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Will Holding a Rental Open House Help Fill Your Vacancy Faster?

Marketing your rental properties can consist of several things. You can add tons of photos, create thorough descriptions, and list your property on several sites. However, you can also host a rental open house to show potential renters exactly what they’d be getting if they rented your property. If you want to learn more about how to host a rental open house, just keep reading. 

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What Is a Rental Open House?

An open house for a rental property is just what it sounds like. You allow potential renters to come in during a specified time and look around the property. Most of the time, open houses are used to buy and sell real estate. However, you can use them in the rental industry as well. 

During an open house, potential tenants can see the property first-hand, ask questions about the rental, and get an idea of what it would be like to live there. On the other hand, landlords can evaluate prospective tenants and answer any questions they may have. 

While rental open houses aren’t always necessary, they can attract more potential renters and give landlords a good idea of who they’re renting to. Keep reading as we go over more reasons why an open house can benefit landlords and tenants. 

Why Have a Rental Open House? 

Hosting a rental open house can offer several benefits for landlords and potential renters. For instance, it allows prospective tenants to see the property first-hand instead of through photos. Some of the additional benefits of an open house include: 

  • Spreads the Word 
  • Meeting Potential Tenants
  • Better Marketing
  • Learn What Tenants Want In a Rental

Spreads the Word

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First and foremost, hosting an open house can create a lot of buzz at your rental property. After all, if you’re looking for a place to live, attending an open house can give you a chance to meet your landlord and ask questions about the rental. 

Most renters consider a walk-through of the property very important before they’d consider signing a lease. So, an open house can get more people to tour your property than if you just listed photos online. 

Meeting Potential Tenants 

One of the best benefits of hosting a rental open house is that you can meet potential tenants face-to-face before setting up individual showings. Hosting an open house can also save you time since you won’t have to go through several showings to tour the property. 

An open house is also a good chance to get a feel for who your renters might be. Landlords can use this time to evaluate prospective tenants and connect with them. If you own more than one property, you can also market those while hosting an open house for another one. 

Better Marketing

After hosting your rental open house, it’ll be easier to tell whether or not you were targeting the right crowd. For example, if you think your rental is best suited for young couples, but a ton of large families showed up at your open house, there may be a gap in your marketing strategy. 

Pay attention to who comes to your open house. Then, take this information and use it to tweak your marketing approach. After all, you want the best renters for your property, so it’s important to target them while advertising your rental. 

Learn What Tenants Want In a Rental

Finally, an open house can give you a better idea of what tenants look for in a rental home. This is especially great for new landlords who are still becoming familiar with owning rental properties. 

If you’re unsure what tenants look for in a rental property, pay attention to the questions they ask and their comments during an open house. From here, you can improve your marketing strategies and answer questions better than before. 

When Is an Open House Not Worth Your Time?

An open house for your rental property isn’t always the best marketing strategy. Some property owners consider an open house to be a waste of time, while some would never do without. However, a few scenarios may cause you to think twice about hosting an open house. 

For one, if you have current tenants living in your rental home, you should probably skip the open house. This is because setting up an open house while a tenant still lives there could be a lease violation. However, you can still set up private showings while informing the tenant, per your lease agreement. 

Potential tenants don’t want to see the property with someone else’s belongings in it–they want to see it for what it is while it’s empty. As such, scheduling an open house for an unoccupied rental property is best. 

Another reason you may want to think twice about an open house is if you have a high-value property with little security. An open house allows anyone to come into your home, regardless of their intentions. So, if you’re worried about the safety of your property and future renters, you may want to schedule separate showings instead. 

If you are planning an open house for your rental, here are six tips to keep in mind to ensure it goes as smoothly as planned.

6 Tips for a Successful Open House

Hosting a successful open house can be a great marketing strategy for your rental business. You can attract more potential renters and get a better feel for who will be staying in your property. To ensure your rental open house goes as planned, consider these tips. 

successful-open-house

  1. Schedule a Good Time
  2. Advertise Your Rentals
  3. Invite Everyone You Can
  4. Make Sure the Unit Is Ready
  5. Get Guest’s Contact Information
  6. Follow Up with Potential Tenants

Schedule a Good Time

Finding a good time that can work for lots of people is key when hosting an open house. Saturdays and Sundays are good days for this, anywhere from 12 pm to 3 pm. Most people are unavailable on weekdays due to jobs and other obligations. However, if weekends don’t work for you, consider having it later in the day on a weekday, like from 4 pm to 7 pm on Thursday or Friday. 

Advertise Your Rentals

You can never have too much promotion for an open house. So get creative while advertising your rental properties by making flyers and posting on social media. Make sure to include a few photos of the property, along with the address, date, and time of your open house. You can also include more information about the property, like the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, and rental price. 

Invite Everyone You Can

Ask your current tenants to spread the word about your open house if you own several rental units. After all, good renters know other good renters, so they’ll likely be able to find a few people interested in your property. Additionally, invite your friends and family to your open house to create more competition amongst prospective renters. After all, the more people there, the more competition to secure a lease.

Make Sure the Unit Is Ready

Before people show up at your rental for an open house, it’s crucial to ensure it’s clean and move-in ready. All repairs and maintenance should be completed ahead of time, and the property should be cleaner than ever. This will ensure your unit stands out against others and give renters no leverage for price negotiations. If you need maintenance services for your rental, contact your property management company in Northern Virginia.  

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Get Guest’s Contact Information

If you want to inform prospective tenants, ensure you get their contact information. With that, you can create an email mailing list to keep all of your guests updated on future rentals and open houses. Also, prepare for renters to submit applications. If you use property management software, write down instructions for the application process on a flyer. This gives guests something to take with them and is a great opportunity to highlight any conveniences that set you apart from other landlords. 

Follow Up with Potential Tenants

After the open house is over, follow up with everyone who gave you their contact information. Send out an email to them know that you’ve gotten a ton of interest in the property and you’ll be reviewing applications on a specific day. This will give anyone who hasn’t applied yet time to do so. Once you’ve gathered a list of potential tenants, make sure to complete a thorough evaluation to ensure you’re getting a reliable renter. 

Manage Your Rental Properties with Ease

Owning and managing rental properties is a ton of work–especially if you’re doing it all on your own. Screening potential tenants, performing maintenance, and keeping up with the day-to-day tasks of owning a rental can quickly become a full-time job. Luckily, you don’t have to do it all on your own. 

Bay Property Management Group offers comprehensive rental management services to take some of the heavy lifting off your plate. Contact BMG today if you need management services in Baltimore, Philadelphia, Northern Virginia, or Washington, DC.