Property Managers love lease renewals and work hard at securing and maintaining long-term tenants because they want to avoid low-vacancy rates and high turnover, so it’s essential that they work on building a stable and successful business where tenants will want to renew their lease.
But recently, renewal rates have been declining this is, in part, due to the apartment industry boom (post-recession). New multifamily units are on the rise, and apartment complexes are being built at a fast rate. While that means more housing options for tenants, it means more competition for your property managers. With so many multifamily units out there it’s easy for tenants to venture on and relocate.
A good way to avoid your tenants wandering off is to promote and work on your relationship with them, as well as tenant/tenant relationships. As a property manager, you’re busy managing other multifamily units, it’s hard to build one-on-one relations with each tenant, knowing that, some property managers will organize small events and get-togethers at their complexes because it is a great way to form relations and bring residents together. If you’re managing multiple complexes, hosting events can get expensive, and that might not be an out of pocket expense you want to make. Property managers build relations and show appreciate other ways, too. There are a variety of inexpensive ways to show your appreciation to your tenants, but I’ll get to that a little later.
The price of new tenants
Finding and acquiring new tenants to fill your multi-family units gets expensive! The cost of making your property/units ready-to-rent, finding repairs that need to be made, and getting the apartment cleaned, and marketing your properties can cost you a chunk of change. Remember, when the tenant moves in that’s when the unit will be in its best condition. During the first couple of months, the tenants will find all sorts of small items that need repairs or need to be cleaned, and that’s because they’re new to your unit and notice everything doesn’t work properly. Since they’re new to your unit, the issues you might have deemed minor are big to them. Getting those issues resolved will might cost you time and money, but by responding quickly to your tenants’ concerns you’re forming relations with them, and your tenants will begin build trust in you, and if tenants can trust/rely on you they’ll be more inclined to renew their lease. As the tenant gets more comfortable in the apartment they’ll stop noticing issues, or begin to ignore them, and a tenant who stays in your unit for a few years will have fewer maintenance requests (saving you money). Retaining tenants only saves you money, and that means your tenants are comfortable and happy living in your units.
Keep your tenants happy and they’ll be yours
Tenants want to feel appreciated, happy, and comfortable in your unit; if you keep your tenants happy and content they’ll be more eager to renew their lease and refer your property to other prospective renters. The last thing you would want to do is discourage tenants from renewing their leases; you can avoid that by being timely at responding to tenants needs, good at following through and fulfilling promises. Plus, content tenants will be more inclined to refer your property to other prospective tenants. But, if you don’t work to meet the needs of tenants they may explore their options, looking for a newer unit to rent from with a more responsive, dedicated property manager. Since there is so much competition out there, unhappy tenants can easily find a property to rent from. Poor managing skills will lead to low-quality renters, in turn, will make your property look undesirable. Finding ways to keep tenants feeling appreciated is not hard to do. It may cost you a bit of out of pocket money, but a small investment in customer relations will pay off in the long run.
Inexpensive ways to retain tenants
Earlier, I touched on the idea of organizing an event for your existing tenants, but that might end up being more money than you want to spend. There are plenty of budget friendly ways to incentivize existing tenants to renew their lease.
- Creating incentives to offer your tenants is a smart way to encourage tenants to renew their lease. Four months prior to a tenants move out date send a letter offering special pricing.
- Give tenants a discount on their first months rent for the next leasing year
- If you’re planning on increasing the rent, create a special renewing rate for tenants for renewing tenants only
- These discounted rates might seem like you’re losing money, but in the long run you’re actually saving money.
- Tenants want their voices to be heard, and if they come to you expressing concerns or need an issue resolved, it’s important to respond as quickly as possible. No matter the size of the problem, a door that won’t close properly, a leaky faucet, or problem with the plumbing–make sure the issue is taken of care of in a timely manner, and then follow up! Following up with your tenants makes them feel valued, and that their voice was heard.
When you’re giving tenants a gift to show appreciation, you can use that interaction to gage whether or not your tenant will be renewing their lease, to see if their content in the unit, and if they’re leaving you might try convincing them to stay.
- Giving your loyal tenants a “thank you” card, as a method of showing appreciation is thoughtful, but it doesn’t leave too deep of an impression on your tenants, and it will most likely not be hung on refrigerator.
- You could give them a $5-10 gift card to Starbucks, but if you’re managing 3-5 complexes with hundreds of tenants is not going to be cost effective, and the tenant will receive little value.
- So, what can you give them that is within budget, has a long lifespan, and keeps the customer feeling rewarded for a full year? A Fastlane Savings Customer Appreciation Card is a gift tenants will really appreciate, and know you really appreciate them.
The Fastlane Customer Appreciation Card
Property managers are spending more money on purchasing less valuable gifts like calendars, magnets, gift cards for their new and existing tenants to show appreciation when they could be selecting our Customer Appreciation Discount Card. Our customer appreciation card is a win-win for you and your tenants. It’s far less expensive than a gift card, especially if you have couple hundred tenants that you’re buying for. The Fastlane Customer Appreciation Card is the ideal gift to give to your loyal tenants.
Our card provides customers 10-50% off in discounts at popular merchants around the nation. Users will have access to discounts on shopping, dining, movies, car rentals, and hotels–on the road! Once the card has been activated, they’ll receive discounts for a whole year! The best part is, the user doesn’t have to bring the card with them to save. The deals are accessed through the mobile app (Fastlane Savings), and the website (discounts.fastlanesavings.com). Each card has a unique code printed on the front. Once the code has been activated on our website, the discounts will be available for a full year on our mobile app. With the app’s built-in GPS feature, users can find deals nearest them, and on the road! The user can access the discounts a few ways:
- Through the Show your Phone and Save app
- By printing the coupon at home
- Online purchases
So, what are more benefits your customers will enjoy?
- Discounts from 10% to 50% on shopping at popular merchants. Up to 250,000 locations nationwide.
- Discounts with over 400 national brands and thousands of local merchants!
- Savings on dining at many of your favorite restaurants! From your favorite nationwide chains to local, independant eateries.
- Customers will have access to the Travel Engine on our website. This feature offers killer discounts on hotels and car rentals.
The customer appreciation cards work great as a referral card, too! Our cards are custom designed with your logo, and are printed on high quality, 30 mil durable plastic (in full color) to match your branding!
Your tenants have helped your business grow, now it’s time you thank them with a Fastlane Customer Appreciation Card.