Many people are choosing to purchase investment properties in Bryan/College Station due to the economic growth that the area is currently experiencing and the security of rental rates that 55,000 Aggies provide landlords. Rental investments can be financially rewarding and a great business plan for many individuals. Paying attention to the following points can help secure that the purchase and leasing process is stress free for the investor and that the rental property will not sit vacant, but will always have tenants at the highest rent rate of the current market.
- First, investors should choose their Realtor wisely. Real estate investors should be certain that their agent not only understands the sales market of the area but also has adequate knowledge of the rental market. The Bryan/College Station rental market is much different from most areas due to the large rental population from Texas A&M and the fact that the market very much aligns with the academic schedule of these students. Key points that your agent should know include: what renewal date should the lease include, what is the going rate for each area and property type, and what floorplans are most appealing to students. Choosing an agent with strong rental knowledge and connections also provides investors the opportunity to know about many pocket listings before they actually hit the market. Therefore, choosing an agent and brokerage that works with investors often, will many times allow the client to view and move on a deal before others have an opportunity.
- Second, a very helpful tip for investors to help their properties lease quickly is to take pictures of the property after a make-ready has been completed. These photos will help market the property each year without having to be concerned if the current tenants may have clutter that would not photograph well. Most clients begin their rental search online. Therefore, if pictures are not available or show a cluttered living space, it will be more difficult to get prospective tenants through the door for a potential showing.
- Third, motivated investors need to be ready to act on a property. Rental properties that are priced well and located in desired areas tend to stay on the market for a very short period of time. Investors should be ready to look at properties at any time and act immediately. This means that choosing and working with a consistent, reliable lender is key in order to get deals completed as quickly as our market often times demands.
- Lastly, know the timelines of the Bryan/College Station rental market. Because a large portion of our rental market consists of students, most leases begin at or before the beginning of August, before the Fall semester of classes begins. If you market a property with a move-in date later than August 10, many students will not be interested in looking at the property. Further, renewal dates are key! Most students have all of their housing arranged and secured by Spring Break. If you begin marketing a property for lease later in the season, you will not be able to get high market value and may even risk securing a 12 month lease. This leads into the last timeline to be aware of which pertains to purchasing new investments. Be careful when purchasing rental properties late in leasing season unless they are already preleased for the next year. Make sure that your agent knows the likelihood of getting tenants before closing on a deal.