Discussions with numerous property managers and owners helped shape the newest Flick with a built-in screen to provide a new channel for engagement between residents and their community. With the current marketplace shifting slightly in favor of tenants and lower rents, owners and managers should consider steps to increase community engagement to insulate their properties from larger market trends.
Some studies and anecdotal conversations with stakeholders suggest that more engaged tenants can contribute to higher rents and less turnover in rental properties, but as proven by the studies below, engaged residents can lead to higher rent potential and, or, less turnover.
In adding a screen to communicate community-wide, energy related and, or, unit specific messaging to the newest Flick, we seek to help properties unlock this value. More importantly, Flick also lowers energy use, property-wide carbon emissions and individual utility bills.
When tenants are engaged with their rental property and feel a sense of ownership, they are more likely to take care of the property, report maintenance issues in a timely manner, and renew their lease when it expires. This overall satisfaction can lead to less turnover, which in-turn can save property managers and owners time and money that would otherwise be spent on marketing and finding new tenants.
Alternatively, managers and owners may be willing to forego rent increases, as they are reliable and responsible renters who are less likely to cause problems.
One study published in the Journal of Real Estate Research examined the relationship between tenant engagement and rent premiums in student housing properties. The study found that tenants who were more engaged, as measured by their participation in community events and use of common spaces, were willing to pay a rent premium of up to 8%. However, the study also found that engagement had no effect on lease renewal rates, which we assume could be due the student demographic being more comfortable to move around for various reasons during their college experience.
Another study published in the Journal of Housing Economics looked at the relationship between tenant engagement and turnover in low-income housing tax credit (LIHTC) properties. The study found that affordable housing residents who participated in resident services programs, which were designed to encourage engagement, had lower turnover rates than those who did not participate. However, the study did not find a significant relationship between engagement and rent levels, which may be due to various rent regulations that may exist with affordable housing.
We hope you will join us as we seek to improve overall community engagement and well being as we well as a new class of energy conscious residents.
Kilpatrick, S. J., & McDonnell, K. A. (2017). Tenant engagement and rent premiums in student housing properties. Journal of Real Estate Research, 39(3), 295-316.
Carrillo, P., & Willis, C. E. (2019). Low-income housing tax credit properties: Can resident services lower turnover rates? Journal of Housing Economics, 45, 101627