For Rent to Rented - Nine DOs and DO NOTs
By Kim Howard on 18 Aug, 2010
Most people who offer property for rent want a tenant moved in as soon as possible. Recently we helped one of our clients to get their apartment rented in just over 48 hours! The client was thrilled, the tenant was thrilled and so were we. While scenarios like this are uncommon, there’s much that can be done to reduce the length of time it takes to get your property rented. Here are some key tips to take you on the fast track from “For Rent” to “Rented”.
Be realistic about your asking price. Everyone wants to know they are getting the most they can for their much-loved house or apartment. However, give consideration to your agent’s advice since their experience can help you come up with an attractive price based on market conditions.
Make sure the house looks amazing (or close enough) when the agent is coming to take photos of your property AND showing it to perspective tenants. These days most tenants will ask to see and review photos of a property before setting foot near it. Remember that how you live in a place may not be how you want to rent it. So the unmade beds need to be made! Dust bunnies – gone! The plastic bag hanging on the cupboard handle – put it in hiding! This may seem elementary or you may even wonder, “What does this have to do with anything?” A lot! It is far easier to make a good impression on a potential tenant if the home looks ready for THEM to live in. (Staging works – see these before and after photos)
Give a key to the agent where possible. This makes it easier for the agent to schedule visits to the property. When each visit has to be scheduled with the owner, this can often present challenges since the owner and potential tenant’s availability may not always coincide. This can result in further delays in getting the property rented.
Have the house opened up prior to the potential tenant’s arrival (if possible). It makes a much greater impression when the house is airy and lit up versus closed up tight, feeling stuffy, stale and dark.
Be negotiable or at least willing to compromise on issues. That flexibility makes all the difference in keeping your property empty for ages or getting some income flowing in.
Take criticism personally. If the agent points out negatives, it is done to help get your home rented, not to hurt you.
Ask the client, “So what do you think?” This puts the client on the spot and makes them feel uncomfortable. All they want to do at that point is get out of your house! Leave most of the talking to the agent…they should work for their money right?
Have obvious outstanding maintenance issues. This shows the type of landlord that you are, slow and unresponsive. These are the types of things that can keep your property sitting empty.
Follow the agent around the house with the potential client. This can put both agent and potential tenant on edge. Leave the agent to do their thing and the tenant to soak up all the features of your property while envisioning themselves living there.