Know Thy Neighborhood – 3 Tips for Marketing a Rental Property

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When it comes to marketing a rental property online, most landlords and property managers do a good job of making sure the important information is listed.  Details like price and the number of bedrooms is crucial upfront information, as many prospective tenants initiate their search for a new home based on the amount of room they need along with their monthly budget.

However, with limited inventory in most markets combined with a customer base that is much more search savvy, it is important to be much more specific when marketing a rental property.  Localizing the listing by knowing the neighborhood and its unique elements is an excellent way to not only separate your property from the competition, but can also help better qualify your leads.  

Here are 3 tips to keep in mind when trying to localize the marketing for a rental property.

  1. Images of the home are important, but so are images of the neighborhood.  The first image is the “front door” image that a user sees when looking at a property.  This thumbnail image is the first photo that a prospective tenant will see, and make no mistake, it is important.  From there, the kitchen, common indoor and outdoor living areas along with appealing bedrooms and bathroom images can certainly help give the prospect a good idea of what the home looks like prior to a visit.  However, most properties fail to upload images of what may be attractive about the neighborhood in which the home is located.  Major shopping outlets or town centers could be a nice allure, or perhaps there is a neighborhood park or recreation center that would help sway someone toward your property over another.  Remember that while the home is an important factor, most people are searching for a location which is important to keep in mind as well. 
  2. Price it based on the local market.  The market for a rental is not the equivalent of the monthly mortgage amount.  It is important to understand the neighborhood comparables and price the rental accordingly.  From there, take advantage of “charm pricing” or social triggers.  For example, if the market bears $1900 for rent, consider pricing it at $1895.  This psychological pricing tactic has proven itself over time, but it also helps ensure that when a prospect “filters” their search, it ensures the property will appear in searches underneath the next pricing tier. 
  3. Are you offering any specials?  Is cable included?  Is there something about the property that is different from the rental across the street?  If so, put that information in the headline of the listing.  This is an opportunity to set the rental apart for competing properties and could possibly get lost in the property description, so put this information in the headline.  There is also an opportunity to localize the headline if say for example, a particular school district is popular and may appeal to someone looking for a family home, or perhaps note that it is near a light rail for a rental that has more of an appeal for a young professional.  

Localized images of the neighborhood along with location based pricing and an optimized headline are 3 key areas where a property can be differentiated.  With tight supply and limited opportunities to separate one rental from the next, taking the extra steps to localize a listing will not only save you from having to consistently field calls from uninformed prospects, but this will also help save your time by finding a renter that is well informed about the property prior to them contacting you.