There are many ways to garner the most value from a real estate investment. Yet, one that’s often overlooked is the concept of valuing your residents through resident appreciation programs.
Without residents who call it home, a building is just an empty structure. No matter how beautifully it’s been designed or what its intended purpose may be (e.g., improve the neighborhood aesthetic, bring more housing options to the community, provide sustainable living spaces), it can’t fulfill that promise without resident loyalty.
When residents are pleased with the value they’re getting from the rent they pay, they’re far more likely to take three important actions. First, they're much more likely to renew their leases. Because resident turnover can disrupt investors’ returns, the longer an apartment remains empty, the greater the percentage of unrealized revenue. Consequently, taking necessary steps to keep residents from leaving makes fiscal sense.
The second action happy residents take is inviting others in their network to live or work in the same building they do. For example, a resident who knows of someone looking for a place to call home (whether permanently or for a temporary assignment) will be pleased to make a recommendation to his or her own building. Why? Because the experience has been positive and rewarding. Again, this increases the chance of the property operating at full occupancy, which is exactly what investors want.
Finally, residents who like the locations they occupy will often post online about them on social media sites. They’ll take pictures or upload videos, such as while lounging at the pool at AVE Phoenix Terra or after an intense workout at the AVE Tampa Riverwalk fitness facility. The result is a natural outpouring of user-generated marketing content for the property — that's a big boost for all investor stakeholders involved in the project.
There’s no argument that resident satisfaction is key to driving the highest potential ROI on investment property opportunities. As one of the leaders in real estate development for a century, Korman Communities believes in promoting many property management best practices to foster resident loyalty.
Korman’s Unique Steps Toward Greater Resident Loyalty
For Korman, treating residents with respect starts from the moment they learn about any of our properties. We’re driven to lead with authenticity and transparency. That way, residents know exactly what to expect when they move in. Yet, residents aren't forgotten once they arrive and settle into a comfortable work or personal schedule. On the contrary, we take measures to ensure they remain a core focus every day. Plus, we spend one week each year honoring the residents who make us successful.
"We call this seven-day event AVE Resident Appreciation Week. Launched in 2015, it’s become a beloved tradition," notes Lea Anne Welsh, president of AVE and COO of Korman Communities, “AVE Resident Appreciation Week involves lots of planning to ensure it’s a standout celebration that residents can count on and enjoy.”
“We know our residents have so many choices as to where to live, and we just go all out this week to say thank you for choosing AVE,” says Welsh. “Resident Appreciation Week is definitely our favorite week of the year because we get to take care of and spend time with our residents, which is what we’re most passionate about!”
What happens during AVE Resident Appreciation Week? As the event has evolved, it’s turned into a weeklong time of giveaways. The giveaways are designed to increase the buzz and enthusiasm surrounding AVE Resident Appreciation Week. These aren’t just small giveaways. They’ve blossomed thanks to AVE’s relationships with outside partners and sponsors.
Take 2023’s AVE Resident Appreciation Week, where the theme was “Immerse Yourself.” AVE partnered with Sprig, a subsidiary of Kohler, to offer product giveaways throughout the week. The Sprig brand is relatively new for Kohler and includes innovative products that harness the power of water to create elevated, self-care spa experiences at home. Since Kohler has been outfitting AVE apartments and amenity spaces with plumbing fixtures since 2015, the collaboration was a natural fit.
Stephanie Krickeberg, managing director of Sprig by Kohler, agrees. “AVE’s focus on enhancing their residents’ experiences within their communities resonated with our core brand focus. We seek to deliver clean, natural, immersive experiences that de-stress and deliver joy. We couldn’t be better aligned.”
Does AVE Resident Appreciation Week make a difference in resident satisfaction? Absolutely. When stacked on top of the concierge service that AVE residents already receive, it becomes a hallmark of what it means to entrust your housing needs to AVE. Welsh concludes, “We want to ensure our residents are comfortable and feel taken care of. Our experienced, friendly team is on-site every day to provide a quality living experience and a sense of community through concierge support, events, and partnerships.”
By focusing attention on residents, AVE can directly and positively impact the ROI of all our properties. If you’re interested in hearing more about our resident appreciation practices, get in touch with a Korman team member today.