5 Sure-Fire Ways to Fill Your HMO Fast
When you’re managing an HMO or multi-let property you don’t want your rooms to hangaround empty as this really hits your bottom line as well as your sanity.
Here are the top 5 ways we keep our rooms full all year round.
These are the five tips that really work for us to have minimal voids.
1 Online Portals
We're all online these days and the top website for us is Spare Room and we find most of our tenants through.
If you own the properties you're managing, another website that fewer people know about and fewer people are using for HMO rooms is Openrent. It is a brilliant resource because it's affordable and it also puts your rooms onto rightmove, which is a big boost in terms of enquiries and therefore tenants!
And the other online that really works is Facebook. There are lots of groups already existing for properties to rent and another source is to use groups for people who are new to the area to those new in town groups are really fantastic.
Be On It Like a Car Bonnet
Ensure you're quick to reply to enquiries and arrange viewings. In a competitive marketplace. She who replies wins! Also, on spareroom.co.uk you can see the people who are looking and who meet your criteria. So, you can search yourself to find people who are looking to move in to a house share that's like yours so you can be proactive too.
Let your existing tenants know that you have rooms coming up and you might offer incentives if anyone they suggest moves in. Let everyone else know too, we actually filled an entire property through one of our builders, so you never know.
3 Local companies and recruitment agencies
Speaking to local companies and recruitment agencies can put you on the fast track to 100% occupancy. A good place to start is by looking at where your existing tenants are working and targetting some of those employers. We've got contacts that we email regularly, telephone regularly and we're beginning to see those really develop into relationships. On one occasion I sent the email out and somebody called me back two seconds later and said "How did you know I've got somebody moving at the end of this week. What have you got for me?" So that works really well as well.
4 Signs and leaflets
"Rooms to Rent" boards outside properties can be very effective. But what works even better is little leaflets in local cafes and workplaces. Ours say "Gorgeous rooms for professionals." It's just getting that message out there.
5 Dress your rooms
Now this really helps fill rooms fast. We wondered ourselves really, does it really work? After a few years you start to think "Does it really make a difference? Does having a fully made up bed really make a difference?" But it does. We've seen time and time again that when we dress the rooms they just go first or second viewing whereas if it's just a bare mattress it can take much longer to let the same room.