Kingsley is Headed to Dallas for the NMHC OpTech Conference

We’re heading to Dallas next week for the 2013 NMHC OpTech Conference held at the Hilton Anatole from November 11-13!

In partnership with NMHC and a panel of industry experts, Kingsley Associates will be presenting an interactive General Session entitled The Residents Have Spoken: The 2013 NMHC/Kingsley Survey of Apartment Resident Preferences on Tuesday, November 12 at 10:45 a.m.

David C. Smith, Kingsley’s Vice President and COO, will be presenting survey results from our landmark study on resident preferences. The survey is the largest of its kind in the industry and addresses:

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  • Apartment features
  • Community amenities
  • Resident events
  • Office hours
  • Green initiatives 
  • Communication vehicles
  • Social media

Attendees will gain important insights into what residents truly value in their communities and what can really make a difference in resident satisfaction and employee engagement. David will also lead an interactive panel discussion with some of the most influential professionals in the industry, including:

  • John Selindh, Group VP, Sales and Marketing, BRE Properties, Inc.
  • Jennifer Staciokas, VP, Marketing and Training, Lincoln Property Company
  • Kevin Thompson, SVP, Marketing, Bell Partners, Inc.

Stop by and see us in the Exhibit Hall at our booth (#444) and learn how Kingsley’s survey programs provide the knowledge and power to improve resident satisfaction. We will also be providing power for your phones and tablets with our universal power bank giveaway. We are also giving away a $5 Starbucks gift card to each person who correctly answers the Kingsley Index trivia question.

We hope to see you in Dallas!

Follow us on Twitter for updates during the conference. @Kingsley_Assoc

Kingsley Associates Presents at 1st BOMA China Conference

In an exciting exchange of Western and Asian real estate cultures,  David C. Smith of Kingsley Associates was recently invited to speak at the 1st Annual Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) China Conference in Beijing and present the results of a global tenant survey.

David C Smith BOMA China Kingsley Associates

David C. Smith presents the results of a global tenant survey.

BOMA engaged Kingsley Associates in spring 2013 to develop a global tenant survey, and data was gathered through a collaboration with BOMA International, BOMA Canada, the South African Property Owners Association (SAPOA), the Property Council of New Zealand, and CBRE. Links to the web-based survey were distributed to office tenants worldwide, and survey questions covered building and tenant characteristics, satisfaction, amenity preferences, lease priorities and space usage. The results of the survey concluded that:

  • Service interaction drives tenant satisfaction
  • Lease factors and general building features are more important to tenants than location factors (i.e.  proximity to clients)
  • Tenants are optimistic about the future, expecting to increase their headcount and square footage needs
  • Most tenants place importance on sustainability
  • Tenant perceptions vary widely by country, building class and tenant type

David remarked, “It was an honor to be a guest speaker at the inaugural BOMA China conference in Beijing. The conference’s high attendance spoke to the rapid expansion in the Chinese commercial real estate market.” Other presentations were given by representatives from BOMA International, BOMA China, BOMA San Francisco and real estate executives operating throughout China.

BOMA Kingsley Global Tenant Survey

Shanghai Tower under construction.

Several new office developments in China were highlighted during the conference, including the architecturally innovative Shanghai Tower, which is composed of nine cylindrical sections and features a unique transparent façade. The tower is scheduled to be completed in 2014 and will offer retail, event and office space.

To purchase the 2013 Global Tenant Survey, click here.

To learn more about Kingsley Associates’ Tenant Surveys, click here.

Industry Conferences Showcase Market Leadership

Kingsley Associates’ expertise will be on display in June at two major real estate industry annual conferences.

First up is the National Apartment Association (NAA)’s Education Conference & Exposition in San Diego from June 19-22:

  • John Falco, Peggy Robinson and Elysse Bell will be on hand on the trade show floor at Booth #340
  • The recently released NMHC 50 is always a topic of discussion at the conference, and Peggy can answer any question about this year’s results
  • If you haven’t heard already, be sure to stop by and ask about Certified Resident Ratings & ReviewsSM, our new partnership with RentPathTM

Immediately following the NAA conference (and, conveniently, also in San Diego)  is the 2013 BOMA International Every Building Conference & Expo from June 23-25

  • Lisa Green and Phil Mobley will be joining John at Booth #234 during the trade show
  • On Monday, June 24, BOMA and Kingsley Associates will jointly announce the results of our collaboration on the 2013 Global Tenant Survey
  • Following the announcement, Phil will be participating in Monday’s general session entitled The Tenant is King: What Office Tenants Want and how to Wow Them
  • The new Experience Exchange Report (EER) reports will also be available in time for the conference.

We’ll see you in San Diego.

NMHC Unveils Top 50 Apartment Owners and Managers

303NRE_12060.pdfWe are honored to have partnered with the National Multi Housing Council (NMHC) for the fourth consecutive year to conduct the NMHC 50, which annually recognizes the nation’s largest owners and managers. We are also proud of the fact that more NMHC 50 members choose Kingsley than any other resident survey provider, including 75% of apartment REITs that conduct independent surveys. This year’s lists of the top 50 owners and managers is now available at NMHC.org/2013NMHC50.

Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews FAQ

Kingsley Associates recently announced a partnership with RentPathTM (formerly PRIMEDIA®), owner of ApartmentGuide.com and Rent.com, to create Certified Resident Ratings & ReviewsSM, a new service for multifamily owners and managers. To help our clients and the multifamily industry understand what this program is and what it means, we have answered some of the most frequently asked questions about the program below.

Basics

What are “Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews”?

Who created Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews?

Where do Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews appear?

How much does it cost?

How do I participate?

How it Works

How are residents “certified”?

What metrics are apartment communities rated on?

When are ratings and reviews posted?

Can anonymous users provide ratings and reviews as they can on other sites?

What do prospective residents see when they are looking at my community?

What do I get to see?

Will I be able to respond to resident reviews?

What it Means for Me

What are the benefits of participation?

Do I need to change my current survey program?

What if I am not a Kingsley Associates client?

What if I am not a subscriber to Apartment Guide or Rent.com?

What if I have more questions?

 

What are “Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews”?

Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews consist of numeric ratings on the 1-5 scale and verbatim comments from residents related to apartment communities in which they live. This information has been collected as part of formal resident survey programs, as opposed to being anonymously posted directly on the Internet.

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Who created Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews?

Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews is a partnership between Kingsley Associates and RentPath (owner of ApartmentGuide.com and Rent.com).

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Where do Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews appear?

Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews appear (for current subscribers) on RentPath-owned websites related to individual apartment communities.

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How much does it cost?

If you are a current subscriber to ApartmentGuide.com or Rent.com, Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews is available at no additional cost.

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How do I participate?

Contact the RentPath concierge at 1-877-999-4472 to sign up for Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews.

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How are residents “certified”?

All ratings and reviews are collected during formal surveys of residents at existing apartment communities. These surveys have been commissioned directly by the owners or managers of the communities. The respondents are “certified” because the owners and managers themselves have supplied  the lists of residents to survey.

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What metrics are apartment communities rated on?

Ratings for overall resident satisfaction and likelihood of recommendation to other prospective renters, as well as a few other aspects of the apartment and community, appear in Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews. General verbatim comments from residents also appear in Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews. While all comments come from certified residents, residents’ full names will NOT be associated with their comments – only first names and last initials will appear.

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When are ratings and reviews posted?

Ratings and reviews are published 10 calendar days after they are received. During this 10-day period, comments are viewable only to community management via the community’s MyAG login (on http://my.apartmentguide.com). If desired, community management can use this time (before comments are publicly viewable to prospective renters) to craft a thoughtful response that will appear on the appropriate site alongside resident comments once the 10-day window has passed.

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Can anonymous users provide ratings and reviews as they can on other sites?

Currently, only data from certified residents will appear on ApartmentGuide.com and Rent.com. All Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews will be collected by trusted third parties such as Kingsley Associates. Individuals will NOT be able to log on to these sites directly to supply ratings or reviews anonymously.

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What do prospective residents see when they are looking at my community?

Prospective residents will see a summary of 1-5 “star” ratings data for a given apartment community. They will also be able to see recent verbatim comments about the community.

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What do I get to see?

Apartment community owners and managers will have access to a dashboard on http://my.apartmentguide.com that summarizes the feedback collected as part of the Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews program. Reviews will be visible on this dashboard for 10 calendar days before publication to ApartmentGuide.com or Rent.com.

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Will I be able to respond to resident reviews?

Community managers will have the ability to view comments from Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews 10 calendar days before they go “live” on ApartmentGuide.com or Rent.com. If desired, managers will have the opportunity to respond both publicly and privately. Managers can craft a thoughtful response that will appear on the appropriate site alongside the resident’s comment. Managers will also be able to respond by sending an email directly to the resident (though the resident’s full name will not be visible). There is no cost for these features.

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What are the benefits of participation?

There are many places online where prospective renters can view ratings and reviews of apartments. In most of these places, no validation of residence occurs. Thus, there is no assurance that what appears online is accurate. In fact, Kingsley Associates’ research suggests that these non-validated ratings are consistently lower than ratings from scientifically conducted surveys and that there is no link between these online reviews and actual resident perceptions. To address this, participants in the Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews program will have data from actual, current, “certified” apartment community residents that accurately reflects the reality of resident perceptions at that community.

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Do I need to change my current survey program?

If you currently have an active survey program with Kingsley Associates, you do NOT need to change it in any way in order to participate in Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews. Data from your current program can be mapped to the appropriate RentPath site(s).

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What if I am not a Kingsley Associates client?

If you are a subscriber to ApartmentGuide.com or Rent.com but do NOT have an active survey program with Kingsley Associates, a limited, no-cost resident survey program is available that meets the minimum requirements of Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews. Contact RentPath concierge at 1-877-999-4472 for more information.

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What if I am not a subscriber to Apartment Guide or Rent.com?

You can contact RentPath to learn more about how to subscribe to ApartmentGuide.com or Rent.com. The concierge may be reached at 1-877-999-4472.

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What if I have more questions?

If you have any additional questions, please feel free to contact Peggy Robinson, Kingsley Associates’ VP of Marketing, at (770) 908-1220 or probinson@kingsleyassociates.com.

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Commercial Tenants are Getting Happier

As revealed in our Q4 2012 Office Industry Trends analysis, office tenants reached new heights of satisfaction in 2012. The trend, though, is not limited to a single property type. Indeed, it has been happening across the entire commercial real estate industry, encompassing industrial, retail and medical office properties as well as traditional office buildings.

The chart below shows the four-year trend for overall satisfaction for the four property types tracked by Kingsley Associates. Though the trend patterns differ somewhat, tenant responses were more positive in 2012 than in any of the previous three years. And in fact, the same holds true for several other metrics, including satisfaction with property management, value for amount paid and renewal intent.

Overall Satisfaction Trend for Commercial Property Types

Overall Satisfaction Trend for Commercial Property Types

When it comes to tenant expectations of future space needs, however, there are some differences across property types. The percentage of retail and medical office tenants anticipating more space has remained fairly stable since 2009. And while more office tenants are expecting to grow than in 2009 or 2010, the proportion is virtually unchanged from 2011. On the other hand, the expectations of industrial tenants have moved up and down a great deal. As of the end of 2012, nearly 20% of industrial tenants are anticipating more space, by far the highest among the four property types.

Future Space Needs Trend for Commercial Property Types

Future Space Needs Trend

For a more detailed look at these trends, check out our Q4 2012 Commercial Property Trends.

How accurate are resident surveys in predicting renewal?

It isn’t hard to accept that survey research is a good way to measure and benchmark customer satisfaction. Customers, after all, have every reason to rate their experiences accurately, whether good (so they can spread the good news) or bad (so they can reap the benefits of hoped-for improvements). But are they similarly transparent about their future rental behavior? Specifically, when apartment residents answer questions about intent to renew, how predictive is that, really?

To investigate this, we took a detailed look at a very large, multi-market portfolio of apartment communities. Having been supplied with the actual renewal rate at every community for the year 2012, we then compared the figures (at the market level) to the renewal intent reported at those same communities on surveys taken during the same period.

The results appear in the graphic below. In markets where survey responses indicated relatively high intent to renew among residents, the actual renewal rate also tended to be higher. And when renewal intent was lower, so was renewal behavior. The relationship is not perfect, but, as the chart indicates, it is meaningful. Survey responses are, in the aggregate, reasonable predictors of lease renewal.

Comparison of stated renewal intent and actual renewal rate

Comparison of stated renewal intent and actual renewal rate

February 19th, 2013  in Multifamily Trends No Comments »

Billions of Square Feet Represented in Q3 2012 Survey Trends

Our survey results represent over 1 billion square feet of office space and an equally large amount of multifamily space (approximately 1.5 million apartment units), making our database the largest repository of customer service benchmarks available to the real estate industry. In Q3, we noted the following:

Office

  • Tenant satisfaction and renewal intent are hovering near 3-year highs
  • Tenants are more loyal than they were a year ago in most (but not all) major US markets
  • Tenant interest in green building practices may be beginning to rebound after a prolonged slide
  • Click here for the full press release an office trends data set

Multifamily

Has Resident Renewal Intent Stabilized?

For more than a year, overall resident satisfaction has remained within a very tight range. Could a similar equilibrium be developing in resident renewal intent? As we have been reporting in our quarterly press releases, the percentage of apartment renters indicating they “probably” or “definitely” would renew their leases has been declining steadily since the middle of 2010. But in Q2, this proportion held steady at 58.5 percent. Is this a momentary blip or the start of a new trend?

For more information on trends from last quarter’s resident surveys, click here or on the chart below.

September 27th, 2012  in Multifamily Trends No Comments »

Clients Protect Reputations with Real Resident Feedback Tools

Every apartment community has a reputation, and that reputation is a huge part of the community’s value. These days, a substantial portion of that reputation is formed in the digital universe. The potential drawbacks of online reviews and commentary are obvious: they may be incomplete, not representative, even downright fraudulent. But there are also ways an apartment community can use online feedback to put its best foot forward.

To help clients do this, we have developed several tools that take feedback from real, current residents collected from valid surveys and direct it to a variety of online forums, including Facebook, Yelp!, Rent Advisor and ApartmentRatings.com. Our approach is two-fold:

  1. With our User-generated Feedback Tool, residents meeting the appropriate criteria are asked to supply specific commentary that can then be posted to the online platform(s) of the client’s choosing.
  2. Our Controllable Content Module takes this concept a step further by allowing clients to actively search and select specific comments for publication on a community Website or Facebook page. Our new Facebook app integrates seamlessly to show this feedback, as well as a dashboard of key satisfaction metrics (if so desired). Finally, The Kingsley Associates brand accompanies the results, giving viewers peace of mind that what they’re seeing comes from real, live residents.

Protecting an online reputation isn’t easy, but, thanks to these tools, it is possible. We can help. Contact us for more information.