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Best Practices for Marketing Your Single-Family Rentals

Best Practices for Marketing Your Single-Family Rentals
Written by publishing team

Single family rental properties are among the most important investments in real estate today. This product, which includes everything from one-time rental homes to entire communities of custom built homes for rent, is attractive to investors, parent institutions, and everyone else.

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There is a good reason why SFRs are so popular. First, the basic fundamentals of this type of property are strong. Multiple demographic groups are driving demand: from young professionals who can’t afford to buy a home because they lack the down payment for families priced out of the market to empty loafers looking for an “insurance and vacation” lifestyle. There are also so-called child-stalkers—grandparents. Who would like to be closer to their children and grandchildren but prefer to rent.

SFR returns are also attractive. According to real estate data firm CoreLogic, single-family rental prices posted double-digit growth in September, with national rents increasing 10.2 percent year on year, up from 2.6 percent year on year in September 2020. Moreover, CoreLogic reported that as the market SFR faces supply challenges similar to the sales market, continuous increases in rents are expected, especially among higher quality rentals as tenants look for more space.

But despite the strong demand for SFRs, owners and managers of these properties need to market creatively and effectively in order to attract potential residents, who, according to the National Multifamily Housing Council, have larger families, more children and higher incomes than those who live in apartments. Thus, marketing strategies are different from those used by owners and operators to attract apartment dwellers.

Three-bedroom home in Farm Haus, a single-family rental community in San Antonio by AHV Communities. It has luxury features like quartz countertops, stainless steel appliances, LED lighting and attached garages for two cars. The home, which rents for $2,300 a month, also has a fenced backyard that makes it family and pet friendly. Images courtesy of the AHV . Communities

Knowing your goal

Single family residents have a similar profile to homebuyers. Since they are more likely to have families, they look for spacious homes with a backyard, safe neighborhoods, a variety of amenities, and good schools. Many of them have pets.

They care about the same things as homebuyers, and their motivations for wanting to move are similar,” said Todd LaRue, managing director of RCLCO, a real estate advisory firm.

That’s why AHV Communities, which operates three single-family rental communities in Texas and Washington, promotes their pet-friendliness, as well as amenities that families might appeal to, when they market their SFR property.

Jane Kim, director of AHV, a private developer, builder and operator of luxury singles, said family rentals and attached homes feature Class A amenities. “Focus on location, safety and schools will help paint the outlook.”

Kim said AHV’s target population are families, working professionals, young and active adults and that the company primarily uses digital marketing strategies to attract potential customers, including SEO campaigns, social media, and online listing services like Zillow, Apartments.com, and Apartment List.

“The combination and a good balance of all has proven to be the most successful,” Kim said.

Multiple Marketing Channels

SFR marketing strategies vary depending on the type of product, location, type of evaluator you’re targeting, and budget. As a result, many owners and managers opt for a broad approach, casting a broad net to increase their reach to potential residents across various demographics and geographic locations.

Dallas-based Invitation Homes is a public single-family home rental company with a portfolio of more than 80,000 homes in 16 markets across the country, has an average population of 40 and has one or more children at home, owns an animal Pets and the average household income is about $120,000 per year. The company uses a variety of channels to reach that inhabitant.

“Invitation Homes has approved listings for homes available on our site, where future residents can search by location, neighborhood, size and price,” said Kristi Degarlaise, a spokeswoman for the company. and Trulia, Hotpads, Rentals.com, List of Apartments, Apartments.com and Zumper.

DesJarlais said that Invitation also uses on-site rental agents, social media, targeted digital advertising, and sometimes radio, to market its homes.

The power of free advertising

Marketing budgets clearly affect the type and extent of access available to the owner or manager of the SFR. Since institutional ownership accounts for only 2 percent of the single-family rental market, and 85 percent of social investment funds are owned by investors with 10 properties or less, according to investment firm Amherst Pierpont, that means the vast majority of owners have to deal with it. Limited funds to apply to marketing. So, creativity is key for these mom-and-pop owners.

David Dweck, a real estate agent in Boca Raton, Florida, who invests in single-family rental properties in Florida and North Carolina, has found Facebook to be his best source for new residents. He places free ads on the Facebook Marketplace and searches the Facebook groups where his target audience is likely to be. He actively markets his properties in groups such as “What Up Boca Raton”, “South Florida Buy and Sell” and “Gotta Guy in Boca”.

Dweck recently purchased a single-family home in Selva, North Carolina, and used Facebook to market it to potential residents. “There was nothing fancy,” he said. “I was going to do some minor fixes, but I thought I’d put it up on Facebook Marketplace for $1,200 a month and see what happens.”

Within a day, Dweck had 2,000 views and received hundreds of inquiries. It had multiple shows, and everyone who visited the property wanted to rent it. He eventually chose an army veteran to rent the house.

“Facebook is disrupting real estate because everyone can post their own,” he said. “Social media is currently the most powerful way to rent real estate. Market your property on social media and save your money. Whether you are institutionalized or illiterate, Facebook is your friend.”

Read the January 2022 issue of MHN.

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