Millennials are the free-spirited 16-34 year olds that make up nearly a quarter of the U.S. population. Frequently moving for jobs, relationships, and the “desire to try something new,” millennials don’t stay in one place long enough to benefit from purchasing a home. Renting allows millennials the freedom to move regularly, which is why they make up a large portion of the rental market.
Projected to have the largest buying power of all generations by 2017, millennials are and will continue to be a significant demographic for property managers. In this post we highlight 3 insights on how to reach out to this critical customer base, including the importance of an online reputation, the necessity of technological accessibility, and the desire for amenities.
Online Reputation Matters
Millennials aren’t bound to tradition, brand-loyalty, or location. Instead, peer review websites weigh heavily in their purchasing decisions with 70% feeling a responsibility to share feedback with companies after a good or bad experience. It’s not surprising then that peer reviews are ranked #1 on the list of reasons a millennial chooses a property to rent (individual property management websites rank #6). It is for this reason that online reviews are so important for property managers.
Using reputation management companies or automated follow-up systems are some of the ways to increase positive online reviews. Here are some suggestions on when to collect tenant feedback:
- After every maintenance repair
- Mid-contract check-up
Collecting feedback throughout the entire tenant experience will help increase positive reviews and address negative reviews prior to them ending up on a Yelp or Google+ profile. Being proactive about online reviews will translate to a positive millennial response.
Millennials are Technology Adopters
Millennials are 2.5 times more likely to be early adopters of technology than other generations and 56% say they are the first to try a new technology. Their use of technology is fundamentally changing the way business is conducted. This is evidenced by the fact that millennials buy the most “same day delivery” services, which means they want immediate gratification that only technology can offer.
A property manager can appeal to millennials by automating repair scheduling and offering online rent payments. Automated repair scheduling allows tenants the ability to coordinate repair times without picking up the phone or waiting for a phone call. Online rent payments allow tenants to pay their rent through their mobile device without having to write and physically deliver a check. Millennials expect these systems to be mobile-friendly and easy to use.
Millennials value goods that enhance their daily lives. This extends to amenities. And while a property manager may not be able to add a pool to an apartment complex, or move a single family home to a more desirable location, property managers can provide amenities to attract more millennials. Here are two inexpensive amenities you can provide your tenants today:
- Tenant parties. Millennials are young and more nomadic than previous generations. Provide them with opportunities to meet their neighbors.
- Lighten their load. Rather than writing into the contract that they do yard maintenance, include yard maintenance fees in the lease. Millennials are willing to pay a premium price for less responsibility.
Millennials are a vibrant generation that believe in working smarter, not harder. Cater to their needs and watch your business grow!
Learn more about maintenance automation and tenant self-service scheduling at Property Meld.