With the rental market hitting its winter slow down, now is the time for landlords to take a moment and look at their tenant retention numbers and if not in place set up a tenant retention plan. With more inventory coming onto the market, often with new resident specials, it is imperative that landlords retain quality residents. When factoring in painting, cleaning, and leasing commissions average turnovers costs can be over $3700 per unit.
GB Property Management has created this quick list of tried and true ways to retain tenants. Using these tips the team at GB keep their tenant retention rates near 75%, well above the national average of just around 50%.
Customer Service & Communication
Many landlords and property management companies tout five-star service but what does that really mean? For residents the ability to easily communicate with the property management team whether is a question on their lease or a maintenance request is crucial. Prompt, courteous, and accurate answers and service are a sure way to keep residents happy. It is also imperative that all members of your staff have the right attitude, from the person taking the call (even if its an answering service) to the maintenance technician. Communication, even when a clear answer is not at the ready, also fosters good landlord/tenant relationships. Don’t keep tenants guessing and be sure to be proactive!
Residents that feel invested in the community are more likely to renew and will also take better care of your property. Landlords can foster community through events, a community newsletter, or virtual portal. There are several new apps and property management software options that promote tenant engagement.
In some cases, landlords may offer small concessions or a bit of an apartment facelift to retain a long term tenant. It is far less expensive to give an existing tenant a new appliance than it would be to renovate the full kitchen if they vacated.
Know Your Market
Knowing what your competition is offering is key when negotiating renewals. Perhaps even a “secret shopping” trip is in order to check out similar units and amenities. This knowledge will allow you to outbid the competition to keep your best tenants.