Bought a house in N Buckhead last year, reno'd and have listed to rent on Zillow. Getting weak traction on Zillow, I get contacted by prospective tenants from zillow/hotpads (they cross-post) but when i respond, they never reply back.
My phone is also getting blown up by housing voucher tenants, asking if i accept them. I'm not opposed as long as they hit my numbers.
Is anyone else experiencing the same in the rental market where 'market' renters are fickle whereas there are what seems like a ton of voucher tenants aggressively pursuing places to rent.
i'm wondering if this is an Atlanta phenom or specific to the buckhead area, it's very odd.
This happened to me somewhat last year with a house in the Belvedere area. I have a standard email reply to all the (nearly 100) non-personalized responses from the listings. When all the viewer has to do is click a button to say "I'm interested in your listing, when can I see it," they don't have much invested and usually don't even remember which houses they sent messages about. My standard response re-states all the basics (rent, location, qualifications) and requests interested renters actually drive by the house before requesting an appointment. I have a similar voice message on the phone number, and text back the drive-by request if someone leaves a message w/o having seen the property and neighborhood. Talking on the phone to people who haven't done their basic homework can be exhausting, so I don't call until further interest has been demonstrated.
Like you, I don't rule it out, but haven't had Section 8 renters yet. When someone asks, I say the house has not yet been approved for Section 8, but I'm willing to investigate for qualified applicants. So far, no one has pursued it past that. I think there is a price break somewhere that divides the tenant pools; oddly enough, try raising the rent just a bit to pull it over a line (for instance, from $795 to $825) to see if that changes the nature of interested renters.
And the phone number isn't my personal cell #, it's a Google voice number that will play a message, accept texts, and forward all texts and calls to my email.
Your response is helpful, I think you're right in that they're just clicking on the web and not really interested.
I like your idea of Google voice just for the listings. I should have done that, and will going forward.
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