Renting has steadily grown in popularity over the last 15 years. The homeownership rate has dropped 7.2% since 2005, partially because people feel better about renting! However, even in a hot rental market, if you want to find Richmond VA tenants fast—and the right tenants—you will face challenges. In this world of constantly evolving needs and deadlines, a landlord doesn’t always have the free time to devote to hunting for tenants. So how can you find excellent tenants quickly? Check out the following tips!
1. Use All Major Listing Sites
Ninety percent of people use the internet as their primary avenue to search for homes. The best way to harness the power of online listings is to make full use of as many as you can. Is it worth the time to create all of those listings? Yes, and the reason why is simple: Each site targets a slightly different market in the Richmond area. A Google search for "home for rent" is going to return at least six or seven distinct listing sites on the first page. Keep in mind that is only taking into account the organic search results.
If you click on a few of them, you will notice slight differences in how each site is laid out and individual listings are presented. These are not arbitrary decisions. Every listing site uses its design to aim for a specific segment of the market. The more places you list with, the more markets you can suddenly access.
2. Be Mobile-Friendly
Most computing is done while commuting. This is particularly true for millennials who are more likely to reach for a mobile device than a PC no matter where they are. If your goal is to find Richmond VA tenants fast, be sure the listing is optimized for mobile devices.
The need for mobile optimization doesn’t only apply to your listing. If you have a website designed to showcase your rental, that should be ready for mobile devices as well. Be sure to test your site on a variety of mobile devices: Androids, iPhones, tablets, and the like.
3. Have a Clear Application Process
Like water, people in the flow of making a purchase tend to take the path of least resistance. A complicated application process is enough to put a dam in your cash flow. Only gather the information you need from potential renters, and explain why you are asking for each item.
Most importantly, be transparent. True transparency requires communication around both the gathering of information and the approval timeline. A potential renter should know what is being done with his or her information. They should also be made aware of the next steps in the application and when they will take place. Giving someone your full name, social security number, and address exposes anyone to significant risk. Ease the minds of renters by letting them know what's happening, when, and how soon the process will be complete.
4. Use a Property Management Company
Trust is one of the most underrated factors of any business transaction. When you’re forking over hundreds—or thousands—of dollars to someone, you want to know you’re going to get what you’re paying for. Renters are no different. If you want to find Richmond VA tenants fast, keep this in mind: Renting from an individual landlord makes some renters nervous. They worry about both a lack of experience and what would happen if something were to go wrong.
On the other hand, when you hire a property management company in Richmond, you gain these renters’ trust. This effectively gives you access to a whole different market segment. Property management companies are known for their ability to take care of renters’ needs in a professional, efficient manner. A property manager is also a trusted resource when it comes to taking care of repairs, maintenance, and unexpected, incidental issues. With a property management team supporting your investment, you offer your potential tenants peace of mind.
Hire the Right Property Management Company
Perhaps the most common misconception about rental income is that it’s "completely hands-off." The reality is that a rental is not an asset that generates revenue on auto-pilot! As you know, there is work to be done from the moment you start acquiring new renters to maintaining the property—and everywhere in between.
A property management company has the infrastructure and human resources in place to take care of it all for you. They can even help you make high-quality listings and get them in front of the right audience. Air-tight application forms and leases will be at your disposal and can be tweaked according to your needs. If you want to find Richmond VA tenants fast, streamlining your rentals with expert property management is the key. For more information about how property management can benefit you as a landlord, feel free to reach out to us at Mission Realty Property Management!