The heartbeat of any successful property management company is a strong leasing cycle and lead to lease conversion. When done right, filling vacancies with qualified renters can be done quickly. But when it’s less than ideal, the lead to lease process becomes a repetitive drain on your business. And due to everything going on now with the coronavirus, experts say this leasing season is going to be different than in past years. This is why it’s important for a property manager to look at his/her own process and make sure it’s done in a timely and efficient manner while creating the best renter experience possible. In this post, we’ll go through 5 ways to improve your lead to lease conversions along with some helpful tips to increase your occupancy rate in 2020.
1) Respond to Inquiries as Fast as Possible
Would-be tenants want information and responses to your rental listings the same way they want everything else in their lives — fast. Rental property managers need to respond to inquiries within minutes because motivated renters are most likely looking at other properties. The faster you’re able to respond, the more likely it is that you’ll get a qualified lead for the rental property. Based on research, landlords and property managers who respond to inquiries within 1-2 minutes vs. 24 hours later are actually 40% more likely to connect with prospective leads. It was also found that 20% of prospective renters will move on to another listing if they don’t get a response within 30 minutes.
Needless to say, a fast response time makes a big difference to your lease to lead conversion rate. However, we know that it’s not always possible to keep up with a high volume of inquiries. This is why you need the help of Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies. There are property management tools available that help you reply instantly to each inquiry and answer any questions about your rental listings. Not only that, but new innovations have made it possible to not just automatically respond, but also to screen and schedule rental showings for all of your prospective tenants. So to improve your property management lease to lead conversions, you need to leverage technology in 2020.
2) Qualify Real Estate Leads Efficiently
This goes without saying. Whether you’re trying to maximize your conversion rate or just want to find a tenant for a property, you should make sure you find someone for the long haul. Finding tenants is easy – rental demand is high and you could receive numerous rental applications after advertising a rental property on listing sites. However, not all of these applicants will end up being good tenants. Therefore, the next step to improve your lead to lease conversion rate is to run a thorough background check through a tenant screening process. This helps property managers determine qualified renters and avoid spending valuable time and resources on unqualified leads.
A good way to qualify leads is to have a set criteria for prospective tenants that you’re looking for. Make sure to include this information in the listing so people have accurate expectations before they reach out. You should also communicate this information upon the first contact with a lead and ask the right questions to see if they fit your criteria.
AI can also ease this challenge for a property management company. Using tools like Mashboard, you’re able to find qualified leads without the need to ask any question. All you have to do is enter basic client information and Mashboard will gather and display the data you need to qualify. Each lead will get a profile where you’ll find data including full name, age range, occupation, net worth, marital status, number of children, if the lead is a pet owner, their contact information, and more. Qualifying your property management leads in 2020 can’t get easier than this! You can get access to this tool right here on Mashvisor.
For more details on how Mashboard helps to improve your lead to lease conversions, click here.
3) Don’t Forget to Follow Up With Leads
Following up is an important part of lead management and filling vacancies. However, research shows that many property managers aren’t doing enough of it. According to Zillow, about half of multifamily property management don’t have or use a customer relationship management (CRM) system to follow up with leads. Also, about 30% of property managers follow up with prospective tenants just once after the initial contact and never again. Zillow’s research shows that the most effective way to convert a lead to lease is by following up five times within four days of the initial contact.
If you want to get the most value for your marketing dollars, remember to follow up and add additional touchpoints to keep leads engaged beyond the initial interaction. You can start with an introductory phone call, then send follow-up e-mails or text messages. When following up with a qualified lead, make sure to mention the main points you talked about in your initial conversation and ask them for questions or feedback about the rental listing they’re interested in. You should also send them more information about the unit and amenities, and finally request a convenient time to schedule a rental showing. Again, this is something that AI can make easier for you.
4) Present Alternatives to Motivated Leads
Once you’ve found qualified renters, you can then proceed with the rental showing. This will help you determine if the rental property is the right fit for them. For example, you don’t want to find out that they want to move in with their dog after showing them a property that isn’t pet-friendly. If you realize that the lead doesn’t make a good fit for the property they initially inquired about, don’t write them off quickly. Instead, make sure to suggest other rentals that you manage.
This is called cross-selling. By highlighting other rental listings under your management that would work out better for the prospective renters, you will improve your lead to lease conversions. You should also use AI for this. There are property management tools that automatically cross-sell available vacant units. Mashvisor’s Property Recommender, for example, will recommend the rental property that best matches your clients’ criteria and meets their needs.
To find out how we can help improve your lead to lease process, read: What Does Mashvisor Do for Property Managers?
5) Automate and Bring Leasing Online
If you’re still relying on printers and scanners for prospective renters to submit rental applications and sign leases, now is the time to catch up and go online. Research shows that the percentage of renters who want to apply for rentals online increased by 15% from 2018 to 2019. When managing a rental property, you want the application process to be smooth – which is exactly what online lease allows for. In addition, by automating your lease signing process, you’ll wind up with more signed leases and decrease your properties’ vacancy rate. Hence, going mobile with online lease increase your lead to lease conversion rate.
Another way to bring online leasing is to make the renal showing process completely virtual with 3D-camera technology. In a time where people need to maintain social distancing, virtual rental showings are in-demand now more than ever. Virtual tours make rental showings more accessible to leads with limited mobility. Besides, once you determine that a prospective renter is qualified, they don’t have to wait to see the rental. This makes your rental listing more appealing and helps save time when filling vacancies. As a result, this is a must for improving your lead to lease process and maximizing your lead conversion rate in 2020.
The Bottom Line
Don’t want to spend too much time and money advertising a rental property? Make the most of the above strategies and tips to start filling vacancies efficiently and increase your occupancy rate. If there is one thing to take away from this is that using property management technology is vital in 2020. From tenant screening, follow-ups, lead management, to rental showing, AI automates the lead to lease process which, in turn, improves your lead conversion rate. Mashvisor provides an AI lead qualification tool that uses data to qualify your property management leads.
Sign up with Mashvisor to start using Mashboard and maximize your lead to lease conversion rate today!