Like any other tenants, students come in all shapes and flavours. That’s why we hear from just as many enthusiastic landlords as those eager to share horror stories about renting to students. If you’ve got student apartments for rent, there are several easy things you can do to attract good tenants and ensure you’re not stuck with the best party pad on the block.
Students looking for housing want something close to school, convenient to shopping, and affordable. There’s not much you can do about location, but here are some ideas definitely worth considering:
- Provide Laundry Facilities
Initial purchase and installation may seem costly, but a house or apartment that comes with a washer and dryer grabs attention. Students are notoriously busy, distracted, and inconvenienced by having to do laundry. Without a vehicle, dragging dirty clothes to a public facility can be a huge chore. If you have the space and the plumbing, install the appliances and expect to have a much wider selection of applicants.
- Provide Bike Storage
Putting a small shed with a padlock in the drive or backyard means students won’t be hauling their bikes in and out of the apartment. You’ll be saving the paintwork, doorframes and floors while providing the convenience and security many students are looking for.
- Provide Maintenance Check-Ins
The number one complaint from student tenants is that landlords don’t repair broken appliances or fixtures in a timely manner. In addition to defining “timely” with your tenants before they move in, you can offer to do a maintenance check every couple of months. This gives you a chance to assess any damage or potential problems, and reassures the tenant that you’re concerned with their comfort. They may decline, but making the offer will be appreciated by good tenants who care about the condition of their home.
- Provide Adequate Security
You don’t have to go to the extent of installing security cameras to make tenants feel that your house or apartment is a safe space. Particularly when renting to young women, you can expect prospective tenants to check the locks so make sure they’re solid. Also ensure ground-floor windows can’t be opened from the outside, and that there’s no easy way to climb to a second- floor balcony. Exterior lights should be motion triggered, particularly if access to the door is through a driveway or alley. If tenants are going to be sharing space, there should also be adequate locks on the bedroom doors.
- Provide Extras
Everyone likes to think they’re getting something for nothing, and students are no exception. Anything you can provide, that goes above and beyond the four walls, will be appreciated and draw better tenants. If there’s a backyard, give them a picnic table. If you’ve got extra blinds or curtains, install them in the home. Deck chairs on the balconies, a BBQ, or even some extra mirrors are all things that will add to the appeal of your property. They don’t have to be new, expensive, or elaborate. These things simply send the message that you care for your tenants and want them to be happy.
The trick to finding good tenants is having lots of applications for your vacant student housing. If you exercise due diligence and check references, you’ll find the responsible, reliable people you’re looking for. Bad tenants get good housing when there’s a lack of competition, so the more you do to improve your property, the more likely you are to attract excellent tenants.