing and leasing to new prospects is still studied, sliced, diced and pureed by the apartment industry to find optimal strategies of getting people in the door. Actually, the better a community is at apartment marketing and leasing, the more it could mask its shortcomings on the resident retention side. So much effort is manufactured on the leasing side of the business enterprise our front line troops are called “Leasing Professionals.” Focusing on Leasing is not a negative idea; however, neglecting the other half of your organization can alienate your residents, cause high turnover, and severely impact your important thing.

That is more important: Resident Retention or Apartment Marketing?

When we discuss the value of Resident Retention, it is not to state that apartment marketing isn’t also quite crucial. In other words, to improve retention, we ought to not sacrifice leasing. That said, an increase in retention is vastly more beneficial than an increase in leasing. This should not be considered a surprising concept. When you compare a new resident to a preexisting resident, the existing resident is much more profitable, with hardly any make-ready costs no loss due to vacancy. Additionally, a long-term renter is a lot more prone to refer friends and coworkers when compared to a new renter would.

When you see the difference in profitability between your two groups, it is shocking how much more we devote to prospects. While prospects and new residents get the good thing about cheaper rent and extensive marketing, existing residents, those who pay the bills, often obtain the short end of the stick. This difference can lead to alienation of one’s current residents, a situation you should strongly avoid.

How come resident retention not on the radar?

Even though we all understand the concept of resident retention, surprisingly little is known about how to accomplish it. Therefore, most communities elect to either ignore it all together or choose methods that not achieve the expected goals. Let’s first consider a few of the most typical mistakes made in current retention “techniques.”

Customer Service and Maintenance

Let me be clear relating to this: Customer service and maintenance are NOT resident retention programs. We constantly hear how important these two items are, that is completely correct. However, rather than going above and beyond, these items are an expectation, not a perk. Specifically for Class A and Class B properties, residents do not see strong maintenance and customer service as a luxury item that they should be impressed with. They instead see these items as a required part of living at your community. Look at a restaurant advertising that its food is served warm. Isn’t that expected at a restaurant? And when this is the best trait the restaurant can provide, would you really expect the food to be that great? For a community to advertise a feature that should be standard, they’re actually implying that the rest of their service isn’t too impressive!

The infamous summer party…

Summer parties can be quite a fun perk, but are rarely an excellent investment. To start with, summer parties could be very expensive if food emerges, generally ranging from $1,500 to $3,000 for a 300-unit community. Ironically, you cut costs when you get yourself a low resident turnout at these events. Imagine the price if 100 percent of your residents attended! However, more than likely, you’ll only have around 25 percent of your residents show up. Of those, it’s likely that no more than 25 percent has a lease coming up to create the feeling on the renewal decision. Therefore, you are impacting only 6 percent of one’s “target audience.” This implies for the average community of 300 units, you are spending roughly $2,000 to attain 18 residents – that’s $111 per resident! Even if the party influences a few others that renew later in the year, investments in these parties usually do not justify the reward.

So what are some programs we can implement?

For starters, know your community. Fair Housing laws limit how much demographic information we are able to keep about our residents, but you should at least have an idea of the different faces of one’s community. Additionally, instead of having one giant one-size-fits-all party, it is possible to coordinate several smaller, targeted parties over summer and winter. Ki Residences Singapore Having more frequent parties allows you to target different demographic groups in your community at different times instead of “putting all of your eggs in a single basket” approach of large summer events. Spacing these events throughout the year will also guarantee your events coincide with all your residents’ renewal periods, this provides you with you the biggest impact possible. Here some ideas that can you can explore that are less costly:

Older Residents

Bridge or Mah Jongg Night
Dinner Rotation – This is often quite popular! Have an indicator up period for singles or couples. These groups then take turns rotating among their apartments hosting small dinner parties for every other.
Singles Crowd
Poker Night at the Clubhouse (for prizes rather than money)
Networking Night
Dance Classes
Sporting events
Children Friendly
Ice Cream Social
Kite Day
Scavenger Hunt
Also, remember that you have purchasing power! Most events around town offer group rates you can transfer to your residents. This may make them feel part of an exclusive club with money saving deals all the time!

The continuing future of resident retention

Have you heard the word “Resident Portal?” In the event that you haven’t, continue reading! A Resident Portal is actually a website for your residents, adding a true social element to your community – contemplate it a “digital clubhouse.” In the event that you haven’t noticed, the vast majority of residents have a social presence online. Resident Portals take that concept and merge it with traditional apartment properties to produce a true “community” environment. A simple Resident Portal carries a community calendar of events, utility sign-up features, maintenance requests, and online rent payment. However, several resident portals offer much more in terms of a community social experience. These expanded resident portals range from about $125/month to $200/month for a 300 unit community, meaning you can aquire a whole year of service for exactly the same price of one summer party. When done properly, resident social interaction can create strong emotional bonds in the middle of your residents, resulting in impressive improvements in your retention rates.