Getting the Most out of Online Property Rental Platforms



Before she started using online property rental platforms like Rental Beast, You Got Listings, and Zillow’s now-defunct RentJuice, Isabel DelValle had her work cut out for her when it came to tenant screening, finding non-MLS rental listings, and ferreting out deals that didn’t require a co-broker fee arrangement.


For the last year and a half, this Realtor with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in Boston has been using Rental Beast (a Coldwell Banker affiliate partner) to more efficiently manage her rental business.


Here are three ways that DelValle makes the most of the online platform.


  • Relying on it to scrub potential tenant leads. Renters go the site, look around at what’s available, and then fill out a registration form. Rental Beast scrubs the lead to see if the person is serious, makes an introduction via phone, and then passes the lead along to DelValle.


  • Using it to organize rental listings. Unlike homes that are for sale, rentals are usually on the market for just a short period of time – days, or less. DelValle uses the platform to narrow down the choices, condense the listings, and save time having to go back through them for every new tenant. And because the platform gathers information from the MLS as well as through landlords and property managers, she can also use it to organize listings she may not have otherwise heard about.


  • Putting her in touch with direct listings. Because she represents renters (who typically pay the broker fee in Boston), DelValle usually has split her fees with a co-broker for MLS-listed properties. “Ideally, I’d rather have the full fee,” says DelValle, “so I use Rental Best to find the direct listings which, in turn, increases my earnings.”


Focused mainly on Boston, DelValle also uses the platform to find the right rental for clients who are looking outside of the city limits. The tool proved valuable when she worked with a couple that wanted to live in a nearby town. “There’s a lot of inventory on Rental Beast that I wouldn’t have even known about,” says DelValle. “Using the platform, I was able to find a property that my clients loved and make a full commission in the process.

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After earning her bachelor’s degree in journalism at the University of Central Florida, Tracey set out in the real world at Florida Realtors in 1994 as a communication assistant, working her way up to editor in chief of Florida Realtor magazine. In 2004, she left the association to start her freelance writing and editing business. One of her first clients was REAL Trends, and she started working for the organization in 2005. In 2014, Tracey was promoted to editor in chief of publications for REAL Trends. She handles the writing and editing of all REAL Trends publications and marketing materials, including LORE Magazine, the REAL Trends newsletter and the blog. She is also the primary podcast interviewer where she conducts interviews with top real estate industry leaders and affiliated industry leaders. Tracey is married with two children.

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