How to Turn Prospects Into Residents

May 3, 2019


Rent Manager

Home Sweet Home

What’s one thing you can’t manage a property without? Residents! While marketing plays a heavy part in attracting prospects that later become residents, a lot of the make-or-break sales will come from their interactions with property managers. Finding the best way to interact with prospects so that they not only want to tour your property—but can’t wait to be a resident of your property—is the difference you need in taking your business to the next level.

Questions You Should be Asking Prospects

Asking questions that dig a little deeper than the basic information you need can help you learn more about the prospect but can also help the prospect know that you’re excited about the unit and the potential for them to live there. When you ask beyond the norm, you can often find answers that will help you with current and future prospects.

What prompted your move in the first place?

Learning why the prospect chose to leave their old home will help you understand what more they want from their new one. Did they have issues with the property manager? Was the rent too high? Are they looking for more space? Better amenities? Asking this question will help you be able to assist the prospect further in their search.

How did you hear about us?

If you are using any marketing strategies or have listed your property online, this is a great way to test if it’s working! Did they find you on social media? Did they just drive by the property one day? Were you listed on an Internet Listing Service (ILS) they were scrolling through? The more prospects you get by certain marketing strategies, the better you will be able to allocate your funds to the ways that are actually working!

Why are you interested in this community?

Perhaps you know what marketing strategy worked best… but why did it work so well? What about your community and your property was intriguing to them? Did they like the location? Were they interested in your pet policies? Or did they simply just like the unit you had to offer? This question will help you better promote the best parts of your properties to prospects in the future!

Is there anything specific you are looking for?

Just like when you ask why the prospect chose to move, asking what the prospect is looking for will help you be able to better guide the prospect and find the perfect unit for their needs. Whether it’s a washer/dryer hookup or a space with natural light, you can better understand their needs and if your property is a good fit for them.

How to Handle Prospect Follow-up

The best way to lock in a prospective resident is a follow-up conversation after the property tour or initial communication. While this sometimes sounds simple, not everyone responds to your messages right away or has completely made up their minds on where they want to live. Sometimes you will need to answer questions or send a few emails (or calls) to ensure the prospect is receiving them. Here are a few tips on how to follow-up depending on the prospect’s behavior:

No response?

Offer to answer any questions they might have. Sometimes prospects that haven’t responded yet are busy or are contemplating on whether or not they want to move into your unit. Showing that you are prepared to walk them through logistics again will ultimately help their decision. Still not responding? Double check to make sure you wrote down their email correctly or give them a call.

Ready to rent?

Make sure you are sending over the right paperwork and doing everything you can to make the process easier for your future resident. Sometimes they may have more questions regarding the unit after they have signed the papers—make sure to be on guard and paying attention to their emails. Every resident you have is just as important as your prospects.

Wanting to look at a different unit?

Send over what they need to know! Offer to set up another tour or send them information on a different floor plan. Maybe there are no units left in this specific property but there are empty or waitlisted ones in another—ask if they would want to see any other properties and provide plenty of information.

So, you’ve done the work to make sure you’ve followed up properly and they still aren’t giving? Make sure you didn’t give them any negative signs or gave too much information. Here are a few tips on what not to do:

  • Give up on them (unless they’ve asked you to, of course)!
  • Pressure them or make them feel like they have to respond immediately (don’t threaten to stop sending emails, either).
  • Include too much info on the initial follow-up. If you’re writing more than a couple of paragraphs, condense your answer or offer to call.
  • Panic. Consider the fact that they may just be taking the time to figure out if your property is a good fit or not for them.

How to get more leads in the future

You’ve got the prospect and you’ve learned a lot from the questions you were able to ask them—so how do you continue to grow your leads and reach them more efficiently and effectively? One of the best ways to reach a wide group of potential prospects is through online advertising. Social media, Google Ads, and using ILS should all be crucial players in your company’s strategy to get new prospects.

Developing or improving your property management marketing strategy is key to attracting new residents to your properties. Learning what worked in attracting past prospects will help with bringing in new ones. Work on what is worth the time and/or financial investment—what is actually bringing people to you or what is turning people away?

Lastly, continue to develop or improve your follow-up process. Maybe one prospect never reached back out, but that doesn’t mean they won’t in the future. Be sure to continue to touch base with calls and emails while a prospect is “still looking” and always follow up on your leads in a timely manner. Maybe your property wasn’t the right place for a prospect, but it could be the perfect place for someone they know! If you make the follow-up process enjoyable for that prospect, they may refer you to someone else.

Don’t forget to keep track!

One of the amazing benefits of property management software like Rent Manager is the ability to keep track of your prospect communication. Knowing when/how you or someone on your team reached out to a prospect and their response will help you further develop your company! Using the History/Notes section of Rent Manager and keeping track of their info in the Prospects section will help you never have to second-guess or ask the same question twice—leading your prospects to feel heard and cared for!

The Prospect Manager feature gives you a surefire way to track potential tenants. Easily and instantly access available units that match prospect preferences, schedule follow-up calls and appointments, generate lease agreements, and more! See how Rent Manager can help you further your prospect experience by scheduling a free demo today!

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