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Why Virtual Tours are a Must for Rental Property Owners

Des Moines Property Manager Creating a Virtual Tour VideoAs a Des Moines rental property owner, you are certainly aware of marketing as a crucial key to getting excellent renters. And if you’re not offering virtual tours yet, you’re missing out! Granting potential tenants the capability to take a virtual tour of your rental properties is the best thing to show them what they’re buying before they even walk through the door. In the next paragraphs, we’ll speak about the rewards of having virtual tours for your rental property marketing, and elaborate on why every rental property owner should be using them.

Virtual Tour Basics

By definition, a virtual tour is a digitally rendered walk-through of a rental property. As distinct from photographs, which showcase the property based on the photographer’s point of view, virtual tours can extend an in-depth glimpse into each room of a property. Virtual tours can indeed make it plausible for renters to measure spaces and areas of the home and even digitally arrange their furnishings to see how they would fit.

New studies have presented that renters would like virtual tours of rental properties. According to results compiled by Zumper, surpassing 70% of renters say they would be satisfied to rent an apartment without seeing it in person if they could inspect it through a 3D virtual tour.

Types of Virtual Tours

Virtual tours are an immersive way for prospective tenants to view your rental properties. They extend an effective opportunity for possible renters to get a feel for the space and see if it meets their needs without having to go to see the property physically.

There are three main types of virtual tours: a 360 virtual tour, a 3D virtual tour, and a virtual reality tour.

  1. 360 Virtual Tour. A 360 virtual tour is a single panoramic image affixed together from countless photographs. These tours let possible tenants examine an entire room in one image, then click and drag to look around. 360 virtual tours are hassle-free and quite affordable to produce, making them an excellent option for Des Moines property managers just starting with virtual tours.
  2. 3D Virtual Tour. A more immersive alternative than a 360 virtual tour, a three-dimensional (or “true”) virtual tour easily allows prospective tenants to walk through the property as if they were there. These tours are set up by taking many photographs of a rental property and then piecing them together employing special software. With the time and effort spent on making them, high-end rental properties usually only use three-dimensional virtual tours.
  3. Virtual Reality Tour. The newest and most immersive type of virtual tour is the virtual reality (VR) tour. These tours enable would-be tenants to put on a VR headset and explore the property as if they were actually walking through it. While VR tours are still mostly rare, they are turning more and more popular as VR technology becomes more accessible.

What are the benefits of virtual tours?

  • Convenience. Quite possibly the greatest advantage of virtual tours is that they are unusually convenient. Likely tenants can tour your rental properties without having to leave their homes or work schedules. This is primarily useful for out-of-state or international renters who might have challenges arranging a time to tour the property physically.
  • 24/Hour Availability. Virtual tours are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This denotes that possible tenants can tour your rental properties on their own schedule, without having to work around your availability.
  • Increased Engagement. Virtual tours are also proven to increase engagement. A study by Inman News identified that properties with virtual tours receive, on average, 42% more website views than those without virtual tours.
  • Improved SEO. Together with more engagement, virtual tours can additionally increase your rental property’s SEO. Google wants the latest content, and placing a virtual tour of your property listing is the best way to set new content and greatly improve your ranking in search results.

How to Optimize Your Virtual Tours

Quality Matters. Be certain to use high-quality images and videos, and stop using low-resolution or blurry photos. You intend for potential tenants to get a clear sense of your rental properties, so be certain to use quality virtual tour content.

Include a Call to Action. Ensure to include a call to action (CTA) at the end of your virtual tour. A CTA is a statement or button urging potential tenants to take the next step, the same with scheduling a showing or contacting you for more information. By incorporating a CTA, would-be tenants are more likely to rent from you.


Virtual tours are an appropriate way to grant potential tenants a feel for your rental properties without having to physically visit the property. If you’re not already making use of virtual tours in your rental property marketing, now is the best time to start. Ready to learn more as regards how to add virtual tours to your rental property marketing? Contact us online today!

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