Interview with Shawn Helin, Franchise Business Development, with Renters Warehouse
Renters Warehouse is a residential property management company that works with both homeowners and investors with rental properties. Renters Warehouse markets a property using their proprietary software system. Tenants apply to move into the property. The system qualifies them before ultimately executing the lease agreement and placing them into the home. Each property is continually managed month after month; collecting rent, random inspections, and handing maintenance issues.
Why is mapping important to Renters Warehouse?
About 4 years ago, we started franchising our model in the Minneapolis area and connected with GeoMetrx to dial in on the key areas that have high rentals.
Mapping is extremely important because when we franchise our model, we do a mix of corporate expansion and franchisees (private entrepreneurs) all across the US. In order for us to determine what areas we are going to target for corporate expansion vs. franchise territories, GeoMetrx allows us to see how the population is spread out in a specific area. We can even dial it in to get more details on specific neighborhoods, blocks, and zip codes. When we can determine what the demographics and specifics of that area, our marketing team decides if we want to go in as a corporate location or a franchise.
Using GeoMetrx, are you able to determine the percentage of homeowners vs rentals in any given area to know if the market is viable or not?
Exactly. We can see the see the total number of housing units within any given region, the homeowner occupied vs. renter occupied units, as well as vacant homes. It gives us an index report based on a sliding scale of 100, where 100 is a national average. Each individual zip code is ranked on that index, showing if it is more saturated with renters or homeowner-occupied dwellings. The sliding index is an invaluable tool that is very granular with detailed data we use a lot.
How has using GeoMetrx improved how you define a territory?
We are better able to really target the “low-hanging fruits”, such as renter-occupied and vacant dwellings.
What problems were you facing before using GeoMetrx?
In our early days of selling franchises, we were vague and awarded to anyone and everyone who wanted one, based on city; and allowed that person a 100 mile radius from their office, or to 1,000,000 in population, without data to support that decision.
Now, with GeoMetrx, we are specifically targeting franchise locations based on data, putting us in the driver’s seat. Instead of spending a large amount of marketing dollars advertising to the masses hoping to catch a new franchisee, our campaigns are more targeted, thus saving us marketing dollars in the long run.
How has using a mapping service like GeoMetrx made your business more successful?
It’s a sales tool. When we go to conventions, now we have a tangible product to print out and utilize. Instead of selling a city, we can say, “Here’s the metrics that we have and this is your potential for profit.”
The data is also used to create marketing materials, such as pamphlets.
What was surprising revelations once you started using the service?
- The shear amount of data available to us. We have just scraped the surface of what Geometrx is capable of doing. Currently, we are only using about 5 to 10 of the available metrics.
2. The Forecasting of 2020 projections. Not only can you utilize the 1990, 200, 2010 and 2015 census data, but there is also a forecasting of 2020. You can create some really great graphs and charts with future and past data.
- We started using the Canadian feature last year, and that was equally as impressive.
- Geometrx service and support. There is a lot that goes on in Geometrx software. It can be tedious to learn at times; takes time to familiarize yourself with it. The support from Geometrx has been wonderful.
To learn more about Renters Warehouse, visit them at RentersWarehouse.com.
Are you overwhelmed by your data and need help? Click here to see how GeoMetrx can help you make sense of your data and help you build more profitable territories for your franchise or company.