Effectiveness of For Lease Signs
I thought I'll share some of my findings on the effectiveness of For Lease Signs. This is something I've personally tested just because I could and purely out of curiosity.
I had a property that was leased, but the tenant was not moving in until 4 weeks later. The property already had a For Lease sign (now... this is not the proper ones that you pay $110 inc GST for and installed in front of your property). The one I'm talking about is just the complimentary one that Box Property Management puts on the inside of your window when it makes sense to. (Refer to below)
Yes, I did wood chip my entire front lawn. I wanted little to no maintenance and I've had experience with other properties where my grass died because the tenant didn't look after it. This way, its cheaper for me since there is no reticulation and there will be no heartache from dead grass.
Anyways, back to these window signs. After the tenant signed the lease and provided the 4 weeks bond + 2 weeks deposit, we:
took down the ad from the internet (i.e. domain and realestate)
left these signs at this property for 4 more weeks
Note: My property was located on a corner of a main road (this is a state route, i.e. the yellow roads with blue shield on Google map) and the front door opens straight into he drive through of a bottle shop and its next to a neighbourhood shopping center. i.e. I get plenty of eyes looking directly or indirectly at the property. Most probably more eyes because its a new property compared to all the old ones around.
You might be asking why we were doing this, well we wanted to test whether these signs actually work!
With absolutely no online presence, we got 3 inquiries over the 4 weeks period for the property and they all asked why they couldn't find the property online.
This tells me the sign attracted potential tenant who were interested in the leasing purely because they saw the sign. They were so interested they tried searching online and couldn't find anything (i.e. they didn't see any pictures, they don't know how much it was renting for), but was interested enough to go to the the trouble of calling Box Property Management to find out more information.
I also suspect there would have been quite a few people who didn't call when they couldn't find the property online, which means the people who did called are better leads as they are very interested in the property.
We now want to use this information to infer whether a permanent lawn sign out the front of the property would be better. I think the answer to this is Yes.
The next question is whether its worth investing $110 (inc GST) and the answer to this question depend on how much rent you expect the property to achieve, the traffic you get. i.e. how many people drive by or walk by your property and look at the sign, take a photo or write down the information.
If your property is in the middle of the suburb in a cul de sac where only the people who live on that street would drive by then I wouldn't bother.
Its definitely worth it on a state route, i.e. the yellow roads with blue shield you see on Google map
Keep in mind average property are leased within 2-3 weeks and does take take a couple of days for the property 'For Lease' signs to print the and install it at the front of your property. i.e. by the time these signs are installed, the property would most probably be leased.
These signs would be worthwhile for the above average properties where it might take a bit longer to lease out or if you own multiple units in the same complex. If you did this and its still take a long time, you're most probably trying to achieve above market rent or there's a lot of competition around under cutting you. i.e. you might need to drop your rent and meet the market.
Note: Please do not confused my findings on For Lease signs with For Sale signs. I've spoken to sales agents and they have harder times selling apartments in the CBD where strata do not allow For Sales signs to be installed and as a result need to spend more money on other forms of marketing etc.