GLOBEST.COM – COVID-19 Acts as Catalyst to Propel Self-Serve Solutions
As the industry continues to experience an increase in self-guided apartment tours and contactless leasing, Tour24 has developed tips on how to return to the new normal.
By Ingrid Tunberg | June 15, 2020 at 07:00 AM
BOSTON, MA – The COVID-19 pandemic continues to drive an increase contactless solutions throughout the industry. As many states phase out of shelter-in-place restrictions, companies are increasingly shifting to the ‘new normal’ through innovative, implemented practices.
In particular, consumers and potential tenants across the multifamily sector are provided increased self-serve solutions.
Automating the apartment tour process and ensuring safety for residents and staff, the on-demand platform, Tour24 aims to assist property managers in streamlining processes and securing places to live through self-guided apartment tours and contactless leasing.
“The COVID-19 pandemic is acting as a catalyst to propel self-serve solutions from more than just a generational request to a broader safety issue for everyone,” said John Doyle, Tour24 co-founder. “Smart tech provides a contactless experience which assists properties in adhering to state and local health guidelines. When the burden of when and how to see an apartment is lifted, residents and property managers can have a more seamless experience that focuses on getting units rented and making the entire process more convenient and safe.”
Aiming to assist properties in managing the next phase of the pandemic, Tour24 is offering five tips on returning to the new normal.
- Go Virtual: In addition to implementing self-guided tours, the company suggests that industry professionals should enhance each property’s website to highlight its character and features through additional interactive content and videos. The company proposes utilizing local freelancers to assist in such projects.
- Support the Community: Publicize community-focused options, such as curbside pick-up from neighborhood restaurants or outdoor green markets. Share information on how to donate to local, non-profit organizations or services.
- Contactless Common Areas: Seek innovative ways for residents and staff to social distance as they move through the property. Encourage safe-distancing near the reception desk and offices by spreading out or removing furniture in the lobby. Display guidelines for elevators and provide greater access for stair use.
- Adjust Amenities: Create and set realistic expectations to safely reopen your amenities. Increase sanitation procedures and supplies and change gym configurations. Consider changing occupancy limits and reducing furniture when reopening outdoor areas, such as lounges and pool decks.
- Delivery decisions: Embrace home delivery for groceries, retail and restaurant meals through services such as Prime, Instacart and Grubhub. As multifamily residents will continue to utilize such services in the future, property managers must implement efficient strategies to respond to residents’ needs and minimize impact on building operations. Reduce contact and keep deliveries secure through automated locker solutions and package rooms.
Tour24 aims to extend its leasing team’s capabilities while adhering to social distancing guidelines through implemented self-guided tours. Through the company’s mobile app, consumers are able to view properties, schedule tours, visit apartments and begin the leasing process. Combining curated tours with detailed information regarding the property, its community and amenities, the apps allows administrators to track consumers’ path through the community.
Ensuring security and validity, Tour24 additionally requires three levels of security checks, including facial recognition, identification and credit card verification.
Conducting thousands of tours across more than 100 properties, the platform’s data showcases a 33% lease-to-close ratio, with some properties reporting a recent 60% close ratio; compared to the industry’s average 25%.
Tour24 additionally reported an 11% increase in conducted tours since March, and a 21% increase since February.