Know your Market!

Unfortunately as Landlords we don’t get to choose the market conditions in which our property becomes vacant. Even long-term tenants move on at some stage. Maybe you have been unfortunate with a string of short-term tenancies. Vacant rental properties affect your overall annual income. For every week that your property is vacant your annual return is affected.

Everyone wants to get the best return they can for their investment. The loss incurred by hanging on for an extra five or ten dollar increase per week may reduce your annual income by more than 2%. For example, you may have a prospective tenant who offers you $360.00 per week, but the vacating tenant was paying $375.00 per week. Declining that applicant and having your property vacant for an extra 3 weeks means you are losing out on not just $15.00 over 3 weeks, but $1080.00 annually. That’s a significant loss!

It is therefore important that you know your current market and let it guide you in your decision. How much are other properties in the area achieving now? How long are they staying on the market before being let? Pricing your property slightly lower than those available, may mean a shorter vacancy period in a tough market.

You may have been fortunate in the past and received higher than average returns. Your property is only worth as much as someone is willing to pay. The market is not your only variable but the circumstances of the applicant themselves. A business couple transferring from a larger city for example may be willing to pay more than average rent, as it is much lower than what they are used to paying. However, a middle-class family moving from within the area may not have the financial capacity to pay more.

Have your property appraised by an experienced property manager who works and knows the market. But most importantly, don’t price yourself out of the market!

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