February 12, 2018

Technology is changing how property owners do business, how people search for rentals, and why people ultimately chose a specific rental. From smart devices to online rental services, there are many modern tools you can utilize to follow the latest market trends and keep pace in a rapidly changing space.

Read on to learn more about how tech is changing your future as a property owner.

1. Search Habits Are Evolving

Not too long ago, Craigslist was the go-to source for finding rental properties. While you can still find rentals on Craigslist or in your local classifieds, rental services that didn’t exist a few years ago have changed the way people search for a rental unit.

Oliver, for example, simplifies how renters look for apartments and how landlords list their properties. The online platform allows people to browse and search for current listings and automatically schedule viewings. For property owners, this means fewer phone calls and emails and less time spent scheduling viewings. Oliver is especially popular with the millennial crowd for its ease of use, and property owners love it because it saves them so much time and effort.

Other rental sites such as Zumper let you post rentals and use a free credit check to screen tenants. Zumper is also helpful for renters because it gives them informative city guides and detailed information about neighborhoods.

Maximize your chances for renting a property by utilizing any of the other online rental resources available.

2. Paying Rent Can Be Painless

Renters typically don’t use cash, checks, or money orders to pay rent each month—they want to pay rent in the easiest way possible.

Mobile payment services such as Venmo securely link to your bank account and allow users to make payments directly to each other. No more waiting for checks in the mail, and no visiting the bank to make a deposit—bounced checks will become a thing of the past. Once you receive a payment, use the app to automatically deposit your funds into your bank account for free. PayPal is another good alternative. Be aware that there are fees associated with using PayPal.

If you don’t feel comfortable using Venmo or PayPal, RentPayment is specifically tailored toward landlords. The platform lets tenants pay rent with a debit or credit card and set up automatic rent payments.

3. Smart Devices Make Everyone’s Lives Easier

At least 4.5 million homes in the United States currently have smart thermostats that save both energy and money. And homes, condos, or apartments equipped with smart devices can give landlords an edge in an already-competitive rental market—especially because IoT-connected smart devices make renters’ lives significantly easier and better. Millennials are also more likely to pay more for a rental that has smart devices.

One of the more popular smart devices is the Nest Learning Thermostat. This smart thermostat automatically learns what temperature your renters like and builds a heating and cooling schedule around how they use it. Independent studies have shown this device saves up to 12% on heating bills and 15% on cooling bills; within two years, the cost savings pays for the Nest Thermostat’s initial expense. The thermostat even prolongs the life of your heating and cooling systems because they’re not being used as often.

You can also add features such as smart lighting to your property. If renters forget to turn off the lights and they’re not home, no problem. They can use their phones and turn them off remotely. They can even dim the lights from their couches if they like.

Making your rentals more visible and more attractive to potential renters has never been easier than it is today. Use the tips above to get started, and share these tricks with your colleagues so you can all stay successful.

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