If you are planning to start a home rental referral business, then you'll want to become intimately familiar with the real estate in your area and also need excellent networking skills. Your job will be to connect people with the rental property best suited for them, and you must make both renter and owner happy to thrive in the home rental referral business.
- Skill level:
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Purchase the needed equipment. The minimum requirements are a computer and a good headset for your phone. If you are doing phone-based referrals, then you'll want to have the headset to make shifting through papers and electronic files easier. You also will need basic filing information so that you can keep contracts and other documents organized.
Set up your website. A website isn't an absolute necessity, but it does make the process much easier. Even if you only have a basic site in the beginning, you should have a web presence so that you can begin to capture future renters and buyers through the Internet.
Begin contacting the real estate agents and individual landlords. Offer a proposal to them. Home rental referral services typically make their money through fees charged to the real estate owner. The owner would pay you a flat finder's fee for every person who signs a lease with him.
Find renters. With your list of rentals in hand, start your marketing campaign. You can run your own ads in the newspaper or look online for people who are renting. If you are near a college or university, you also could consider putting up fliers there or searching out students who are advertising that they need rentals.
Ask questions to place clients appropriately. As you get the clients, work hard to place them in the right home rental situations. Your referrals should indicate that you understand the needs that the renters have. Be prepared to ask the renters a number of questions about the amount of space they need, special accommodations and non-negotiable amenities.
Obtain signed contracts from both parties. You make your money when you secure a lease, but you should make sure that both the real estate owner and the renter have signed contracts with you regarding their truthfulness in the process.
Tips and warnings
- Do not let your fee hinge on a successful rental after a lease agreement is signed. You want to be paid for making the referral, regardless of how long the lease remains intact.