Estimated time to read: 12 minutes
This document covers the procedures, technology aids and best practices to conduct a virtual rental transaction, from lead to lease. In contrast with for-sale transactions, rental deals are less complicated and, in general, highly conducive to the virtual transaction process. And, because the decision to rent is highly significant for both renter and landlord, the role of the agent as deal facilitator and trusted advisor is all the more necessary.
Key additional considerations that the virtual process introduces:
Step 1. Connect with (the right) someone looking for a rental
Generate Leads. Qualify and converting leads.
Most agents already rely on a virtual process to generate rental leads. This is because the overwhelming majority of renters search online. Our suggested agent best practices:
- Make sure you have a Facebook Business page set up.
- Make sure to set/review your Rental Beast lead filtering and automatic response configurations.
- Make sure you set (and stick to) a schedule for marketing via social media, using best practices.
- When you post listings: (a) that are designated as allowing virtual showings, (b) are in communities and areas that you are familiar and (c) always let your audience know the listings you posted are able to be toured virtually with your help. Note: properties that allow virtual showings will be designated as such within the Rental Beast System.
- Let your “sphere of influence” know that you are open for business and have access to numerous rental properties that allow for virtual tours.
Qualify and Convert Leads
As with rental lead generation, qualifying rental leads is already a largely virtual process, done via phone, email and text. Some important things to remember:
- Get familiar with our best practices for qualifying rental leads. Handling rental leads is different than working with potential buyers, so make sure you brush up, even if you are an experienced agent.
- For virtual showings in particular, it is critical that you establish the value of using an agent. See below for messaging, but it is all about local knowledge and access to an unbiased expert to help guide an important decision.
- Make sure to give your soon-to-be client a brief overview of the mechanics of the virtual showing process. Give a general idea of what technologies may be used (discussed later in this document) and let the client know you will provide them with any necessary instructions, once the showings are confirmed. Click here for a list of tech aids, along with some “how-to” info.
Whether you are posting rentals to make the world aware of your service, or, qualifying a lead, the emphasis for virtual showings must be all about the critical role of the agent. For many, rent is the biggest monthly expense and deciding where to call “home” will have a major impact on well-being. And, for owners, picking the right renter is a critical investment decision. If a client can’t visit the property in person, you as the agent are all the more important. You are there to provide critical local knowledge and an unbiased view. In contrast to property managers, you are not trying to push a specific rental or building: you only want what is right for your client. And, bonus for the renter… your services may be free to them since, in most markets, the owner pays your fee.