Create a Picture of Your New Tenant
May 1, 2005
Can you see him? Or her? Or them? He, she or they are the people who will rent your property. They are real people, thinking right now about moving. It’s just a question of where they will move.
The fact that they are thinking about moving means they probably will. It means they will look at classified ads. They will drive through neighborhoods where they would like to live. They will ask their friends to look out for them.
Here is your big opportunity. You can take advantage of your opportunity by creating a mental picture of the people who will rent your property. After all, if you don’t know who it will be, how will you know when she shows up?
It works the same way as it does when you create rental policies and standards for your properties. You study the demographics of the people who usually rent the unit, then create the policies and standards to fit those demographics. That way you know who is qualified before you get an application.
This step is the first one toward actually getting that application. This is where you create your marketing. Start with a name.
What the name is doesn’t matter, just pick one. Let’s make one up, Mary Wilson. I picked that one because it came to mind pretty quickly and it doesn’t have too many letters to type.
How old is Mary? Is Mary married? Does she have children? If so, how many children does she have? How much money does Mary earn? What kind of job does she have?
You already have a pretty good idea of all that from your property profile, the demographics of the typical person who rents your property. Now what particular needs or desires does Mary have that your property can fill or satisfy?
Let’s create a picture. Mary is 29 and has two children and a husband. Mary works in an insurance office. Mary’s two children are in grade school. Mary’s husband, Bill, works as a mechanic at a local car dealership. Together they earn $39,000 a year. What they really want is a home in a good school district, close to both their works with a fenced yard. Oh, and the rent has to be what they consider reasonable, too.
Now that you know who Mary and her family are, you can do put your marketing together. When you write the classified ads, when you create the flyer, you are seeing Mary, you are thinking about what Mary wants. You are talking to Mary. You are writing a note to Mary.
“Mary, I know that you will love living here. There’s a terrific fenced yard for Billy, Jr. and Suzie. It’s just 10 minutes from ABC Ford and about the same to the Allied Insurance office. The neighborhood school has an active parents’ group and a principal who has earned the respect and loyalty of her teachers. They have received awards for their improvement in test scores. And the rent is right in your range, just $995 a month.”
It’s a lot easier talking to someone you know than some amorphous being out there in the ether. Mary is the person who is going to rent your property. Marketing to her is easy, you already know her.