Are you wondering how to find renters? Better yet, how to find good renters? There is an old saying in the rental industry that has been proven true time and time again. No renter is better than a bad renter. Once someone moves in it is very difficult to get rid of them, even if they are trashing the place, causing problems, and not paying their rent. The eviction process, especially in some of the states with more renter-friendly laws, is long and difficult. Of course the best way to avoid this is to set the bar high and only consider top quality renters. Unfortunately this is a little easier said than done when you're trying to get units rented quickly. Sometimes tenants you're renting to seem good at first, but then turn into a nightmare. This is why it's important to cover all your bases and do everything you can to ensure you're renting to someone who is respectful, will pay on time, and will take care of your important investment property. Learn how to find renters easily with these tips.
The first step in finding quality renters is having the kind of property that a quality renter wants. This means the unit is in good shape, the rooms are freshly painted, the floor is clean, and the grounds are well landscaped. The more presentable the entire complex is, the more you can entice a higher caliber renter. It is also very important that all proper precautions have been made to make the property safe. Quality renters will look for things like properly working locks on not just doors, but windows as well. Make sure peep holes are installed and working properly, and alarm systems are a nice added bonus.
How to Find Renters : Advertising Message
Once the property is ready, it's time to start learning how to find renters. Targeting quality renters begins with the right advertising. First, you need to create a compelling marketing message for your rental property. Focus on benefits and amenities - especially the ones that set you apart from nearby properties. It could be location, larger rooms, laundry facilities, lower deposits, or a friendly policy regarding pets. Once a potential renter has found an area they like, they are more likely to be swayed by small bonuses such as a larger kitchen or more closet space. Advertisements should include adjectives such as "clean", "spacious", "safe", and "upgraded". A higher-end renter expects a little more.
How to Find Renters : Marketing Channels
The next step in learning how to find renters is to get the word out about any vacancies with the compelling advertisement you've created. If you're wondering where and how to find renters, many landlords have found that these individuals are searching online first. There are lots of opportunities for free or low cost advertising all over the web. First, start with the larger, more well-known site such as Craigslist.org. The listings are targeted to local areas, it's a popular site with lots of traffic, and best of all, it's free. However, there is a bit of an art to posting on Craigslist. First, make sure to create a compelling headline to get good candidates to click on your add. Pick the best benefit of the property - "3 bedroom condo w/pool access", or "Upgraded 2 bedroom close to the beach". Also, each ad is placed in order of when it was posted, so after a couple days your ad is likely to be so far down the page that not many people will see it. Monitor where your posting is and refresh if necessary. There are also lots of other sites where you can advertise openings. Just do a search online as if you were looking for a rental; for example - "3 bedroom home in Austin, Texas". Take a look at the search results. This is what someone who rents in your area is seeing when they go online. Find out how to list with some of the sites you see.
Also, don't forget about the standard "For Rent" sign. It may seem simple, but clearly marketing where the available property is for those who pass by is an important step. If someone sees your ad online and then wants to drive by the property, if they do not see a "For Rent" sign, they will most likely think it has already been rented or they are looking in the wrong place.
If you own many rental units or large apartment complexes, you may even want to consider a commercial. Commercials are relatively easy to make and since your marketing message and overall look of the apartments isn't likely to change, one commercial can be used over and over again, potentially for years. You don't even have to buy airtime. Upload your commercial, just like you would videos, to sites like YouTube.com and promote it through social media. You can also put a link to it on marketing materials for corporate offices and locator services.
You can also utilize social media to spread the word, sharing information on sites like Facebook and Twitter, or put an ad in the local paper and on community message boards. Message boards may be particular effective if you're looking to rent to students. A college town is a great place to enjoy a constant stream of people looking to rent, however since students tend to be younger and haven't necessarily lived on their own as long, it is even more important to be highly selective.
How to Find Renters - Application Process
Speaking of being highly selective, when learning how to find renters, the application and screening process may be the most important. This is the time it's necessary to be firm and uncompromising. From the ad and the first phone call, you want to make it clear that your standards are high. The ad should mention that you will be running a thorough background check and you may even list a minimum acceptable credit score. Just putting this in the ad will deter many candidates who are not up to par. Reiterate the qualifications you're looking for at the first meeting (3 months of pay stubs, good credit history, clean background check, no criminal record). Do this before they fill out an application. Often "bad" tenants will look for landlords that they can walk over. After finding out your long list of demands, he or she may reconsider if they know they do not meet your requirements. Someone who rents often and meets your qualifications will not be deterred.
These tips on learning how to find renters of high caliber will get you started in the right direction. Set your standards high and you'll be able to enjoy high quality tenants. While the relationship is a two-way street and you will be responsible for maintaining the type of environment that this type of tenant will want, it will be well worth the time and expense in the long run. Good tenants pay on time and take care of the rental property, and as a landlord, you'll be glad you found them.