If you’re in business, you’ve likely heard more than once that it’s more expensive to lose an employee and face the need to find a new one than it is to actively focus on retention efforts. It makes sense. You have a significant outlay to advertise the position, recruit, go through the vetting process, relocate the right applicant, train him or her, and invest in both salary and benefits. If you lose that individual, you lose not only all of that investment, but the time and productivity losses associated with a vacancy, as well as another round of the same initial investments to fill the position yet again. For this reason, wise companies make significant investments in their ongoing retention efforts.
Multifamily apartment properties are no different. Think about it. To get a tenant in the door, you must advertise the vacancy, then you must vet and screen the applicants, which takes significant resources in including time, effort, and money. You then must have the unit move-in ready, which always requires at least a small investment. And the list goes on. Once that tenant is in place, if anything goes awry and he or she is no longer satisfied enough to stay the term of the lease or renew, you are now faced with all the related expenses of losing that tenant and replacing him or her, and according to research conducted by the National Apartment Association (NAA), those expenses can add up to a whopping $4,000 for each move-out.
The moral? As a property owner, tenant retention efforts should be a top priority. And even the simplest efforts go a long way. How can you get your tenants to stay? Here are just a few ideas:
- Have an open door policy to encourage feedback and free flow of information, including keeping all tenants up to date on anything they should know about the property and its management.
- Be responsive. When there is an issue, be attentive and quick to respond. Think of how you would like to be treated if you were the one making the request, and give it due diligence. Even if no real attention is needed, empathy is sometimes all people need or want.
- Keep an open mind. Remember that while the property is your business, it’s home to all your tenants. For this reason, it’s recommended you keep an open mind when it comes to special requests. Do your tenants want an outdoor chicken coop? Is there room for the volleyball pit that seems to be in high demand? Would a community garden really be such a bad idea? Granting wishes within reason in order to help tenants achieve a more ideal living situation will encourage them to stay.
At Class A Management, we understand the demands of tenant retention and have at- or near-occupancy at every property we manage. Let us help you. Contact us today at 817-295-5959 or send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.