With technology seeming to make a new leap every couple of weeks, the marketplace is in a perpetual state of flux. Now more than ever, it is important for landlords to keep up with the rental trends. Practices and parameters across all industries are changing and evolving all the time. This is true of the housing and rising rental market as well.
Landlords interested in keeping up with the times should consider taking advantage of the following six rental trends as 2018 unfolds:
1. Advances in Communication Options
Technology has certainly made communication easier across the boards, and landlords would do well to take advantage of these new channels. Younger renters and Millennials in particular are very accustomed to using communication methods such as texting and social media. Landlords should be up to speed to these rental trends and willing to use these channels to stay connected with current and prospective tenants.
2. The Internet of Things (IoT)
Despite concerns about the IoT being yet another channel for “big brother” to tap into consumers’ home lives, its growth can’t be denied. Some tenants might be looking for its features and conveniences, so landlords should consider adding some IoT elements to their properties. Easy and appealing additions include wireless Internet, USB charging outlets, electronic thermostats and fire/heat detectors, home security systems and other “smart” technology.
3. Online Marketing
Just about everybody is online these days, and the majority of renters start their search here when looking for a new home or apartment to rent. Landlords should take full advantage of these online marking rental trends which include sites like Craigslist, Apartments.com, Hotpads, ForRent.com and other top platforms to connect with interested parties.
4. Online Application Rental Trends
Facilitating the ability of interested parties in applying for rental properties online is a natural extension of online marketing. Ads can direct applicants to an automated online form to eliminate old fashioned paper forms and retain a digital record of correspondence. Online rental applications are convenient and can help with filling vacant units more efficiently. Landlords should ensure adequate encryption so that applicants’ personal data is stored safely and securely and data breaches can be avoided.
5. Professional Tenant Screening
As the world becomes more complex, so does the process of screening tenants thoroughly and accurately. Connecting with a professional tenant screening company helps with taking the guesswork out of the process and compliance with current state and federal laws and ensures it is done thoroughly.
6. Online Rent Payment Processing
The rental trends in the digital realm has also made it easier for landlords to get paid. The old, archaic system of clumsy paper checks has been replaced with slick, digital online processing. Sites like PayPal make it extremely easy for tenants to pay with a few clicks. The option of a monthly online checking account debit can make rent payment easier as well. Landlords might consider offering a small discount to tenants who sign up for automated deductions of rent payment versus manual payment.
The upcoming year promises continued evolution of technology, and with it more changes to the rental industry. Landlords should be aware of these six rental trends and consider making changes to their processes accordingly.