Eight Ways to Win Residents Over
By Priyanka Agarwal, J Turner Research
By hosting regularly scheduled community events brimming with “great food” and making an effort to greet each resident by their name, apartment operators can earn great reviews.
For property teams, it is delightful to receive a four- or five-star review and enjoy the boost such reviews give to the community’s online reputation. Residents may compliment a friendly staff, prompt maintenance service, first-rate amenities and more.
As you strive to win over residents, consider these eight aspects of apartment living that individuals often commend and talk about favorably in positive reviews.
1. Regularly scheduled community events brimming over with “great food” are a big hit! Residents view these social opportunities as a way to encourage community spirit. Cooking classes, back-to-school events, Fourth of July parties and food truck visits are examples that residents have called out in reviews.
2. An ideal way to demonstrate that you are genuinely interested in your residents is to make an effort to greet each one by their name. Additionally, it is important that your staff assists them when they need it the most. (You may not have another opportunity.). Here is some of the feedback that occurs when that happens.
“Earlier during the year, I had a car accident, and (…) went above and beyond to help me on more than one occasion.”
“I've lived here a little over a year and I have had a very positive experience with (…). The staff in the Leasing Office and the Maintenance crew are so nice and helpful, and they even know me (and my dog) by name!”
3. Property teams in family-oriented communities can go the extra mile to make children feel welcome and cared for. Here are is some of the feedback from delighted parents.
“They are always friendly and the manager at my location is always asking how my kids are and even let my daughter and her friends help with little stuff around the complex to make them feel welcomed in the complex.”
“Absolutely love the staff here very friendly and helpful. Any time were at the pool the ladies always come out an offer the children popsicle! Like ohhh yessss!!! Not to mention these ladies/gents always get creative when planning events for the community. My kids adore (…) as she always spares a moment of her time to talk and play with them.”
4. Win accolades from new residents—especially those coming from other states—by guiding them throughout the entire process to make their move-in more convenient and comfortable. Here is a response from one new resident.
“Out of state move-in was painless, everything was as described, the staff was always there to answer questions.”
5. Ever considered throwing a welcome party for new residents and offering a gift to each new resident? Online reviews show this idea is a real winner. Residents also notice every little step you take to help them during move-in. For instance, a resident generously complimented the leasing office staff for providing her access to a cargo garage.
6. Residents are grateful when management keeps packages on their behalf. If this process is inefficient or inconvenient for the resident, you will hear about it in an online review.
7. Show that you care about the appearance of the community—clean hallways, mature landscape, green grass and well-maintained roads—are acknowledged in resident reviews as reflective of a caring management.
8. Consider some “extras,” such as a car wash station, movie theatre, conference room, pet wash station and a walking trail, which can earn an outstanding feedback for a property. Be careful, though, to ensure that it's functioning at all times or it can lead to unfavorable reviews.
It’s critical to remember that residents often submit reviews when they are exceedingly satisfied or sorely disappointed. It all comes down to how they view your commitment to them and their needs. A little love can go a long way.