Finding the perfect renter is a combination of savvy advertising, good interviewing skills and listening to that inner voice. Of course, in reality, there is no such thing as a perfect renter. But these three methods are some of the best ways to generate applicant leads. Each method has its pro’s and con’s.
Craigslist is going to give your room for rent the most exposure. Craigslist has created a sub-category in their Real Estate section dedicated solely to the industry of room rental. It is a great forum for both renters and landlords. You can post pictures, text description of room and amenities, directions and preferred method of contact.
Craigslist is the 13th largest website worldwide in terms of visitors. People can view Craigslist ads on their computers, cell phones or tablets. There are several apps that allow people to search items of interest. They can put in alerts that will notify them on their phones when an ad is placed that fits the criteria of an item they are looking for.
Though this method does not reach as large an audience as Craigslist, it does narrow your search to a slice of the population with whom you would have more in common. Renting to a person from work or church can give you an advantage in the screening process. If you are employed at the same place, you will always know that he has income (until he loses his job). If you attend the same church as your renter, you can reasonably assume that he holds similar moral values as yourself. Neither of these methods that you won’t choose a dud of a renter, but it certainly moves the odds closer to your favor.
Word of Mouth
One of the issues or concerns a landlord may have regarding their renter is character. Nobody wants to rent to a “bad” person. Word of mouth is probably the best way to find a reliable renter, but it may take longer. Word of mouth gives you the advantage of renting to someone you know or the friend/relative of someone you know. Your friend can vouch for the renter. The question is…can your trust your friend’s judgment?
There are advantages and disadvantages to each of the options above. Craigslist will give you a renter quicker due to its audience size while not contributing at all to the screening process of the potential renter. The word of mouth method could take forever but will certainly make you sleep better at night knowing that you have a renter who has been well vetted in the process.