Is there a particular place I should be looking for rent comps, outside getting them from an agent? I don't remember who exactly but someone on one of the podcasts did mention rentometer. I do realize with something like that you don't know the exact level of those rentals so you do have to take them with a grain of salt.
@Daniel J. A real estate agent will be your best bet to get an accurate number. However, I heard an ad on the radio today from Renter's Warehouse that will give you a free rental analysis for your property. I have clients that use them for property management but have not used them just for analysis. I am here in Houston so please feel free to ask me.
We use a combination of rentometer, har and craigslist to see what is out there and at what prices. Zillow has some rentals as well though usually it's repeats of what you can find elsewhere.
You can either work with an agent who will have access to the MLS or there are a lot of websites popping up that say they provide "true" MLS data. I think it's not as complete as the full MLS access but it will be better than looking at har which will not allow you to see the rent prices of homes that have been rented in the past.
The MLS will only have those rental listings that have been placed there by members of the service. I'm not sure how it is in Texas, but out here in California comparably few rentals end up on the MLS. And so I'll echo rental homework via Craigslist, etc.
In rural areas, the local newspaper classifieds are excellent also.
@Daniel J. - I use Zillow since Craigslist will have repeats and scams. I zoom in around the neighborhood (filtering for properties with similar square footage, bedrooms, and style. Then, I have a true market analysis ... which will take out whatever is not near my property's neighborhood or with similar style.
@Jeremy Pakalka I'll look into them. I do have an agent I work with some. I should have been more clear, I am specifically speaking to in the beginning stages when I'm looking for a basic price range before getting super in depth and spending someone else's time. I appreciate the offer!
@Kevin Wood ok, thanks! I have had very poor results with CL around here. It's so flooded with "we'll buy your house for cash" ads that's it's hard to find anything useful otherwise.
@Tristan S. Thanks!
@Michael Medinger Thanks!
@Jordan Sand I have essential my tried that. It is hard to tell sometimes though because so many rentals remain on there for quite awhile and it's hard to tell why.
@Daniel J. - that is the beauty with Zillow. I can see how those properties (which have been on the market for awhile) have changed their rent prices to accommodate demand. My issue with Craigslist is that I don't know the days on market and cannot tell whether or not the Craigslist property is priced according to the market.
@Jordan Sand That does make sense. Thanks!
@Daniel J. I used to have appraisers calling my office (Property Management Co.) all the time wanting rental info i.e. rental rates, size, locations.... I would contact a few management co.. They will be your most accurate and knowledgeable, they have a plethora of useful info for investors (what tenants are looking for, what brings in the most $ per sq ft...). In hopes of getting your business I think that they would be willing to share their info, at least I would.
An appraiser would also be a good lead, however, less likely to get free info out of them
@Josiah Pisel Thanks for the info! I do plan on calling around for vacancy numbers and such. Hopefully they will be willing to share.
I have a property Mgr so he has a pretty good pulse on rental comps. However, I always do prelims myself so I can provide my input, and I do this by simply typing:
"rentals & my zip code"
into Google and I get a whole flood of them (including Zillow's). Could not be easier
try www.rentometer.com to find rent values in the area where you plan to rent. Accurate.
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