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Investments · News & Updates · Property Management

Three Reasons Why You Haven’t Found A Tenant Yet (And Why)

If only finding a tenant were as simple as uploading some smartphone photos of our property on the internet.

Some property managers make it sound this easy… I call these property managers debt-collectors. They sit back and do little other than charge a % just for collecting your rent!

They expect tenants to come to the property, whereas a real property manager hunts for a tenant for your property.

I believe all landlords are entitled to the hands-off, feet-up landlord experience

I believe all landlords are entitled to the hands-off, feet-up landlord experience, given they’ve done the hard work of saving for and securing a property. So, if you haven’t leased your property yet, this is the post for you.

I’ll run through our Sydney Listings diagnostic tools for when a property hasn’t leased straight away, and what you can do about each type of problem.

Reason 1 – No views or enquiries online

If no one is seeing the ad for your property online, then no one will enquire or show up to inspect your property. This means no one will lease it any time soon.

First, always check how many views your property ads are getting on the internet.

How to check the number of views on your property ads

This is simply done through the back-end of realestate.com.au, domain.com.au, or any other listing portals you are using to rent out your property.

There’s a few examples below.

Domain.com.au Example
Domain Example Analytics
Domain Example Analytics

In this example the green line shows the property views, and the light blue shows the views of similar properties on the market at the same time.

What you can see is that there are not a high number of daily views (usually less than 10 per day) but that this is consistent with the market.

Realestate.com.au example

In the realestate.com.au example during the COVID-19 downturn, even though the total views (red) are lower than the market comparison (grey), they start off quite high. 75-100 views in a day is definitely a lot, and should be generating enquiry.

What to do about low views

low views

In this green highlighted section of the analytics, the views are a bit lower. What could we do to increase the eyeballs that are seeing the property?

  1. Price a property accurately from Day 0 … this doesn’t sound helpful, I know! But a good lesson when you are struggling to lease is to take advantage of the first week of advertising next time you’re on the market. Properties get more attention when they are uploaded to the internet. (Check out our book on the 6-steps to doing this)
  2. Pay for upgraded advertising– on both realestate.com.au and domain.com.au, you can pay to have your property ad show up higher in the list of search results. The upgrade cost varies based on suburb, but will always be less than a week of rent, so it can be worthwhile.
  3. Revise Pricing Strategy – tenant searches filter out for their desired price. This means that by lowering price, you might appear in more searches – whilst normally a last resort, it is better to do this sooner rather than later.

Hint: Take special care of ’rounded numbers’. For example, tenants are more likely to screen a search for “$500-$550 per week” than say “$495-$555 per week”… so make sure your property isn’t narrowly missing out on search parameters!

Reason 2- Views but no enquiries

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A lot of views… so where are the enquiries?

In the above example, we are getting a lot of property ad views, but not as much enquiries or property page views (people clicking into the ad).

As pointed out my book (The PROVEN Strategy to Leasing Your Property In ONE WEEK), our first job is to sell the click, not the rental application.

To get people interested in the property as they scroll online, we need a well-presented hero photo showing off an amazing part of the  property, as well as a competitive price.

The photography and the display price work hand-in-hand to sell the click. So how do we remedy this?

How to increase enquiry and inspection levels

  1. Quality online advertising – photography is the most important part of this. For a rental property, you shouldn’t need to spend more than $120-150 on quality property photos that can be re-used for years.
  2. Box Brownie – Paying around $40 to virtually stage one photo with furniture, will make your property stand out when potential tenants are scrolling online. Click here for Box Brownie.
  3. Pricing Your Property – this is explained here. If you need further help, contact us to help price your property more accurately.

Reason 3 – Busy open homes but no applications

If people are enquiring as well as showing up to inspect your property regularly, then there must be a good reason why it hasn’t leased yet.

There are two possibilities: Price or Presentation. 

In my book on the PROVEN Strategy I emphasise the importance of presenting your property like a luxury listing. 

This is important given that you are competing with other properties in the marketplace. If they are presented in a better and cleaner way, but are at the same price or slightly higher, you’re likely to lose out on the tenant.

Top tips for touching up presentation

  1. Touching up paint
  2. Improving natural or internal lighting
  3. Decluttering the property

For more on property presentation, check out this video.

If price is the problem, that will become clear in the feedback from open home attendees via your property manager. You’ll notice lots of applications coming in low, attempts to negotiate, and complaints that your property is more expensive than others in the market.

Good luck and remember – stay hands-off, feet-up!

Keep the image in mind of the hands-off, feet-up landlord that you deserve to be. Turn that rental campaign around, and get your property investing path back-on-track.

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by Joe Wehbe
Investments · News & Updates · Property Management

How to price a rental property in three simple steps

In my book The PROVEN Strategy To Leasing Your Property In ONE WEEK we review the three-step process to pricing a rental property.

Step One in this Six-Step Strategy is of course “Accurate and Competitive Pricing”, and I discuss how pricing a property is not as difficult as most agents and property managers insist.

Sure industry professionals will have a bit more accuracy and speed. But with realestate.com.au and domain.com.au, you can get a pretty reasonable estimation on your own!

The below steps to pricing are what we will discuss today.

  1. List the features of your property
  2. Establish comparables
  3. Rank by value offered
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1) List the features of your property

For this we suggest you click and download the worksheet resources: Worksheet Pricing Your Property I Sydney Listings

Hint: This exercise is much better done when written out on paper. The reason is, our minds aren’t designed to balance so many factors at once.

When done on paper, it is a bit easier to see the full picture. This is important because you have to consider the property’s location as well as its other features.

Features

These include the number of bedrooms, bathrooms and car spaces, age, style, outdoor areas, access, aspect and moreThe build of the property and the way it is set up will impact its value.

Location

Location, location, location. A property’s value will be impacted if it is close to schools, beaches, public transport, commercial areas, good amenities, shopping centres and more!

One useful factor to consider is the property’s walkscore – think about how much you’d like to live in a walkable area that is normally hard to drive around or park in.

A comprehensive list of features is provided in the worksheet! Here it is again: Worksheet Pricing Your Property I Sydney Listings

2) Establish Comparables

Now that you have a list of features, you can go identify a few properties that are comparable to yours. We will use these comparable properties to estimate the value of your own property.

Our first requirement for a comparable property is proximity. The exact same house as yours will have a completely different value if it was placed on the other side of the world.

Land has the most value, so ideally choose properties that are within 1-2km if possible. Remember, they must have similar location attributes.

An apartment on a main road might be within 500 metres of a waterfront house in Gladesville- this doesn’t make these properties useful comparisons.

The more features that match, the better the property is as a comparison. Ideally you would like four to five comparable properties.

Note, if you cannot find good comparables, use the Sydney Listings’ “Floor and Ceiling Method” instead. 

3) Rank by value

Weighing each comparable against your property, come up with a rank, for where your property sits in comparison to these. Using reasonable judgments, you’ll be able to come up with a useful price range. 

Congratulations!

You’re now on your way to the hands-off, feet-up landlord experience. Remember you can reach out to the Sydney Listings team if you need help with pricing your property.

Click here to check out upcoming examples on our youtube channel of the three-step pricing guide!

by Joe Wehbe. 

Investments · News & Updates · Property Academy · Property Management

How Property Investors Can Claim Depreciation Deductions of up to $15,000

Depreciation is an aspect of property investing that most property investors fail to take advantage of. 

And it costs them thousands of dollars every year!

So if you’re not claiming depreciation already, we’re going to explain what it is and more about how it can improve your returns on your property. 

How can property investors take advantage of depreciation on their property?

Let’s hand over to Bradley Beer, CEO of BMT Tax Depreciation to explain. 

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While the value of your property goes up over time the value of the items within it will tend to go down, or ‘depreciate’ over time! This is just like buying a new car for example.

When these items like carpet and light fittings lose their value over time, the ATO will actually give you tax exemptions, because of the loss of value.

Wow, it turns out the Tax Office can be kind after all!

All sounds pretty amazing doesn’t it? So you must be asking…

How much can I save through claiming depreciation on my property?

Back to you for this one Bradley…

“Average return for the last financial year was $9,000”.

Gee, that’s not too bad.

Importantly don’t forget! Old properties can claim depreciation as well, just not as much as newer properties.

So enough beating around the bush. How do you get started?

Well even though this is tax, it’s not as simple as going to your accountant. You need what is called a depreciation schedule. This is done by a Quantity Surveyor. So let’s go back to Bradley one last time…

Can you use an accountant to claim depreciation?

There is no question that depreciation deductions are the most under-utilised part of property investing.

Our Solution

At Sydney Listings, our property management team gets proactive making sure our landlords and investor community make the most of depreciation. We partner with quantity surveyors and organise for the information and inspections required to take place.

We also extend a courtesy to others in the community to help you organise this. If you’d like our help, please contact us or email info@sydneylistings.com.au. 

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