A virtual shift:

How a multifamily manager instantly increased leasing productivity & conversion

Tricap Residential Group is a Chicago-based multifamily management firm that specializes in workforce housing and is known to acquire and elevate a property with value-add renovations, branding, and more.

Elizabeth Williams
Prior to the pandemic, Tricap had already begun its shift from the traditional multifamily staffing structure to a fully remote workforce. The goal was to create a more flexible workplace and leverage technology to make their leasing processes more efficient. By moving their leasing process to a fully virtual platform, they could streamline their operations, reduce costs, and create a better customer experience.  

With staff offsite, 3D tours were essential for the leasing teams to be able to give effective virtual walkthroughs that build trust with prospective residents. Tricap implemented Peek to fully virtualize its portfolio and put in place a leasing process driven by virtual tours of each unit that was actually available at that point in time, as opposed to just models or layouts.

After investing in Peek’s virtual leasing platform, Tricap Residential Group enjoyed a 3.5x increase in website engagement, a 2.2x increase in leasing productivity, and a 47% reduction in the time required to complete a lease -- these differences have been very significant for Tricap.

Key outcomes:

3.5x increase in website traffic and website engagement

2.2x decrease in agent interactions per application

A 47% reduction in the average time of market per listing 
(reduced from 32 days to 15 days)

“The world changed whether you liked it or not. People are doing their shopping more online. Things just aren’t done as much in person. But to set your team up for success, you need to provide them with the tools that are going to be able to do that, and [Peek] was a huge part of that for the Hoffman Estates property.”

The Challenge:

Establishing a quick and seamless virtual leasing workflow to increase conversion while maintaining trust with prospective tenants

Due to the remote nature of the company (even before the COVID-19 pandemic), Tricap was looking to establish a virtual leasing workflow. The aim was to provide customers with a virtual viewing of a model unit -- a technological advancement that was necessary, but due to its infancy in the real estate market, logistically tricky and time-consuming.

Showing properties virtually had a number of advantages, but Tricap noticed early on that customers were struggling to imagine the exact property that they would move into. Tricap was unable to “show” customers the exact properties that were available to them to lease. The sales team was met with many objections when trying to sell units. Tricap needed a solution that would allow them to build trust while showing apartments remotely. Enter Peek!

The Solution:

Investing in Peek, an affordable provider of virtual multi-family leasing experiences, that boosts productivity, increases engagement, and leads to better conversions

Tricap invested in Peek’s virtual leasing solution which enabled them to shoot 3D virtual tours quickly, efficiently, and accurately - within 15 minutes each. This means they would be able to shoot every single unit, as opposed to just the models.

Most importantly, the platform integrated with all of its existing systems, including the PMS and website so that the team could easily incorporate the technology into its workflow.

When using Peek, Tricap no longer needed to rely on showing solely model units, and could virtually show the exact unit that the prospective residents were exploring to rent. This became the fastest and easiest way to build trust without being onsite.

Furthermore, with a full inventory of virtual tours, Tricap was able to quickly pre-lease apartments with an engaging 3D experience of the available unit even before the current resident moved out. As opposed to beginning the leasing process the day a unit becomes available, they cut their time on market but having highly qualified leads lined up before the move out even happens.

This ultimately turned a process that was previously stressful with uncertainty into one that is effective and transparent. It was a win for both the prospective resident and Tricap.

After implementing Peek, the workflow at Tricap is now seamless, leading to an increase in leasing productivity, faster conversion, and the bottom line.

The Results:

A tangible increase in website engagement and productivity, while significantly reducing time on market

With Peek, Tricap saw tangible results in a few key areas.

With a virtual tour for every unit, there was a 3.5x increase in website engagement as prospects got more value out of the website and session times went up, giving Tricap an edge over competitors.

In terms of leasing productivity, there was a 2.2x reduction in the number of activities it took to get an application since leasing agents could more easily establish trust, and prospects could virtually access more information that brought them closer to the close.

As Elizabeth Williams puts it, “Our teams are able to do more by not being on site from a sales perspective.”  Equally important, low intent leads self-qualify themselves out quickly, so onsite teams could focus attention on high-quality leads and free up bandwidth for other priorities.

Lastly, the ability to shoot units quickly and to more effectively pre-lease was a game changer when it came to leasing cycles. Units usually sat 2 weeks to a month before someone moved in, so reducing time on market by 47% had a major impact on their ability to minimize lost revenue during vacancy.

Not only have the benefits of Peek directly impacted NOI through a reduction of time on market and productivity gains, but it has been integral in enabling Tricap’s leasing teams to operate within a fully remote workforce.

“Peek is the best - flexible, available, and quick to respond! You were really patient with us at Tricap. I had a lot of experience using a Matterport camera and this was easier -- it changed a workflow we used for 6 years and it made it way more efficient. I can even use my phone to do the scans. The onboarding was great and included live training and test scans. Peek talked us through the process until we were really comfortable working the ropes ourselves. The provided camera is sleek and small - easy to move around and comes with a lightweight tripod to make the process more simple and effective. By day two of using Peek, it was like riding a bike.”

“We get all the units done, which overcomes the objections that our sales teams were getting. It was a harder sell than just showing them their unit. To help our teams truly be virtual sales people, we need to reduce the amount of objections. We know what those objections are going to be and we needed to provide our sales team with a solution so that it wasn’t even a part of the sales conversation anymore.”

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