Real estate, like any industry, is haunted by some scary myths, especially when it comes to rentals. Real estate myths can be passed between agents and seem true, but, here at Rental Beast, we don’t want folklore to get in the way of you building a thriving business. Let’s bust these real estate myths, discover the truth, and get you 20/20 vision on the dynamics of the real estate market.
Real Estate Myth 1: Rentals aren’t worth your time
For too long rentals have been ignored by a lot of real estate agents, even savvy ones. The conventional logic is that rental transactions are too much work for too little reward.
Here’s the truth: We hear you, but the numbers suggest that you really should consider building rentals into your business. They are popular— nearly 50% of the US population are renting— and the vast majority of people who buy a house move from a rental unit. Rentals aren’t going away anytime soon, so get ready to build them into your business.
Want to continue busting real estate myths about rentals? If you want to know more about why rentals are so popular, read our recent article!
Real Estate Myth 2: If a lead’s not the perfect lead, it’s not worth your time
Especially if you’re working with rentals, you might find yourself realizing that you’ve chosen a client who doesn’t check all of your boxes. Maybe they don’t have a stable job (pointing at a less than fantastic credit score?). Perhaps they’re way too unsure about what they want. Or maybe the apartments they’re after are cheap, and you don’t see much in the way of a commission.
Here’s the truth: Not all commissions are great; not every lead is going to be perfect. Some will be, but a lot won’t. Now, there’s a couple of things you can do here. You could adjust your lead screening process, and the questions you ask your lead. You don’t have to work with anyone. But, if the possibility of a low commission deters you, maybe you might want to rethink. Rental transactions move quickly, and working with any client still allows you to exercise your agent skills (and make a buck doing so!)
Be realistic and figure out a workable plan. Acknowledge that this might include working with your less-than-desirable leads.
Real Estate Myth 3: Rentals are just for big cities
A lot of real estate myths have to do with rentals, and this is a big one. When we think apartment living, the first thing that comes to mind might be big cities and small apartments. As a result, it can be easy to think that rentals are just limited to cities like New York, San Francisco.
Here’s the Truth: There are rental units everywhere from urban, to suburban, to rural. There might be a higher quantity in larger cities, but the smaller inventory in suburban areas might be to an agent’s benefit. A smaller inventory means a known quantity. As a bonus, moving to the ‘burbs might mean that you can cross a few things off of your client’s checklist at a lower price point.
Real Estate Myth 4: Rentals are all ugly
When you think of rentals, you might think of peeling paint and windowless basements. But, fortunately, this is not accurate anymore. Instead of roach infestations, think open floor plans, renovated kitchens, and a laundry list of amenities from roof-top pools to in-house coffee shops. Places are looking so swanky because the demand for “luxury apartments” is up. Luxury apartment rentals attract the more affluent type of renters that are starting to make up a greater share of the market. Even if an apartment doesn’t market itself as “luxury” it may have gone through at least a few renovations— an updated clubroom, new fridge appliances, new carpeting, repairs to the exteriors.
Here’s the Truth: Maybe 5-10 years ago, rentals might have been the ugly duckling of the real estate world.
Now, you can feel confident that when you look for rental units for clients, you’ll be able to show them someplace nice.
Myth 5: Leads will find their way to you
Post your listing to your personal page and you’re done, right? Not exactly.
Here’s the Truth: Nothing comes easy, including lead generation. You need to be invested and active to capture the attention and business of a lead. Use all the resources at your disposal to build a book of business— social media, in-person meetings, all the advice we’ve read about this on the Rental Beast Blog, all the tips in Rental Beast University!— and start putting them all to good use. Think about it this way: the more you can post on Facebook, Craigslist, and Twitter, the higher chance you have of getting in front of a lead and closing a deal.
Myth 6: Only millennials are renting
There’s been a lot of buzz about Millennials (a lot from us, too). And with good reason. Millennials make up the majority of the renting population. However, they aren’t the only group opting for the flexibility and ease of apartment living. Later generations are also seeing the benefit in renting a home rather than purchasing one.
Here’s the truth: Millennials, right now, are three times more likely to rent than any other prior generation. However, other generations are also seeing the benefit of living in a rental. Renters over 60 are the fastest-growing demographic of renters.
Myth 7: Your life will resemble million dollar listings
Shows on HGTV and Bravo show the life of a real estate agent as super-glamorous super-luxurious. Best of all, all the high-stake drama ends up working out for the agent before the episode ends. No one ever seems to fail. No one gets really stressed and cries. Leads (and money!) come through in a steady, gold stream. We hope at that, at one point, you might see some parallels between your life and these real estate giants, but don’t stress if it’s not (ever).
The truth: What we hear when we work with agents is that real estate is a 24/7, 8-days-a-week profession. The good news is that it’s also the job with the best job satisfaction. Real estate agents tend to love what they’re doing, even if it’s hard work and doesn’t involve private jets and rooftop bars.
Myth 8: You can’t continue learning
Getting licensed is a big deal, but maybe you’re feeling a little bit unsure about some area of real estate. You can feel this way a few weeks or a few years after you’ve started working with clients.
Here’s the Truth: Continuing education courses are already built into your real estate education, and you can learn in a variety of other ways, too. Always think of yourself as a student of the area that you work in, and try to keep learning about what’s happening in your neighborhood. Think about attending an in-person seminar, or looking into online real estate classes. For example, our very own Rental Beast University has online webinars and courses designed for agents at any point in their career— from freshly minted, to super seasoned— and our real estate coaches provide you with timely feedback on all assignments. The best agents never stop learning about the real estate market, their local area, and how they can grow, adapt, and succeed.
Myth 9: New agents can’t complete
If you’re a new agent, you might feel some self-doubt creeping up on you. Newbies to every profession are considered green and naive. This might seem especially true in the real estate industry when a new agents book of referrals is looking a little slim.
Here’s the truth: New agents can compete. They’re hungry and have all their education right and ready to access clients and get to renting, or selling homes. Or, try this way of looking at it: new agents can help seasoned agents with some things, and visa versa. If you know an agent you respect at a different career stage, ask them any questions that you are struggling with.
Real estate myths can be widespread, but don’t let them get in your way.
Rental Beast was started by real estate industry professionals to simplify every part of the rental process and empowering real state agents. Our database contains seven million off-MLS listings, all gathered directly from property owners and landlords. Rental Beast makes it easy both to mine your current sphere of influence and get new, warm rental leads. Agents can syndicate Rental Beast listings to Craigslist, and Facebook with just a few clicks. Our partnerships with realtor.com, Facebook, and other popular websites allow us to post our listings to millions of social media users and apartment hunters. Whether you get the word out on a listing, or we share it for you on Facebook Marketplace, all leads are sent directly back to you. Rental Beast is dedicated to making make rentals a viable part of any agents’ real estate business.
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