Let’s say you need to get in touch with one of your residents about a minor matter regarding your rental property. The problem isn’t urgent, but you would like to get it handled within a decent amount of time. How should you go about this? Do you send a written form of communication like a letter, email, or text message? Or do you call and leave a voicemail? 

While some property managers prefer to communicate with their residents via written notices, it has been proven that emails and text messages are the most effective and efficient form of communication.  A phone call or letter is a tried and true form of communication; however, it is much slower than digital communication methods. 

In 2020, the number of smartphone users worldwide is 3.5 Billion, which translates to 44.85% percent of the world’s population. By 2023, the number of mobile device users is projected to increase to 7.33 Billion. If that isn’t enough to convince you to go digital, maybe this statistic will: on average, Americans send 94 text messages a day. Meaning, we spend quite a lot of time on our phones. A text message to your resident will most likely be viewed within 2 hours of sending, while a written letter could take much longer to actually be read by the resident. As for email, in 2019, the number of global email users was 3.9 billion users. This figure is set to grow to 4.3 billion users in 2023. (That’s half of the world’s population!) 

Keeping in touch with residents through these digital forms of communication makes the property manager’s job easier. To further prove the point, here are a few examples of when the use of text messaging and email can get the job done more quickly. 

  • Overdue notices – if your resident’s rent is overdue, skip the letter and send them a quick text. 
  • “Rent is Due” Reminders – this can be done via text or email. It’s not something they need to respond to except for making their payment on time. 
  • Maintenance Requests – if your resident sends in a maintenance request, send them a text to let them know you’re on your way. If they’re not home, send them a text and email notifying them that the issue has been resolved, or that it is still a work in progress, and you’ll be back tomorrow. 
  • Lease Renewals – this should be done through email. It makes it more convenient for residents to open their lease renewal online and automatically e-sign right then and there. 
  • Building/Neighborhood Updates – this message can be sent through email, unless an emergency, a text might be quicker! 
  • Building/Neighborhood Events – if you have a monthly newsletter highlighting any neighborhood event, this can be sent through email. 
  • Payment Notices – after your resident makes a payment, send them a friendly notification via email that their rent payment has been processed. 

Navigating having a reliable channel of communication with residents can be frustrating. However, it is highly recommended to try communicating through email or text messaging. If done the right way, these methods have been proven to help streamline the process and expedite communications for everyone.