If you are in the rentals business, making sure that no unit is ever empty can be a major responsibility. Certainly, you will always have an assured supply of tenants if you’re willing to spend on commissions for letting agents. Throwing money at the problem, though, isn’t always the solution that you need.
Rental incomes in some areas tend to be modest, and it can cut too deeply into it to pay for commissions. In other cases, rental units may generate enough rent, but property managers may still want to do the hard work themselves, to save on costs. It’s always a good idea for every rental property manager to learn the tricks of the trade when it comes to knowing where to find new tenants.
Cover the basics
Many property managers have trouble finding tenants simply because they haven’t mastered the basics of promoting their property well: yard signs, good, advertisements on property listings sites with plenty of pictures and videos, flyers around the local neighbourhood, proper staging and open house events. As important as these first steps are, going further is important.
Advertise on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter
According to Miller Countrywide (weblink), a prominent lettings agent in southern England, hundreds of savvy landlords and property managers have successfully exploited social media to do the kind of work that would cost them hundreds in lettings agency fees, if they were to choose to go through them.
Property owners can use LinkedIn by signing up and establishing contact with hundreds of working professionals in the general area. Once they are in touch with a sizable group, they send out personal messages about the properties that they have on offer.
Facebook and Twitter can be worked in the same way. On Facebook, you can create a dedicated page for your property, and start it off with plenty of high-quality pictures. You can even create a Facebook event, and invite people whom you trust. On Twitter, it’s good idea to create a fun hashtag for your property to generate some excitement.
Whatever social networking method you may decide to take up, it’s a good idea to not post the exact address of your home for all to see. Doing so could attract scammers. You can let individual respondents know of the address once you’ve spoken to them.
Don’t just promote the property; promote yourself as a landlord, too
People looking for homes to rent tend to worry about having to live under unpleasant, insensitive or careless landlords. Poor image is a real concern that most landlords simply do not address well. It can greatly help to put in a word every ad about the sensitive, fair and friendly way in which the landlord and property manager treat every tenant.
Incentives are a great way to win tenants. Often, the incentives that you offer don’t even need to be big. They only need to be moderately attractive; they will still give you an edge over your competitors.
Advertise a single fixed bill: As long as you know how to work out the cost accounting required to come up with a fixed number, giving your tenants a clear figure for what they need to pay each month for rent and utilities together is extremely effective way to attract tenants.
Give the first month off: To many people looking for home to rent, the problem that they have in mind is managing to afford the deposit together with the first month’s rent. Giving the first month away for free is all you need to do to be hit with this sizable crowd. Certainly, you will lose out on a month’s rent; you will fill your rental units a lot more quickly, though.
Find out what kind of people find it hard to find a home to rent
It can be hard for people with large pets to find homes to rent. As unfortunate as it is, finding a home also tends to be hard for people from various religious or ethnic minorities, and for gay couples. Squarely aiming your property at these minority groups is an excellent way to find tenants quickly.