By: Shad Bookout
It is Halloween time and the multi-family industry is filled to the brim with spooks, specters, and fun filled frights. Both industry members and apartment residents will spend tons of cash celebrating the monsters within us all. But this is also a time to pause for a moment to consider the decisions you are making when dealing with your residents. Because many of the things you do can drive fear into your residents and that fear may leave them feeling cursed this Halloween.
Residents Fear Change
Shortly after move-in, your apartment residents settle into the daily routine that is their lifestyle within your community. That routine is a place of comfort and a place of certainty. But when that routine is changed, the lifestyle often changes as a result. This leads to thoughts and concerns of future changes – included a possible need to move – creeping into your resident’s mind. Most people hate, and even fear, change. This is a powerful tool for you within your apartment community. To find early on that a resident is satisfied, as well as the things that lead to that satisfaction, gives you an opportunity to continue providing those customer service items. Each resident has their own set of things they find important and it is necessary to make sure that you give the individual attention each desires.
They Also Fear You
When that personal attention is not there however, a feeling of discontent begins within your resident. This mixed with changes in the community result in a downward spiral of the once positive perspective that your customer once had. These are further worsened when communication between your office and your resident break down. They no longer feel their voices are being heard and their needs are being met. Not feeling like valued individuals, they regress into a fearful, reactionary lifestyle. Once this occurs, it is extremely hard to win back their trust. Once they fear you, the next choice may be for them to take the frightful risk of moving elsewhere.
And They Fear the Future
When you are successful in meeting (and hopefully exceeding) their expectations, you can use these same fears to your advantage. It becomes easier to sell that value to living there and the fact that even an increase in rental rates at renewal time still lead to a great value. People want to live where they are happy and, given the choice, will often take steps to avoid the unknown. One of the amenities where this story is easily seen is resident packages.
Apartment residents expect that the packages the order online are able to be delivered to them safely. This does not mean leaving them to the mercy of weather or possible theft as they lay outside an apartment door. This requires an additional customer service step to take in their parcel and notify them when it has arrived. If this basic resident need is not successfully met, residents will begin to question the value and fear that the future there may lead to other failures in meeting their expectations. If this previously existing basic resident need is suddenly taken away (as an attempt to streamline operations) then the fear enters the mind of unnerved apartment residents at an alarming rate. There must be a better solution.
The PackageLog package management solution creates a system for automated communication with residents about packages including arrival, reminders, and pickup notification. Each message is available via text and email and is 100% customizable to create a personalized item of effective communication. In addition a variety of ancillary resident retention tools come standard with the budget friendly system allowing you to help your residents fear less, trust more, and want to continue to live at an apartment community that values their needs.