The most successful residential properties are the ones that don’t have to cycle through waves and waves of new residents every time a batch of leases is up. Indeed, one of the most important numbers to pay attention to when running a property is the rate of resident retention. Having a low retention rate means constantly needed to use resources to try to find new residents. Instead of getting stuck in that mess, it is often much more productive to simply find a way to make your residents happy enough to stay. Naturally, you will always have people who need to move after their leases are up, but it’s better if this number stays on the low side. Here’s some ideas on how to improve resident retention.
Put the effort into building a community experience
In a renters experience, there are few properties that offer a living situation where people truly get to know many of their neighbors. However, as landlords you have a very unique situation where you can bring people together to build more of a community experience. Try hosting some events for all residents to attend around the holidays (not on the actual holiday, though). In the summer, have events with fun activities for children to do, so that families can come together within your property. This type of community experience is desired by many, and they will continue to live in an area that can offer it to them.
Be available to address concerns
The most important thing you can ever know about customer service is that the primary thing that people want is to be listened to. Even when there are concerns that can’t be fixed with an easy solution, people appreciate it when another human being shuts their mouth for just one minute and opens their ears to actually listen. Setting up a pipeline that fulfills this desire lets residents know that you actually hear their problems, and that they are being considered as people. At the very least, have an email that people can send their comments to, and make sure that those emails are replied to in a timely manner.
Simply having refreshments for visitors to your office is a small gesture that goes a long way in people’s hearts. Many people are tempted to think of property managers as soulless shells of human beings who don’t really care. Doing something nice like putting out a plate of cookies reminds everyone involved that you’re just a person who can be talked with, like anyone else.