Eight easy steps to better resident retention - Property Vista

June 02, 2016

Eight easy steps to better resident retention

What if there was a way to keep good renters around longer? Just imagine the returns; you’d reduce time spent seeking new prospects, cut back on advertising costs and enjoy a far more hassle-free approach to property management.

Here’s the great news: There is a way, and all it takes is following these eight simple steps!

 

  1. Choose Wisely. One of the best ways to keep renters around is to make sure they’re a good fit from the start. Pick people who are looking for a long-term commitment. Always run a credit report. In fact, why not use a system that integrates an automated credit check right into the lease application? Also screen for criminal records and check references. And consider asking for recent bank statements to ensure that rent payments were made on time and that applicants haven’t lagged on any service bills, like utilities, phone or cable.

 

  1. Maintain Good Relations (and Functional Faucets!). One of the top reasons tenants move is lack of prompt or competent maintenance. Deferring maintenance is a bad idea; not only does it risk poor resident retention, but it can also wind up costing you more money. For example, leaky faucets left too long can lead to water damage. Look into setting up a system to manage online maintenance requests. New technologies can now send an automated response so the resident knows their maintenance query has been received and can follow the status online. (Speaking of maintenance, it’s always a good idea to maintain appearances. A shoddy entrance or poor curb appeal can keep away prospective tenants, no matter how nice your property may look on the inside.)

 

  1. Be Responsive. If a resident complains about noise, smoke or other disruptions from neighbouring renters, respond right away and take timely action when necessary. If you don’t, you wind up enabling the “bad” tenants while alienating the good ones – those you actually want to stick around!

 

  1. Build a Community. People want to feel a sense of belonging in their home. Plan activities to bring residents together, like BBQs and movie or trivia nights. Keep renters in the loop —and cut down on paper—by sending event notifications though an online portal or social media (think Facebook pages); give residents an easy opportunity to connect, share stories and make plans.

 

  1. Go the Extra Mile. Let residents know you care. Send out regular e-newsletters with updates about the community – on and near your property. Promote building upgrades and upcoming events. You can even let renters know about sales at local stores. Also arrange automatic e-greetings to go out on residents’ birthdays.

 

  1. Improve Security. Good tenants care about their belongings and well-being. They won’t stay on your property long if they feel that either is threatened, so do what you can to keep them secure. Ensure that the front doors lock automatically, and consider gates at the main entranceway. Make sure the telecom system is in good working order, and look into video cameras. Good security gives tenants a reason to stick around; it also helps protect your property, reducing maintenance and repair costs.

 

  1. Watch Your Rent. Protecting your profit margin is one thing, but raising rent needlessly is a great way to chase away good residents. If your rent is already at or above market, keep it there. Only raise it if you’re below market.

 

  1. Take Proactive Measures. Regularly solicit input from your residents. Send out electronic satisfaction surveys – and pay attention to the feedback. If action is required, take it. (It’s also a good idea to ask departing residents if there were any issues that prompted their move.) Keep an electronic schedule of when leases expire, and set it to flag you 90 days before they’re up. For good tenants, approach them and offer to improve their unit with a clean carpet, fresh coat of paint or new air conditioning unit. Choose something that’s a smart capital investment; you’ll improve resident satisfaction while increasing your overall property value.

 

The Return of the Long-Term Resident

Nobody likes to move. Most residents will happily stay at one property unless something big comes along, like relocating for work or buying a house. Why not give your renters every reason to stay put?

For more information about the services and systems we can offer to help you improve tenant satisfaction and resident retention, sign up for your free account today.[:us]What if there was a way to keep good renters around longer? Just imagine the returns; you’d reduce time spent seeking new prospects, cut back on advertising costs and enjoy a far more hassle-free approach to property management.

Here’s the great news: There is a way, and all it takes is following these eight simple steps!

 

  1. Choose Wisely. One of the best ways to keep renters around is to make sure they’re a good fit from the start. Pick people who are looking for a long-term commitment. Always run a credit report. In fact, why not use a system that integrates an automated credit check right into the lease application? Also screen for criminal records and check references. And consider asking for recent bank statements to ensure that rent payments were made on time and that applicants haven’t lagged on any service bills, like utilities, phone or cable.

 

  1. Maintain Good Relations (and Functional Faucets!). One of the top reasons tenants move is lack of prompt or competent maintenance. Deferring maintenance is a bad idea; not only does it risk poor resident retention, but it can also wind up costing you more money. For example, leaky faucets left too long can lead to water damage. Look into setting up a system to manage online maintenance requests. New technologies can now send an automated response so the resident knows their maintenance query has been received and can follow the status online. (Speaking of maintenance, it’s always a good idea to maintain appearances. A shoddy entrance or poor curb appeal can keep away prospective tenants, no matter how nice your property may look on the inside.)

 

  1. Be Responsive. If a resident complains about noise, smoke or other disruptions from neighbouring renters, respond right away and take timely action when necessary. If you don’t, you wind up enabling the “bad” tenants while alienating the good ones – those you actually want to stick around!

 

  1. Build a Community. People want to feel a sense of belonging in their home. Plan activities to bring residents together, like BBQs and movie or trivia nights. Keep renters in the loop —and cut down on paper—by sending event notifications though an online portal or social media (think Facebook pages); give residents an easy opportunity to connect, share stories and make plans.

 

  1. Go the Extra Mile. Let residents know you care. Send out regular e-newsletters with updates about the community – on and near your property. Promote building upgrades and upcoming events. You can even let renters know about sales at local stores. Also arrange automatic e-greetings to go out on residents’ birthdays.

 

  1. Improve Security. Good tenants care about their belongings and well-being. They won’t stay on your property long if they feel that either is threatened, so do what you can to keep them secure. Ensure that the front doors lock automatically, and consider gates at the main entranceway. Make sure the telecom system is in good working order, and look into video cameras. Good security gives tenants a reason to stick around; it also helps protect your property, reducing maintenance and repair costs.

 

  1. Watch Your Rent. Protecting your profit margin is one thing, but raising rent needlessly is a great way to chase away good residents. If your rent is already at or above market, keep it there. Only raise it if you’re below market.

 

  1. Take Proactive Measures. Regularly solicit input from your residents. Send out electronic satisfaction surveys – and pay attention to the feedback. If action is required, take it. (It’s also a good idea to ask departing residents if there were any issues that prompted their move.) Keep an electronic schedule of when leases expire, and set it to flag you 90 days before they’re up. For good tenants, approach them and offer to improve their unit with a clean carpet, fresh coat of paint or new air conditioning unit. Choose something that’s a smart capital investment; you’ll improve resident satisfaction while increasing your overall property value.

 

The Return of the Long-Term Resident

Nobody likes to move. Most residents will happily stay at one property unless something big comes along, like relocating for work or buying a house. Why not give your renters every reason to stay put?

For more information about the services and systems we can offer to help you improve tenant satisfaction and resident retention, sign up for your free account today.

Leave a Comment

Jack Beaton Sterling Karamar, Property Management
Describe your experience in a few words

Property Vista Inspector app helps us to effectively manage all of our inspections.

What do you like the most about the software?

The app is very intuitive and ensures we do not miss any inspection