2021 is here! As an unprecedented year comes to an end, we are left with seemingly fictional tales of a year that brought along several new trends that have since become commonplace. Most restaurants have continued with limited seating, sporting events now play host to screen after screen of remote fans watching via webcam, and facial coverings are considered a necessity when going anywhere in public.
A willingness to change and adapt continues to be a key to success for rental housing operators as many new trends have remained prevalent. Perhaps none more so than the safety, ease of access, and convenience of virtual showings. With the use of virtual leasing tools continuing to expand, a development into other communication functions such as resident engagement, interaction, tours, and collections is being predicted (Chamoff, 2020).
The term “virtual showing” can mean many different things. Whether it is a self-guided tour that prospective renters view online, or a FaceTime walkthrough of a vacant apartment, there should always be guidelines to ensure the potential resident is getting the most out of their virtual experience (Born, 2020).
- Virtual Tours Do Not Have to be Complicated – Showings can be as complicated as buying a fancy camera, or simply chatting via FaceTime. What is important, is ensuring that the tenant can adequately see the apartment and discuss with the staff.
- Establish and Follow Your Script – Virtual apartment tours may not be the norm for a landlord or a prospective tenant yet, but it is important to be just as thorough as you would during an in-person showing.
- Leave Nothing Out – Again, follow your script! Show the entire apartment just as you normally would including amenities, even if they may be closed.
- Leave Time for Questions – Again, follow your script! Review any property policies such as pet restrictions, available move-in dates, late fees, etc.
AFI managed-assets have offices open and are welcoming to prospective renters and guests alike! However, we remain abreast to the global situation and are always willing to accommodate for individuals that would prefer to limit in-person interaction. While change and innovation can be difficult, we remain optimistic that these lessons learned will breed new success in 2021!
Born, Mackenzie. “6 Tips for a Virtual Apartment Tour.” Avail.com, Realtor.com, 17 June 2020, www.avail.co/education/articles/6-tips-for-a-virtual-apartment-tour.
Chamoff, Lisa. “Here’s What Industry Leaders Predict for Real Estate in 2021.” Forbes.com, Forbes, 23 Dec. 2020, www.forbes.com/sites/lisachamoff/2020/12/23/heres-what-several-industry-leaders-predict-for-real-estate-in-2021/?sh=48e0a7ac49e7.