Listing a rental in November, December, January...?

7 Replies

C class property, 2 bed 2 bath ($650 mo) in Ohio. It's taken me a couple of months to get the apartment up to speed and now I'm running into holidays and dead of winter to find a tenant. Any advice or suggestions? I'm a bit tentative about the quality of the applicants id be getting this time of year?


This always be the same 

“quality of the applicants id be getting this time of year“ regardless of the season!

Yes, it will hard and difficult to find a good tenant quickly this tim of the season but what other options do you have?

I don't have any tips for finding a tenant this time of year.  But I recommend using either a 6-month or 18-month initial lease to help prevent another winter vacancy in 12 months.

In the serious off-months I don't try to max out my profit and I run the lease only until the next prime season. Anything that we lease after October 1 will end June 30th. 

Best tip is be better than the market at this time. There are always people looking to move, any time of year, so even though this time is not ideal, if you are the best of what's on the market then you win. Best could mean best price, best location, best price for the amenities, etc. 

I had a very similar property go vacant the end of September (a couple of years ago). It did take until January to get it rented, but it was to a tenant who has turned out to be THE BEST EVER. (I hope he stays forever!)

I would just say screen, screen, screen; don't take the first warm body with a checkbook just to get it rented. You may regret it later on.

People move every month of the year.   One important issue is WHY are they moving?  Are they being evicted or are they moving into an area for new employment?

You develop your screening criteria in terms of what you will accept (i.e., no history of evictions, income so many times the amount of rent, proof of income, whether you will accept a certain FICO score or a certain number of accounts in collections, past rental history, etc.)  and you stick with this while you advertise your rental unit.


It happened to me that I took anyone into. This is before the internet and screening process. It took 3 years to get rid of them. A kitchen fire, major damage to a 5 year old home. For several years the collection agencies called wanted to know where they moved to and are after them-not through my action. They claim they were in a prayer group and she was a minister.

If it is February before you get a decent tenant lets be it. We have same problem here in Silicon Valley where homes can get sold in 1 weekend and taking several months to lease out to. Listings are all taken off now. 

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