Creating a Positive Tenant Experience in Multifamily Properties

tenant experience

In today’s cut-throat real estate market, creating a positive tenant experience can be the difference between success and failure for multifamily properties. With numerous options available, tenants have the power of choice, and property managers must go the extra mile to ensure their satisfaction. In this blog post, we will highlight the crucial role of tenant experience and provide property managers with actionable ways to enhance it, so they can attract and retain happy and loyal tenants.

The Importance of Tenant Experience

Tenant experience refers to the overall experience tenants have when interacting with a property, from the initial leasing process to day-to-day living. A positive tenant experience can increase tenant engagement, satisfaction, and, ultimately, retention. Tenants who are happy with their living arrangements are more likely to renew their lease and recommend the property to others.

Additionally, a positive tenant experience can result in increased revenue for property managers. Satisfied tenants are more likely to pay rent on time, reduce vacancy rates, and minimize maintenance costs due to fewer complaints or issues.

Tenant Experience Strategy for Landlords: Reducing Turnover and Increasing Profitability

In the landlord industry, turnover can significantly impact profitability. Not only does it increase workload and costs associated with cleaning and repairs, but it also leads to advertising expenses to fill vacancies. The question is, what causes higher turnover rates? Is there a problem with the tenant experience?

According to a survey conducted by Zego, the average retention rate is only 58%, and turnover costs are estimated to be around $4,000 per unit. For landlords managing 50 to 1000 properties, a tenant experience strategy can be a valuable investment, helping to increase retention rates and grow revenues.

Shifting the Focus to Tenant Experience: The Importance of Strategy

Residential tenant satisfaction is often overlooked in the real estate industry, with a lack of available reports indicating a lack of concern for the tenant experience. It’s not viewed as a profit center, and landlords and property managers tend to focus more on tenant retention than on improving tenant satisfaction. However, it’s essential to prioritize the tenant experience from the rental listing and move-in process to continuous lease renewals.

There is a growing emphasis on tenant experience strategy, which involves finding ways to achieve tenant satisfaction through a well-planned approach. The Zego report highlights several noteworthy touchpoints that contribute to a positive tenant experience:

  • The move-in process
  • Pet, vehicle, and visitor registration
  • Online rent and utility payment
  • Easy and safe unit access
  • Direct two-way communication between resident and landlord
  • Building amenity reservations
  • Exclusive local community offerings such as discounts to local shops/services
  • Coordination of social and holiday calendars, event planning, and decoration
  • Easy online lease renewal
  • Move-out process

By implementing a strategy that focuses on these touchpoints, landlords and property managers can improve tenant satisfaction and retention rates, leading to increased profitability in the long run.

Understanding the Factors behind Tenant Churn

Zego’s report highlights various factors contributing to tenant churn, including lower prices, better neighborhoods, modern living spaces and amenities, personal changes, and moving to a new city. 

While these factors may seem beyond a landlord’s control, it’s important to recognize that tenant recruitment and retention strategies significantly attract and retain the right tenants.

Rather than resigning yourself to high churn rates, focusing on improving the tenant experience is important. This requires a deep understanding of what modern renters are looking for, how you can improve your amenities and services, and how to leverage the weaknesses of your competitors.

Addressing these three factors can create a compelling value proposition that keeps tenants leased and willing to pay higher rent. Ultimately, focusing on the tenant experience can help you improve tenant retention rates and drive profitability in your rental business.

Understanding Renter Preferences

In our previous discussions, we’ve explored the challenge of understanding what renters want and how to create an optimal renter experience. The COVID-19 pandemic has also significantly impacted renter preferences and needs, but as the pandemic recedes, renters’ priorities will likely shift back to what they were pre-pandemic.

Social engagement is an essential aspect of renters’ needs. While tenants want more than just knowing their neighbors and attending community events, having friends in the same building or neighborhood can provide a sense of personal relevance, security, and social opportunities. Renters are willing to pay more to live near their friends.

Renter demographics have also changed in many countries. Younger generations, such as Gen Z and Millennials, have a strong emphasis on digital connectivity and socializing via digital devices. Ignoring this aspect of their lives would be a mistake, as technology has become integral to their identity and sense of personal power. They rely on it to manage their lives and socialize, and it connects them with their peers.

Therefore, having a mobile tenant app can be a valuable tool in enhancing the tenant experience. In conclusion, people and technology are the key drivers of the tenant experience.

How to Improve Tenant Experience: Key Elements

Improving tenant experience is an essential aspect of running a successful multifamily property. Happy tenants are more likely to renew their leases and recommend the property to others, which ultimately increases revenue for property managers. Here are some ways to improve tenant experience:

1. Communication

Good communication is key to any successful relationship, and this is no different when it comes to property management. Property managers should establish an open line of communication with tenants, whether it be through regular emails, newsletters, or social media. This helps build trust and encourages tenants to come forward with any issues or concerns.

2. Digital Tenant Experience

Many property managers are now using digital tenant experience platforms to improve communication and engagement with tenants. These platforms provide a one-stop-shop for all tenant needs, including rent payments, maintenance requests, and community updates. This convenience can improve tenant satisfaction and increase retention rates.

3. Building Amenities

Property managers should invest in building amenities that cater to the needs of tenants. This could include a fitness center, communal spaces for socializing, and even dog parks. These amenities provide added value to the property and enhance the tenant experience.

4. Maintenance

Keeping the property in good condition is crucial for tenant satisfaction. Property managers should respond to maintenance requests in a timely manner and ensure that common areas are clean and well-maintained. This helps create a sense of pride in the community and shows tenants that their concerns are taken seriously.

5. Community Engagement

Property managers should encourage community engagement by hosting events such as movie nights, pool parties, and holiday gatherings. These events help build a sense of community to allow tenants to have the opportunity to socialize and connect with their neighbors.

Improving tenant experience is essential for property managers looking to attract and retain tenants in multifamily properties. By prioritizing communication, investing in digital tenant experience platforms, providing building amenities, maintaining the property, and encouraging community engagement, property managers can create a positive tenant experience that will keep tenants happy and satisfied for years to come.

Retaining Tenants with BFPM’s Tech-Savvy Solutions

If you’re unable to make any physical improvements to your rental properties, turning to property management software or other digital services may be the solution. Utilizing a next-generation landlord solution like Beach Front Property Management can provide business-changing and profit-boosting performance improvements.

With the rise of younger, tech-savvy renters, offering a digital tenant experience platform can be a powerful tool in attracting and retaining tenants. Providing convenient and powerful digital solutions can enhance the tenant experience and help improve retention rates.

Trevor Henson

Trevor Henson is an experienced entrepreneur (10+ highly-successful start-ups) and property investor with a demonstrated history of building and leading teams in investment property management environments, maximizing returns for property owners, and optimizing properties through construction management and re-positioning. He…
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Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs)

Tenant experience refers to the overall satisfaction and perception that tenants have while residing in a multifamily property. It encompasses various factors such as the quality of living spaces, communication with the landlord or property management, maintenance responsiveness, amenities, and community engagement.

Improving tenant experience involves several key strategies: Enhance communication channels to ensure timely and effective interaction with tenants. Prioritize maintenance and promptly address repair requests to create a comfortable living environment. Upgrade amenities and common areas to provide added convenience and enjoyment for tenants. Foster a sense of community through events and activities that encourage social interaction among tenants. Utilize digital tenant experience platforms to streamline processes, such as rent payments and maintenance requests, and provide convenient access to information.

Tenant experience plays a crucial role in the success of multifamily properties. It directly impacts tenant satisfaction, retention rates, and overall profitability. A positive tenant experience attracts and retains high-quality tenants, reduces turnover and associated costs, and enhances the reputation of the property. It also creates a sense of community, fosters positive word-of-mouth, and improves tenant referrals, ultimately contributing to long-term financial success.

To achieve tenant retention in a multifamily property: Focus on providing exceptional customer service and maintaining open lines of communication with tenants. Regularly assess and address tenants' needs and concerns to ensure their satisfaction. Offer competitive rental rates and consider incentives for lease renewals. Maintain the property in excellent condition and address maintenance requests promptly. Provide desirable amenities and community spaces that enhance the quality of living. Engage tenants through community-building activities and events. Implement a digital tenant experience platform to streamline processes and offer convenient services. By prioritizing tenant experience and taking proactive measures to meet tenant expectations, multifamily property owners can significantly improve tenant retention rates and create a positive and thriving living environment.