3 Ways to Fill Vacancies During Peak Rental Season
by Kyna Garrett, on Mar 14, 2019 9:00:00 AM
Peak rental season is upon is. Typically, peak rental season happens from May to August when the temperatures are warmest to move, school is out or students have just graduated and are ready for a place of their own.
While peak rental season is exciting for communities with the influx of tenants, it can also be challenging with the increase in competition from new developments opening their doors just in time for the season.
It’s essential to equip your team with a creative mindset to stand out in these competitive months, not only to generate more leads, but to increase retention to prevent current tenants from moving out.
It’s all about what you’re doing, how you’re doing it and when you execute your multifamily marketing.
When is the best time to begin preparing for peak rental season?
It’s never too early to start preparing for a high volume of leads. The best time is to begin during the rental lull, typically in the winter and early spring.
Take what you’ve learned from the previous season and improve upon it. Identify the challenges you faced and ask yourself where can you advance your marketing initiatives.
The best time to start executing your marketing plan for the upcoming peak rental season is January and February. Slowly begin ramping up your efforts as the spring approaches so that prospects begin to recognize your communities in listings when March and April arrive.
3 Steps to Attract Attention During Peak Rental Season
Forming your marketing strategy for this exciting time is no walk in the park, but we have three steps that are sure to set your community up for success.
1. Audit Your Listings Across the Board
In addition to your community website, your apartment listings are the most important marketing tool in your wheelhouse. That’s why it’s essential to do a thorough audit of all your listings, from apartments.com and Yelp to Google and Facebook. Don’t sleep on any of these, because this is where your prospects will land to learn more about your community, amenities, whether or not you’re pet friendly, utilities and more.
Prospects will also land on a listing to get a feel for your community. Is it a luxury, modern high-rise with all-inclusive amenities? Or a hip and modern mid-rise with vibrant colors and unique amenities?
Before peak rental season, compile a list of where all your listings are located and audit for consistent messaging, high-quality photography, pricing and call to actions.
The goal is to drive users to contact you either through the listing or your website.
2. Refresh Your Photos
Have you had a recent renovation to your units? Maybe your photos are outdated from a cloudy day. Giving your community’s photography a refresh will help your listings stay at the top of results with fresh content and eye-catching visuals.
When is the last time a person landed on an apartment website and made a decision to rent based on poor-quality photos or no photos at all? Photography of your units and amenities should never be overlooked. That’s the brand of your community.
Photos are the first impression of your community. They’re a make-or-break in the decision process to live in your community.
3. Don’t Underestimate Special Offers
You know this, but it must be said: peak rental season is the ultimate showdown for multifamily communities. Everyone is doing whatever they can to stay at the top. One thing not to overlook is the power of promotions.
Promotions are mostly leveraged during off-season when it’s more difficult to bring in those leads, but year-round promotions can really entice renters to choose your community over another.
Whether it’s two weeks off your first month’s rent or more, an enticing offer can be that last push a lead needs to seal the deal.
Tip: test out various promotions to see what kind of traction you receive to form decisions on future offers.
Emerging Victorious During Peak Season
No matter what you do, it’s essential to get all your ducks in a row before renters are in full swing for the season. Check all your apartment listings, give your photos an update and begin working in offers for that final rental push.