There is good news and bad news for landlords who are struggling to find tenants for vacant units. Thankfully, the bad news isn’t all that bad. But for your business to succeed, you will have to move forward with the times—and these could be significant changes. The good news is that millennials are a generation of renters.
Before looking at how to list rentals successfully on online marketplaces, let’s look at how the rental market has changed over the past few years.
Let’s face it—no one drives around neighborhoods looking for rental signs on front lawns. It’s even harder to imagine somebody picking up a newspaper, flicking to the classifieds, and highlighting the rentals they wish to see. To advertise vacant units and attract renters, you must be online.
Once your properties are online, you have the chance to reach a massive audience. Millennials—those who were born between 1981 and 1996—are a generation of renters. Homeownership used to be a priority, but Millenials place much less importance on getting the property. Statistics show that as much as 72 percent of millennials in 2019 saw renting as the best choice they currently had. Naturally, this is excellent news for landlords.
It clear—the most effective way to list rentals is on online marketplaces. However, how can you make sure that your rental listings catch the eye of potential renters?
How to List Rentals on Online Marketplaces
1. Know your market audience
Not every potential renter is going to be a good match for your property. If you have a three-bedroom house in the suburbs, it’s unlikely that you will have much interest from students. Similarly, if you aren’t in a good school district, you might struggle to bring in families.
There are numerous rental websites, and they will often appeal to a specific type of renter. When you match your target type of renter to your rental units, you will be able to save time and money by advertising in the right places.
2. Get your wording right
You have just a few words and sentences to capture someone’s interest. So use language that appeals to a person’s emotions and desire for a better lifestyle. That way, you increase the chance that they click to get more information.
For example, there is nothing catchy or exciting about a “2-bedroom apartment in the city center.” On the other hand, an “open plan loft with gym and pool” will make people hungry for more.
The same is true for the description. While it is essential to describe the crucial aspects of your property accurately, don’t forget to highlight the best parts. Imagine yourself as a renter. What would you need if you were a young couple working in the city? Include these things in your description.
Of course, it’s also vital to avoid any discriminatory advertising under the Fair Housing Act.
3. Don’t scrimp on photos
Statistics show that online customers are 80 percent more likely to request more information about a property when there are 20 or more photos. Now, that may sound like a lot if you own small rental units. But you should include as many images as possible to highlight the best aspects of each room.
When it comes to photos for online marketplaces, it’s also essential to use high-quality images.
Here are a few handy tips if a professional photographer isn’t in your budget:
- Use a camera with a flash and tripod instead of your smartphone
- Take photos of all the rooms and from different angles
- Don’t forget to include any outside areas
- Include photos of the benefits of your property that you mentioned in your description
4. Use videos and 360° pictures
Millennials are busy people, and they don’t want to view a ton of different properties. By providing virtual tours or 360° images, you can give them a more precise overview of what’s on offer. This will help to make sure your property is on their final list to view.
Another advantage of videos and 360° pictures is that it lets your tenant know that you are tech-savvy. This may be just enough to convince some millennials to short-list your rental unit.
5. Get on social media
Almost 80% of millennials are on Facebook. It’s not an exaggeration, but if you want to find good renters and fast, your property has to be on Facebook. The latest algorithms allow rental properties with videos to be ranked higher than those with only photos—another good reason to create a virtual tour.
Post your rental properties to Facebook and other social media sites and ask your friends and family to share the post. It is also a good idea to join rental property groups where you can share your posts.
6. Sign up for Q&A websites
Q&A websites are a novel way that property owners can reach out to folks looking to rent. People use websites such as Quora to research particular neighborhoods where they are looking to rent. They may want answers about average rent prices, amenities, or public transport.
If you sign up to Quora, make sure you show your areas of interest are real estate, property management, property rentals, and housing. You will then receive relevant questions related to renting. You can use the chance to provide reliable answers and even show what rental units you have to offer. The reach may not be as extensive as social media, but you have the advantage of people learning about your brand.