Did you know that For Rent signs are a highly effective marketing tool when letting a property? It’s true. Even though internet and newspaper advertising media are great, signs should not be overlooked when you’re letting your property.
It’s a bit like fishing: you’re angling for the ideal tenant, so you need to have a variety of bait options and cast your lines and nets far and wide. The For Rent sign is something that should be in your bait box at all times.
Why For Rent signs should always be used
The way that For Rent signs work is quite different to internet or newspaper advertising, as they will be seen by prospects who are already living in the neighbourhood or driving through it.
These tenant prospects are typically circulating in the area and may drive past your property every day for work or school requirements. They often have a very particular need for living in the area: maybe it’s close to work; close to their children’s schooling; or they’re considering accommodation options for a family member.
These people may not be actively searching through other advertising sources but will act very quickly when a For Rent sign goes up in their desired location. And a premium rent can often be attained because the tenant’s exact needs are being met.
We have two good examples of current tenancies where the For Rent sign attracted good tenants who never saw the internet advertising. One lady who regularly visited her mother’s home saw a For Rent sign on an adjoining property. She was planning to move closer to her mother, so she acted quickly to secure the property. Her motivation to be in that location and perception of market rent was high because her needs were being met. Another example is of a restaurant owner who responded quickly when he saw the For Rent sign go up across the road from his restaurant.
How is a For Rent sign different to newspaper or internet advertising?
With newspaper or internet advertising, you will get a lot of interested parties who are considering a number of adjoining suburbs as well. In other words, their motivation for finding a property isn’t quite so location-specific, and they’re casting their net wider, so there’s less chance of them letting from you.
Whereas the prospects who’ve acted on your For Rent signs are so keen to live in that specific area, it helps you to pre-qualify them as applicants. (So when you’re screening tenants, be sure to ask them how they heard about the property, so you can ascertain if they saw your For Rent sign or not.)
Are there any downsides to using For Rent signs?
The only downside to using a For Rent sign is that someone has to go out and put the sign up, and many property owners put this in the “too hard” category.
Either that, or they’ll try internet and newspaper advertising first, and will then only put a sign up if the enquiries aren’t rolling in adequately. (And in the meantime, the property might be sitting there empty with this “take and see” approach.)
A sign is just as important as internet and newspaper advertising
A sign is just as valuable a marketing tactic as internet and newspaper advertising. Best of all, the sign costs nothing each time you put it up, whereas internet advertising might be $100 each time you advertise.
How to use For Rent signs in your property marketing
- Have a sign writer design and manufacture a good quality, generic sign with all your contact information on (landline phone, mobile phone, email address and website address). The sign should be large and eye-catching, and suitable for every property you’re likely to advertise.
- Put the sign up as soon as a tenant gives notice to vacate.
- Use the sign in conjunction with your other advertising, such as internet and/or newspaper ads.
Remember, your goal is to attract that A1 tenant, so you need to have all your nets and lines out. And a For Rent sign is a very important part of your tool kit.
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