How and Where to Properly Market Your Rental Property

Nationwide, the housing market is in turmoil. As the number of foreclosures continue to pile, the ranks of those that are becoming renters continue to grow. Obviously, this a positive for those that own rental property. On the flipside, a traditional resource for marketing rental property, the local newspaper, is now dying a slow death. Readership of newspapers has been on a steady decline and one by one, newspapers are going out of business. So where is one to advertise his or her rental property? This article will take a look at some of the better options currently available.

– Yard Signs tend to work quite well. You’ll know that those that have seen the sign and inquired, will have at least driven by your rental and through the area that your rental is located.  If using yard signs, go one step further and add an information tube to the sign with flyers containing details on your rental.  Your goal is to inform prospective renters about your rental, while at the same time, save you valuable time rehashing details about the rental. 

Newspaper readership continues to dwindle.  However, advertising rates to advertise a rental in your local newspaper, are rising.  Instead of wasting money on dwindling newspaper readership, advertise on the newspaper’s online classifieds if at all possible.  Locally, your newspapers’ website would be a good place to go, as much of the physical paper readership has migrated online to read the content on the Internet.

The Internet as an advertising medium continues to grow.  In fact, this is a primary resource for identifying rentals, especially among the 20-39 year-old demographic.  But just where is one to go to effectively market a rental on the Internet?  As recently as 2008, the field was wide open, as not one site had more than 2.5% national market share.  This means that not one rental site is “THE go-to site” for listing your rental property.  But do you really need to market your rental on a national rental listing site?  Maybe, maybe not.

Consider the options the site offers for both you and the renter when trying to determine just where on the Internet to market your rental property.  Take into consideration price, listing exposure, length of ad listing, and other site “perks”.

Free rental listing sites do exist on the Internet, and several are heavily utilized.  Some of the more popular include: Craigslist, HotPads, Vast, and Oodle.  Craigslist, a free-to-use classifieds website has a very popular rental listing section. Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for your listing to be pushed down and off the main page, especially if you’re geographically located in an area that tends to post large numbers of housing listings. Rudimentary search functionality makes it a bit difficult for rental seekers to locate your rental after it has been pushed off the front page.

Social sites such as Facebook are now also utilized to get the word out about available rental property.  Don’t hesitate to link to your rental listing if you have a Facebook account, or other social site account such as Twitter or Myspace.

Some of the more popular nationwide listing sites include: Rent.com, Rentals.com, and Apartments.com.  These particular sites have much more enhanced features, and as such tend to have higher advertising rates, generally ranging from $40-$100 on average for a 30-day rental listing.

Use of the Internet as a medium now offers one the abiltiy to post pictures and even video of property.  In fact, you’re likely to be wasting your advertising dollars if you do not include pictures of your rental when posting Internet rental listings.  Time is very important to people anymore, and renters want to be able to narrow rental choices before jumping into the car and driving around town to further scrutinize prospective properties.  Take the time to take interior and exterior photo’s of your rental for use with your online ads.  It’s worth the time and effort.

Online video viewership is growing leaps and bounds.  More and more property managers, especially those that manage apartment complexes, are now turning to the use of video to help them market their communities.  If you utilize video in your marketing, keep the length to no more than 2 minutes.  Research shows that viewers tend to lose interest after about 2 minutes time.

Rental property marketing techniques seem to keep evolving at an ever-increasing speed.  Just about the time you think you’ve got it figured out, some other new technique comes rolling out.  Hopefully some of the suggestions in this article will assist you in some manner, in the marketing of your own rentals.  Good luck!