Atwater rental properties keep investment property owners busy all year long; however, you may find yourself a bit less busy during the rental market’s slow season. While it may be tempting to put everything on autopilot for a while, it may not be the best use of your time. The slow season offers a chance to focus on a few important but often overlooked tasks. By using your slow season wisely, you can be better prepared for the busy times and optimize the potential of your investment property.
Develop a Marketing Plan
The slow season is perfect for developing a great marketing strategy if you don’t already have one. With more effective marketing, you can easily attract great tenants and keep your rental property occupied year-round. At a minimum, your marketing strategy should include things like a great newspaper or classified ad for each property you own, knowing all the best places to post your ad online, and how to use social media to attract applicants. With your marketing prepared and ready to go, it’s one less thing you’ll have to think about when things get busy.
Ask for Online Reviews
Along with effective marketing, you need to have a positive online presence. In today’s digital world, prospective renters will check to see what past tenants have said about their experience with you and your rental home. You can ensure that what they find is positive by asking your tenants to leave you reviews online. Through platforms like Google, Yelp, and social media, you can encourage tenants to leave feedback. Make it easy for them by sending them a link, and don’t let the fear of a bad review stop you. People who rely on reviews understand that the occasional bad review exists and don’t let it influence their final decision.
Re-Work Your Budget
If it has been a while since you updated your operating budget, the slow season is a perfect time to do so. The rental market, just like your rental properties and tenants, is perpetually in motion, and your budget should be updated periodically to reflect recent changes. To get started, you could go through your expense items and update any out-of-date numbers. Then, recalculate things like your vacancy rate and capital improvements, adjusting the numbers when needed. Having an accurate budget can help you make more confident decisions about your rental properties throughout the year.
Get Your Paperwork In Shape
The slow season is also a perfect time to get your paperwork in order – especially if you’ve been putting off a few tasks, like gathering all the invoices for replacements or upgrades to the property, tax records, reconciling accounts or auditing your books. It can be hard to keep up with smaller tasks like monthly bookkeeping and bank reconciliations when you’re busy. And then there are the important annual tasks, like tax document preparation and auditing. Using the slow season to address tasks like these can streamline your schedule and keep your focus where it should be.
Plan Your Next Investment
Finally, one of the best times to evaluate your investment strategy and make plans to add to your portfolio of rental homes is when things are a bit slow. Whether your goal is to hold and rent a single property for future use or to build a large, lucrative portfolio, using the slow season to make plans is a great use of your time. Then when things heat up, you will be able to take those next steps with confidence.
If you find that your busy schedule is causing you to overlook these and other tasks, it may be time to bring in professional property managers to help. At Real Property Management Valley Wide, we handle most of the day-to-day work of owning rental properties for you, freeing up your time for more important things. To learn more about the range of services we offer, contact us online.
We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.