Rental Advertising Tips
Are you frustrated with the quality of tenants you’re attracting via your rental listing ads and promotional efforts?
It’s not a simple thing to reach renters and filter in only the best. However, good tenants are your key business asset, and writing great rental advertisements is how you attract them.
Most landlords and property managers struggle with this all-important task. Filling a 1 bedroom apartment in the city or a 3 bedroom house for rent in the burbs is part art and part science. You’ll discover via profit results that perfecting it is a valuable property manager skill.
Attract and Filter in Great Tenants!
Success in professional property management may come down to two things: finding the best tenants through advertised listings, and then managing those great tenants well so they’re a continuous, reliable source of revenue. If you have a process for this, you’re going to get better results.
Contrast that with how most apartment ads are written and placed by landlords. All too often, a confusing, deceptively written ad with vague photos and untrue benefits is then presented on low quality popular classified sites or forums such as Craigslist.
That only creates more problems down the road for any landlord. Because the location of your rental advertising is important.
Instead, you could use a simple 8 step process to keep you focused on the right tenants. You get who you ask for.
8 Simple Steps to Acquire the Best Tenants
- know your property – what does it really offer and what are the top 3 benefits for renters
- know your target renter – list and prioritize the top ten characteristics of the targeted renter and what they actually want
- review the right rental listing sites – the most appropriate and effective site depends on the class of the rental property (e.g., craiglist is the worst site for luxury rentals or house rentals)
- list all your property’s features – and prioritize the ones that mean the most to good renters
- take pictures of the most compelling features – bathrooms, kitchens, big windows
- write your rental landing page on your website – send everyone to your landing page for great photos and a professional presentation that differentiates your rental from others
- write a draft copy of your ad – write it, leave it and come back to it again later with a fresh mind, then edit again and again until it reads well
- use tracking code on all ads – so you’ll know where your best prospects are coming from. Then your next ads will perform even better.
When you receive phone calls from renter prospects, ask them how they found your ad, where they’re living now, and what they’re looking for in an apartment. This gets their focus off the listing and onto what they really want. And will help you avoid time wasting, in-person showings to poorly qualified prospects who don’t really want your apartment or house.
Again, having a good rental marketing website where you can showcase your units to the right prospects makes a big difference.
Filling Vacancies Fast Means Errors
I just read a post form a rental screening service which was entitled “5 Ideas for Marketing Rental Property to Fill Vacancies Quickly.” And yet another post on a software provider’s site entitled: “Fill Vacancies Faster: 10 Proven Rental Listing Tips to Convert.”
Here the emphasis is a desperate ploy to grab a tenant quick. That’s surprisingly poor advice from firms in this industry. If your tenant does give you quick notice, you can be well prepared to fill the vacancy smartly using this new rental advertising process.
Competent managers focus on achieving key business goals of solid earnings growth with a calm, well planned and executed pursuit of quality tenants.
The First Step to Sustained Rental Property ROI
Finding and signing good tenants is perhaps the most effective property management skill. Signing great tenants changes your business model, raises profits, and improves the outlook for your property management revenue. Great tenants make your work enjoyable and profitable.
Your business is your tenants.
If your acquisition channels fail to bring on good tenants, you lose the ease and comfort of conscientious people occupying your units. Your companies’s value and competence begins with understanding your value proposition to renters in detail. That is followed by advertising your apartment or house in the right places, crafting the right message to the right renters, screening them well, and listening carefully to what they’re telling you about themselves.
The tenant screening and background reports are vital information, but they’re a screening tool to help you pluck the right tenant out of those who respond to your ad. Tenant screening is only as good as the tenant pool you bring in. You attract the right tenants through your rental vacancy ads and the location of where you advertise.
Crafting a Powerful Image
Retaining your tenants does come down to image management. The image of living in your buildings and apartments is what tenants use to decide whether to rent, stay leased or leave. And they do base their judgment of value they’re receiving through your communications with them. You’re in control from the first ad placed through to all your periodic communications with them.
Surveys bear out that your relationship with your tenants is the top factor in their future actions
And that’s where your property management software and marketing website come in. They are your real value presentation channels. If you don’t use them, you leave the image of value up to chance or malice by others. You lose control of your most vital asset – the brand image tenants build of you and your house or apartment rental unit.
You can take control of the image of value with good advertising practices.
Better Rental Advertising
Improve prospective tenant’s assessment of value beginning with your rental ads. Writing your rental ads gives you an opportunity to review the value of your units. At the moment of crafting a good rental ad, you begin to see your unit and location more objectively and from their point of view.
Do you really have a good offer compared to other apartment or houses for rent, and against the rentals that tenants are actually seeking? If not, you should hunker down and create a strategy for offering more value (not lowering rental prices) so new tenants believe in your offer.
Check out our very popular blog posts on writing powerful rental ads and offer more value to get an idea of how to build a better value proposition for tenants. Create more value first and then learn how to promote in your advertising communications.
Location, Location, Location
Yes, getting your ads in the right place where your ideal renters are is so important. That may exclude forums and cheap listing services such as Craigslist. You’re looking for high quality, reliably rent-paying tenants, not people simply desperate for a place to live.
Your business is your tenants. Choose wrong and you pay a continuous price for your lack of strategy and good business sense. Once you have the wrong tenants, your daily efforts keep missing the mark, because you don’t offer what they want. It’s a continuous disappointment for you and them sometimes leading to eviction or lower occupancy rates.
With all the digital tools, ad locations, and advice available, you don’t need to do a slapdash effort. You can get this key task done professionally and get outstanding results. This process is especially important for property managers, i.e., newbie property management company managers.
Highest Quality Advertising Locations
High quality ad locations including Facebook, Apartments.com, Padmapper, etc can be managed strategically to place your ad in front of high quality, reliable rent paying, long term lease tenants who continuously resign their leases year after year.
Handing over your rentals to a Realtor comes with risk too. They may only target and lease renters who might buy in future.
That means a future vacancy is in the offing. That’s not the business results you need. Ideally, you need a “professional renter” who is someone who keeps renting and ideally never buys their own home. This group of renters is so profitable, that you can offer concessions and incentives galore without losing them or their continuous patronage.
The advertising services, Realtors, leasing agents and even property management companies are ready to deliver troublesome tenants. Instead, you can take the bull by the horns and learn how to maximize your advertising, tenant screening and professional tenant management skills.
Where to Advertise?
Your own property management marketing website is the best location where prospects can get the “beautiful view” of what you have to offer. Other channels have presentation limitations, but you can redirect them to your own website to build the desire of the best leads. It’s like a high powered filter that reliably delivers the best prospects.
Highest Quality Rental Listing Sites
We’ve provided a list of rental listing sites, but let’s talk quality.
Realtor.com, Padmapper, Zillow, Hotpads, apartments.com have great reach to the best quality renters. The key to using them is to target your ads rigorously. Sites such as apartmenthomeliving.com are classy magazine style sites that cater to classy renters.
From those locations, you route prospects to your marketing website where they can see high definition quality photos with interesting views, detailed and persuasive descriptions.
Try ManageCasa and discover how Quality Makes a Difference in Tenant Management.
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