We’re living in a different world when it comes to the rental market in Boston. As one of the heaviest supply markets in the country, the downturn in demand is hitting our city harder than many other areas of the country. With that said, that doesn’t mean all hope is lost. In order to stay competitive in the Boston rental market, you’re going to have to get creative and start offering concessions. In fact, in May, more than 40% of all properties in the Boston multifamily market had some form of a concession, according to CoStar. So where do you start if you want to get your apartment rented and prevent extended vacancies? Here are some of the key things you should be focusing on.
Paying Broker Fees
If your apartment is on the market, we strongly advise paying the broker fee. At Charlesgate Realty, we charge one month’s rent. Many larger managed properties and smaller landlords have recently begun offering this to agents. This lowers upfront fees and is often much more effective than just lowering monthly rent.
Watching Market Rent
The market is changing – we’ve seen a downward turn from last season. With that said, it’s important to follow the trends of other similar units on the market. We are seeing average list prices for downtown neighborhood rentals, per MLS data, are $539 less in June 2020 vs. June 2019. Staying aligned with what’s currently available is an easy way to stay competitive in today’s rental market.
Investing in Renovations and Upgrades
If your unit is currently vacant or is expected to be, it may be an opportunity to renovate the kitchen and bath(s). It is not common to have downtime in a unit and many rentals have deferred improvements due to the lack of vacancy. Reinvesting now can help you avoid losing rent in a hotter market and will also make the unit more desirable against competing inventory in the short run.