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Using text messages to remind tenants when rent is due and chase late payments provides a range of benefits, according to PayProp who say communicating via text not only saves time and resources, but also meets the needs of modern tenants, many of whom prefer not to receive direct phone calls.
Why is SMS an effective communication method?
Communicating with consumers via text message has become popular with companies across all sectors since proving to be more effective than phone calls and emails. According to a report from Mobilesquared, over 99% of all text messages are read by the recipient and approximately 90% are read within three minutes of delivery.
“When it comes to chasing rent payments, it’s clear text messaging has become one of the most effective methods of communication,” says Neil Cobbold, chief sales officer at PayProp.
“Traditionally, agents have used letters and phone calls to remind tenants about outstanding payments. However, letters are very easily ignored, while younger generations are less likely to speak on the phone.”
“Even if tenants delete texts, they are highly likely to read them before they do so. Having the information pop up with urgency can encourage them into action with many renters now using mobile banking to pay their rent, either manually or by standing order.
Meeting the needs of modern renters
Recent research has also revealed that SMS messaging is the preferred communication channel for most renters. A survey by bill payment company PayPoint found that 57% of tenants were opposed to direct phone calls, with 62% preferring to receive texts instead.
According to PayProp’s recent report on the effects of COVID-19 on the UK lettings sector, 91% of tenants who received an e-mail or text message arrears reminder from the platform in August 2020 paid some or all of their debt within seven days.
A record of text messages can further be kept and used as evidence further down the line if required. In the most serious cases, a phone call or in-person meeting may be needed. However, in the first instance, text messaging is an effective way of sending rent reminders.
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