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Lease Your Rental Faster by Leveraging Local Time to Lease Data

Published on: Feb 16, 2024

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When it comes to the rental market, knowledge is power—and data is the source of that power. Zillow's comprehensive days on market (DOM) data provides an invaluable resource for rental property owners looking to optimize their pricing strategies. 

What does DOM mean you may wonder? DOM, or days on market, in this data means how many days the average property is marketed for rent. DOM, in this case, is the time it takes to lease your home which is also how long you wait before you earn rent.

Understanding the average DOM for your specific zip code and home type is crucial to creating a pricing strategy that not only competes but also stands out in today's market.

The Importance of Pricing with the Market

By aligning your property's rental price with the market average, you're more likely to achieve a market average DOM.

Take, for example, one of our recent customers who owned a 3-bedroom townhome in Denver. Aware of the Denver market's average DOM of 41 days for a property of this type, the owner set a competitive initial price. After observing the market response for 5 days, they implemented a single meaningful price drop. The result? A lease signed in just 9 days—well below the average DOM.

This case illustrates that with a well-considered listing and smart pricing, it is entirely possible to outpace the market averages.

How to Use Zillow's Data to Your Advantage

Zillow's rental market trends data can be a powerful tool in your arsenal. Here's how you can make the most of it:

  1. Visit Zillow's Market Trends: Start by visiting Zillow's rental market trends page to gather data on average DOM for homes that match your property's characteristics in your area. Put in your city or zip code, and filter by your property type and bedrooms to see the most relevant data to your property.

  2. Analyze Your Property Type and Location: Compare your property to those in your area with a similar number of bedrooms and similar amenities. Note how many days these homes have been actively listed for rent, and keep track of the address of similar homes for rent that have leased so you can see how many days they were listed. This will give you a benchmark for setting your rental price. 

  3. Set a Competitive Price: Price your property at or just below the market average to attract attention and encourage quicker leasing. Remember, if you price your property at the market average rent, you can expect to lease your property around the average market average DOM.

  4. Stay Flexible: Be prepared to adjust your price if the initial market response is lukewarm. A small reduction early on can lead to quicker leasing, as our Denver case study shows.

  5. Highlight Your Property's Best Features: Make your listing shine by focusing on what makes your property unique. High-quality photos, a detailed description, and an emphasis on desirable features can make all the difference.

Remember, while the average DOM is a useful guide, it's not a fixed rule. Your property is unique, and with the right strategy, you can secure a lease faster than the averages might suggest.

Conclusion

In the competitive rental market, smart pricing is not just about setting the right number—it's about making informed decisions based on reliable data. These market trends are an excellent starting point for understanding how to price your property effectively. Combine this with a standout listing, and a smart pricing strategy, and you're well on your way to securing a lease ahead of the curve.

Make data-driven decisions, and let the numbers guide you to rental success.

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