How to improve resident retention in 2023


A group of people gather for a happy hour.

We all watched it happen. Last year’s third quarter was one of the worst in recent history for apartment communities as demand continued to fall through the second half of 2022.

It appears the pandemic pop has officially come to a halt. Help your community stand out and attract more leads by focusing on your current residents!

How do you improve resident retention? All signs point toward more consistency, care, and a little creativity in 2023.

Leads stalled? Focus on resident retention and accountability

If qualified leads have stalled, don’t panic. There’s still plenty you can do to improve your reputation (to attract more leads organically) and provide a better experience for your current residents. And that starts with the leasing office. 

In 2023, apartment residents will not accept a poorly managed rental office (a nice little welcome present from Generation Z). Though relatively new to the renter demographic, Gen Z will not shy away from holding your team accountable. So this year, focus on streamlining management processes to provide the best customer service possible. 

This could include small property-level scheduling or workflow changes, or major operational changes. For example, the implementation of an AI leasing assistant or a centralized leasing calendar to organize appointments across an entire region can help ease the burden for your on-site staff to provide better customer service.

Additionally, as purse strings tighten across the nation, residents will look for more value for their money. If your rental rates have increased throughout the pandemic and your community doesn’t provide a valuable experience for your residents, they’ll begin exploring other options. 

Providing a valuable experience to your residents doesn’t necessarily mean you have to build a state-of-the-art gym or refinish the pool. Simply communicating with your residents to better understand their needs can help forge a connection and provide ideas for worthwhile improvements (that won’t break the bank).

Try sending out a periodic resident satisfaction survey to open the lines of communication between the front office and your residents.  

Another great way to communicate with your residents and prospects is to prioritize your property’s social media because…

Social media marketing will continue to grow in 2023

We know you’ve heard this a million times before. But we’ll say it once more for good measure: Social media is here to stay—and it’s time for apartment communities to get serious about their social presence. 

Social media is sometimes seen as a “necessary evil” in apartment marketing. But as platforms grow in popularity, and apartment demographics shift to encompass the biggest group of social users, your community’s social media presence will also need to grow. 

If you haven’t already, 2023 is the time to introduce video-based content like TikTok and Instagram Reels.

But don’t panic! We have a ton of resources to help you learn how to be a pro (plus nearly 100 examples to inspire you on your less-creative days).

User-generated content helps build a community on your platforms and helps residents connect with their neighbors. Plus, it’s basically free content for your feed. Whether for a holiday decorating contest, pet of the week, or scenic view from a balcony, ask residents to submit photos of what makes their apartment home. (Did you know Respage has a tool to request community content?)

User-generated content provides a glimpse into what it’s actually like to live in your community; and interactive content like contests, polls, surveys, scavenger hunts, and games will help increase engagement.

Focus on the people—not quick fixes

Prioritizing resident satisfaction and operations in 2023 will help you naturally create a community people want to be a part of. And by increasing resident retention and engagement, new leads will soon follow. 

After all, your happiest residents are your best marketers. 


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