The rental housing industry has undergone drastic changes since 2020. A slew of new landlord-tenant laws has made the rental housing industry much more difficult to navigate than in years past. Furthermore, both prospective and current tenant habits have drastically changed after more than two years of lockdown. While some changes in tenant behavior have been harmful to housing providers, some of it leaves room for opportunity, particularly with changes in the way renters look for housing.
The first place to start when building an effective property listing is to maximize your reach. This means making quick look at a prospective tenant’s Facebook profile could help a housing provider better understand how serious the prospective tenant is about their property. They also have an auto-response feature for prospective tenants to ask if a rental is still available, and all communication between buyers and sellers happens in-app. Listings are also easy to create on the Facebook marketplace as you can take photos in-app with your phone.
A final option to consider is Zumper. Zumper listings also puts you in front of Facebook Marketplace, PadMapper, and Walk Score users, giving you a large office, highlight it! The same goes for nearby parks, backyards, or fenced-off front yards. Being within walking distance of supermarkets and local restaurants is also a great selling point. sure your listing finds as many prospective tenants as possible. Nowadays, there are more options than ever to choose from, including: Zillow, Facebook Marketplace, and Zumper.
Tenants have also been checking out fewer homes before making a decision. Thus, it is more important than ever to provide high quality and well thought out pictures for your listing. Most prospective tenants would prefer the space to be empty; it will be the easiest for them to imagine themselves in the space. However, staging can work to your advantage if done right. Using generic furniture, maximizing open space, and keeping everything clean can help prospective tenants picture themselves in the unit.
Zillow, the most popular of the bunch, is one of the most common and trusted sites for listing the rental property. Zillow allows you to list properties for free, but offers a premium package that can help you get more exposure by placing your listing at the top of search results for your area.
Facebook Marketplace is a great option for those who want to greatly increase their listing’s reach but don’t want to spend money. Your listing will tap into their user base of around 2.9 billion users, all of whom are linked with their Facebook accounts. A reach. Zumper is also good for those operating a smaller number of units who are looking for an easy one-stop shop for most of their rental business needs. Housing providers can collect rent for free, with a paid option for rent protection if you’d like. The service is also free to use for up to 10 listings.
Once you’ve chosen the right listing service(s) for your rentals, you then have to decide how to best market your property. This means highlighting the best features of your rental, taking good pictures, and making sure the unit is clean and ready to show. This is where you use changing tenant habits to your advantage. Even as COVID restrictions have lifted, many tenants still work from home and thus spend much more time there than ever before. If your property has room for a home
Even with an excellent listing, timing the market well will minimize your chances of an extended vacancy. It is no secret that the rental housing market is busiest during the summer. Parents don’t have to break up their kids’ school schedules, college graduates are looking for rentals where their jobs land them, and convenient weather all factors into this. Not only is the rental market hottest during the summer months, but the increased demand also will allow you to maximize the rent that you charge, as rents typically go up during these months. If you are trying to rent in the winter and struggle with vacancy, considering a one time 6 or 18 month lease could help in the long term.
Source: CURRENT – March 2023 by RHAWA