The multifamily space is rapidly changing, and that means people’s expectations of what it means to have a great customer experience is changing as well. Prospective renters are looking for a seamless and personalized experience that mirrors what they’re used to in other industries. Historically, the real estate space in general has been slow to adapt and evolve to meet these changes, but in part thanks to the pandemic, property management teams are leaning into new tech and solutions to deliver a better multifamily customer experience.
To help you and your teams, we’ll be sharing the specifics on how to craft a more compelling experience for both your current and prospective renters. But first, let’s dive into more detail on how consumer behavior is transforming the multifamily space.
How the multifamily customer experience is changing
People are increasingly turning to digital spaces and platforms to find their next home. And with the pandemic making in-person appointments and tours tenuous at best, more interactions between property teams and consumers are happening online than ever before. No longer is it the norm for people to call or visit a property in person; instead, people want to go through the entire process, from discovery to lease, online.
When it comes to the needs of current renters, the pandemic and events of 2020 have also changed expectations. People are spending more time at home than ever before, making luxury amenities, responsive customer service, and maintenance more important. What’s more, issues of diversity and inclusion are at the forefront of peoples’ minds, making it critical for property management teams to address these matters with empathy and action.
What you can do to improve the experience
Digitize the renter experience
From finalizing leases to requesting maintenance, there are so many multifamily processes that can be digitized today. As we discussed earlier, consumers are used to seamless digital experiences when buying clothes or ordering takeout, and expect the same level of ease and accessibility from their residence. Make a checklist of the most common processes that renters and perspectives go through (think renter applications, maintenance requests, etc) and digitize those processes on your website.
With more people spending their days at home, prospective renters are looking for properties that offer spacious units, along with accessible and luxurious amenities. By tailoring your amenities to meet today’s changing standards, you can help ensure your property stands out. Amenities people are looking for today include high-speed wifi and coworking spaces, up-to-date fitness facilities, green space, and hand sanitizing stations.
Utilize a chatbot
At BetterBot, we know just how impactful a chatbot can be on the customer experience. Not only do chatbots create a more personalized user experience, they also make things like taking virtual tours and getting property questions answered easier than ever. Plus, chatbots are available 24/7, 365 – meaning they’ll be available and ready to help even when your live customer service reps aren’t.
The great news is, it’s easier than ever to find a powerful chatbot that can take your leasing process to the next level.
Adopt a people-centric approach
It sounds simple, but creating a truly people-centric strategy is probably the most important thing you can do to elevate your multifamily customer experience. Residents want to feel like property staff members care about them and their experience. Cultivating and maintaining great relationships should be a priority.
And when it comes to prospective renters, they want to know everything they can about your property before they make a commitment. This is your opportunity to get to know everything about them. Try adding contextualized questions like, “What brings you to our neighborhood?” to information request forms to get more insights.
Find ways to measure satisfaction
You can implement all of the customer experience initiatives you want, but at the end of the day, if you don’t measure and track your progress, you’ll never know if you’re successful. A simple way to start tracking customer experience is by adding customer satisfaction surveys at key points along your leasing (and exit) process. By adding these surveys, you’ll be able to gain key insights into what drew people to your property, and what potentially turned them off.
By leveraging tech solutions and adopting a people-centered strategy, you’ll be able to deliver the best multifamily customer experience possible. And don’t just stop at customer-experience – learn how the pandemic and changing renter expectations are transforming the multifamily industry at large on our blog.