Changing perceptions of the Hispanic renter: as stereotypes dissipate, apartment owners are changing their marketing strategies to stimulate interaction with prospective Hispanic renters.Fourteen years ago, apartment trade magazines analyzed the boom in the Hispanic population in America and its impact on the apartment industry. People were saying that the industry needed to better understand and adapt to the changing demographics and to prepare for the continued rise in the number of Hispanic residents.
At the time, 70 percent of U.S. Hispanics lived in California, Texas, Florida and New York New York, state, United States
New York, Middle Atlantic state of the United States. It is bordered by Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and the Atlantic Ocean (E), New Jersey and Pennsylvania (S), Lakes Erie and Ontario and the Canadian province of . Miami, Houston, Los Angeles Los Angeles (lôs ăn`jələs, lŏs, ăn`jəlēz'), city (1990 pop. 3,485,398), seat of Los Angeles co., S Calif.; inc. 1850. and New York were already accustomed to the diversity and to the opportunity and challenges the growth of the Hispanic population brought.
In 1992, the U.S. Census Bureau Noun 1. Census Bureau - the bureau of the Commerce Department responsible for taking the census; provides demographic information and analyses about the population of the United States
Bureau of the Census estimated that by 2080, 28 percent of the population would be Hispanic. The estimated growth is still enormous; approximately one in four in this country will be Hispanic in 2025. But more importantly, Hispanics are positioned to be the largest segment of renter growth by 2010, according to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.
2. In keeping with: according to instructions.
3. Witten Advisors.
Today, Hispanic migration has affected almost every state, and cities such as Atlanta and Charlotte have seen triple-digit percentage increases in their Latino populations. Second- and third-tier cities are experiencing explosive escalation as well, bringing new renters to cities like Shelbyville, Ky., and Greenwood, Ind. Perceptions and attitudes about adjusting marketing strategies and procedures have changed to stimulate and to facilitate interaction with the Hispanic demographic.
Confronting the Stigma
The stigma associated with Hispanic residents in cities not traditionally populated with Hispanics has been an unspoken ignominy IGNOMINY. Public disgrace, infamy, reproach, dishonor. Ignominy is the opposite of esteem. Wolff, Sec. 145. See Infamy. for apartment management professionals. For many reasons, industry professionals have been either unwilling or unable to discuss the negative perceptions associated with Hispanic residents. So what are the issues really? Are there too many occupants? Are they working on their cars in the parking lot? Are they not calling in work orders?
While it may not be politically correct politically correct Politically sensitive adjective Referring to language reflecting awareness and sensitivity to another person's physical, mental, cultural, or other disadvantages or deviations from a norm; a person is not mentally retarded, but to even mention stereotypes that have plagued the industry, perhaps putting it in writing will further demonstrate that those views are changing. Complaints such as occupancy problems and undocumented occupants are finally giving way to the realization that the industry has faced these concerns with all residents, regardless of heritage, for decades. Negative perceptions of Hispanic residents are dissipating, and the desire to provide good customer service and to capitalize on Cap´i`tal`ize on`
v. t. 1. To turn (an opportunity) to one's advantage; to take advantage of (a situation); to profit from; as, to capitalize on an opponent's mistakes s>. the opportunity is winning out.
Critical thinking is also winning the battle over prejudices as owners realize that it is hard for residents to abide by To stand to; to adhere; to maintain.
See also: Abide community policies or laws that they do not understand because of language or cultural barriers. Just as strange as it may seem for some Anglo-Americans to be told it is illegal to chew gum in Singapore, it is equally strange to tell a Latino that having several family members stay in a one-bedroom apartment is not permitted. The challenges of overcoming language and cultural barriers have distracted industry professionals from the real opportunity of this dynamic demographic--improved occupancy and a better bottom line.
Following the Southwest's Lead
Information about the Hispanic boom has remained quietly tucked in the marketing plans and procedures of companies operating in the Southwestern United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. for years. The rest of the country and the industry remained relatively unaware of adaptations made by those companies until immigration immigration, entrance of a person (an alien) into a new country for the purpose of establishing permanent residence. Motives for immigration, like those for migration generally, are often economic, although religious or political factors may be very important. became a hot topic as the number of Hispanics in the United States Hispanics in the United States, or Hispanic Americans, are American citizens or residents of Hispanic ethnicity who identify themselves as having Hispanic Cultural heritage. According to the 2000 Census, Hispanic Americans constitute roughly 12. surges across areas outside the Sun Belt.
Now, property managers across the country are embracing Hispanic residents by altering marketing strategies and operating procedures to welcome them into their communities.
Following the lead of management teams in California, Texas, Arizona and Florida, companies across the country are developing programs to reach out to the Hispanic demographic by communicating in Spanish, providing applications that no longer require Social Security numbers and stepping up outreach efforts by joining Hispanic Chamber of Commerce organizations and other Latino groups.
Owners and operators throughout the Southwest have long benefited from the boom of Hispanic growth, which has provided improved customer service and has made targeted marketing easier by understanding the characteristics of a niche.
Judy Ray, Pace Realty's Vice President of Marketing, recognized the need for Spanish language Spanish language, member of the Romance group of the Italic subfamily of the Indo-European family of languages (see Romance languages). The official language of Spain and 19 Latin American nations, Spanish is spoken as a first language by about 330 million persons services some time ago and began converting forms and letters into Spanish, advertising in Spanish newspapers, conducting customer service surveys in English and Spanish and hiring bilingual team members.
Lesley Brice, Asset Manager of MC Management, based in Arizona, said, "Any opportunity to improve customer service and resident relations, whether doing bilingual fliers for resident events or by sending a resident manager to survival Spanish classes, is worthwhile."
Brice advertises in Spanish language media when available and equates changes in the marketing mix to alterations made whenever an opportunity to reach a target segment of the market exists.
Proactive Marketing Directors such as Cindy Brewton of Harbor Group are just now facing the demand for improved customer service for Spanish language residents by signing up for services that advertise, facilitate communications and provide bilingual marketing fliers for their teams.
Catering to the Demographic
Basic marketing practices dictate that consideration must be given to price, product, promotion and place within internal and external markets, with a persistent focus on the target market--the residents. Acclimating to the shift in demographics points to simple changes in the marketing mix and operating procedures that will generate a solid return on investment.
Owners and operators can take positive steps to better serve Hispanic residents and to follow the lead of management professionals that have long benefited from this strong market segment.
RELATED ARTICLE: Addressing undocumented workers.
Problems will still exist as the integration of new marketing methods make their way into everyday operations and new methodologies eliminate old biases. Undocumented Hispanics will still cause owners and managers concern. It is up to each owner and operator to develop his or her policies to minimize the likelihood of violating fair housing, as HUD Hud (hd), a pre-Qur'anic prophet of Islam. Hud unsuccessfully exhorted his South Arabian people, the Ad, to worship the One God. offers no official guidance on undocumented renters. It is unreasonable to think that site teams should be responsible for the enforcement of immigration laws immigration laws npl → leyes fpl de inmigración
immigration laws npl → lois fpl sur l'immigration
immigration laws npl .
Schools are required to educate undocumented children, and hospitals are required to treat undocumented patients. In some states there are specific laws that provide equal opportunities for such matters as workers' compensation workers' compensation, payment by employers for some part of the cost of injuries, or in some cases of occupational diseases, received by employees in the course of their work. and in-state tuition rates.
The IRS An abbreviation for the Internal Revenue Service, a federal agency charged with the responsibility of administering and enforcing internal revenue laws. affords undocumented persons the opportunity to pay taxes and issues them an Individual Tax Identification Number (ITIN ITIN Itinerary
ITIN Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (US Internal Revenue Service)
ITIN Information Technology in Nursing
ITIN Integrated Triangular Irregular Network ), an individual taxpayer identification numbers. This is a nine-digit number that enables anyone, including undocumented residents, who wish to pay taxes and receive refunds to do so, just as if they had Social Security numbers. In the past it was almost impossible to lease an apartment without a Social Security number, today's concerns about privacy, identity theft and the influx of non-citizen residents have created a demand to do so without the SSN SSN
Social Security Number .
According to Suellen McFarling, Credit Retriever's National Sales Executive, Social Security numbers have always been a key identifier to process a consumer's application to lease an apartment. However, TransUnion Credit Retriever retriever: see sporting dog.
Any of several dog breeds, bred to retrieve game, that have a thick, water-resistant coat, keen sense of smell, and “soft” mouth that does not damage game. Retrievers are 22–24 in. is able to use an ITIN or a U.S. Visa, along with other identifying information, in place of a Social Security number to check an applicant's credit and criminal background. The company can even go one step further by supplying an international application form for those applicants without any type of nine-digit identification number:
"Our customers count on us to assist them in increasing occupancy while minimizing bad debt," McFarling said. "By allowing applicants with no Social Security number to be processed, a community can increase the pool of potential residents and the number of quality residents."
Questions often arise concerning the status of undocumented residents and federal housing laws. The Fair Housing Act (FHA See Federal Housing Administration.
See Federal Housing Administration (FHA). ) makes it unlawful for housing providers to discriminate against any protected class Protected class is a term used in United States anti-discrimination law. The term describes groups of people who are protected from discrimination and harassment. The following characteristics are considered "Protected Classes" and persons cannot be discriminated against based on (race, color, religion, sex, disability, familial status or national origin) and charges HUD with investigating discrimination complaints. Neither citizenship nor one's current immigration status is a protected class, so apartment owners have a right to determine the immigration status of their residents. HUD communicated this view of the FHA to the Texas Apartment Association in a letter dated Nov. 20, 2001. A copy of the correspondence may be found on NAA's Web site.
--Sondrah Laden, Cam, and NAA NAA
Nomina Anatomica Avium. Lease Director Michael Semko
Sondrah Laden, CAM, has 19 years of industry experience and is the Creative Director for PezGrande.com. She can be reached at Sondrah@PezGrande.com or 877/410-0123.