Direct Mail for Multi Family properties

45 Replies

We are doing a direct mail campaign for single family properties with much success.  We plan to transition over to marketing for small to medium size multifamily units.  Is direct mail a good way to market for multifamily units?  

Yes!

I would make sure that the lists go to the owner (Typically they do not live on the property)

A better way is to drive the streets.  many multi-family properties have "Managed by" or "for rent" signs posted.  Those are gold, call them up get the deal!

I have two multi family properties on a street with 11 more.  Only one of the other 11 are currently listed for sale, so I was pondering sending targeted (more personal letters) mailers out the other owners on the street to see if I can get any interest.  

I can't remember the guy's name, but, there was a guy that posted that he did a targeted direct mailing campaign a few months ago and ended up buying a 25 unit place near Charleston, SC.  I think it was around November if you search for it.

Very curious to see others say.

i'm curious as to what your criteria is going to be for this direct mail marketing. If someone could provide some feedback on their criteria for direct mail marketing to multifamily property, that would be great. I will following this closely because I am trying to do the same thing 

@Nick Patterson  would you say driving for dollars for multi is better than a mailing, in your experience?

thx

Compared to direct mail for single family homes, it seems much more affordable.  There are less multifamily properties, and you can hit most of them in your desired areas for much less marketing money. 

Driving for dollars can be beneficial if you have the time.  Direct mail is more efficient IMO.

DM is definitely more efficient for Multi properties. Driving for dollars is all about driving an area and looking for the dilapidated house on the nice street. Target what you want and contact them you are going to send them a letter anyway. Pulling a list is a more efficient use of your time. Drive around for an entire weekend or spend 50.00 (or way less) on a list? I don't know what kind of car you drive but a list is cheaper than gas/your time.

Medium head icon colorRyan Dossey, Call Porter | http://Callporter.com

@Chris Wood  

 Yes!

With mailing you are fishing for leads.  Throwing out a net to see who bits

With driving around and making calls you are hunting for leads and making stuff happen.

We did a few mailings for multi-families and had a pretty good response rate of around 10%.  The county auditor website where we invest allows you to screen for 4-19 units in different neighborhoods so we could put together a pretty targeted list.  Out of the 600 or so letters we sent we ended up making offers on two different four families and ended up buying one.  We talked to a lot of people who were burned out landlords but relatively few that were truly motivated to sell at a realistic price, but I guess that is what you should expect.  

@Ryan Ball    Thanks for sharing!  We plan to jump into multifamily properties.  Glad to hear you were successful with your campaign!

When I first got into real estate investing I used to ride my bike around neighborhoods that I wanted to find opportunities in. I found a street with duplexes on one side and SFH on the other, in a nice neighborhood. I was a bit surprised that they were duplexes, but the mailboxes gave them away. So when I got home, I used the county tax appraisal website to get the names/addresses of the owners.

I drafted a short and sweet letter - signed each one, and hand addressed the envelopes.

Out of the 13 properties on that street, three owners representing four of the properties called me back.  I ended up buying two of them over the next year.  I should have purchased all four.

Mail sure worked for me..  While I don't feel like I got the properties at fantastic prices, at least I got my foot in the door before they were listed.  

Good luck!

@Daniel D.    Great story!  I love riding bikes for exercise.  Combining that with looking at real estate is genius!  'Riding' for dollars just sounds like fun!  I will have to do that when the weather warms up!

take a look at this post here http://www.biggerpockets.com/forums/223/topics/149357-20-unit-apartment-building-with-no-money-down

Awesome post and beneficial information! I'd agree that driving for dollars might be best in such a situation.

@Nick Patterson  

Call up on multi fam vacancies or managed by... signs? Managers I'm afraid wouldn't/couldn't give the time of day to such calls. Owner managed, however, completely different. 

On the other hand, I actually keep and file unsolicited offers I get in the mail.  You never know...my desires and circumstances could change sooner than I expect and I like having info on ppl who've shown interest in my props. 

Curious on the best letter to use for direct mail. I have received letters on properties I have owned and they look cheesy. Does that work?  I always have tossed them.

The one I used successfully was plain white, typed, personally signed, stamped, with hand written envelopes.

I am sure someone has a better idea than that but when I do it again this summer I'm probably not changing a thing.  

Good luck!

@Daniel D.

Did you guys try anything out after the above post for MF DM mailing? Any experience you wish to share? I just posted a question on this topic myself and am not getting much feedback yet.

Originally posted by @Ryan Billingsley :

We are doing a direct mail campaign for single family properties with much success.  We plan to transition over to marketing for small to medium size multifamily units.  Is direct mail a good way to market for multifamily units?  

What sort of response rate are you getting for the mailings that you sent -- whether for SFRs or multi units? 

Account Closed

We don't track response rate.  We track conversion rate.  For every 1000 letters we send out per month we average 1 deal closed.

Originally posted by @Ryan Billingsley :

@Greg F.

We don't track response rate.  We track conversion rate.  For every 1000 letters we send out per month we average 1 deal closed.

Good. It helps to be aware of what the response rate is (effectiveness of the direct mail effort) . The conversion rate, although = $ in the bank, often does vary based on the sales skills of the mailer; the ability to convert a respondent may have a lot to do with what you may or may not have said to the seller so you don't want to miss whether or not your response rate is at par with what the industry norm is.

Originally posted by @Daniel D. :

The one I used successfully was plain white, typed, personally signed, stamped, with hand written envelopes.

I am sure someone has a better idea than that but when I do it again this summer I'm probably not changing a thing.  

Good luck!

Go @Daniel! Rip it up! 

I always like to think of it from the mail receiver's perspective. Would I rather look at - or even open - what is clearly a DM piece, or would I rather look at something that might (and I stress *might*) be a normal letter? 

I have sat on this fence many times, and I have to say curiosity always gets the best of me... I open any letter that might not be mass DM, and I think a lot of folks act the same way. 

Where I am, there are less than 2,000 MF (4+ doors) in the whole county. That's manageable for personal contact as well as DM. And I have found property managers to be happy to talk if they're not busy... drop by with a smile and get to know them. It's worth the time.  :)

A Street Full of Property Managers, 2015.

My first multifamily deal was a 48 unit, which came from a Direct Mail Campaign. I LOVE IT, and still try to send out 350-500 pieces a month.

Medium screen shot 2015 08 11 at 5.23.17 pmJohn Cohen, JC Property Group Inc | 5162683500 | http://www.jcpropertygroupinc.com