Zillow for Marketing a Rental

9 Replies

Hello All,

I am knew to being a landlord and have not gotten very many bites on a home I put on the market about 6 days ago. Right now, I am listed on Craigslist and have a "For Rent" sign in the front yard.  I got few calls and did two showings the first two days. Unfortunately, the first family didn't qualify and the second family just notified me that they needed something larger. After receiving this initial interest, the calls have since dried up, and I am considering Zillow as my next marketing avenue. Have any of you used Zillow, and can you tell me whether you think this is a good place to find potential tenants?

Thank you in advance for your tips and advice. 

Try Postlets, which sends your ad to Zillow and several other sites. It's free. 

Also have you reposted the Craigslist ad?  They drop down into the depths of hell within a couple days here so even when someone searches your ad can be a couple pages down.  I am really hurt because my primary town is also the name of some property manager in Dallas and if someone does a search on the town all her dozens of listings that she posts duplicates of several times a day show up even though the nearest one is 40 miles away.  The CL switch to the map format in my area really helps for people looking in more rural areas.

Originally posted by @Jon Klaus :

Try Postlets, which sends your ad to Zillow and several other sites. It's free. 

 My immediate thought as well! I found a great tenant last month utilizing postlets. It seems the quality of tenant who finds your property online is much higher vs one who drives by. Try that, if you still have no responses chances are your priced to high. Best of Luck!!

Thank you for the tips everyone. I'm now on postlets. My fingers are crossed that this generates more interest. 

I do Postlets.  I see the biggest responses from Craigslist, Zillow, and HotPads. Occasionally I get a lead from Trulia or some other place, but that's rare.

Originally posted by @Paul Ewing :

Also have you reposted the Craigslist ad?  They drop down into the depths of hell within a couple days here so even when someone searches your ad can be a couple pages down.

A couple of days?

My experience with CL here is it drops to the bottom of hell in about 15 minutes!

I have used them all, and I suggest you do it all instead of doing them serially.

Craigslist - I got many responses, but the annoying thing is you need to keep posting it.  I also got the worst qualified tire kickers from CL, just seems like many of them don't pay attention to ads.

Postlets - I use that too, it syndicates to Hotpads, Zillow, Trulia etc...I got some leads from it, BUT I don't like it because if you go to the syndicated ad sites, the information you posted in Postlets sometimes do not translate correctly.  One ad I placed for a single family home single story listed syndicated on Trulia as having an elevator with a doorman.  OooKayyyy... also the info on those non-zillow sites are completely cramped with ads and links back to Postlets.  So now, I use Postlets to post but disabled syndication to Trulia and Hotpads, and instead I go through the trouble to place ads on Trulia and Hotpads.

Yard signs - depends on location.  Most of my properties are on dead end streets, so I get fewer bites but the bites I do get, are quality bites from those who knows the area.

Hi Aaron,

Craigslist works but it sometimes takes time for the type of tenant you are looking for to find you. As a real estate investor, have you considered getting your real estate license and posting your properties on the MLS? Listings on the MLS get syndicated to Zillow and many other property sites online.

You can also have hire a real estate agent to put your rental property listing on the MLS. Yes, there will be a commission to pay the agent, but in exchange you get service that can save you a lot of your time and also spare you some aggravation. The agent can show the property, handle the screening process and present you with a tenant ready to rent.

There are many other benefits you can take advantage of by having a real estate license.  It is possible to get a license in approximately 12 weeks.  I know this won't solve your need to rent the property you have available right now, but presumably you'll have this situation again.  

I hope this helps to give you some idea about alternatives available to you.  

Good luck!


I agree with using an agent. Some agents will take a fee (usually 1/2 or one month rent) in exchange for finding a qualified tenant. When you consider they do the background check, credit check, eviction check, etc and the fact that they can get your property great exposure I think you should consider them. One last thing: don't be in such a hurry to find a tenant that you let your guard down and end up with a really terrible one. It costs a lot less money in the long run to make up for a couple weeks of income loss versus having some jerk move in, quit paying rent, damage the property, and force you to file eviction proceedings.

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