Finding that perfect tenant

Okay, so you’ve got your rental fixed up . . . repaired, cleaned, painted, etc.  When I first began this career, I advertised in the free local newpaper that comes out once a week, and I still do.  This is a great way to find tenants for your low and middle income rental properties.  With our changing economy, many people no longer subscribe to the city newspaper.  It’s too costly to buy.  And furthermore, after checking with my newspaper, I found it was too costly to advertise there, too. 

People are either picking up a copy of the free paper, or they’re looking for a rental through Craig’s List.  I also post my available properties there.

But before posting my ads in these two places, I leave a flyer in the mail boxes of my favorite tenants, letting them know the particulars of my empty unit(s).  I’ve found that networking with my excellent, responsible tenants is a great way to find more excellent tenants.

Another option for finding potential tenants is to visit some of the businesses that are close to your rentals.  What a nice perk it would be for those employeees to have the option of walking to work!  If you can, talk to the manager/supervisor of the facility and instill confidence in the type of landlord you are.  If you can establish a good relationship, maybe they will send people your way.  You could drop off flyers every time you have an empty unit.

Along that same line, post a flyer at the local grocery store, church or community center if you can. 

When you meet at the unit, sell it to the applicant if he/she is a great candidate!  Mention the good attributes of the house, neighborhood, and impress them with your own qualities as a landlord.  There are lots of slumlords out there, and you are not one of them!

Find out as much as you can about the applicant’s current situation, and have them fill out your application.  (I don’t charge a fee; this puts people off.)  Move quickly . . . there are other houses out there for rent, and if you’ve found a good candidate, then you need to close the deal if possible.  Good luck!

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