Finding good renters is critical to the financial success of your income properties. Good tenants pay their rent on time, keep the property clean and don’t cause any trouble with the neighbors. Bad renters, on the other hand, can cost you time and money by paying rent late (or not at all), destroying the property and creating issues for the neighbors, which you would need to address as the property owner.
If you don’t want to deal with late payments, expensive turns between tenants, time-consuming neighbor spats and even evictions, invest a little time on the front end to find responsible tenants.
Here are three steps to finding ideal renters for your income properties.
Step 1: Make the Property Appealing to Renters
To attract good renters, the property needs to be appealing. If it’s been decades since the property was last renovated, a rehab may be in order. Just make sure you use a reliable tool for estimating your renovation expenses. PropStream’s rehab estimator tool, for example, uses local pricing for labor and materials to give you the most accurate estimates possible.
But if the property is already in good shape, a deep clean and some simple staging is all you need. Don’t spend your money on a full staging with furnishing; instead, just add some accessories to cozy up the place. A few tea towels, candles and plants go a long way toward making an empty space feel more inviting.
Step 2: Market Directly to Your Ideal Renters
With built-in marketing tools such as in-browser advertising and single-property landing pages, PropStream makes it easy to meet your ideal renters where they are online.
Take advantage of in-browser ads to reach your target demographic of renters and direct them to a landing page that features your income property. This landing page can include photos, provide a list of amenities and explain the process for submitting a rental application. You can even share a link to your landing page across your social media platforms to help spread the word and drive more qualified tenants to your property.
Step 3: Screen Tenants Thoroughly
Review each rental application thoroughly as they start coming in. You want to check each applicant’s credit history to see a track record of on-time payments. You also want to review proof of income for each applicant to make sure they make enough money to afford the monthly rent payment (or that they have enough money in their savings accounts to cover the rent in addition to normal living expenses for the duration of the lease). And finally, you should contact previous landlords to confirm that the applicants were good tenants at their previous residences.
To ensure compliance with fair housing laws, make sure you systemize the application review process so each applicant gets the same review and has equal housing opportunities.
With this simple three-step process, you’ll be able to attract the attention of good prospective tenants and find ideal renters for your income properties.