Covid-19 has changed the rental property landscape dramatically since March 2020 because the once stable, rental market has been hit hard by Coronavirus and the same rules that landlords followed last before March are no longer relevant.
In this article we will offer you several tips that landlords can use to get their rental properties ready for tenants during Covid-19.
How To Get A Rental Property Ready For Rent During Covid-19
1. Clean and sanitize the rental property
The first step to getting any rental property ready is a thorough cleaning. Properties that are maintained to a high standard attract the best renters. However, due to COVID-19, getting the unit spotless has never been so crucial as now.
Because of the risk of infection, it’s best to call in a cleaning crew to get the unit ready for renting. Most cleaning firms have training in cleaning and sanitizing buildings during COVID-19. Also, a cleaning crew will get the unit rent-ready in optimal time, meaning that you can start showings as soon as possible after the previous tenant has vacated it.
When advertising the property for rent, remember to specify that you took particular measures to sanitize the whole property to meet stringent hygiene standards during COVID-19.
2. Arrange for virtual tours
Putting technology in place to provide virtual showings can help to fill vacancies during COVID-19. Due to “shelter-at-home” orders and social distancing, rental showings present challenges for tenants and landlords. While residential real estate services are an “essential service” during the pandemic, tenants are still nervous about physical meetings.
Virtual apartment tours allow prospective tenants to view a property without physically being there. You probably have all the equipment you need to film a video walkthrough—your smartphone. Here are a few handy tips for shooting a virtual tour on your phone:
Turn on all the lights and open all the blind to make the apartment as bright as possible.
Hold the camera or smartphone steady, keeping it at a 90-degree angle.
Start at the entryway and walk through the property as a regular tenant would.
Move slowly through the apartment, taking care not to pan left and right too quickly.
Apart from a walkthrough video, you should arrange for high-quality photographs to showcase the best features of the unit. Also, provide floor plans, pictures of common areas, and amenities. Your goal is to provide as much visual information as possible to any prospective tenant.
Other useful ideas for preparing to show a rental property to a tenant include the following:
Provide an interactive 3-D virtual tour that allows tenants to explore the unit themselves.
For single-family properties, take drone footage of the surrounding area and the property.
Offer a live video tour where you are at the apartment and can discuss details with the tenant via video link.
Of course, you can hire a professional to make a high-quality video walkthrough of the rental unit.
3. Install the latest technology
Providing fast broadband is vital to getting a property ready for renting during COVID-19. According to McKinsey & Company, surveys show that more and more people are working from home. Also, many remote workers expect to continue working form home after the pandemic is over.
To attract the best tenants, fast broadband service is crucial. Workers who telecommute need reliable internet connections with plenty of bandwidth for video conferencing and other communication.
4. Utilize a lockbox
Lockboxes are a great tool to avoid unnecessary in-person meetings. You can use lockboxes to facilitate move-ins and move-outs so that you don’t have any physical contact with the tenant. Also, lockboxes are handy for allowing cleaning companies to clean up units to get them ready for the next tenant.
5. Prepare for remote rental closings
Due to the COVID-19 health crisis, it’s becoming more necessary for landlords to work remotely. To make sure that it’s possible to meet with tenants and close deals, it’s vital to have the right tools in place.
Thanks to new technology, it’s possible for the whole tenant journey to take place online—from viewing the unit to filling in the application and signing the lease.
Here are a few ways that landlords can fill vacant units without physically meeting the renter:
Provide tenants with an electronic rental application or online form to fill out.
Invest in technology such as DocuSign to sign lease agreements digitally.
Have the right equipment, such as full-HD cameras and fast internet, to communicate with clients.
Spend enough time screening applicants to ensure they can pay rent on time.
Use property management apps to collect rent online, manage leases, or accept maintenance requests from tenants.
Contact RPM Central Valley
For more information about how to get your rental property ready for rent during Covid-19, or to speak with us about the property management services that we can offer you, contact us today by calling (209) 572-2222 or connect with us online.