With nearly one-third of the country's population currently renting, you'd think finding the right tenant for your investment property would be easy. Unfortunately, this isn't always the case.
Last month, we offered our readers tips on how to avoid problem tenants, but what if you're not getting any interest at all? Every day a property sits empty is a day that you're losing money.
Here is our guide to making your property more attractive to the right type of tenants.
1. Hire a property management company
You may have been going it alone up until now, but property management companies are experts in finding the best people to live in (and look after) your home.
They can advertise your property across a wide range of online and offline platforms, as well as utilise decades of experience and a wide network of contacts to help you fill vacancies.
An added benefit is that property management companies can provide a range of other services to assist you with a tenancy once it starts, including collecting rent, organising repairs and dealing with complaints.
2. Be realistic on price
The NSW government's latest Rent and Sales report for the March 2017 quarter showed rental prices stagnated in Australia. There was no change in the average rent received across the state over the three-month period ($460) and prices slumped 2.4 per cent to $620 in NSW's inner ring.
As such, landlords may need to adjust their expectations for rental income in the coming months if a downward trend arises. Dropping your asking price to stay in line with the rest of the market is a possibility, so listen to your property management firm if they feel you're unlikely to get much interest at your current rate.
8 per cent of renters are living in a home they believe is in need of urgent repairs.
3. Improve the presentation
The phrase 'don't judge a book by its cover' doesn't really apply to properties, meaning you should make every effort to ensure your investment is as presentable as possible to potential tenants.
Property management companies will take professional photographs of the exterior and interior to advertise your home, but they can only work with what they've got.
A recent report from National Shelter, CHOICE and the National Association of Tenant Organisations revealed that 8 per cent of renters are living in a home they believe is in need of urgent repairs. Don't be one of these landlords; deal with any maintenance issues, redecorate if necessary and provide high-quality furniture if you intend to offer a furnished property.
4. Consider a wider pool of tenants
If you're still struggling to find tenants, you may want to loosen your suitability criteria. For example, have you placed a restriction on pets in the property? Your ideal tenant could be keen to get in touch, but they're hesitant to contact you because they have a cat.
Perhaps you'd allow smokers if they promise to only smoke outside? Remember, you can always filter out a prospective tenant at a later date, so consider casting your net wide in the early stages to attract more interest.
Again, your property management firm should be able to provide advice on some of the ways you can broaden the appeal of your home based on demand in the local area.
Try our 10 Year Rental Guarantee
Even with the above advice, finding the right tenant for your home is not set in stone. However, if you purchase an investment property through PI Store, you can benefit from our unique 10 Year Rental Guarantee.
This means we will ensure your property is filled 24/7, 365 days a year for 10 years. We also offer a comprehensive range of services related to property management and the wider property investment lifecycle.
Would you like to know more? Please get in touch with PI Store today.