What do I say in my advertisement for my rental?

9 Replies

Hello BP! I am preparing to rent out my first investment property! I've seen tons of information and posts regarding where to advertise, but I can't find much on how to advertise. What are some do's and don't's when writing up an advertisement for Craigslist and other sites/venues? 


Location, Bedrooms, Baths, SQ FT, Heat, Water included in the rent? Central air? updates to unit? View? Floor? special features. Construction quality if it is good. Your name, pictures are often neglected with rentals. A video tour.        

Parking is often an issue as well. 

Congrats Nicole! Go on Zillow and look at many rental listings. You’ll see what looks good and what doesn’t and apply that to your own listing. Best wishes!!!

I keep it short, sweet and use bullet points.  Most people aren't going to read a wall of text.  Give the precise information regarding the apartment, with a call to action (contacting you or visiting your website).  I also try to create a sense of urgency to call TODAY before this great opportunity to rent a beautiful apartment in a highly desirable neighborhood is GONE.

Good luck!

Read ads and take notes in what sounds and looks good. Then apply to yours. Good luck.

Zillow rental manager measures the number of views for your ADS, you may notice more activity there with more creative headlines, with tougher properties to rent, I would change the headline every few days. 

Something else that I would add in is the location of your property. Are you close to grocery stores? Restaurants? Major highways? Public transportation?

Know your area and use it to your advantage. People love convenience. I have a Taco Bell/KFC within a 2 minute walk, who wouldn't want that!!

Also stress safety if you truly believe you are in a nice part of the town/city.

@Nicole Heasley I am a big fan of providing great detail and many photos. I even include bedroom sizes. I started doing that after a couple showings where people said the bedrooms were too small for their furniture. Adding it to the listing, screens out people. My goal isn't to have lots of showings, it is to have qualified people at the showings.

Here is what I include:

Description including some details about the location (close to mall, parks, schools, whatever makes the location appealing)

Include details about the square feet, number of rooms, bedroom sizes, garage stalls, parking spots, bathrooms

Talk about any recent updates like new appliances, new flooring, high efficiency furnace

What is the tenant responsible for, list all utilities and lawn care or snow removal 

Rent and deposit amounts, state when they are due, such as "deposit due upon application acceptance"

Pet policy including size restrictions and breed restrictions

Date the property is available

Lease terms such as minimum one year lease required

Do you accept housing vouchers?

General application approval guidelines, such as income must be 3X rent, minimum credit score, two landlord references required. I didn't include this when I first started in the business, but since adding it I get way better qualified people.

Maximum occupants, but make sure your policy is legal. For example in my city, the city prohibits more than 3 unrelated adults from occupying a property. Regardless of bedrooms, 3 is the maximum. My policy is no more than 2 unrelated adults, which basically prevents groups of roommates from applying. This depends on your property and preferences. If you were in a college town, then you would want the maximum unrelated adults allowable.

Location of the property, either address or a part of town, such as "Located in Southwest Youngstown" or "Capital District" or whatever terms people use in your city to describe locations

Details about how to setup a showing, provide your preferred contact method call me, text me, e-mail me, whatever that is. 

Find a good title to catch peoples attention. Look at the new postings every day and you will get a feel for the ones that stand out.

I post the maximum number of pictures allowed. People are very visual, so posting pictures helps them figure out if the property meets their needs. I see some listings on craigslist with one picture or even no pictures. Or people leave out a picture of the front of the house. Any time I see this, it makes me think they are hiding something.

Make sure your pictures look good. Light is very important to taking good pictures. Don't have cleaning supplies or ladders sitting in the picture. Save your pictures after a vacancy, so you can start advertising right away for the next vacancy!

My best success lately has been on Facebook and Zillow, but I still try Craigslist.

That is my brain dump, but I am probably missing something obvious. Good luck.

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