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Spareroom fake AD to check rental demand?

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Hi guys,

I'm a property investor, I know there are conflicted opinions about posting a Spareroom fake ADs to check rental demand in a certain area. A lot of courses (and property leaders) out there suggest putting out fake ads to check demand, as they mean it's the most efficient way. I know there is a moral issue here, but other than that, it seems like Spareroom has increased its screening process, they want to validate that you in fact are a landlord of that property by asking you for certain documents before you can post anything.

In other words, even if I wanted to, it seems like its much more difficult now. My question is, has anyone here encountered this problem before? Do you get around it somehow?

Or in general how do you guys check rental demand before investing in a property if not testing ads first?

Many thanks for responses, know i'm not necessarily supporting putting out fake ads, i'm only interested in the most thorough way possible to check rental demand before investing.

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Have done a spare room advert previously, although a couple of years now so rules have probably changed. It was on a property we owned but the tenant was leaving and wanted to see if could get interest at a higher rent. In reality, spare room is more for house share, so rooms in an HMO etc. Doesn't work so well with full houses.

Earlier this year, we used Open Rent. In the main that was because we weren't that happy with the job our new agent was doing on finding tenants following a refurb. When people got in touch, we then directed them to the agent to do the viewings and referencing, but in terms of getting responses, I was surprised how well it worked.

So not quite fake ads but it was useful to gauge interest. That said, there's no way of knowing how many are serious, how many would be suitable tenants etc. If your interested in understanding tenant demand, I think you're better off looking at the lettings section on something like Rightmove and seeing what's available and what's been let. Look at the rents, the condition, how long they've been available etc. 




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There's a few things that I do then compile them all together to make this decision as informed as possible. Firstly, I would talk to a local realtor and get their opinion on the matter. They'll have in depth knowledge and lots of resources at their disposal. Obviously they have to get something out of it so I ask the ones that i have built relationships with over the years and just ask for a ball park figure.

The other thing to do is to look at 'let agreed' properties on spare room or rightmove etc then look at available properties and see the ratio. By doing this on multiple different websites you start to get an understanding of how the market is doing. 

I also sometimes ask the local housing authority as they can give you information on tenant demand and they offer this for free. 

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