If you have a vacant property, your cash flow stops , your asset is a liability, you increase your chances of vandalism and run the risk of your insurance being void. Vacancy is the number one enemy of property investors!
Vacancy on all occasions is done to three P’s :
- Property Manager
PRICE 9.5 times out of 10 it’s the price. Rent is very price sensitive. Know your competition – how many similar properties are there like yours in your area and the surrounds . There are always people moving but no one wants to pay more than they have to. If your property was $1 a week you would be knocked by the rush of tenants.
If you have good enquiry and little follow up i.e. applications, second inspections etc . It will be because your prospects are underwhelmed upon inspection . This may be the way the tenant is keeping the property, it could be that maintenance hasn’t been kept up or the ad was misleading i.e. you couldn’t call that a bedroom? As property investors we have an obligation to keep maintenance up in a proactive manner or else we run the risk of getting less qualified tenants.
On occasion it could be that your agency or agent is too slow to respond to enquiry. . You will always receive most enquiry in the first three weeks, especially the first week. If your agent burns that enquiry, your property AFTER A WHILE WILL BEGIN TO look stale OR HEAVEN FORBID STIGMATISED. The agent should show the property at convenient times i.e. after school or work or Saturday mornings.
These times will allow more people through, with more applications to choose from. Progressive agencies use sms technology so tenants can regiuster easily for inspections and dont have to play phone tag. The way your property manager promotes your property, I find print media expensive with a limited shelf life . Signs are still useful as a prospect who rings of the sign is already qualified as they know the area and like what they see from the front of the home.
Real-estate has moved to the Web – your listing needs to be well presented and on a dominant website. Some aren’t worth being on. Take quality shots as most rental companies still rely on poor quality mobile phone shots – if your rent is $500 a week then the buying decision is $30000 per annum, let’s take our investment seriously the cost is very little and the pictures can be used over and over !
So in summation price it right , get quality photos on a quality real estate website, have it presented well and shown at times when employed people can attend as employed people make better tenants. May the wealth be with you!