As the real estate space continues to struggle with uncertainty, high interest rates and scant inventory in many regions, the rental market stands out for its momentum, which is set to pick up as the warmer months approach. Apartment hunting is steadily on the rise across the U.S. and projected to peak in July as renters seize the opportunity to relocate before harsher weather sets in across various parts of the country.

Recent surveys show that more than half of those living in the U.S. either plan to or are contemplating a move this year, setting the stage for a busy summer in the rental sphere, according to research by Architectural Digest. The motivations behind this migration are diverse: Gen Zers and millennials seek employment prospects and safer neighborhoods, for example, while about a third of respondents were looking to trim living expenses.

Fortunately for those contemplating a change, rental market supply is providing a greater number of options. Data from Yardi Matrix and RentCafe shows a record influx of over 1.6 million new apartments between 2019 and 2023, presenting ample choices for prospective renters.

This surge in relocation aspirations also presents opportunities for real estate professionals to spruce up their business strategy and potentially create new income streams. While the desire to move spans the calendar, summer presents a unique confluence of factors driving demand, including short-term rental spikes as students leave dorms and remote work providing the flexibility for extended stays in preferred locales or closer to family. Research by Doorloop foresees the short-term rental market ballooning to about $8.91 billion by 2026, with continued annual growth through 2032.

Anticipating this seasonal upswing, agents can leverage their expertise to strengthen their business and create supplementary income. 

Professionals can partner with acquaintances and clients interested in tapping into the short-term rental boom. They can lend their market acumen to effectively market and lease properties during peak migration periods. 

Agents can also focus on earning a certification in property management that can provide a stable revenue stream year-round but especially during the busy season. 

Real estate professionals can seek property maintenance, marketing, and leasing opportunities, ensuring a steady flow of income. They can also offer their marketing acumen to landlords to enhance property visibility in competitive markets, and in the process foster long-term client relationships and income avenues. 

Agents can identify opportunities to teach real estate courses or provide coaching services, tapping into the growing interest in real estate careers, showcasing expertise and creating revenue through course fees and coaching sessions. 

Last but not least, leveraging social media in the form of affiliate marketing can generate additional income by promoting relevant products, such as essentials for short-term rentals, through affiliate links.

In addition to these income strategies, smart hacks such as offering virtual property tours and collaborating with vacation rental management companies can amplify agents’ success, especially during the bustling summer season. These partnerships not only expand service offerings but also attract new clients and generate referral-based revenue.

While challenges persist in the for-sale market, the rental sector, especially this summer, presents a myriad of opportunities for creative and out-of-the-box-thinking real estate professionals. Innovative strategies and focusing on strategic alliances can unlock the full potential of the busy summer months.

Michael Lucarelli is the CEO and Co-Founder of RentSpree.

This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of HousingWire’s editorial department and its owners.

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