There are pros and cons to either choice, and whether or not you should list your property’s pricing information depends on what the price is and who you’re trying to reach.
If your property decides to keep its prices off the internet, instead requiring a phone call or email to inquire about rent, you’ve got a foot in the door with potential tenants. However, by keeping the prices hidden, there is an underlying implication that perhaps they are so high that not having them listed is to save the public from sticker shock.
On the other end, listing rental pricing can help attract target demographics. If the pricing is reasonable, you’ll see more people close on a room who might not feel like calling 20 properties that day. In bigger cities, housing rates can be one of the primary things people filter for, and less confrontational individuals might give up on a property that looks good but doesn’t disclose rent.
College students (or younger generations more generally) who tend to be less likely to pick up the phone and reach out, may be more comfortable with a more clear informational picture. However, specifying rent carries the risk that wider populations will be severed. These properties also face the added annoyance of having to stay on top of their website’s data entry.
The New York Times wrote an article titled The Psychology of Pricing, that details the struggle properties face when pricing.
It noted “An equally compelling reason to fly low is to adhere to psychological ‘breakpoints.’ These are dollar thresholds that buyers are most likely to select as the top amounts they are initially willing to spend or to use in internet searches.”
This section alludes to properties that charge $5-10 less than their competitors and appear to be a steal. In these instances, having the price listed is beneficial because potential renters feel they’re getting a deal. This method is common. Properties all over the country battle for the lowest prices (within certain margins) that will still bring profit without overwhelming possible tenants.
Those properties that withhold pricing can facilitate the good-deal illusion by advertising an all-inclusive rent. By illustrating included amenities and other possible benefits, all-in-one leasing helps take the pressure off potential tenants who won’t have to worry about keeping up with multiple bills. This, coupled with certain other factors like desirable location, can help sway renters who might otherwise have outright rejected a property falling outside a preferred price range.
In the event that your property relies on an application to configure the pricing for available units daily, the inclusion of this on the listing might sway a potential tenant to make a phone call and learn more. Properties are also beginning to display the average pricing in their area versus other popular areas to give future tenants a more holistic idea of the market in which they are looking.
Camouflaging your property’s pricing to encourage feet in the door is a wise business strategy in many instances.
However, it prevents your listing from appearing in price-filtered searches on popular search engines like College Rentals, thus keeping it from being readily accessible.
Consider your options carefully and choose what works best for you.