Fighting Competition with Conservation
As a property manager, how do you differentiate your property from the other choices in your neighborhood or city? Of course, you have to look at rental rates and amenities, but is there anything that you can do that is good for you, good for your prospective renters and good for the environment? Yes!
When it comes to rental property shopping, one of the things capturing people’s attention is properties that focus on conservation. Zillow Spotlight referenced this in their blog on Apartment Trends under the heading ‘it’s okay to pay more to go green.’
Even if your green efforts won’t allow you to charge more, they can help you attract an important audience of renters, specifically millennials. There is mounting evidence that the millennial generation cares about conservation as a top priority. A recent Forbes article said it plainly: “Millennials care deeply about the environment, the global community and social justice.” In an MSNBC sponsored survey, Millennials state that they are more focused on the environment than their parents’ generation.
So how can you easily take advantage of these trends in a way that actually adds to your bottom line? Consider working with a company that will manage your utility resources. Often referred to as Utility Expense Management, providers of this service help you save money, save resources, and attract renters. Here are just a few ways Utility Expense Management providers can help:
In drought ridden areas like California, every drop of water is precious and a leak in the plumbing indoors or in the landscaping can be both costly, and off-putting to potential renters. With good utility bill analysis tools, anomalies in water usage can be pinpointed. And if your properties are equipped with submeters, a leak can be detected down to the specific unit and repaired as quickly as possible.
Vacant Unit Oversight
When a unit is in the process of being turned-over, there can be lots of maintenance workers and community staff coming and going from the unit. Under these conditions, keeping track of the utility costs and creating alarms when things look out of whack can save lots of headaches and money. For instance, if the air conditioning is set to extreme cold while a certain work crew is present, how can you be sure that it is reset to a more appropriate temperature when they leave? With a good Utility Expense Management tool, of course.
Stopping the ‘buffet’
If utilities are included in rent, there is little reason for residents to be mindful. It’s like going to an all-you-can-eat buffet and gorging on food to ensure you get your money’s worth. If consumption levels don’t impact the price, then some residents will be less careful with their usage. Submeters, as well as utility expense management can put a stop to the buffet mindset, appealing to your conservation-minded millennials.
If you want to stand out with potential renters and/or you are trying to attract millennials, focus on conservation. Not only is it good for the planet, but it is good for your bottom line. Talk about a win-win.