Rental Open Houses? Is This a New Trend in Boston Real Estate?

Rental Open Houses?


Recently, I’ve noticed a new trend that is starting to catch on in the Boston rental market. It’s the concept of a rental open house. This type of open house isn’t really the same as a “for sale” open house, its more of a”tool to rent it out quickly and easily.  In this market, things are going fast.  Actually, things can be said for the sales market too (if the product is right), but there are a few differences between the “rental open house” and the “for sale open house”. For sale open houses are tools to increase exposure and get people in the door. Open houses for rentals are similar, but there are intended to get multiple offers, and to minimize the amount of showings.

There are a few pro’s for this. Pros are: They can generate large interest and a possible offer over asking (good for the landlord and not the renter), they make it easier for a Real Estate Agent to rent out the property. Why? Instead of showing it 7 times over 4 days, you can get 7 people in one day and rent it out in 2 hours.

Cons for this are really against the renter and real estate agents working for the renter. For instance, I am working with a particular customer and i was trying to get them in the next day after it had been listed. I usually try to keep an eye out for properties, and i like to get clients in, soon after it goes on the market. I saw a great listing, called the listing agent and was told “no showings till the open house.” which was 4 days after the listing had been made open to the public. I did my job, tried to get them in early, no luck. The downside was, my client was not around in 4 days and if they were, it’s not an ideal situation.

The interesting this i see in this concept, is, we don’t see this  in slower markets. Now that  we are in the busiest season with low inventory and high interest,  people sometimes have to bite the bullet and overpay as well as take something a little lesser quality than they had hoped for. This is something that we saw in the sales market during the boom, now its time for the rental market to follow suit.

Bottom Line…..It’s tough to be a renter this Summer. It’s also tough to be an agent working on behalf of the renter. Low inventory + high interest = higher rents and a lot of stress.

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