For landlords, an empty property means lost income. As a result, during void periods, you need to make your rental properties stand out from the crowd and be as attractive as possible to prospective tenants. Below, using our experience as letting property agents working across West Lothian, we list some of the ways you can successfully market your property in the competitive rental sector.
Show your property in the best possible light
It sounds obvious, but it’s still a very important thing to consider. Thoroughly cleaned, nicely decorated, tastefully furnished and well-thought out properties tend to appeal more to tenants. If you make your property look friendly and warm, you can increase the chances of getting good tenants in place, you may also be able to increase your rents.
Choosing neutral, unobtrusive colours is the best way to go when it comes to décor (bright, loud and garish colours, whilst appealing to some, can also put many off).
Maintain, maintain, maintain
If a property is well-looked after and loved, tenants will notice. It stands to reason that a well-maintained property will be more palatable to renters than one that is ramshackle and in disrepair. Spend some money on renewing items and fittings between tenancies and you’re more than likely to reap the rewards. If you care for your property, new tenants are more likely to respect it; this will undoubtedly save money in the long run.
Virtual tours of properties
Whilst virtual tours cannot recreate what you feel and think when you physically view a property, it can still be very useful as a marketing tool. People who are busy and don’t have time to view many different properties in the flesh, could take a virtual tour from their desk or on public transport. It gives them an instant idea of whether the property is for them or not, and could save on the hassle of numerous viewings which lead to nothing.
Full colour photographs
In our experience, people respond best to visual images. High-quality photos can make your property look really eye-catching. Tenants are more likely to arrange a viewing if they see professional, well-taken pictures, that show the property at its best, compared to hastily-taken images taken on a camera phone.
Internet and newspaper advertising
The majority of people now look at rental properties online, although newspaper advertising can still be a useful way of getting the local community to see the property you’re trying to let. When using the web, it’s important to make your ad as catchy and visually appealing as finding tenants can prove difficult in a crowded and competitive marketplace.
Applying some or all of these lessons can produce dramatic results. This week we took on a property which had been on the market since April with another local rental agent without success, and few viewings. The day after taking instructions we had six viewers lined up and a let. A recent data sample we took showed that we enjoyed an average turnaround time of just over six days on a selection of properties, comparing favourably with the time to let figure of 55 days for the Livingston postcode area published by the property portal Citylets.
For more information on preparing your property to let, please contact Lettings Solutions on: 01506 496006. Alternatively, use our value my property tool to find out how much your property could be worth in monthly rents.