To-Let Advertising – Dissing the Opposition!

To-Let Advertising – Dissing the Opposition!

11:09 AM, 7th March 2014, About 10 years ago 26

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Sales and marketing isn’t my thing and I’m wondering how aggressive I should be in my property To-Let advertising.

The two bed apartment that I’m soon to complete on is approx 1,000 square foot in size. The problem is that almost every advertised property claims to be ‘spacious’!

I’m planning on letting at about 10-15% more than the average rent (the apartment also has lots of lovely period features etc). To-Let Advertising - Dissing the Opposition

In my drafted advert I say that it is “genuinely spacious” and I mention the square footage (and all the other good stuff about it…). However, I’m a little bit cheesed off that letting agents are describing 600 sq ft properties as spacious (they don’t mention the floor area, but as there’s a lot of new developments in the area it’s been easy to find out).

I know that prospective tenants will see the size difference for themselves when viewing, but you’ve got to get responses to the advert first.

I’m therefore tempted to be more aggressive in my advertising and make comparison, perhaps saying that “… (this is 50% more than the typical apartment in developments X, Y and Z)”. Or do you think that this would just be negative advertising and isn’t the done thing?

A trivial question I know, but any comments will be welcomed…

Many thanks


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Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118

11:11 AM, 7th March 2014, About 10 years ago

Hi Simon

I am a marketing person and I wouldn't say that your proposed wording is "dissing the competition" at all. You are merely pointing out the additional features and benefits associated with your property and providing reasoned justification for the price.

Good luck with it 🙂

11:18 AM, 7th March 2014, About 10 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mark Alexander" at "07/03/2014 - 11:11":

I agree!

We have several tips on marketing your property and finding good tenants in our free guide, please see >>>

Our business model is very different to other letting agents in that we do not offer management. We work on volume and our advertising is a loss leader, just £5 to advertise on Rightmove so you have virtually nothing to lose by giving your ideas a try with us.

All we ask is that you insist upon your tenants being professionally referenced by us. We charge tenants £89 for referencing which is also incredibly competitive when compared with most other agents.

You are not tied into anything else but we do offer a rent collection service which guarantees to pay your rent on the due date even if your tenant is in arrears. We also foot any legal costs associated with eviction if your tenants don't pay. This service costs 5% of rent per month and is obviously only offered subject to tenants being approved under our referencing. Therefore, we are prepared to put our money where our mouth is when it comes to the quality of our referencing 🙂

12:11 PM, 7th March 2014, About 10 years ago

If your property is in Bristol, Cardiff, Bath or the surrounding areas then by all means make contact and we'll be delighted to discuss the valuation and best marketing techniques for your property. There's no obligation to use Piper Property and no fee for having a chat - best way to contact us is via our member profile as we will then know you come to us via Property118 and we may just be able to offer you a special deal 😉

But more generally speaking I think achieving the best response from marketing the property is dependent on the type of property and your target tenants. Whilst I don't disagree with anything said above, there's certainly nothing 'wrong' in your proposed wording. I would personally be hesitant to be too "aggressive" in selling a high end property.

Young professionals looking for a higher end property (being that this seems to be the market your property is aimed at), will probably respond better to a more subtle pitch than "this property is bigger and better than that property", if the photos are taken well they should demonstrate this and simply stating the size is probably more than sufficient to get the viewings if the property is priced correctly.

If you compare marketing your flat to selling a car, you may put a great big luminous green star sticker on a 15 year old mondeo with a 200k miles on the clock, stating the price as "Bargain at £995!". But you wouldn't see that in your local BMW or Mercedes dealership.

Tenants are not stupid, they'll be able to work out that a £1,000 sq ft flat is spacious - I don't think you need to worry.

Best of luck!

Jeremy Smith

12:18 PM, 7th March 2014, About 10 years ago

How about:

Go and waste your time viewing other properties, then come to us, you will see the difference !
100sqm, vs 60sqm
period features vs NO period features
good facilities vs poor facilities
good, responsive managment vs slow, uninterested managment

...go for it, shame the others !!

Simon Coppen

13:16 PM, 7th March 2014, About 10 years ago

Thanks everyone for your comments, they're all appreciated.

Providing reasoned justification for the price was my thinking too, but I can also see Peter's point of view that a more subtle pitch might be better for higher end tenants, assuming they work out that 1,000 sq ft is spacious.

Unfortunately I'm going to be using the photos that were used for selling the place, which are pretty good but could be slightly better at showing off the space. I was going to advertise as soon as we exchange, rather than take my own photos after completion, to minimise the void period.

Maybe I'll compromise and say "...and offering far more character and space than your average two bedroom property". I'm probably over-thinking this now...!

Some One

14:28 PM, 7th March 2014, About 10 years ago

Most people have no idea about floor area, even less so if you express it in square metres. However, if you have a 25' lounge, and an 18' bedroom, say so, adding a floor plan could also help, which seldom happens with lettings.

Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118

14:31 PM, 7th March 2014, About 10 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Some One" at "07/03/2014 - 14:28":

I agree - therefore, the original words was best in my opinion, i.e. "genuinely spacious", "50% bigger than the rest of the properties currently being advertised in this block" etc.

Simon Coppen

14:43 PM, 7th March 2014, About 10 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Some One" at "07/03/2014 - 14:28":

I have doubts about people understanding floor area too.

I will definately be including a floor plan with the photos, especially as I already have one from the sale of the property!

Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118

14:52 PM, 7th March 2014, About 10 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Simon Coppen" at "07/03/2014 - 14:43":

Hi Simon

I'm not convinced people pay that much attention to floor plans, although it's worth adding one if you have one.

I think the pictures and the words are what does the selling though.

Be aware of price bands used by the portals, they tend to go up in incremental steps and generally display from high to low. Therefore, a rent of £999 pcm will display above £995.

Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118

14:59 PM, 7th March 2014, About 10 years ago

PS - just suppose you were thinking of marketing at say £950 pcm.

I would market at £999 pcm but add "will consider discounting by £50 pcm for the right tenant" 🙂

Also say "sharers and pets considered - guarantors may be required". Would you really say no to a person with a Goldfish or a single Mum with a millionaire father willing to stand as guarantor?

I let my nicest property to three sharers. They are rarely there as they are all international helicopter pilots (taking people from Norwich and Great Yarmouth to the oil rigs) and they go home to their wives when they are not working.

Best to keep all options open to appeal to the widest possible audience 🙂

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