by Mary Girsch-Bock –
The number one job of the property manager is to lease. Whether it’s a unit in a multi-family complex or a single family home; the success of the property manager lies in large part in how quickly and how effectively they lease empty space. Today, there are more leasing tools available to property managers than ever before. But there’s also more competition than ever before. While some managers may find it relatively easy to lease quickly, depending on market conditions and location, leasing effectively means that the property manager is not just filling those spaces, but filling them with quality tenants who will most likely pay their rent on time, take care of the unit appropriately, and likely not skip out on a lease. Wouldn’t it be great if you could have a steady stream of quality applicants simply show up at your doorstep?
Well, you can – if you know where to look. As a matter of fact, it’s likely they’re right next door, a few blocks over, or less than a mile away.
They’re the employees of local businesses, and quite possibly, your future tenants!
While online marketing, local ads and even a Facebook page can help drive traffic to your leasing office, building long-term relationships with area employers can help drive those quality applicants to your doorstep.
Here are some suggestions on how to establish these relationships and why building these relationships will help keep your vacancies low:
- Offer local business a rental discount. Even a 5% discount will be significant. By offering reduced rental rates or perhaps flexible leasing terms, you’re making a commitment to the company, who in turn, can help drive their employees your way.
- Don’t think of the partnership just in terms of leasing. These same companies can also be your partner in community events such as a local food drive or a coat drive in the winter.
- Partnering with area businesses will help raise your visibility in the community – a great strategy for lease-up or recently rehabbed properties.
- Rather than approaching businesses individually, consider having a community open house that provides property tours and additional information on the property. Once this is done, approaching the area businesses will likely yield better leasing results.
By partnering with area businesses, property managers will not only increase qualified applicant traffic, but will also gain a stronger presence in the community for the foreseeable future.