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Resident Retention Ideas

Hello, property and potential property owners! Welcome to the RPM Distinguished Care blog, where we provide practical advice about property management! If you’re a return visitor, welcome back. We sincerely appreciate your support! RPM Distinguished Care specializes in managing successful rental properties in and around the Charleston area. We’re here to make your lives easier by giving you the resources you need to maximize profitability and have a successful rental property. We provide comprehensive property management services at every conceivable level. From advertising and marketing, to responding to applications, to inspecting and maintaining properties–there’s nothing we do not do. Further, we ensure tenant compliance, handle necessary evictions, and report directly back to you about revenue and profit potentials. We aim to make owning rental property as easy for you as possible, for as little money as possible. Check out the rest of our site to meet our team and discover what makes RPM Distinguished Care the best property management company in Charleston!


In our last article, we discussed rental property renovations that add value and/or increase your return on investment (ROI). Renovations improve the look of your property and make the space more appealing to potential renters. These renovations included things like adding a bedroom, upgrading the kitchen, adding amenities, and more. If you are interested in learning about the ways you can add value to your property and attract and maintain tenants, we encourage you to check out our last post!


Today, we’ll be talking about resident retention ideas! As a rental property owner or property manager, one of your biggest goals is undoubtedly to attract and retain good tenants. Tenant retention rates measure the number of tenants that stay at your property for multiple rental periods. Tenant turnover just might be one of the most expensive parts of the rental business, but it is a great way to track your growth and progress as a landlord. Once you fight a great tenant, you can’t stop there– You’ll want to keep working hard to make sure they stick around. Otherwise, you’ll have a vacant property, and that means a loss of profit. Luckily, there are some easy ways you can increase your resident retention! If you’re interested in finding out how you can encourage tenants to stay long-term, you’re in the right place. Let’s get started!


Cultivate a Relationship With Tenants


One of the best things you can do to increase resident retention is to be personable. Introduce yourself to your tenants and make them feel comfortable. Consider creating a “welcome packet” for new tenants. Whether available for digital download or printed off as a physical copy, put all of the information your tenants need in this packet. Include multiple ways that they can contact you, such as an office phone number, cell phone number, and email address. Are you open to letting tenants text you? If so, let them know that, or emphasize that you prefer calls over texts. Let them know what to do if they are in need of a maintenance request, where they can pay their rent, and list amenities that come with the rental space, if applicable. If necessary, remind them of particular rules that you feel are most important. You may repeat some information that can be found within the lease, but this will save the tenant time and give them a more convenient way to access certain information. You can also provide instructions on how to set up utilities, if applicable. If you feel that a packet of information is too much, consider a simple welcome letter! This letter should still include your contact information. If a tenant contacts you, be sure to respond to them in a timely manner– Prompt communication is key! Additionally, you may consider reaching out to new tenants after a few weeks to check in on them. This will show them that you are a landlord who truly cares about their tenants. 


Invest In Maintenance


Keeping up with maintenance requests is essential for any rental business. This probably goes without saying, but tenants generally do not want to wait a long time for a repair. As mentioned above, prompt communication is one of the keys to a happy tenant! Respond to your tenants’ needs as soon as you can, and stay in contact with them throughout the maintenance process. Let them know what is going on and when repairs are expected. It is also important to be proactive in scheduling routine maintenance as needed, as this can diminish the need for emergency repairs and will save you money in the long run. Putting effort into your rental property shows your tenants that you care about their experience, and they will remember that when the time comes to renew their lease.


Send Out Surveys


Every so often, you may want to consider sending out a survey to tenants. Ask them to rate their experience so far in different areas, including maintenance, rent collection, and customer service. Offer a space where they can write their thoughts, comments, or concerns. Ask them what can be improved– And don’t be afraid to receive constructive criticism! Allow them the option to submit the survey anonymously, which may make them more likely to complete the survey. If your budget allows, you may also want to offer an incentive such as a $10 or $15 gift card to a local restaurant that will be rewarded to tenants after they show proof of completing the survey. An easy way to set up an online survey is by using Google Forms or a website like Survey Monkey. You could also send out surveys through the mail if you wish. If a tenant is moving out, send out an exit survey asking why they’re leaving, what they were satisfied and dissatisfied with, and any recommendations they may have. Knowing how your tenants feel will help you identify any changes that need to be made to the property or to the way the property is managed, and can improve your tenant retention rate.


Offer Incentives


It is no secret that people love incentives. As the end of a tenant’s current lease approaches, they will likely be deciding if they want to stay in the property. If you have a great tenant that you would love to have renew their lease, you’re going to want to keep them around! Of course, there are always outside circumstances that may influence a tenant’s decision, such as job opportunities or out-of-state family members. Regardless, you still have a chance to win them over. Consider offering an incentive such as a discount on the first month’s rent after renewal. This incentive can be altered in any way you’d like, whether it’s a discount on the first three months of rent on the new lease, or waiving a pet fee for the next month, if applicable. Another idea is to partner with local businesses, such as cafes or gyms, to give tenants a gift card, discount, or special promotion if they decide to sign the new lease. Not only can this encourage the tenant to stay, but it also serves as a “thank you” from you to them! It shows that you care about your tenants and that you appreciate their business. 


Utilize Technology


With technology being a huge part of our lives, it is important to utilize it whenever possible. Technology is supposed to make our lives easier, so make life easier for your tenants by offering them access to an online portal. A secure online portal is a great way to let your tenants pay their rent online, put in and check the status of maintenance requests, view their lease, communicate directly with you, and more! This is convenient for both tenants and landlords or property managers. Everything can be accessed in one place with the click of a button!


Hire a Property Management Company


Another great way to improve your retention rate is to hire a reputable property management company. Consider your personal circumstances. Do you live near your rental property? How many rental properties do you own? Do you have another job that takes up most of your time? If you are starting to feel overwhelmed, it may be time to hire a property manager. A property management company will free up some of your time, help you find and manage great tenants, set the right rental rates, and more. Although hiring a property management company can cost a bit more, it is well worth the investment and will actually save you money in the long run. Having someone to help with things such as rent collection and managing maintenance requests will ensure that everything is running smoothly and will keep your tenants happy. It is important to research potential property management companies and find an experienced one that is the right fit for you and your properties. Consider asking friends, family, or colleagues for recommendations or referrals. 


We hope you found this article helpful. If you are a rental property owner looking for assistance in managing your property, feel free to reach out to us! RPM Distinguished Care specializes in residential property management and offers a range of services including communication, marketing, and advertising, thorough tenant screening and selection, full-service leasing, timely rent collection, regular evaluations, cost-effective and reliable maintenance, strict and compliant evictions, and comprehensive accounting. We utilize an online portal for owners to keep track of their property, including access to reports and financial statements. With over 30 years of experience, we know how to keep your property at its best. We believe in full-service and comprehensive property management. That’s why we take the time to understand each of our clients and help identify their most closely-held goals. Let us give you peace of mind that your property is in good hands. Use our website to request your free assessment and meet with our expert team! Thank you for taking the time to read this article and we hope to hear from you soon! See you next time!

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