Social events are a great opportunity for residents to mingle with their neighbors and connect with the rest of the community—plus a higher resident engagement rate translates into greater resident satisfaction, which can ultimately increase retention.
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In order to increase participation at events, you can offer various incentives and enter residents in drawings to win a prize. People might want to bring guests who don’t live there, so make sure you get their contact information and reach out to them—they might want to rent with you in the future!
While well-known resident events such as a pool party or BBQ usually do the trick, there’s always room for more creativity. Spice things up with the ideas below.
Cook something up
Food is life. And there’s no better way to celebrate this than by offering cooking enthusiasts and taste testers alike an opportunity to feel good by filling their tummies. So why host a cooking challenge? By doing so, residents who are keen on preparing delicious meals can show off their skills while the rest act as judges. You can never go wrong with the classic mac and cheese or a slice of pie. And don’t forget to publish the winning recipe on social media.
You can then use these recipes, or ask residents to contribute their favorites, for a community cookbook. Make sure to send the cookbook to everyone or post it online.
If you want to upgrade your game and throw a dinner party with a twist, hire a private chef to provide a curated culinary experience to your residents. Or for a more hassle-free event, bring food trucks to your community. Choose from local food trucks, play some themed music and let your residents get a sample-sized bite from each and every vendor.
All work and no play make residents…dull. A classic game night could be fun, and you can entice them with prize-filled trivia and snacks. Ever thought about a poker tournament? Hire a professional dealer, bring bright neon lights for a complete Las Vegas vibe and let everyone play their wildest card. If you want to go all in, create customized poker chips and use prizes instead of money.
Or you can organize a dance party—or opt for dance classes. All you need is the right soundtrack, a good DJ and a dynamic host. There are plenty of dance types to choose from, from the well-known Tango to a more modern or even a freestyle approach.
In case you’d like to save the dance for another time, put together a karaoke night. A mic, a karaoke machine and an MC can go a long way.
Younger residents might enjoy a video game tournament. You could even livestream it for other renters to enjoy.
With social distancing still in place, a fun way to bring residents together is a scavenger hunt. Come up with a theme, hide items across your community and let your residents find these by solving fun riddles. They also have the chance to explore their community in a different, more fun way.
From & for the community
Resident events are the key to creating a close-knit community. To deepen those neighborly bonds, property managers can host a wide array of training events and classes. Some might include getting practical skills—such as step-by-step lessons on tax preparation. You can either ask for a professional’s help or reach out and ask for volunteers in the community.
First aid and CPR are also skills your residents could—and should—want to master. Just ask a licensed professional to teach the course.
You could also try group painting classes where residents can relax alongside a canvas and glass of wine.
How about a community yard sale? This is a good way for your residents to get rid of the things they no longer need while socializing with their neighbors—one’s trash is another man’s treasure. The remaining items can be donated to a local charity.
If your community features a generous green area, make the best of it by creating a community garden. The residents interested in growing their own produce can trade with each other, exchange ideas and recipes or put together a seasonal dinner with fruits and vegetables grown in their very own backyard.
Fun for pets
If you community is pet-friendly, don’t forget about your furry residents. Have a happy hour where the pets can enjoy drinks, treats and great company alongside their favorite humans. Once everyone gets to know each other, organize pet contests such as “Best Groomed” or “Best Behaved” where the attendees can vote. Gift the winner with a day at the pet spa or a gift card. What else to ask for once they’ve received the entire community’s appreciation and treats? It’s all going to be fun and barks, we promise.