Why you should ask your residents for reviews

How often do you get emailed a request for a review after purchasing a product or using a service? It is highly likely that a few days after you stayed in a hotel you will have received an email asking you to post a review.

The hotel industry has learnt what many industries have now experienced – that when they ask for a review they are likely to receive a much higher average rating – reports state up to 56% higher – than if they didn’t ask for any reviews at all.

The USA rental market is familiar with the importance of reviews and the impact they can have on your business. Just look on the NAAHQ website and you can find lots of articles talking about the benefits of reviews and how to manage them. Research on renters showed that reviews matter with

  • 70% of renters deciding to visit a property with a higher reputation score
  • 73% said reviews affected their decision to rent
  • 89% used review sites to narrow down their search and make a final selection

However, in the USA, Kingsley Associates found that ratings for apartments on public review sites were consistently and substantially lower than reviews collected directly through customer satisfaction surveys sent via the landlord. They found that if the landlord or building management asked for feedback ratings were higher and these reviews could then be published on the rating sites.

Berger Rental Communities in the US was one of the first companies to proactively engage and request reviews from the tenants of their 2,323 apartments across the 11 communities they managed and ensure these reviews were visible and easy to find. Dan Berger, President of Berger Rental Communities wanted the good the bad and the ugly to be available as “prospective residents are willing to overlook some bad reviews. Not everyone is going to like the same movie and not everyone is going to like the same apartment”. Berger implemented this marketing strategy ten years ago and contributed this to helping them achieve an average occupancy in 2010 of 95.15% with 4.5% rent increases.

Many Build to Rent operators already undertake customer satisfaction surveys and it is easy to invite your residents to add their review to www.homeviews.com as part of this process. Alternatively, we can create a survey for you that includes our HomeViews questions and any additional bespoke questions you would like to ask. As we did with Fizzy Living we will provide you with all the responses, reporting and insights and ensure the results are added to HomeViews.  If you would like HomeViews to support you with a survey please email [email protected].

Berger also said that reviews made public validates employees hard work, “it means everything to our team members to see nice things residents say about them on a website, it really encourages everyone to work as hard as possible to strive to please our residents”.