How To Attract Quality Student Tenants


As we approach September, many landlords are wondering the same thing:

How do I find a student tenant?

Student tenants are often desirable candidates for property managers and landlords. They’re generally organized, responsible, and their schedule is too busy to have time for wild parties. Although, some property managers and landlords have it in their minds that students aren’t the perfect tenants. Horror stories of wild parties, not being able to afford rent or utilities on time, and bothering neighbours with noise has scared some property managers off from renting to students.

So, the question becomes:

How do I find the perfect student tenant?

If you live close to a college or university, students will be hurling applications at you from sun up to sun down, so you’ll have your pick of the litter. So how do you weed the good ones our from the bad?

First off,

Make sure your unit offers some space for peace/quiet/study time. Many students make an effort to get most of their studying done while they’re on campus, but it’s nice to have the option to go home and get some studying done – maybe they go to a college or university that has crowded work spaces, or maybe they’re distracted by their peers. Whatever the reason, if they have a quiet space in their home it will promote better student behaviour. Make sure to include this feature in your posting, and if your unit does not offer a quiet place, do not mislead potential tenants! Rather, lead them to nearby coffee shops that do.

Which brings us to…

Include nearby amenities. A very attractive quality in a home isn’t necessarily the home itself, it’s what the home is close to. For instance, if your property doesn’t offer in-suite laundry, be sure to mention that a laundromat is close by. Grocery stores are also something to mention, if it’s not very close by then be sure to mention how close the bus stop is that will take you to it. Attention to detail is key, if there’s a cafe that offers fair trade, organic coffee – be sure to mention it! All those hipsters will come a-runnin’!

Be resourceful. If you live near a college or university, make a phone call to their housing referral program, they can point you in the direction of international or out-of-town students on a short-term basis. Also, take a gander on Craigslist or Kijiji, this way you’ll be able to choose posts that make look more promising than others. Keep in mind, if you contact the college or university, it’s not their job to follow up on what kind of students are looking for housing – so be sure to follow up with character references, parental guarantee and academic program details.
Sweeten the deal. Some students aren’t paying for their accommodation (the bank of mom and dad helps!), so they can afford nicer places for the sake of a good education. This also means that these students have to be accountable to their parents for things like getting the damage deposit back. For this reason, make your unit more attractive to these students by offering fully furnished, and include student essentials like internet or other utilities (much like the campus dorms do!). The price of the unit might be a little higher, but there are some students who are able and/or willing to pay for it.
On that same note, students are busy. Whether they’re working at the same time as completing their studies, or just focussing on school full-time, they don’t have time for things like repairs to different parts of their home. Make sure that everything is in full working order before they move in. Have the cable already set up, because they’ll likely need that immediately upon move-in because September is crazy busy for cable companies!
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Keep your home maintained. A major concern for student tenants is privacy and security, this is especially true for female students, and for some of these students it’s their first home outside of their parents’. Whether students have roommates or live in a multi-home unit, there are many things that you can do to make sure you’re offering the safest environment for your tenants (which also adds to the value of your property).
  • Install lights on the outside of the home that have motion sensors, this will give some peace of mind to your tenants when they’re at home, and when they’re searching for their keys when they get home it will give them light to do so.
  • Make sure the home has a dead bolt and an alarm system in place.
  • Make sure to take care of any major repairs before your tenant moves in, this way their stay can go uninterrupted by repair crews.
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Rich Elliott

The author Rich Elliott

Rich is the Marketing Director at RentMoola, he enjoys rugby, food, and his pet Corgi Prince.

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