The D.R.E.A.M apartment (process)

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Lacy H.
Sep 9, 2020

If you’re a repeat consumer of our digital content, then you’ve seen us share that we have the ability to find your next “dream” apartment. We don’t just say that because it’s convenient wording, we say it because that’s literally what we do, we D.R.E.A.M. – we Discover, have Real market knowledge,Explore options, get clients Actively touring, all in an effort to help our clients Move.

Listen, at the end of the day, we can say all we want that we’re market leaders in what we do (which we are), but we’ve got the “bite” to back up the “bark,” and it all starts with our D.R.E.A.M. apartment-finding process. It’s the foundation of consistent client experiences and optimal hyper-personalized service that stands tests against market seasonality and industry development.

But, let’s be honest – you probably don’t care to read about how we do what we do. All you want to know is that we’re going to deliver on the service we say we’re going to provide without any hiccups or gimmicks. We hear ya!  So, here’s our D.R.E.A.M. process told from the client perspective so that when you decide to work with one of our free, licensed real estate agents, you know exactly what to expect.

The Discovery phase

This is where we get all up in your business. You can expect our agents to ask you everything from what you’re looking for in an apartment to your desired location and budget, to why you’re looking to move, to your rental and credit history, and more.

When your agent is in the Discovery phase, they’re essentially gathering all the information they need. The goal is not only to compile a personalized list of apartment units that meet your needs but to also help set your expectations according to the market and what is realistically attainable. Think of them as the liaison between the seasonal ebbs and flows of the apartment market and everything you’re looking for in your next apartment, which leads us to our next phase.

Where Real Market Knowledge comes into play

Real. Market. Knowledge. This is absolutely essential to your locator producing a list of apartment units where each suggested unit is damn-near a 100 percent match to everything absorbed in the Discovery phase. A great locator is always able to explain the state of the market in order to set your expectations accordingly.

For example – maybe you’re moving in the summer months, aka the peak season for renters everywhere, and ideally, you’d like a studio in a high-rise in a popular neighborhood in your city with a max budget of $1000. Because apartment pricing is based on supply and demand of the market and changes daily (yes, daily), your agent should be able to explain if that’s possible, and if not, what your alternatives are. Remember, you look for an apartment once a year, our apartment locators look every couple of minutes, so your expectation should be that we know our stuff (which we do).

Exploring all the options

Now that we got all in your business and set your expectations, we’re going to look at every single option that’s out there. This means we’re scouring the internet and calling properties we have great relationships with to inquire about move-in specials that might not be advertised on property websites. 

We’re collaborating with other locators in our office. We’re updating you along the way. We’re communicating when we’ve come across, what we call, “unicorn units” that are virtually never available in certain neighborhoods below certain price points. We might even send you a text asking how quickly you can get to a property to tour it because pricing is literally that freaking good. We’re also looking at units that, based on all the information we’ve gathered and the current state of the market, might be a little more unique from the others on the list. Your expectation is that we’ve searched high and low to meet the expectations we’ve set in phase two. Our next step is to get you a list and get you all set up to tour.

The importance of Active Touring

Active touring is exactly what it sounds like – getting you out there viewing and experiencing the properties placed on your list. After your agent has sent you a list of personalized options for you to check out and you’ve let them know your initial thoughts, they’ll start asking you when you can tour. Once they know what your preferred touring days and times are, they’ll submit what are called guest cards to the properties so they know to expect you and you’re not just considered a walk-in client.

Something else your agent will do in this phase is ask your opinion on your top choices. Basically, you should always tour with the intent to apply for the unit because time is of the essence when it comes to locking down what you’re looking for in a timely manner. Apartment pricing isn’t like waiting for your favorite outfit to go on sale – waiting does you no good *unless* you’ve got complete flexibility in your move date and you’re waiting to move in the fall/winter time. So, your agent will help you prioritize your tours based on what you’re vibing with most, which is a total power move (trust us).

Let’s Move!

Once you apply and get approved, your agent can actually connect you with our Concierge service to help facilitate everything that needs to get done between the signing of your lease and move-in day. Our Concierge connects renters with utility services like electricity, cable/internet, movers, renters insurance, furniture rentals, etc. And, yes, for free! This is a service exclusive to Smart City that truly completes the apartment-finding journey for our clients. It’s not typically something renters can expect from all locating services, but you can bet your bottom dollar that it’s something Smart City clients can expect.

Now that you’ve read through our not-so-secret sauce,  you know what you’re getting into when you decide to use Smart City to find your next apartment. It’s a process proven to provide our clients with a totally unique apartment search experience that makes them feel confident on move-in day, which is exactly what we always want the product of our service to be!

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