Students Make Great Tenants

Monday, August 9, 2021

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Wouldn’t it be great if landlords could use a crystal ball to determine which applicants would make the best tenants? It would certainly make a property manager’s job easier! Wrong choices can often lead to problems down the road and affect the landlord’s bottom line negatively.


Now more than ever, landlords need to utilize effective marketing tools and pre-screening methods, rather than a crystal ball. Often, it’s just easier to resort back to the same demographic of tenants they have always rented to. But is that always the best option?


We recommend property managers ask themselves the question, “Have I considered renting to students?” 


The following list of recommendations will give landlords insight to young renters and help them market their properties to student tenants.


  1. Advertise the rental online. Within the listing, consider using a bulleted list to provide rental property descriptions and information, instead of a paragraph. A list is easier to read and provides brief details that can be skimmed through.
  2. When creating a rental listing, keep the targeted audience in mind. Include information about the property, amenities, features, neighborhood, public transit, etc. that would be of interest to students.
  3. Include a variety of pictures with online rental listings, both interior and exterior. Students will usually skip over listings without pictures, especially if they are moving from out-of-town.
  4. Avoid vague or ambiguous statements in rental descriptions. Be clear and very specific, so students are aware of what’s included with the rental and expected by the landlord.
  5. Students enjoy the convenience of paying bills and rent online; be sure to highlight this option in the rental property listing, if it’s available.
  6. Setting up wi-fi, cable, or other utilities can be a hassle for students. If you can offer an all-inclusive rental, it will appeal more to student tenants.
  7. If internet is included with the monthly rental rate, make sure there is a large enough data plan to avoid being charged fees for going over the limit.
  8. For all-inclusive rental units, consider some upgrades like low-flow faucet aerators or energy-efficient appliances to generate energy savings.
  9. If parking is included with the rental unit, specify how many parking spaces are available for each tenant, as well as guests.
  10. Students will often have little or no credit history. Consider requesting character references or a guarantor, as an alternative to conducting a credit check.
  11. If students are required to cut the grass, shovel the driveway or do other basic maintenance and up-keep, be sure to stipulate this in the rental agreement and provide all the necessary equipment to perform the required tasks.
  12. Consider offering flexible and short-term leasing options for students. The study term for most educational programs is typically eight months. A twelve-month lease may deter students from renting a property, even if they are permitted to sublet the unit during summer months. 

Students can also be a great source of tenant referrals in the future for landlords.  A positive relationship and good communications with student renters is essential, as is with all tenants.


SEE ALSO:  Ever Considered Renting Your Spare Room to a Student?

The Team