In RiTA by AiRE’s recent webinar, Morton’s Joint Managing Director, Ewan Morton, shared his five key rent roll growth tips that agencies should focus on.
Based in Sydney’s CBD, Morton have been in business for almost 25 years and managed over 3700 properties. Through that cycle, they have been through it all.
For Joint Managing Director Ewan Morton, growing the rent roll from 0 to 200 is the easy part.
The challenge is when it starts to mature after seven or eight years and people start to do things with their property, either move in or sell it.
The older the rent roll gets and the more established you are, the more effort you have to put in to actually make sure you continue that growth.
1. Get in front of your churn
There are two types of churn. The unavoidable churn, when people move back to their properties or sell, and the avoidable churn, when they decide you are not good at property management.
There is nothing you can do about unavoidable churn as it’s a fact of life and you simply just need to make sure you are putting on more management than you are losing.
As for the avoidable churn, you have to do what you can to keep it low. That is the challenge. The expectations of landlords have gone up and as property managers, you have to be in tune to their needs, read their personality and a lot of other things that come in the complexity of customer service.
The best way to grow your management is not to lose them, so making sure that avoidable churn is under control is your first protocol.
2. Hire resources to assist with rent roll growth
Your BDM is is an investment.
To meet demands and expectations, you have to structure your business and resources to make the most out of the opportunities that are in front of you. Train your team on asking the right questions.
Mr Morton got everyone in his team to ask this question to tenants: “have you got a property to rent?”. As for property managers, “do you have another property that I could work for you?”.
The key is to start a conversation with your contacts.
3. Be Google worthy
This is your point of difference and you need to put effort into Google Reviews, Facebook Reviews, etc. Get in front of your Google Reviews and get in front of your competition on that. Once you get ahead, it is actually difficult for your competitors to catch up.
It is important to give a level of service that is Google reviewable, and you do it in such a way that is sustainable. This means providing a service that is good enough to get a good Google Review and no more. Save your energy for the next one.
If you have a bad review, don’t be afraid to call that person. Talk to them. They generally calm down and realise they overreacted. Then, ask them if they can pull their review down.
If you make a mistake, explain what you did to make it better in a post. Simply be honest. The best marketing you can do is do a good job.
4. Collaborate with the sales team
There is a direct correlation between the sales team and leads for new business.
Therefore, buddy up your BDM with your sales people. You want your BDM to work in a team with the sales people and bond with them. If the sales person respects the BDM they will pass on leads.
5. Scale with technology
Have your technology do as many tasks as possible because the real skill in property management is handling tricky human situations. That is why your clients pay you.
Morton had so much data that couldn’t be used. When they got artificial intelligence service RiTA, she helped them work out what was in their database, and when they had last spoken to their contacts.
It was an eye opener when they found out no one talked to anybody, which meant a lot of opportunities were being missed.
RiTA the Ai robot can have automated, two-way SMS conversations with people in your database.
When Morton started RiTA’s SMS automations, it put a lot of efficiency in as to who they should call and who they shouldn’t. She helped the team be more consistent with their prospecting and relationship nurturing.
As a matter of fact, Morton decided to expand their growth function in the middle of the pandemic and employed more people because they knew they could count on RiTA.
In the past, Mr Morton never felt like he could use his data well enough whereas now, knowing that RiTA can work on his data, he is confident that his new agents can make the calls RiTA recommends, get new leads and win listings.
RiTA is part of their team and starts valuable SMS conversations while agents manage the follow ups and only call the people who have shown an interest. Agents are no longer wasting their time.