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New Era of Renting

The past ten years have seen a remarkable surge in rental households and the demand for long-term rentals, a phenomenon that has made a significant impact on the housing market. You might be surprised to learn that this trend is not segregated by wealth or geography. It is widespread, and just like your favorite dancing cat video, it’s gone viral. If you are a landlord or property manager, are you taking full advantage of this market boon?

According to the 2015 Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University, “households of all generations rent, and are doing so in larger numbers.” Renter households increased by nearly 9 million from 34 million in 2005 to nearly 43 million in 2015. This jump exceeds rental growth in any 10-year period in recent history. That’s enough to make any landlord sit up and take notice. But wait, there’s more…

Renting is no longer reserved for hip bachelors, recent college grads, young newlyweds or starving artists. According to the Harvard report, eighteen percent of the growth in renters in 2005-2015 consisted of households with incomes of $100,000 or higher (1.6 million).

 

It would seem that while the long-term rental market has experienced rapid growth and change, landlords have been slow to adapt and update their methods of finding occupants and decreasing vacancies. Traditional methods of static newspaper and online listings, and even Craigslist are slow and inefficient. Challenged by a lack of proper analytical tools, landlords and small-to-medium property managers often miss the mark on rental pricing. Comparative pricing leads to subjective assumptions and may overlook unique features that set a property apart, such as recent renovations or a professionally-landscaped yard.

Likewise, landlords have difficulty getting an accurate picture of a potential tenant’s credit rating and rental history. Paper printouts are subject to creative editing as renters vie for the landlord’s favor. When application fees are involved for credit and background checks, the process becomes even more questionable as landlords may not always take the time to run full checks on all applications once they have found what they perceived to be a good tenant. Thus, the rejected candidates lose both the application fee and the opportunity. The process is less than perfect.

It may be time to investigate digital services and online options to find a better way. Companies such as Rentberry are recognizing the problems and working hard to offer solutions like transparent rental application process, which levels the playing field for renters. Using an online platform creates a much more efficient, direct line of communication between renters and landlords that saves both parties time, frustration and money. Ongoing services such as submitting maintenance requests can also now be done online. These are all positive advancements that benefit tenants and landlords.

The future looks bright. When demand is high, and growth is exponential, take some time to investigate and discover efficient new rental platforms designed to help both tenants and landlords realize the full potential of this long-term rental trend.

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