How To: Re-branding Your Property
Updated: Apr 30, 2019
Every entrepreneur knows intrinsically that their value and success comes solely from only two skills: To solve problems, and create value.
Whether you're running a retail business, a services business, or investing in real estate you will inevitably need to re-brand, and change with your market and times. Becoming fluid and able to adapt is a core trait of a successful entrepreneur.
As a full-real estate investor, creating value and solving problems is the name of the game. Decreasing expenses, reducing vacancy, and increasing revenue can have absolutely massive payouts. However, if you're buying turn-key real estate, where the work has already been done and the ideas have already been implemented, there probably isn't much meat left on the bone for you. If you want to create value, your path is going to eventually lead you to the ugliest, mismanaged, and under performing buildings in your city. Almost everyone understands on some level that if you fix them up, you're going to increase the value of your property, but how to do you get those astronomical, top dollar prices? How do you ditch the negative stigma that the building spent years creating for itself before you took over? Can you turn the worst building in the city into a place people wait on a list for an apartment to open up?
Absolutely, and it's not actually that hard, you just need to be a little bit ridiculous, and a little bit creative.
If you want to re-brand your building, and change the way the community views it, and by default, the way they see you... Here is your basic recipe:
1. Change the name. When you're buying a building that has a nasty reputation, either for crime, drugs, or just general disarray, you'll ALWAYS find that the community has a name for the building. The name may be posted on the building, or it may be something that the community has developed it's own name for it. That name will always carry the stigma that created it. When you take ownership, it becomes a new building, and you need to broadcast to the world. Give it a new name, and you're one step closer to building a new reputation.
2. Give it a new look. People remember what they see way more quickly than they remember what they hear. The very first thing you need to do is drastically change the way the property looks. Here's the funny part, it doesn't even need to necessarily make sense... it just needs to be DIFFERENT. Look at this building above. It is clearly meant to be a Spanish looking building, but after we changed the colors to blue and yellow, which makes no sense, it does not even look out of place. Changing the look of the building is one of the quickest things you can do to send a strong statement to the community and the city that you mean business, and changes are coming. The second you start this step, members of the neighborhood are going to start introducing themselves to you. You're going to make friends, and you're going to start building influence. This is a very powerful positive externality of re branding your properties.
3. Create a WOW factor! When people think of real estate investing, they rarely think of buy and hold rental investors. Thanks to HG TV, everyone always first thinks of house flippers, who generally have a notorious reputation for doing the "Carpet, paint, and cosmetics" flip. You want to create your own reputation, not just trade the building's old reputation for someone else's. You need to create a WOW factor.
A WOW factor is something special about the property that isn't common, or doesn't exist in other places. In this example, we painted a large screen on the face of the apartment complex, which we project movies onto for the residents a couple times each month. Not only is it something crazy that the whole community loves, but it creates a good culture among the tenants.
A WOW factor implemented correctly will decrease vacancy, justify higher rents, and increase demand for your apartments. Suddenly, instead of that ran down building people wanted to avoid, you're creating a scenario in which people will compete to live there. Even if that weren't true, sometimes it's just nice to give people a reason to smile.
4. Institute proper management. Finally, you've done tons of work re-branding your property, and are probably beginning to experience the positive effects of that, but if you just move on to the next property from here, it isn't going to last. It is going to eventually, and quickly fall into the same sort of disarray that was there before you arrived. More than any WOW factor, or paint job, the number one reputation your building is going to create for itself is going to be based on the people who choose to live there. If you want to cultivate that positive reputation, you need a solid management team in place. You need screening processes, rules about animals, rules about smoking, and regular maintenance. Once you've completed all four of these steps, you'll find that you probably have people offering to buy the building from you without it even being listed for sale. You'll have a happy tenant base, a happy community, and a growing sphere of influence. If you liked this article, or read anything that vibed with you, please sign up for this blog and leave me a comment! Follow us! Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DWinvestors19
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