RISMedia's Real Estate Magazine

MAR 2019

Real Estate magazine is the industry's leading source for real estate news and information since 1980. Published monthly by RISMedia, Real Estate magazine offers timely and relevant real estate news to the industry's top brokers and agents.

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44 March 2019 RISMedia's REAL ESTATE Tapping Into the Lucrative Rental Market RENTAL CONNECT FROM HOMES.COM SETS THE STAGE FOR BUSINESS NOW—AND WELL INTO THE FUTURE by John Voket L ike any new real estate professional, when she broke into the business in late 2013, Jen Carlisle was beginning a new career with no experience and no leads. But she eventually managed to find a niche that she felt a lot of other agents were ignoring: clients looking for help securing a rental. "When I started in real estate, I had no business," says Carlisle, "so I did all the rental leads and slowly, but surely, those renters came to me and said, 'I'm ready to buy.'" Carlisle, a REALTOR® at Costello Real Estate and In - vestments in Charlotte, N.C., with additional offices in Raleigh, N.C., and Fort Mill, S.C., recently enlisted the best partner she could find to connect her to prospects: Homes.com and its Rental Connect product. "I used to work for a company that did a lot of prop - erty management, so when I went to Costello, I didn't have any more rental leads, so my broker/owner sug - gested I contact all the lead-generation companies— a n d Homes.com was the only one that provided the kind of rental leads I could use," says Carlisle, who recently got a call about a $2,800-per-month rental. "Some of these are pretty high-end inquiries," notes Carlisle, who goes on to explain that a majority of the renters she's met have unique needs because they have a high self-employment income, less-than-perfect credit or they simply aren't able to buy. After connecting these particular clients to a rental, Carlisle can work with them like a full-service finan - cial counselor, helping them transition to lease-to-own situations at a rate of one or two homes per month, virtually all coming from her Homes.com rental leads program. One recent lead involved an individual with high veri - fied income, but a lower-than-preferred credit score. Car- lisle used her experience and knowledge to counsel the client, and was able to help him achieve his homeowner - ship goal relatively quickly. "He only needed a few more points on that credit score, so I studied his credit report and advised him to pay just a few more things off," says Carlisle. "Once he paid off those accounts, he immediately qualified for a lease-to-own program on a gorgeous home he'll be ready to buy in three to five years." As she's settled into her niche over the years, Carl - isle finds that the renters she works with are more than grateful when she calls. "Many of them say that as soon as they talk about their credit score, a lot of real estate professionals won't work with them," says Carlisle, "but there are a lot more people with past credit issues than there are perfect credit scores." In addition to the easy-to-use CRM interface that Homes.com provides, Carlisle has also developed a great relationship with her Homes.com rep, who she says has become like a close friend. "In six months, I've developed 90 leads," says Carl - isle, who is already getting new referrals from people she helped from her Homes.com leads. "I've only been using Homes.com for six or seven months, and I've already made $50,000 or $60,000 from their leads," she adds. Thanks to her success rate, Carlisle was invited to be part of Costello's training team, a role in which she helps new agents learn how to convert lease-to-own and rental clients into homeowners. Naturally, one of the tools she recommends to every new real estate professional to help them jump-start their careers is Homes.com. RE For more information, please visit https://marketing.homes.com/advertising/ property-managers/.

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