Many property owners and property managers find themselves in this situation time and time again where the rental market competition is fierce. Statistics have shown that one-third of the population are rental Residents and the common mindset is shifting to this living scenario being a preferable option. Furthermore, Residents are not just the college age demographic with little to no credit. There are nearly as many Residents age 30-65 years old as there are renters who are under the age of 30. This now begs the question; “How can one of these potential applicants become my new, great Resident?
With such a broad span of ages regarding potential Residents, there should be an equally diverse range of methods to attract them to your vacancies.
Here are some of the most successful methods for filling a vacancy:
When a clear, concise and legally permissible rental policy is available for applicants, they can decide before they apply whether your vacancy is a viable option. This alone not only protects you, but will help bring in more qualified applicants to view your rental property.
Don’t Schedule ‘Interviews’- Plan ‘Viewings’
It is in our nature as people and within our society to know and trust people. This is a good thing, but when it comes to renting a property it can pose some potential problems. The leasing agent bases the ‘interview’ stage of filling a vacancy on perception and opinion. This type of subjective reasoning can get the best of us in trouble and potentially eliminate the greatest potential tenants.
If an applicant has found your property, they know your rental policy, and they are still interested in it; the next step is to use methods that can keep all applicants on a level playing field. The most common of these is performing a background check that will provide the same type of non-biased searches on all applicants. These checks will provide objective information that can be backed by credible data so the decision does not fall on any kind of ‘gut instinct’ that can lead to an applicant feeling they were discriminated against. This is the time when many sections of your rental policy are reviewed to ensure the applicant is a good fit for the property.
Be Patient and Proactive
Finding great tenants can be a game of patience, but the more pre-planning that goes into it, the better you can expect the end result to be. If you can begin the process the right way, you can build the type of relationship that makes re-listing properties few and far between.
This article hopes to spark your thinking on best practices for finding new residents. Please add your comments and suggestions. I am always willing to update articles with thoughts, suggestions and new ideas from our loyal readers.
Mr. Wilhoit is the author of three books: How To Read A Rent Roll: A Guide to Understanding Rental Income and Multifamily Insight Vol 1 & 2 – How to Acquire Wealth Through Buying the Right Multifamily Assets in the Right Markets. Multifamily Insight Vol 2 — just out!
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About This Blog: Multifamily Insight is dedicated to assisting current and future multifamily property owners, operators and investors in executing specific tasks that allow multifamily assets to operate at their highest level of efficiency. We discuss real world issues in multifamily property management and acquisitions. This blog is intended to be informational only and does not provide legal, financial or accounting advice. Seek professional counsel. www.MultifamilyInsight.com
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