Although the property rental business is experiencing a temporary slowdown because of the COVID-19 health crisis, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. It may take several months before the economy begins to come out of hibernation, but many believe it will happen in the foreseeable future.
Some forward-thinking landlords are making the most of this down time by developing marketing strategies. When conditions improve and restrictions are lifted, those who have developed a plan of action and are ready to implement it will have a distinct advantage over those who are relying on a “wait and see” approach.
4 Strategies for Attracting Tenants in a Competitive Market
- Price has always been a key factor for most people searching for a place to live, but competitive pricing will be even more crucial in the months ahead. When businesses, the economy, and people’s way of life returns to a semblance of (new) normalcy, we might be seeing more frugality and careful spending than we did before COVID-19 emerged on the scene. That’s one factor to keep in mind when setting a price for apartments and condos. Determining the best amount to charge would depend on several variables, of course, ranging from square footage and location to the age and condition of the apartment or building. All things considered, staying competitive with comparable rental properties in your area is key to finding and retaining good tenants.
- Focus on positive selling points. Whether you’re advertising your rentals through social media, online classifieds, a blog, a website, brochures, flyers, signage, display ads, or an email list, make sure to mention as many of the desirable features you can think of. You never know what will “tip the scales” in your favor, when it comes to gaining a new tenant. Everyone has different priorities and preferences, so don’t be too quick to dismiss the merits of improvements you made or neighborhood amenities and attractions. Features that may appeal to different tenants could include new appliances, off-street parking, a quiet neighborhood, private decks or balconies, security features, a low crime rate, nearby tennis courts, hiking trails, grocery stores, pharmacies, pet-related services, city bus routes, playgrounds, good schools, golf courses, restaurants, and other conveniences. Once you’ve had a chance to communicate directly with your prospective tenant – either by phone, email, or in person – you can find out exactly what they’re looking for and to what extent you can cater to those expectations and needs.
- Providing existing tenants with good service, in terms of problem resolution and prompt repairs, not only results in higher tenant retention, but it can also generate favorable “word of mouth” advertising, which is the most valuable form of marketing available (and the least expensive)! Offering incentives for tenant referrals can increase the effectiveness of that method.
- If you own vacant rental units, houses for rent, or condos to lease, now would also be a good time to spruce them up for prospective tenants. It’s often the superficial improvements that can make a big difference, such as applying a fresh coat of paint and hiring someone to do a thorough top-to-bottom cleaning. Since first impressions are so important in the property rental business, doing a few cost-effective cosmetic improvements could make your rentals immensely more appealing and marketable.
If there are any aspects of property management that you don’t have the time, the skills, the knowledge, or the patience to handle, please give us a call! Our team of experienced property managers and advisors can make being a landlord a lot easier! PMI Austin offers expertise and help in property marketing, tenant screening, rent collection, property maintenance, property inspections, legal compliance, financial reports, and evictions. Feel free to contact us by phone or email. We’ve also included a convenient online inquiry form on our website. Call or send us a message and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible!