Advertising & Marketing
Strong marketing makes it easier to find great tenants. And the best way – hands down – to advertise your property is on Internet rental sites and social media. The reasons? Unlike newspapers (do those even exist anymore?) online listings have a longer shelf life. And unlike print ads or traditional bulletin boards, online rental sites allow you to post plenty of pictures – always worth a thousand words. But even more important than shelf life and photos, savvy renters tend to check online for listings rather than any of the old methods.
While you can use sites like Craigslist or Kijiji, targeted rental sites are my preference. Most cities have local rental search engines. Many areas also have rental search engines geared to students, and some universities and colleges offer online off-campus rental listings.
Other than photos, what information should you include to advertise your property? Make sure you state the availability date of your rental – the first of the month is the most popular move-in time. And go ahead and boast about the strengths of your property – its location, size, appliances, parking, laundry and amenities, as well as other selling points like brightness, neighbourhood and proximity to public transportation. Your ad should also prepare prospective clients with realistic expectations: if utilities are not included or there is an additional fee for parking, for example, be upfront about that.
Check out the Competition
When preparing to advertise your property, always check out the local competition. Spending time looking at other ads for properties in your area will give you a good idea of what rental units similar to yours are going for.
- How do they describe the neighbourhood?
- Are the listings aimed at students, families, or single renters?
- What amenities are they offering? Is there laundry? Parking? Do they allow pets?
If you find ads that really grab your attention, feel free to more or less copy them. There’s no need to reinvent the wheel. Just be sure to include the very best features your unit has to offer. Remember, you want your ad to stand out!
Next article: Part 3 – Scheduling Appointments
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