Being a property manager is a demanding, albeit rewarding job; however, if you're suffering from high tenant turnover, you feel like you're doing the same things day after day, not to mention allocating too many resources on filling empty apartments. Take the initiative and figure out what's going on, so you can increase tenant satisfaction and therefore, reduce turnover.
1. Use One Of Your Apartments
The next time you have a vacancy in one of your buildings, temporarily use the apartment. You don't have to move in, just hang out there in one capacity or another, such as holding meetings in the kitchen or eating your lunch in the living room. Find out how it feels to be there for more than a few minutes, and you'll likely learn a thing or two you wouldn't otherwise know.
For example, is there a particular odor coming from the carpets? Does the upstairs tenant sound like they have a herd of water buffalo in their midst? What does the water taste like? Really getting to know the units, the way tenants do, should provide you an interesting perspective and may very well make clear the different ways in which the apartments can be made more pleasant to live in.
2. Pay Attention To Online Reviews
While you'll nearly always see a negative review from a disgruntled tenant who was evicted, online opinions of your apartments (and how they're managed) should provide valuable information. These observations often reveal inner secrets the tenants might not have told you themselves, but that you can act upon, to improve living conditions and solve other problems.
3. Conduct Tenant Surveys
Even if the real estate portfolio you manage includes numerous tenants, go out and talk to them or mail them all a short survey for additional insights into what it's like to live there. Directly inquire as to how satisfied they are, how likely they'd be to recommend the complex to a friend and how well of a job they feel you're doing. The responses could be harsh, but they'll definitely be helpful. For added honesty in their responses, make sure the survey is anonymous. Use the data you collect to make a list of improvements you can eventually make to the property and your process, to foster a more favorable living environment.
A happy tenant is more likely to be a long-term tenant, making your job easier and maintaining a steady stream of income for the real estate company. Getting into the trenches and determining what's causing your renters to run is ultimately the only way to solve your problem. For more information, contact your local property management group.