Ways You Increase Revenue in Your Properties?

24 Replies

All,

I'm interested to hear any strategies or methods you use to increase revenue. I work for a local investor, and we are brainstorming ways to increase cash flow and revenue in his student housing properties.

We are of course aware of raising rents, but I'm interested in hearing innovative or different ideas of how you all raise revenue and cash flow.

Thanks in advance!

Hi Eric,

Some ideas are following and use your best judgement. 

1. adding additional rooms/units

2. adding storage

3. Laundry fee

4. Bill back the utilities

5. Provide rental insurance 

6. parking 

7. pet fee

8. Vending machines

Expanding on these ideas

9. Pet deposit/fee and monthly pet rent

10. Covered parking

11. Reserved/Preferred parking (stencil numbers on pavement)

12. Enforce strict late fees

13. Charge more for preferred locations/configurations/larger sizes

14. Charge by the student/room instead of unit (i.e. $500/room instead of $1200 for 3 BR unit)

For one of our recent student housing acquisitions, our team made a video and the school played it up on the jumbotron at a sporting event.  It was reported to us that it helped with brand awareness, the students liked it, etc... the play being to increase occupancy for our deal.

@Jeff Greenberg - student housing is your wheelhouse... Got anything to add?

Also, don't forget about expenses. You can increase cash flow by lowering monthly expenses.

love idea #14! smart - still feels affordable per person! win-win situation!

Originally posted by @Scott Skinger :

Expanding on these ideas

9. Pet deposit/fee and monthly pet rent

10. Covered parking

11. Reserved/Preferred parking (stencil numbers on pavement)

12. Enforce strict late fees

13. Charge more for preferred locations/configurations/larger sizes

14. Charge by the student/room instead of unit (i.e. $500/room instead of $1200 for 3 BR unit)

To add to @Scott Skinger and @Bharath(AJ) A.

15. Bike Rack Rental

16. Short Term lease premium

17. Depending in your location and local city regulations.  Install lease billboards

18. Charge more for furnished units

19. Clubhouse rental  (for the keg parties)

@Bharath(AJ) A. Thank you for your input, adding extra parking spaces is something we've thought about and may implement

@Scott Skinger We do use the per room charge, which is a great idea. We also are working on enforcing our late fees, because it's so easy to let someone go every once in a while.

@Chris Tracy That's an awesome idea, a great way to increase awareness of your new acquisition and get the buzz going with students.

@Jeff Greenberg Good idea, we are slowly renovating some units in order to get up to the max that the market will allow. Thanks for your input

@Russell Gronsky Good perspective, it's easy to forget about lowering expenses, cause increasing income is the fun part :) 

@Todd Dexheimer haha hey why not! Your podcast was great by the way, I listened to it not too long ago. 

@Michael Dang Bike Rack Rental is something I never thought about, and there's a decent amount of students that ride bikes from our properties to campus. Something to think about! Thanks

Originally posted by @Eric Fitzgerald :

@Scott Skinger We do use the per room charge, which is a great idea. We also are working on enforcing our late fees, because it's so easy to let someone go every once in a while.

I think I read it in the BP Landlording book or from Jake & Gino but the idea is to be very regimented and have a clear system in place. For example, you might do something like the following:

-rent is due on the 1st with a 5 day grace period

-on the 6th it is considered late, $50 late fee, every day it is late after is $10 per day

-payments only accepted for rent + all late fees, online systems can be configured this way. Or all payments are applied to late fees first and then towards rent

-on the 10th a notice to evict is sent.

No emotions, this is business and the way the system works. Paying rent first before other bills becomes a top priority for the tenants then.

RUBS - This is something I am starting to see in our market.  One of our owners who just let me know he wants to setup all C class properties on a RUBS program for water, but potentially trash and other items as well.  

We are going to start to hit a ceiling for rent increases, so reducing expenses is a huge way to offset rent growth and RUBS has come up time and time again lately as the way to do this.  Really it just makes sense and helps conservation.  I have always thought it was insane that residents don't pay water even though it is a cost that is highly influenced by personal use like electric.

You can of course always charge for parking, storage, WIFI (student housing this will be needed either way), late fees (we do 8%) with the 3rd as the last day it isn't late instead of the 5th.  Pet rent (I don't think anyone mentioned this), vending, laundry (make sure your rates are up to market....I see so many buildings charging 1.25 in a 2.75 market).

Also look at putting together syndications or smart alliances with services and businesses in your area that will pay a percentage back.

Renovate units to bring up rents or to try to push the markets up.  We are currently cycling through a 4 plex, replacing carpet with Luxury Vinyl Plank.  Getting rid of the stove that worked but was missing a knob and the fridge that works but is missing all door shelving.  New light switches, outlets, fixtures, etc to get rid of the dated feel.  In general we are working on bringing up the quality of the building from a place that meets their needs to a place that they are excited to move into.  

We won't have the cheapest place for rent in the end however we aren't looking to get the cheapest tenants!

We do value add on almost all properties with Granite/quartz countertops, stainless steel appliances, designer vinyl planking, new marble bathrooms (not always, but lately) so we max our rents per market for our class of rentals.  

There is always a ceiling even in class “A” so cost conservation/management effencies and customer service will be even more important.    

In my opinion it will separate the good operators from the bad operators very quickly once marketing, sales and customer service exceeds market demand.

You don’t have to sell very hard with the vacancy rates we have had.    

If renting by the bedroom, supply wifi @ $20/ person monthly. Definitely parking spaces, move the back fence up your required length, gravel it, cuts down on grass cutting and provides monthly revenue. If you do paid laundry definitely go with a pre-loaded card system, not coins. Never fails some idiot finds a screwdriver and tries to steal the $9 in the coin opp and it needs repairs. Lost cards just increase revenue.

I've been converting my long term rentals into short term rentals over the last 6 years. Fully furnished with all bills paid are my STRs. A LTR brings in about $400/month. STR is $400/week. 98% of my renters are traveling contractors working short term jobs at a refinery. My latest influx of tenants is about 25 guys here to bring a cat unit back up and running properly.

Hi Paul Sandhu,

where are your STRs? i do this in South Lake Tahoe. and the revenue on Vacation Rentals are fantastic.

(323) 397-4874

@Susan Chee These are all in my town of Coffeyville Kansas.  Home of CVR Energy, a 120,000 bpd petrochemical and uan fertilizer production facility (you'd call it a refinery).

Depending on size. Hopefully I didn't repeat any.

1. Dog park

2. Play ground

3. Satellite tower

4. Cable, verizon, ect discounts

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