A landlord always needs tenants. Income properties can be valuable investments, but it doesn’t take a financial genius to realize that an income property isn’t worth much unless it generates income. If your income property is a rental property, that means you need a tenant!
With more Americans renting than at any point in the last 50 years, it’s a good time to be looking for a tenant for your space. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t ways to fine-tune your rental listing in order to attract the best possible tenants.
The right photographs
No smart tenant wants to rent an apartment sight unseen. If you’re going to attract qualified and discerning tenants, then you have to show potential renters just how great your property is. That means taking impressive photographs of your space. Document the best features of your rental property, and shoot your photos in the most flattering possible ways.
What makes a flattering photo of a space? You’ll want to follow tried and true photography practices for shooting rooms. Take photos when the sun is out, because that way, you’ll flood your rooms with natural light. The room will look better in the photo, and renters want to see that their new home has nice lighting. Stand in doorways and corners to take photos, so that you can communicate the full size of the space. You want your potential tenants to know that the property is roomy and well laid out.
The right text
The text of your rental listing matters too, of course. You want to communicate the right things about your space to potential renters. And in the era of online apartment and home listings, the text that you choose for your ad could make it easier or harder for home hunters to find your listing in the first place.
Emphasize the best traits of your rental property in the text, and be sure to mention the basics: the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the square footage, and other important traits. Talk up the rental property’s proximity to public transit, work and recreation centers, and other things that your potential tenants may be looking for.
And think about keywords! Search engine optimization is an essential investment for businesses of all kinds in this day and age. And the major search engines like Google and Bing aren’t the only kinds of search engines you’ll want to think about. It’s also important to think about your rank within website searches. When you post your ad on a rental website, will it pop up when the best renters search for “outdoor space” or “…with washer/dryer?” Think about the words that would-be renters will use to describe the spaces they want, and be sure to include those sorts of words and phrases in your listing.
Screen your potential tenants
If you write a great listing, add great photos, and hit important keywords, then you’re likely to get a lot of eyes on your ad. That’s good news, especially if you use a great landlord website that lets you set up a free rental application. You might find that lots of potential tenants are applying to occupy your space. So choose carefully.
Use landlord software to conduct background and credit checks on potential tenants. Make sure that your would-be tenants are qualified to rent your space. If they can’t afford it, or if they are destructive, they’ll be a huge problem for you as a landlord. But if you choose wisely and get a qualified tenant, you’ll enjoy steady income from your property.