Illustration about different people and personalities

Dealing with Different Renter Personality Types

October 24, 2020

There’s no doubt that you can probably think of several people with very different personality types from your own. We experience different people every day – some we may be drawn towards, and some you may experience an immediate distaste for…and that’s ok! We all deal with problems differently and find solutions differently. A “one size fits all” leasing approach may not be the most effective method for you and your leasing agents. Here’s a way to start accounting for those differences in personalities. Have you ever heard of Charles J. Clarke, III? Well, he just might be about to be your new best friend. He invented something called the BOLT system. It stands for Bull, Owl, Lamb, Tiger. Get ready to get you to learn on…

The BOLT system of personality types

Characteristic of each animal:


Straightforward, strong and want to take control of most situations. They want to be in charge! Bulls know exactly what they want. Sometimes, they’re direct, hard-charging personality can seem intimidating.

You’re more than likely not to receive flowery, lengthy communication from these individuals. They may also interrupt you. Keep your calm; give a confident presentation. Stay on topic. While you shouldn’t be intimidated, you also shouldn’t waste a bull’s time. Keep your conversation concise and on-point. Furthermore, prestige and uniqueness are significant to the bull. They want to be the best and have the best.

Control the questions. Bulls will seek to control the conversation, and they will often speak in bullet points and highlights that may leave you confused about their desires. Make sure you’re controlling the questions. YOU be the one to take charge! Be prepared to move quickly. Bulls make decisions very quickly, so take advantage of that.


Detail-oriented (and wise!) and can be very analytical in problem-solving approaches. They tend to ask many questions to really wrap their heads around things. Don’t rush.

Take your time, and don’t get frustrated if things take longer with the owls. They mull things over – so they have a slower pace. They’re generally introverted and serious in nature, so it’s important to make them feel comfortable. Don’t be overly excited or aggressive. Match their pace, and assure them you’re available to talk and answer questions for however long they need.

It’s important to be an expert with the owls – or at least act like you are! Walk the walk! Talk the talk! Know the nitty-gritty details, and give specifics. Be prepared to answer questions — about anything and everything. If you have the luxury of knowing an owl is coming in to speak with you, brush up on the details that may not normally be at the top of your mind. You don’t have to be the only one answering questions. They should, too! Ask them questions.

Owls know what they want just as much as a bull. However, they’re less likely to express it.


You can probably guess what kind of personality traits lambs possess. They are caring. They like to please people. And they definitely avoid conflict! Be calm and gentle.

Choose your actions and words wisely. Don’t be pushy or forceful because lambs will retreat if frightened. If you’re naturally a loud person (Bulls! Tigers!), make a conscious effort to lower your voice. Create a coaching and encouraging atmosphere if you sense any anxiety from a lamb. Take an emotional approach.

Lambs are often concerned with the bigger picture and how it affects everyone else. Therefore, it’s not normally about the floor plans, price, and amenities with these individuals–but instead how it makes them feel.

Build a trusting relationship. Lambs trust others’ opinions, so make sure they trust you. While it’s hard to build trust right off the bat, there are a few things you can do to help it along. Respect their time, meaning respond quickly to emails or phone calls and keep appointments. Be genuine, honest, and transparent. Deliver what you say you’re going to. Listen for pain points and reassure the lamb in any way you can.


Positive, fun-loving, and outgoing. They are expressive and energetic. If you are a tiger, then you are what people refer to as “an extrovert.” They get excited easily, feel confident, and are optimistic. Sometimes they tend to be impulsive – which can be both a good and bad thing in the leasing industry. Tigers sound pretty fun, right?

Keep in mind that tigers are often late, messy, and disorganized. Relationships and conversations are important to tigers. They will probably be turned off if you go straight into a sales presentation. Try to get to know them a little first with relevant chit chat. Instead, you should try asking questions.

Try not to get too comfortable. Tigers are happy and talkative, so it’s easy to have fun with them. But it’s important to avoid being too comfortable, or else you may find yourself veering away from your presentation altogether.

Can you read all of these descriptions and think of at least one person who falls into each category? Bet you do!

SEO Strategist at Help Scout, where we make excellent customer service achievable for companies of all sizes. Connect with her onLinkedIn or Instagram.