We are moving quickly through the leasing season, an important time for every property owner and manager. Have you capitalized on the increased activity that comes at this time of the year? Here are some things to consider:
Studies have shown that many tenants experience significant drops in satisfaction 3-4 months ahead of the renewal season. We all know that maintaining current tenants and limiting vacancies are among the most critical goals for every property manager. For that reason, maintaining high levels of tenant satisfaction is crucial.
The nationwide average cost to a property owner for every tenant that chooses to leave is about $3,900. Check out the Multifamily Insiders Apartment Turnover Cost Calculator to determine your actual tenant loss costs. Tenant retention should be your number one priority, especially during leasing season since it has a major impact on your cash flow and property asset value.
Maintaining tenant satisfaction is a year-round effort. Review service requests to determine patterns or areas of constant concern that you can address. Listen to tenant feedback, keep the lines of communication open, and work at building a healthy community environment.
There is never a good time to increase rent as far as your tenants are concerned, but lease renewal is one time where it is most anticipated. As we said before, retaining tenants is the number one priority, but you still have to make sure your rents are keeping pace with your costs. Increasing rents doesn’t have to result in tenant loss. There are things you can do to raise rents and still retain your tenants.
Now is the time to spruce up your property since traffic from prospective tenants should increase significantly. Walk the property from a tenant’s or prospective tenant’s point of view. Check for small cosmetic improvements that make a big difference in curb appeal.
Now might be the time for that overdue paint job. Prune shrubs and perform other landscaping chores. Perform preventive maintenance. Check your roofing, gutters, and downspouts. If you have a pool or barbeque, make sure they are clean and maintained. You want to ensure a great overall first impression for your property.
This is the season when most prospective tenants are out looking. Make sure you have the highest visibility possible so that your units get seen. Push for referrals from existing tenants. Do a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis of your property and that of your competition. Always be looking for ways to market your units, especially at this time of the year. Here is a link to a great video for more tips on how to market your property this season.
The leasing season is an opportune time to help secure your success. Make sure you are doing everything possible to take advantage of it.