Mystery Shopper Tips – 8 “Keeping it Real” tips!

Mystery shoppers use their listening skills, their memory, and their attention to detail.  As professional shoppers for the past 25 years we have seen a lot, and the mystery shopper tips we are sharing below were attained from real life experiences.

While you are mystery shopping you may find that it is extremely easy to get caught up in the “moment” with your leasing consultant and lose track of your time and purpose at the community.

You might be looking for an apartment for yourself, you may like… I mean REALLY like your leasing consultant, you may find yourself hating the property and thinking to yourself “I would never, ever live here”, the leasing consultant may have rubbed you the wrong way or said something rude (yes, this can happen), or you may find yourself bored to tears because you live in a house and an apartment is the furthest thing from your mind.

Either way, as mystery shoppers, we all serve a purpose. The purpose as an Ellis Property Mystery Shopper is to evaluate your leasing consultant and community in order to measure the leasing consultant’s performance based on their company’s guidelines, expectations, and industry standards. Your experience plays a factor in whether a customer decides to become a resident at that particular community or not. Make sure you make your time count and you don’t lose sight of your purpose.

8 mystery shopper tips that you possibly didn’t think about.

  1. Mystery shopping is an opportunity to improve the leasing consultant’s ability to sell their community and determine whether continuing education for areas of weakness is needed.
  2. Mystery shopping is an opportunity to celebrate the leasing consultant’s strengths.
  3. You are getting paid to be the eyes and ears to help further someone’s career by either reporting how weak or how strong they may be in particular categories.
  4. Whether the property is your style or not is a moot point. You may drive up to a community and think to yourself, “I would never live here in a million years.” Remember to look at the cleanliness and overall curb appeal of the community and stay focused on your leasing consultant and their abilities. They might just be the type of person that can sell ice to an Eskimo.
  5. If you are on the market for a new apartment home for yourself, remember that you can always go back after your shop is complete to look at additional floorplan options and potentially become a resident (wouldn’t that be cool?) Your forty-five minutes to one hour spent at the community is for the sole purpose of focusing on the leasing consultant.
  6. It happens all the time; you fall in love with your leasing consultant’s personality and you want to “give” them points for areas where they may be weak. This is only hindering the career and potential for your leasing consultant. Don’t forget that this mystery shop is in place to help grow your leasing consultant’s career within the multifamily housing industry and help show underperforming individuals their areas of weakness. The mystery shop is in place to show high-performing leasing consultants where they excel and where they are satisfactory.
  7. It’s very possible that you come across a leasing consultant that you just don’t mesh with. He/she may say something that completely turns you off. There will be an option to note this, but don’t forget to stay focused on the overall goal…notating both the positive areas of the shop as well as the areas needing improvement.
  8. You may own a house, love your current apartment community where you live, or you just aren’t interested in apartment living. Regardless, make sure you stay focused, act interested, and “play the part” for the purpose of keeping the mystery in the shop. These leasing consultants know that mystery shops are part of their position so you don’t want to make yourself obvious.

No matter what your status may be with multifamily housing, remember that the facts presented by your leasing consultant and your perception of the mystery shop are the general consumer’s reality. These 8 mystery shopping tips play a viable role for furthering the leasing consultant’s career, help measure the leasing consultant’s performance against industry standards, and monitor the performance of the community and the leasing consultant.

Your opinion and accurate depiction of the shop count!