Filling your rental properties fast enables you to have consistent cash in the bank and better peace of mind as a landlord. However, sometimes the market might seem slim, or, for various other reasons, filling vacancies feels slow. Online marketing helps streamline the rental process as most renters search online for rental properties, but it’s the most effective when you have a great rental description, capturing photos, and even a video tour. Enhancing your rental property listing within these areas will help fill your vacancies quickly even in a slow period. Keep reading for a complete rental listing guide so the leads can start flowing in for your rentals:
The most important parts about a property description are the details. You want to provide enough detailed information that renters will find it easy and trustworthy so they will apply – however, you don’t want your property description to feel like work reading it. Depending on where you live, the type of renter pool might determine how you write and what you include in your description. For example, if your rental property is in a college town, it’s most likely your renter pool will include lots of students or people who work for the university – consider what features of your rental property are most attractive to the type of renter who might apply and write accordingly. Remember to always double-check your grammar and spelling to maintain professionalism so you don’t discourage people from applying for your property. You can also include an enticing headline to draw renters in using active descriptions like, “Check out this beautiful family-friendly townhouse available for rent.” Things to include in your property description are the following:
- Price – Most renters need and want to know if a rental fits in their budget so being honest and upfront from the marketing stage will encourage more applicants
- Basic Details – How many bathrooms, rooms, HVAC, washer/dryer, kitchen appliances, and square footage should always be included.
- Amenities – These will help highlight your property to differentiate it from others – is there a pool, hot tub, trash pick-up, or garage? Include anything renters would consider a bonus.
- External Information – This means including where your rental is located, what it’s nearby, school districts, how far of a walk to a university, restaurants, etc. These details are just as important as the internal property details as well.
When it comes to online rental marketing – it’s all about the visuals. You can be as detailed as you want in your property description, but it’s even more important to have high-quality and eye-catching photos. One of the reasons online rental marketing is so successful is that renters don’t have to physically go to your property to see it, photos provide the context and let them know if it is exactly what they are looking for. If you can’t get professional photos taken, your smartphone will take high-quality photos that are easy to edit and upload as well. Read this guide for quick tips on real estate photography, and here are a few other things to keep in mind when you are taking photos:
- Lighting – Have as much natural lighting in your rental when taking photos to enhance the quality.
- Angles – Make sure you’re taking good eye-level angled photos so renters can get a feel of what each of the rooms looks like and so the photos are aesthetically pleasing.
- All Areas – Cover all areas with photos and don’t leave any rooms, or even closets, out as renters will want to see everything.
- Match Your Description – Make sure you are showing what you are saying in your property description so you’re not misleading or being inaccurate.
- Minimal Staging – Consider adding minimal staging before you take photos such as towels, a chair, or even curtains.
Here is a full guide on how to create a video tour of your rental property – as contactless renting is becoming more popular, creating a video tour to include in your online rental marketing will further set your property apart and will help keep your listing competitive in the crowded market. Don’t worry – it doesn’t have to be anything fancy, you can take a video right from your phone.
Post In the Right Places
Most online real estate listing sites are easy to use, but the easiest and best option is to syndicate your property listing to multiple sites at a time. Syndicating will make sure your property listing is getting to all of the most important rental sites while saving you time as you only have to do it once. Learn how to market and syndicate your properties here. Don’t forget about using other sources like social media or Craigslist – sharing your listing on social networks will allow others to share it and increase reach to then increase applicants and, of course, fill your rental property.
Things to Do Before You List
While creating your property listing and your property description won’t take a ton of your time, there are some general things you’ll want to do before listing your property. Sometimes your property might fill fast and renters will want to move in ASAP – for this reason, your rental should be move-in ready as soon as you begin marketing. Here are the things you need to do before you list:
- Minor Repairs – Obviously, with rental turnover you’ll need to either make minor or major repairs (depending on your previous tenants) to make sure your property listing is excellent and accurate. You can even include the repairs or improvements you’ve made in your new listing – plus, your property will look better!
- Clean – While you should do a deep/routine clean after tenants move out, cleaning is more important now than ever to make your rental last and so renters are comfortable moving in.
- Know What Renters Want – Being familiar with the market and the types of renters who might apply to your property is important to attract applicants – research what other rentals are including or adding to make their properties attractive and see if it would work for your rental. If it’s in your budget, consider adding small changes or amenities.
- Don’t Forget the Outside – Updating the inside of your rental is clearly a must, but don’t forget about the outside. Curb appeal is important for renters too, especially for houses and townhomes – it’s even important for apartments because a well-kept complex and surrounding area makes renters feel safe and comfortable. Doing easy yard updates, planting flowers, and pulling weeds do a lot for properties.
Once you nail your rental property description, online marketing is one of the most efficient and simple steps of the rental process that will lead you to the right tenants. Don’t forget to always protect yourself and your property by doing thorough tenant screening for new renters.