Spruce up your abode for rent

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By VIKTOR CHONG
viktor@mystar.com.my

 

Simple ways to attract potential tenants to your property

INVESTING in property with the intention of earning rental income is an appealing prospect, except for the fact that landlords have to sit and wait for tenants during a dry period.

Here are eight simple ways to improve the odds of renting out your property.

 

1/ Clean up the front and back
A house with a messy yard full of weeds sprouting out in every direction looks like a veritable haunted house.
The front of the house should be kept clean and tidy for presentation purposes.
Tenants do not like the idea of cleaning the yard themselves. As a landlord, you can DIY and trim the grass or hire someone to do the work.

 

2/Maximise online traffic
Agents are not the only ones to reach out to prospective tenants. Register yourself with various online websites that function as intermediaries between landlords and tenants.
One such website is www.ibilik.com, which will boost the viewing traffic to your property.

 

3/Hand your agent a set of keys
Most tenants prefer to view a property before making a commitment to rent. To enable your agent to conduct short-notice viewing, it is in your best interest to provide the agent with a set of keys.
Without the keys to your property, the agent may have to turn away an interested tenant. Turning away any prospective tenant is a wasted opportunity.
Prospective tenants should be allowed to view the property at any time unless it is currently occupied.
Before handing over your keys to an agent, make sure you clear out precious belongings for your own sake as well as for the sake of the agent.

 

4/Understand the economic climate
Charging a reasonable rental amount is key to getting your tenant. If the rent is significantly lower when compared with other properties, prospective tenants will look for you.
Adjust your rental amount accordingly by finding out the average in the surrounding area. While rent is usually based on the size, location and condition of a property, it also involves the subjective decision of the property owner.
Just because some properties can command a high rent does not mean you should follow suit.
As a landlord, you should consider charging a lower rent instead of bearing the opportunity cost of waiting for a tenant who is willing to pay high rent.
If the landlord holds many properties that are tied to loan financing from banks and monthly instalments, it might be prudent to be less demanding in terms of rental.

 

5/Use some feng shui
Ensure good lighting in your property when prospective tenants come a-calling. The ambience should be calm and relaxing.
An inviting atmosphere will encourage tenants to move in. Most superstitious tenants will judge a property based on the atmosphere alone.

 

6/Give notice of viewing
Most property owners adopt a boss-and-employee relationship with their current tenants. However, a little courtesy will go a long way toward smoothening out the transition process.
If you’re advertising a property while the current tenant is still living there, make sure you give at least a 24-hour notice of a viewing.
Encourage them to be flexible with viewings, as well as keeping the place clean and tidy.

 

7/Mind your manners
The customer always wins. This adage is the universal language employed by all successful businesses.
All the other rental properties out there are your competitors and the tenants are the customers.
With a little humility and consideration, you can win a person over.
Distinguish yourself from the other landlords by calling back prospective tenants to ask if they are still interested in renting. However, don’t overdo it as this will signify desperation.

 

8/Woo the pet people
Most rented properties do not allow pets. It is understandable that people may be concerned about health issues and property damage.
However, many people have pets which they consider as part of the family. They go to great lengths to look for a suitable home.
Putting up the “Pets allowed” sign next to your house details will bring pet owners to your side quickly.
Most pet owners with expensive dogs and cats also have higher purchasing power and hence are more reliable as tenants.

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