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REAL ESTATE Pick my idea apart!!!

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aptohosting

Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Aug 16, 2007
360
71
38
North Carolina
POSTED THIS IN E-BIZ! Thought you RE folks could help me out also!

Hey guys,

I am constantly asked for advice on rental properties and help finding them from my college friends (slow lane alert). I guess since I am one of the few that decided to buy, it makes me the real estate guru! Either way here is my idea.

1) I was going to develop a website that allowed rental agencies to post their rental properties for free.

2) All the properties would be near campus and targeted for students.

3) The students would see one of the hundreds of ads on campus and go to this site.

4) Upon getting to the site, they find a property they want, they press GET MORE INFO.

5) Instantly the rental firm that owns the property receives the lead email, I receive the lead email, and the student will wait for their information.

6) Once the email is sent out, it will automatically withdraw from that agencies account they they have with us. I was figuring $5-10 per lead.

Obviously there is face book and craigslist that I am competing with, but none of them are targeted nor monitored. There is so much crappy properties, duplicates, low quality images, etc. I thought that this may be a good way to help students find rental properties and make a killing at the same time.

Let me know what you think, REAL ESTATE PEOPLE I WANT YOUR INPUT ESPECIALLY!

Thanks
Tom
www.aptohosting.com


 

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kurtyordy

Bronze Contributor
Aug 28, 2007
2,375
282
70
42
PA
Ok, here is my 2 cents...

If I was to use this I would be more likely to use it if it was structured as so....

Potential tenant fills out app with you. You run credit check, cust pays $25. They can be sold on this because the $25 covers 35 landlords or whatever the number is.

You then cross reference their app with landlords desires, i.e. pets, smoking, credit score, etc.

You email perspective tenants list of qualifying landlords, they pick one and you send to landlord with copy of credit report and highlighting the matches. Landlord pay $25-$35 per qualified lead.

Let me know if this was confusing, my brain is functioning slow right now.
 

Yankees338

Bronze Contributor
Jul 24, 2007
1,829
136
81
29
NJ/MD
Ok, here is my 2 cents...

If I was to use this I would be more likely to use it if it was structured as so....

Potential tenant fills out app with you. You run credit check, cust pays $25. They can be sold on this because the $25 covers 35 landlords or whatever the number is.

You then cross reference their app with landlords desires, i.e. pets, smoking, credit score, etc.

You email perspective tenants list of qualifying landlords, they pick one and you send to landlord with copy of credit report and highlighting the matches. Landlord pay $25-$35 per qualified lead.

Let me know if this was confusing, my brain is functioning slow right now.
I like that idea a lot. Including a quality service like that would definitely be beneficial to a lead-gen site.
 

ChrisS417

New Contributor
Sep 24, 2007
81
10
27
34
St. Louis, MO
The real estate brokerage I work for has a similar program. It isn't a web business, but the web is involved. For $50 we will market someone's unit, take the phone calls about the unit, set up appointments and show the unit, run credit and check references, and then present the landlord with the credit info and background and they have the ultimate decision for whether or not they want the tenant. If they say no, we keep on looking, if they say yes, they owe us a $400 commission. We have about 20 clients for this program and it works very well.
 

tbsells

Contributor
Jul 27, 2007
304
59
31
Ohio
Apto,
I think its a great idea. But, as a real estate broker I would be concerned about paying for unqualified leads or leads for prospects that were not serious. The quality of the lead is what we are interested in. If they are prescreened or prequalified according to some criteria it would be much more valuable. You would be more likely to get $50 for a good lead than $5 for a random name, phone #, and email address.
 

Jorge

Bronze Contributor
Oct 5, 2007
583
103
32
38
Mendoza, Argentina
I think its a great idea! Owning a webhosting company, this should be no problem for you at all, I say go for it.

TbSells, based on what criteria would you qualify the leads? Credit is one of them, of course, but what else?
 

aptohosting

Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Aug 16, 2007
360
71
38
North Carolina
TBsells- Can you get me on AOL Instant Messenger (mrgoodcat).

If you got time I would love to pick your brain!

Thanks
Tom
 

aptohosting

Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Aug 16, 2007
360
71
38
North Carolina
Thanks guys for the quality information!

Getting lots of good ideas and suggestions.

Tom C.
www.aptohosting.com
 

8 SNAKE

Contributor
Aug 15, 2007
239
44
25
Midwest
Tom,

I don't know your market, but from your first post I got the impression that you were servicing the prospective tenants more than the landlords. If that is correct, shouldn't you be charging the tenants for your service? Are rental firms having a tough time filling vacancies around campus?

If that business model won't work, I'd consider charging the rental firm a higher rate for actual tenants that are referred from your sight rather than prospects (or perhaps you can charge the tenants and the rental firms to cash in on both ends).
 

tbsells

Contributor
Jul 27, 2007
304
59
31
Ohio
I would prequalify or prescreen based on the following criteria:
1) Credit. Most college students are going to have little or none established. Thats OK. I would work with it as long as its not bad.
2) Are Mom and/or Dad willing to cosign? Many would be and obviously thats a big plus.
3) Criminal background check.
4) Enrolled status at a local college or university.
5) How are they going to pay rent? Are they working, being funded by Mom/Dad, on scholarship or grants, loans, etc...?

If the above check out OK, then this becomes very important:

How soon do you intend to rent and do you have the required security deposit and first months rent? Or whatever the landlord requires.

If you can prequalify them as ACCEPTABLE and then show they are MOTIVATED you really have something of value to landlords.

This is probably something that could be a simple one page online application much like a simple loan application. You could even grant them "prequalified" status like a loan company does. The more I think about this- I think its a great idea.

Tom-I have to go out for a while. I'll try to reach you later.
 

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