You've built a rental and listed it—now why won't they come? Unlike the hit classic Field of Dreams, real estate agents may need to do a little work to attract the attention of top-quality renters. In a competitive market, you'll need to stand out from the crowd. Fortunately, hard work and ingenuity are marks of a great real estate agent, and these top tips can help you attract the best landlords and renters to your listings.
Professional Photography Services
Whether you are looking to attract a property listing or renters for that property—first impressions matter. Most people won't rent from a listing with low-level photography, so it's crucial to stand out with professional-quality photos. Professional photos can help show those empty rooms in the best possible presentation, reflecting the true character of a property and not simply a few walls and some flooring. The National Association of Realtors notes that the first step for 41% of homebuyers is to check online first, and it makes sense that others searching for a property would do the same.
Create Community Connections
In an ideal world, listings will come to you through quality services and simple ads. Unfortunately, we don't live in an ideal world. Word-of-mouth referrals contribute to some of the top-quality connections you'll find in the business of attracting listings and renters. Spend some time on local community Facebook groups, and don't slack on recruiting positive reviews from happy clients. Make sure you don't use only one review service as your clients will likely check out multiple services from Google, Yelp and Facebook.
Get involved with community-building activities. A more engaged neighborhood will inspire more renters and listings in your areas and at better rates. In addition, noting your service, including financial and volunteer support and boosting local events—this involvement will help keep you at the top of mind the next time a friend asks for a recommendation.
Develop your Digital Presence
Photos are just the beginning when it comes to prospective clients' digital experience—and the National Realtors Association reports that 95% of buyers use online tools in their purchase process. Working with a larger real estate organization will provide you with the visibility and digital experience of its brands, such as Windemere or Redfin. You may also want to create your unique digital presence with a mobile-responsive website and your custom-curated guidance.
Consider developing your blog or podcast, guiding people through the local rental markets in your area. Add regular tips about property and property management on Facebook and Instagram. Team up to create a community class that helps first-time landlords manage the renting process or helps prospective tenants clean up credit to upgrade their rental options in the future.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
Embracing a diverse community and equitable housing standards will open the door to a larger pool of renters. Consider accessibility features when renovating your rental properties. For example, bicycle parking, doorways wide enough to accommodate a wheelchair, or community space to walk a pet?
Equity doesn't stop at physical features but includes financial features. So how does your rental application address adverse events? Do you deny a tenant because of their past or perhaps offer increased deposits and a shorter lease until they've proven their status in your community? Sliding scale rentals are often supported by state and city initiatives to help reimburse you for offering additional housing in your area with a guaranteed income. Section 8 Housing is guided by federal standards that you can achieve with careful planning.
Offering housing options that fit multiple socioeconomic levels can significantly increase your pool of renters for both real estate agents and landlords. In addition, knowing how to navigate these programs can help attract new clients.
Finding rental clients depends on attracting attention to your rental area. Whether recruiting new property listings to manage or attracting renters to your longtime property—you first need to get noticed. Always promote your listing with professional pictures to make the best first impression. Get involved in your community so you are known in advance to people who refer you through friends and former happy clients. Develop your digital presence beyond your company pages and start providing services that will create trust with prospective clients. And finally, embrace the potential of diverse renters and properties through inclusive renovations and equitable financial programs.