I am completing 2 commercial rehab projects within the next month and know you all have some awesome techniques for luring tenants in…So what are they??

The properties are an 8 unit building that consists of 5 studios and 3 1 beds
and a 10 unit building that consists of 4 1 beds and 6 studios

They are in the “east side” and “Frog Town” area of St. Paul, so not the “best” area. I love section 8, however, I find that “private” market people cannot pay as nearly as much as the government, and it is more difficult to find 1 bed or studio vouchers in general. SO, does anyone have experience with “transitional housing”, Month to Month rentals, or any other creative housing ideas?

So…I will need single people and lots of them…

What provides you with the best results??

-Rent specials? What “specials” work best?? 3rd month free, $300 dollars off, etc…
-Free TV, gift card, or other incentive??
-Referral Fees
-Flyer’s…What do YOU write on them?
-sticky notes
-Bandit signs?
-Paid Advertising…Free (craigslist) advertising (I always get freaks calling me…)

Any ideas of any kind are appreciated!

Thank you so very much for your valuable time!

Move in specials for Section 8? Are you kidding? Just say Section 8 welcome and you’ll be buried in applicants.

HUD has programs for seniors and handicapped, and their vouchers are for 1 bedrooms and studios. They’d actually be your best bet for decent Section 8 tenants.

Maybe you could check with the housing authority and see if they have any demand for handicpped accessable units. If they have seniors, you could set the units up with safety rails in the bathrooms and see if any of the units copuld be made wheel chair accessable.

Waiting lists for the HUD senior buildings are years long.

Studios and 1-bedrooms are prime worker housing.

If they were mine, I would do some quick research on local furnished extended stay rentals. If you were an elevator repairman coming to your town to fix an elevator for 2 months, where would you stay? (We just had 3 elevator repair guys fixing our courthouse elevator ).

I would keep the prices low and attractive for construction workers. Put in nice, but used frigs/stoves/ microwaves/ TV’s. Spend money on good mattresses. Throw in a recliner (recliners are absolute GOLD), BBQ, towels, sheets, dishes. Have a washer/dryer.

Turn on the utilities. Now you’ve got a furnished rental. NOW YOU CAN CHARGE DOUBLE OR TRIPLE THE RENT. You pay the utilities. You will be quoting a daily rate on a monthly place. Your competition is the cheaper motels. Go visit a couple and see if your place is better.

Advertise in the newspaper, local Pennysaver, truck stops, whereever your tenants are eating or hanging out. Drop off flyers at construction sites if they have out-of-area crews. The local business development office will want your flyers to mail to prospective new businesses.

Try this with 1 or 2 units. Every single town has traveling temporary workers. Find your market!

There is another market–seniors–that is out there that I haven’t tapped into yet. Single seniors should like nice but budget units. They don’t need furnished. They would stay and stay . Make your whole building senior-friendly. Also accept pets. Seniors here find my furnished places too expensive, but they like them.

Let us know how you filled 18 units quickly!


Just to piggyback on furnishedowner’s suggestions.

If there is a hospital nearby, I am sure that there are contract health care workers on six month contracts that need a furnished unit.

Also contact the local in-home health care service providers. Their nurses and therapists also tend to be limited term contractors who will need a furnished unit for the term of their contract. The bonus here is that the employer often give the contract worker a housing allowance.