Tenant Search


Tenant Search

By using a multiple number of ways to find potential tenants, landlords can help increase the odds of quickly finding a good tenant for a vacant rental property.

Few common ways for finding suitable tenants A good tenant can be worth their weight in gold, but finding tenants isn’t always as easy as it might seem. Fortunately, there are several good ways to find prospective tenants, when a landlord knows where to look:

Property manager/leasing agent

The best property managers have an in-depth knowledge of the local rental market and may already have a waiting list of tenants that are ready, willing, and qualified to rent.  Good managers and leasing agents know how to set the rent at a competitive price to reduce the time the property is vacant, tout features the property has that tenants are looking for, and spot potential red flags when showing the property.

Rental listing sites

Nearly every demographic group – from Generation Z and millennials to Generation X and baby boomers – like rental listing websites to find a home to rent.

Landlords using a rental listing website benefit from significantly increased marketing exposure, saving time and money by reaching more prospective tenants faster to get a vacant home rented quicker. Many rental listing websites also offer optional features such as tenant screening and automated rent collection.

Popular rental listing websites to consider using this year include:

Property Finder

For rent sign

Putting up a “For Rent” sign in the front yard or window can be a simple yet extremely effective strategy for finding a new renter. Oftentimes prospective tenants drive through the neighborhood looking for a home to rent, or the neighbors might know of someone who is looking for a rental in the area.  Be sure that the contact phone number is easy to see from the street, consider including a website address for the property, and check with the HOA to make sure posting a “for rent” sign is allowed.

Property website

Even for landlords with just one rental home, a property website can be inexpensive and easy to set up. Website builders for real estate include Wix, Weebly, and WordPress.org, with pre-built professionally designed website templates for real estate and rental property. 

Include key information about the rental property such as:

Attention-grabbing description
High-quality photos
3D video tour
Floorplan of the home
Number of bedrooms and bathrooms
Monthly rent price
Available move-in date
Contact information for the landlord or property manager

Social media

Leverage the network effect that social media has to offer by sharing an available rental property on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to let the world know there’s a great home available for rent. 

Asking friends and family to do the same on their social networks can help to get the word out much faster, because nearly everyone uses social media as part of their daily routine.  

The Facebook marketplace is another good site for advertising a rental property, then follow up by posting an account status update and a photo of the rental home on Instagram.


Print media can still be an effective way to find tenants for a rental property, especially in smaller cities or urban areas where there is a community newspaper. 

Check with the newspaper to learn what days readership is highest, then run an ad on the days when the paper sells a large number of copies. 

Rental real estate ads generally run only a few lines, so plan on using abbreviations such as BR for bedroom, or consider spending a little bit more in marketing to run a larger classified or display ad.


Printing and handing out flyers can be another strategy to use for getting the word out that a property is available to rent or to announce an open house. Think of a rental property flyer as a large classified ad, and include information a prospective tenants needs to know:

Property description
Monthly rent
Available move-in date
Landlord or property manager phone number
Property website address
Social media accounts

Bulletin boards

Public locations such as grocery stores, churches and community centers, and laundromats have a high amount of foot traffic and usually have bulletin boards for the general public to use.  Post a version of the rental property flyer used to hand out, being sure to use an eye-catching headline and attention-grabbing photos, along with tear-off tabs with contact information so prospective renters can take on while they are walking by.

Word of mouth

According to Forbes, word of mouth marketing is the original social media platform and still one of the most effective forms of marketing. Investors who let everyone in their professional network know a home is available for rent may be able to quickly find a qualified tenant.  Another good source for word of mouth advertising are current tenants who may have a relative, friend, or co-worker looking for a great place to rent. Some landlords even offer tenants a small referral fee for referring an applicant who ends up renting.

Key takeaways

  • Effective ways to find tenants include working with a leasing agent, holding a for-rent open house, and using a rental listing website.
  • The best local property managers often have waiting lists of qualified tenants who are ready to rent a nice home.
  • After gathering rental applications, landlords screen tenants based on a number of criteria including credit score, income-to-rent ratio, background check, and pet ownership.
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