At McCaw Property Management, we manage rental properties all over north Texas, and we get a lot of questions from landlords and rental property owners about how they should advertise their properties. Everyone knows that online advertising is where you’re going to reach the largest pool of prospective tenants.
But, what about yard signs? Many people ask us whether we use yard signs when we have a vacant property to rent out.
The short answer to this questions is yes – we do use yard signs as part of our marketing plans.
The long answer to this question is maybe – it isn’t always the best strategy.
Let’s dig a little deeper into the question of yard signs.
Yard Signs Then vs. Yard Signs Today
Back in 2003, when I first started managing rental properties in Fort Worth and throughout Texas, you’d always put a sign in the yard when a property was for rent. People would often drive around in the neighborhoods that they wanted to live in, so there was an excellent chance that good prospective tenants would see the sign and get in touch.
However, there are not a lot of people doing this as much today. Today, you might get some people driving or walking through neighborhoods, but it’s not quite as common. Tenants have an easier time going online to browse through rental listings. They’d prefer to search for houses at 2:00 in the morning, while they’re comfortable and unable to sleep. They have access to dozens of rental websites now, and they can search based on the neighborhoods and areas they want to live in. There’s no longer a need to be physically present in the neighborhood in order to find a home that’s for rent there.
Yard Sign Risks: Opportunity Theft
Another reason that using yard signs may not be the best idea is that there is some risk involved. Some people who are driving around the neighborhoods looking for signs can be sketchy people who are looking for opportunity theft. You’re basically advertising that a property is vacant. This might invite some questionable behavior.
It really depends on the home and the location. In certain neighborhoods, we would prefer to not put a for rent sign in the yard, especially if the property is vacant. We don’t want to open the door to theft for someone looking for appliances or a condenser.
It’s not something we like to think about, but it does happen. Managing risk is part of the business of managing properties, and it’s our job to reduce those opportunity thefts.
So, to answer the question of yard signs – yes, we do on occasion put signs in yards based on the neighborhood.
Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions. At McCaw Property Management, we would love to help you make good decisions about your rental property. We believe it will help the industry if we all help each other.