Saturday, August 21, 2010

Three Steps – Explaining the Tax Credit Application Process

Communities that fall under LIHTC may have a rental consultant that struggles to explain the application process to a prospect. First advise the prospect that your community has income guidelines, based on the number of individuals in the household, that must be followed for initial residency. Ask how many persons are in the household and tell them the maximum allowable yearly income, then ask if a) they feel they would qualify, or b) they are over or under this income limit – whichever method of questioning the rental consultant is most comfortable with.
After the prospect has completed the application, let them know there will not be an immediate response on acceptance. Income verification is needed to prove the information provided on the application is accurate, and that there are no hidden bank accounts, home ownerships, or other assets of this type.
Explanation to the prospective resident of the three-step application approval process is critical. First, credit and criminal reports are run to be certain that the prospect meets the resident selection criteria as defined for that particular apartment community. Secondly, if step one passes, the income verification process will begin. Let the prospect know that we are at the mercy of their employer, bank, and anyone else they listed, to prove the information collected when the application was filled out is true and accurate. In some cases, the need for the prospect’s assistance in obtaining the required documentation may be necessary. The third and final step is the approval process. At Yarco Companies a “second pair of eyes” is enlisted to review the file and guarantee that all items have been properly verified and nothing has been missed. When the applicant’s file has been successfully approved, the prospect can move in. This entire process could easily take more than a week to be completed, depending on the speed with which all verifications and approvals can be completed.
Explanation of this process from the first initial contact with a prospective resident may stop some of the phone calls asking if the application has been approved. When a phone inquiry is made asking about approval, let the prospect know which step of the process their application is in. With the information that has been given the applicant regarding the three steps necessary for approval, they should know what stage the verification is in and how much longer they may have to wait for a final decision and move-in date, hopefully reducing daily phone calls from the anxious applicant.

What ways have you found to help you explain the process to prospects?

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Icing on the cake Customer Service

I found this on Multifamily Insiders and really liked it.  Had to share it. . . .

"Icing on the cake Customer Service Multifamily Insiders - Apartment Marketing Property Management Resident Retention Apartment Investment Apartment Jobs"
Aug 03
2010 Icing on the cake Customer Service
Posted by: Ginger Long on Aug 3, 2010 07:16

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I am one of those people that are constantly critiquing customer service wherever I go. I think because I know how important it is in our industry and I am always curious how people outside our industry handle certain situations. I have to admit that for the longest time when I encountered a young Gen "Y" employee and received "undesirable" customer service, I chalked it up to that generation. But just last week, I was pleasantly surprised at the "over and beyond" service I received. I was on a mad search for some ant cupcake toppers that I had seen at one of the grocery stores here. I could not remember which one so I started at the one I most shop at. The young girl working the bakery counter looked at me as though I had two heads as she told me "no, we’ve never had any of those".

I drove to the same chain of the first grocery store that is located by the post office, since I stop there quite often thinking I might have seen them there. Again, behind the bakery counter was a young guy, who could not have been older than seventeen. My immediate thought was that this was a total waste of my time. I told him what I was looking for and he knew immediately what I was talking about. He explained that they recently had run a promotion of a cake in the shape of a watermelon and the ant toppers were spread all over the cake. Unfortunately, they did not have any left. He began to call the other stores to check on their ant availability - no luck. I thanked him for his time and was about to leave when he offered to order me some from their cake supplier. I agreed and gave him my follow up information and left the store. The next day, I received a call from the bakery dude telling me that he stopped off at one of the stores located in Bargersville on his way home the day before, and not only did they have my ant cake toppers, but he brought them back with him and I could pick them up at any time! WOW! He went "over and beyond" for me and I was floored! I made sure to speak with his manager and brag on him for his gracious behavior!

My ant cake toppers are great and besides the excellent customer service experience, they were FREE because the promotion was over!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Reply to the internet Apartment Leasing Hot Leads

Answering your internet Apartment Leasing Hot Leads is a hot button of mine. I love this article, and it really teaches the Apartment Rental Consultant a lot on the subject. Click on this link,  Read it, Love it, Live it!!


Don't Let Another Lease Walk Away

BEFORE ANYONE SAYS A WORD.  .  . Ok, so an apartment rental prospect visits your community for consideration of their new home.  A lot m...