One of the cornerstones of our success has been how quickly we are able to rent our properties. As I write this blog our average time on market per property is 19 days. This is almost half the time of the average day on market shown on the Manatee and Sarasota Board of Realtors.
As any real estate investor understands, vacancy is the death knell of any investment. This is especially true in the individual single family/condo rental space. In the multi-family apartment industry, owners and shareholders build vacancy into their model. Most private landlords don’t have this luxury and with a month’s lost rent equating to more than 8% of the total Gross Rental Income (GRI), vacancy can be devastating.
Now many real estate companies and/or property managers claim they rent their properties fast, but can they back their claims up?
I will lay out how we lead the way when it comes to renting our properties whether this be in Bradenton, Sarasota or Venice.
Our strategy is multi-layered, the cornerstone of which lies in our department style approach to rental management.
Firstly, we have broken down the mechanics of rental management and have divided the specific responsibilities into departments. Most firms operate on the traditional real estate model; an agent essentially runs her own business, signing up landlords, marketing the properties, showing the properties, screening the tenants, handling the move-in inspection. Unfortunately for that agent the work doesn’t stop there. She still must manage all the other responsibilities of property management, including; inspections, maintenance coordination, rent collection, accounting and everything else that goes into effective real estate management.
Even if the ‘jack of all trades’ agent prioritizes showings over the other responsibilities, do you really want that level of customer service for the rest of your management experience? Remember, it may be your property inspection she is sacrificing when she is showing the next property. She cannot be in two (or five places) at once.
Compare this to the Gulf Coast Property Management approach. We employ licensed agents to market and show properties. That is the extent of their responsibilities. They do not retain any of the management duties which would distract them from their core focus of finding suitable tenants.
Ask yourself which agent is more likely to find a qualified tenant. The agent wearing multiple hats or the agent whose only responsibility is generating occupancy?
The next advantage we have over the competition is the requirement of our leasing team to make themselves available to show properties in the evenings and over the weekends. In an ideal world, prospective tenants would want to see properties between 9AM and 5PM, Monday through Friday. Unfortunately, we all know this is not the case. The most popular times to view properties is outside of normal business hours.
Considering the expense of vacancy, I am amazed at how many companies do not require their leasing agents to work in the evenings or on weekends. Companies with this approach simply can’t compete with our productivity.
We have invested in technology that allows prospective tenants to view our properties, ensure they meet our rental criteria, and then book a showing directly online. This streamlined approach finds tenants fast.
Lastly, we invest in a marketing platform that delivers results. Our marketing budget far surpasses that of individual agents developing their own portfolio of management accounts.
Now agents may tell you that by listing the property on the MLS, the property will be also be listed on other major sites via syndication. This is true. What these agents don’t tell you, is that properties can be listed in premium positions and on many more sites than the standard syndicated sites. At Gulf Coast, we realize this, and all of our vacant properties are displayed in premium positions, on about 80 different websites.
We understand you have a huge choice of agents but before choosing who represents you, I encourage you to consider how your pick is going to ensure your rental experience is successful.