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Thursday, 15 October 2015 05:00

Using Sales Principles to Engage a Tenant's Emotions

emotionSigning a Tenant is An Emotion-Based Process

If you’ve ever been in the sales business of any kind, you must have heard that people are said to making purchases with their emotions and backing it up with logic. This principle along with clear communication is the key to ensuring you keep the right tenant in your property. There's more to investing in rental property than just buying a rental home.

In this article, we are going to see how this principle can help us fill vacancies and keep the rent money flowing in.

Make Purchases With Emotions

We all believe that we’re rational people who have legitimate reasons why we do things that we do, but science manages to prove us wrong time and time again. Investing in real estate takes a study into the emotions of home buyers.

The science behind decision-making is that every choice that comes our way is influenced by (at least!) three irrational factors:

  • Our current state of mind (Priming)
  • Our analysis of our own needs (Desire), and
  • Our analysis of other people's opinions (Judgment)


Behavioral scientists use the term “priming” to describe a phenomenon in which our brains unknowingly show a reaction to things in our instant experience. When you are investing in rental property, its vital to know such factors.

An experiment that proved this phenomenon showed that when a group of people were asked to take a multiple choice test, the group whose answers included words like “wrinkle” and “forget” walked out of the room more slowly as compared to the group whose answers had words like “home run” and “kinetic.”

If we want to get the potential tenants that we’re showing properties ready to sign the deal, we should consider what we’re priming the prospects with things. For instance:

  • The walk from the car to the front door: How does it feel like? Smooth or rocky? Is the tenant in line with your goals of investing in rental property.
  • The process of getting from outside to inside: Are there quite a few steps or is it one-and-done?


We know you are thinking that it’s impossible to change someone’s desires and that people already have pretty clear idea of what they need.

Once again, science proves us that people are well aware of what they want, but often have little to no idea of how what they’re looking at suits with their 'wants.' A great example to prove this point is the door-to-door sales logic that says that everything presented should not always be in terms of a feature (“This home has laminate floors in the bathroom”), but should be in terms of an advantage (“The bathroom floors are easy to clean”). For those investing in rental property, the right advantages can help lure the perfect tenant.

This can magically influence people’s decision-making process because instead of looking at things from the point of what they experience in their everyday lives they right away imagine themselves suffering a fictional problem and then preventing it through the use of the advantage. Investing in rental property is a course in psychology as much as it is in profit/loss calculations.

This can certainly be applied during the showing, but is of more importance for the person drafting the advertisement. Calling a lawn “low-maintenance” solves a problem; calling it “green” does not.


Finally, comes judgment–the subconscious processing what other people will think. This can be both favorable and unfavorable for someone trying to fill vacancies because prospects inherently consider the seller’s opinion as not only treacherous, but also misleading because they have a purpose(filling the vacancy). So, if you say a meaningless term while showing a property (“This kitchen is great), it not only gets discarded, but often negatively impacts their opinion. Your best route is to stick to specific claims (and link them to features!) when presenting a rental property to a prospect.

If we use sales principles to engage a potential tenant's emotions, we’ll be able to efficiently fill vacancies across all the rental properties we manage.

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