According to Bloomberg Businessweek, the growing rental market has likely topped out and it's not expected to increase in the next few years — a natural effect of an improving housing market and strengthening economy.
"We've always liked apartments," Chris Graham, managing director of a private equity firm, said in a Businessweek article. "We like the stability, we like the cash flow and we like the ability to add value. I'm not suggesting the apartment market's going to go into decline. I just think it's going to slow down."
Here are a few marketing tips to help you prepare for a possible downturn in the rental market.
Increase Demand Through Marketing
Marketing a rental property when more people are choosing to purchase homes is a difficult task that some would compare to promoting properties during non-peak seasons — it can be done, but new tactics must be explored.
Use Real Numbers
When more rental properties are available, prospective residents may have a tendency to make their final decision based on price and which property offers specials or the best deal. Instead of putting the greatest emphasis on amenities or location, spotlight special deals and low fees, if applicable.
If the price cannot be lowered and the rental unit is more expensive than competing properties in the area, address and justify the price in marketing campaigns and on social media pages. Potential renters may be more likely to splurge if they recognize the property's value.
Make Strategic Partnerships
Sometimes marketing is most effective when partnerships are formed. Consider pairing up with other businesses to create a co-marketing plan. Such strategies may involve volunteering with local fundraising efforts or charities, which will draw positive attention and serve as a vehicle to get the property's name to large groups of people.
Know Your Audience
Most importantly, this is the time for property marketers to make sure their promotional efforts and strategies are heard by the correct targets. If the property is in a family-filled suburban area close to great schools, it might not be the best idea to market to millennials or recent college graduates.
Take a look at current residents and determine what demographics should be targeted. It may be beneficial to survey current or former residents to find out what attracted them to the property and what can be done to improve marketing efforts.
What have you done to attract renters when the demand for units is low? Do you have any tips to add to this list?
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