The Benefits of Building a Strong Community in Your Rental Properties - Article Banner

Think about what community means for you, especially when it comes to your neighborhood. Perhaps it’s the people you say hello to every morning when you take a walk. Maybe you have neighbors who water your plants and take in your mail when you’re on vacation. 

Why should you spend your time and invest the resources putting together amenities, activities, and a vibe that feels community-focused within your multifamily rental properties? 

Because, it’s vital to a great experience for tenants and owners. It will also ensure higher renewal rates, fewer conflicts and disputes, and even a more profitable investment

Knowing your neighbors and participating in something communal is more important than ever, especially in a world that often feels fractured and lonely. Creating a sense of community in your rental properties can be a great service to your tenants. It benefits you, too, by helping to retain residents, provide an outstanding rental experience, and build your reputation as a landlord who understands how to meet the needs of tenants. 

Community contributes to a sense of belonging, and that’s really what people want – to belong. 

Community also creates a sense of living in a home rather than just a rental property. 

Most of the renters you encounter will be yearning for a sense of community in one way or another. When you can build a strong community within your building or your rental property, you can create a unique and rewarding experience that will mean something to your tenants and to the greater community you’re living and working in. 

Let’s explore the benefits of community building. We’ll also share some quick tips on how you might get started making your residents feel invested in their homes. 

Benefits of Community Building in Your Rental Properties: Increasing Tenant Retention 

The most obvious benefit is perhaps the most lucrative: tenant retention. Your residents will have a hard time leaving a place that they love. 

Tenants living in a place that values community will feel like their neighbors are their friends. They’ll socialize, share, and bond. Those are meaningful connections. When lease renewal time rolls around, a tenant who feels supported and embraced by their community will not want to leave that community. 

An established sense of belonging will increase the likelihood that a tenant decides to renew their lease agreement. This will be especially true if that tenant gets involved in the activities and the events that create the communal feel around your property. You’ll easily be able to predict who is likely to stay and who may be willing to leave, based in part on their level of involvement. 

Longer residencies lead to more consistent rental income and better return on investment (ROI). When you have a vacancy, you lose money. And, you have no idea how long it will take to turn the unit over and look for another qualified tenant. Turnover costs are even more expensive. Not only is rent not coming in from that vacant unit, you’re also struggling to keep up with the costs associated with your empty property. You’ll have to cover the utilities. You’ll need to pay for maintenance and cleaning and cosmetic repairs. There may be upgrades and updates necessary before the property is ready for a new tenant. 

If you’re going to prioritize retaining tenants, make sure your tenants feel like they’re at home.

Communities Have Fewer Disputes and Conflicts 

Most tenants are likely to have a grievance or two against a neighbor. Especially in a multifamily property where a lot of space is shared. 

With a strong sense of community at your property, you’ll likely have fewer tenant disputes and conflicts. Your tenant relationships will be easier to manage because they’re closer. They’ll have an easier time talking to one another instead of complaining immediately to you. 

When tenants share a building or even a wall, it’s easy for friction to occur. There can be tension around noise levels, pets and their messes outside, and parking. As a landlord, you have probably been called upon to get involved in arguments from time to time between tenants. 

Why not make it easier for tenants to talk with each other? 

Establishing a community within your rental property will make it more difficult for tenants to be aggressive and unpleasant with one another. When you create a safe and welcoming space for everyone and you encourage all of your residents to get to know one another, you will find there are fewer fights, and minor disagreements will be less likely to escalate into total hostility. 

Use Community to Market Your Property 

Imagine what it might be like if some existing residents were on hand to welcome prospective tenants when they come to see your property and have a showing. 

The community part of what you offer can also help you attract new tenants. 

Most potential tenants are looking for the same things; a fair price, a safe neighborhood, good property management, and a comfortable and attractive home. 

More and more, tenants are also looking for a welcoming environment. They want to know who they’ll be living with and near. 

Make the strong sense of community at your building a part of your marketing strategy when you’re listing and advertising your home. Let prospective residents know that there are events such as socials, pot lucks, movie nights, and whatever else you have going on. This is unique, and it will get their attention. It will also draw them to your property. It will leave a lasting impression. 

Make the Rental Experience More Meaningful

More than ever, tenants are looking for value. 

Rents are higher than they’ve been in a while, and you need to give your tenants a reason to choose your property and to renew their lease agreement. By providing the community that so many other buildings and rental properties lack, you’re setting yourself apart. You’re something special. 

Tenants appreciate this selling point, and they will possibly be willing to pay a little bit more in rent every month. Good tenants are looking for value and meaning, and a community feel to your rental property can be the difference that gets your lease signed and your rent increased.

Santa Rosa Rental Properties Get Better Care

When your tenant feels like a property is a home, they’re going to protect that home. They’re going to take better care of it. 

This is another benefit of creating a sense of community. Happy tenants who like where they live will not damage that space. They’ll keep it cleaned. They’ll change light bulbs and air filters and report maintenance needs right away. 

You’ll need to take the lead – by responding quickly to maintenance needs and prioritizing preventative services. In a strong community, you’ll have residents who take pride in their property. They’ll do a better job of cleaning, they’ll make minor repairs on their own when it’s possible and safe, and they’ll be quick to let you know when something needs attention. All of this leads to better protection of your investment and its condition. 

What Can Santa Rosa Rental Property Owners Do to Create Community?

How can you create that sense of community at your rental property, especially knowing the benefits it can produce? Here are some ideas:

  • Identify dedicated communal space

You’ll need to create some communal space. Your property can benefit from a recreational area or a clubhouse. If you have the space inside your building, a multipurpose room is a great idea. Outside, perhaps you can set up a courtyard space or a picnic area.  

  • Create social media groups for residents

Everyone’s on Facebook. A Facebook group can help your tenants stay connected to one another and the community. They can share information. When someone signs a lease, send them an invitation to whatever social media channels you’ve created for your community. You can be the administrator of these online groups yourself or you can appoint residents who show a strong interest in keeping up with posts and monitoring of conversations. 

  • Host community events and clubs

Organize events for your residents. Eventually, you may have some eager tenants in your property who are willing to take over the social and events calendar. Start with a coffee hour every weekend or suggest a potluck or a summer picnic.  A movie night or at trivia night could also give people a reason to come together. 

Your community could have a book club, a bowling league, a recurring card game, or a weekly walking group. Clubs can be established and promoted pretty naturally once everyone feels like they’re empowered to get things started. 

It will help to be as inclusive as possible. Community building activities should be diverse and welcoming. Remember that every community is different. What works for you might be something unique that doesn’t necessarily work in other communities. There might be a bit of trial and error, so be patient with that. 

Contact ManagerWe’d be happy to make some personalized recommendations based on what you need and what you’re hoping to accomplish when it comes to building a residential community. Please contact us at Redwood Residential Property Management.