by Theresa Bradley-Banta
Think about your current residents. Do you love having them as renters? Are you hoping they’ll stick around for a while? Happy residents will stay!
And think about the types of residents you want to attract. Wouldn’t it be great if you could perk up your marketing message? Position your community and building slightly ahead of the competition?
Here are some ideas:
It doesn’t take a lot of cash out of your pocket to offer inexpensive amenities like recycling or complimentary Wi-Fi. Use these upgrades in your marketing!
Keep the Building Clean
Community rooms, halls, entryways and laundry facilities can get dirty fast. How often do you visit your property? If you spring a surprise visit on your manager and residents you might be shocked to see how the property looks.
Some common areas need to be cleaned more often than others. Make sure your cleaning crew stays on top of it—especially the areas where your tenants spend time and money like the laundry room and vending areas.
Offer Enhanced Security
You can install telephone operated tenant entry systems without breaking your budget. Residents want to know they live in a secure building. This is also a big marketing point.
Install automatic lighting around the property exterior especially in parking areas and areas that are hidden from the main street—or off the beaten path. Make sure your residents are (and feel) safe.
Offer In-community Marketing
Do you have residents who are entrepreneurs? Why not create a (free) monthly flyer for resident marketing and advertising? This is a great duty for your on-site manager.
Host Apartment Community Events
Hosting tenant appreciation events like an ice cream social or a community barbecue will help create a feeling of community at your property. Ask your residents to invite their friends and family. Other events can include wine tastings, pizza parties or a simple “meet and greet your neighbors” gathering.
Encourage Resident Referrals
Reward your current residents when they tell their friends and family about the great place they live—especially when those referrals become new residents. Give your residents small cash rewards or gift cards for every referral.
Welcome New Residents
I love to give “welcome home” packages to new residents—and it doesn’t cost a lot. You can enlist local merchants for some of the goodies like discount coupons, 2-for-1 deals and free samples.
Include area maps, a list of local attractions, shopping and mass transit information.
Provide Responsive On-site Management
Hire a charming, accessible and affable on-site manager. Your residents will thank you!
Give Rewards and Bonuses
Reward a resident who consistently pays rent on time by giving them a gift that will enhance your property while also showing your appreciation. Things like water faucet filtration systems, ceiling fans, and new lighting make great gifts.
Give more expensive gifts like a new bathroom vanity or higher-end counter tops to your excellent long-term residents. This type of gift will enhance your property and make your resident happy.
If you decide to offer this type of unit upgrade make sure you are on top of what the current market is looking for. Don’t let your resident tell you what they want. For example, if wood floors are in high demand in your local market offer to remove the carpet and replace the flooring in one room of the apartment unit.
Talk to Your Current Residents
Ask your current residents what they love about your property and community. They may love things about the property that you’ve overlooked like big windows, extra-large living space or closets. This is great information to include in your marketing.
By doing these small things for your residents you will be setting your community up for best in class. Word will get around that you know how to keep happy residents!