Paperless leasing offices were among the many discussions about new enhancements to Entrata’s Resident Suite at the 2019 Summit.
The biggest form of paperless expansion is the rise of electronic payments. Of all Entrata users, the average online payment adoption is 67 percent. The best way to adopt paperless payments at your community is to incentivize the leasing team with a competition. At Redstone Residential, for instance, onsite teams went from a 50 percent adoption rate to 80 percent paperless in three months.
For senior communities, leasing associates at Redstone are trained to walk their residents through the leasing process online. They make sure that the senior resident has a guardian present and they can work on the lease together. This process has resulted in a 97 percent adoption rate for a demographic that is not traditionally digitally savvy.
Another way to make a paperless community a reality is to expand payment options. Now available through Entrata’s ResidentPay, residents will be able to make payments with their American Express cards. This credit card provider was not previously offered through the ResidentPay portal because their fees were higher than Visa or MasterCard and the property would be absorbing them. Entrata was able to negotiate their fee structure and level them out to the same as Visa or Mastercard.
In addition to paperless payments, an impactful opportunity to reduce the amount of paper lies in the operations and systems of the maintenance team. Multifamily maintenance teams that leverage Entrata’s maintenance solutions are able to perform work orders and complete inspections within the mobile app.
The Entrata maintenance app requires residents to include Permission To Enter within their maintenance request. That way the PTE is documented. Maintenance techs can provide updates within the app and with the latest enhancement, the app does not need data to update. Any maintenance technician can enter updates and photos from anywhere on the property, regardless of Wifi or data access. Once that device reconnects to Wifi, the app will automatically update the information.
While everyone likes the idea of a paperless system, some factors prevent them from becoming 100 percent paperless.
For example, most states require property managers to physically post a three-day notice on a resident’s front door. There are also legal requirements in some states that property managers accept physical payment.
The leasing experience can also be enhanced by utilizing all five senses, which include walking away from the leasing office with a brochure, something to drink or even a snack.
While all of these factors are considered, the truth remains that most people want a paperless experience and leasing offices are well on their way to providing that to prospects and residents.