I confess: Last night I spent hours viewing apartments online—and I’m not even looking for a place to live.
As a new landlord I was doing a bit (ok, a lot!) of research on what apartments in the area are currently offering and charging. And I’m nervous. Price the unit too low and I leave money on the table. Price the unit too high and, worst-case scenario, it sits vacant costing us money.
So I spent the better part of my Tuesday night clicking each apartment-for-rent ad and filling in my comparison spreadsheet. And yes, I used an Excel spreadsheet. I recorded how many 2-bedroom units were in my area, the asking rent, what was included and whether or not there were restrictions. The results were surprising.
Prior to my research, I would’ve under-priced our rental unit—estimating a potential loss of $4,200 in rental income each year. That’s significant and a reminder that in real estate: it’s the details that count.