The new way to meet renters
You’d think this crazy fast real estate market would be every landlord’s dream. Well, personally, I found the flood of emails for our suite overwhelming and it was a lot of work to sort through and keep track of applicants. I was savvy and created a process that will work for most landlords; here are my tips:
- Ask questions in your ad, this cuts down on one email at least
- Plan to do your showings in 10 minute intervals over a couple/few hours
- Make sure you’re showing your rental with someone else for safety and organization
- Print out applications and have them ready to go
- Create some canned responses so you can copy and paste your replies. I had two; one was the decline message (much like screening resumes in my day job, I’d put applicants in the “no pile” for a variety of reasons: grammatical errors, not reading my ad properly and asking questions I had already answered in the ad etc.). I had another reply with more questions and I let the applicant know that they were a fit and I’d provide them with a viewing time and address
- Once I provided a viewing time and address, I also gave my mobile number so anyone could let me know if their plans had to change quickly
- I was using my Hotmail account, (yes, I realize I’m giving away my age here) and Hotmail is terrible for organizing emails, so in my replies, I’d type the applicant’s name in the subject line – this way I could see who I had already corresponded with at a glance in my sent folder
In my last post I said that renters should act quickly; but so too should landlords. We made our decision that evening, and I sent out an email to all the shortlisted candidates to let them know we didn’t select them. Don’t leave people hanging, that’s bad karma.
Although I found a great tenant and the rental process was quite smooth, I’d do things a little differently next time. Instead of having applicants come to me, I will browse rentals wanted ads on my local Used.ca site (UsedVictoria.com). It’s kinda like online dating: people are posting some great ads introducing themselves and their situations/requirements. Some renters have pets which can make it harder to find a place. Personally, I LOVE renters with pets: pet owners are typically caring people (at least all the ones that I’ve known), and they might become long-term renters because it is hard to find a great place that allows pets. You can also ask them to pay an additional pet deposit, along with their damage deposit (note: in BC this may not exceed half a month’s rent).
We’ve seen some great wanted ads on our sites:
Share your rental wanted ads with your friends and Used.ca on social media and we will help you spread the word to our followers.
Have questions or suggestions? Comment below; we’re here to help you find your next place.