A good revenue property should be a cash positive situation for the real estate investor. As a landlord, you are likely to receive inquiries about a rental unit, the application process and more. These rental requests may come via email or through third-party messaging services like a rental website.
How you respond to these requests has to be manageable, especially if you have many units you rent out. If you don’t put a system in place, you may lose the opportunity to rent to a very suitable tenant.
Why do you need to reply to rental property requests?
All emails you receive about your rental property are leads. When potential renters want to know more about your property, you have the opportunity to tell them about what it has to offer. Following up on all these leads gives you a better chance of renting out a unit quickly.
A Colorado Springs property management company like Evernest, Timberline or Dorman can help you harness the full power of digital marketing to get your house noticed. It will handle the whole process of responding to requests from prospective tenants and make sure the most suitable ones are placed on your property.
Rental property: Set clear expectations
You need to let people making property rental requests know your expectations. This will help you to cultivate good landlord/tenant relations from early on. You need to clearly outline what qualifications tenants must meet to rent from you. Establishing landlord/tenant responsibilities helps if they become a tenant down the line.
Gauge interest in a unit
Reviewing the queries that come in and the results of inquiries can help you to improve your advertising, what you say in listings and other marketing aspects. This is an important way to improve your business. If ten people send in rental requests, but you only get two applications after your response, you may have to adjust your requirements.
Rental property: Open up a line of communication
Responding to requests opens up a line of communication with potential tenants. They should feel free to ask questions and find out more without any barriers to communication. When you assess what kind of questions they ask, you can use this to refine your listings and your application forms. You can use data like this to your advantage even if those asking the questions don’t become your tenants.
Use an email response template
Once you have received a request, send an email response using a template that spells out the standard set of criteria you apply to consider prospective tenants eligible for consideration. Suggested criteria:
- Your monthly net/gross salary must be three times the rent.
- We will run a full background and credit check that applicants must pay for.
- We do not allow pets at this residence.
You may have other criteria, such as occupancy limits or expected minimum credit score.
Say that if they’re comfortable with the criteria, you are happy to answer any questions about the rental. Give the person a number to call on between certain hours to discuss further. Outlining criteria means that you can save yourself and the inquirer time and money.
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Reply automatically using Gmail
This offers a way to create responses to specific types of filtered emails. You can automatically reply to queries and let interested parties know the next step in the process. It can take a few minutes to learn how to do this, but it can greatly reduce the time you spend.
Other reply methods
- You can configure your email to automatically sort emails into folders based on the text, like an exact property address. In this way, you will have subfolders for specific listings.
- Keep a copy of your responses in drafts so you can copy and paste them without having to open up multiple files or programs.
- Add the prospective tenant’s email address to the address book. Mark them as important by using the ‘category’ feature, and you won’t miss any updates.
- Make sure you check your email regularly.
What to do next
It doesn’t matter what method you use to reply to rental requests as long as you can stay on top of them. Tenant screening will be the crucial next step, and this will require robust screening criteria to make sure tenants are the best fit for your rental properties.
Responding to rental requests can be done in various ways depending on your business style and needs. If you only have one rental unit, it’s easy to keep up with the requests, but when you rent out several properties, it’s more complicated. This is why automating the process as far as you can help to save you time. When you respond to inquiries with as much information as possible, you can quickly weed out unsuitable tenants.