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Over the years managing rental units, it’s surprising how many tenants we’ve come across haven’t exactly been through real estate agents. This is particularly so for the average working class. Many Papua New Guineans are starting to be more smarter in the way they search for rental properties because real estate agents are being viewed as more for the “big” businesses. So we’ve knocked up a list of the ways in which we’ve come across Papua New Guineans looking for rental units and “scored” good deals.
Ask your work colleagues
Word of mouth marketing is so powerful and asking workmates at work is a clever way to start your property hunting. There’s a good chance your workmates are also renting so they might have come across properties that might suit you.
Ask your friends
A friend of a friend could lead you to become your friends after helping you find an affordable unit because that friend, new a friend of a friend who owns rental units 🙂
The wantok system can help in times of need. Papua New Guineans live a communal lifestyle and we tend to worry a lot about how our relatives are doing and what problems they’re facing. You never know until you ask.
Ask at church
Do you go to church? Why not ask the pastor, the deacon or anyone at church who you think might own property or know of someone who manages properties. It’s a small world, you know, and next thing you know, you’re blessed with an affordable rental unit for your family. Hallelluia!
Play sport? Ask your captain
If you’re involved in sport, don’t be shy to ask your team mates or the captain. You’re part of the team and if everyone in your team thinks as a team they’ll help you out.
Grab a newspaper and check the classifieds section. We’ve found that the more desperate are heading there. Traditionally, this was the place to go but you know what, the internet has taken over and if that has failed landlords revert back to the old Classifieds. Make an offer, the landlord is desperate.
Speaking of the internet, Facebook is the buzz word in PNG. Everyone goes to Facebook they say and while that’s not entirely true it plays a big part in real estate marketing. The good thing about Facebook is that most who advertise are owners themselves so you deal direct and no annoying middleman.
Inbox Key Profiles
On Facebook you can get to message someone you think posts regularly on rentals and with their network they can help you at a more personal level direct you to someone that might have a property that fits your description. Just tell them you’ve found them posting about rentals so decided to contact them direct. It won’t hurt but be courteous.
Drive Around Neighbourhood
Each suburb has a particular rental range. Consider your budget and work out what particular suburbs might suit your budget and drive around. Some houses in Port Moresby now advertise rental vacancies on their fence. It used to be a real estate thing, you know, but times have changed. Those with spare units realize how valuable their space is and they want every toea of it so they plaster their own sign at the front gate.
While you’re driving around the neighborhood, stop at the buai stall because chances are Mama Susi or Aunty Agnes has a fair idea who in the street has a unit available. They’ll even let you know who the last tenant was and possibly why that tenant left!
Real Estate Agent
This might sound a little weird but real estate agents know the ins and outs of the property market. They even know properties that are not on their list but might suit you. They can direct you to the property owner themselves too. But keep it a secret!
The Boroko Foodworld Supermarket noticeboard is one place we’ve found affordable accommodation. Not to say that everything plastered there is cheap but if you check regularly you’ll see new notices up every week and there is bound to be something that could get your attention. Patience!
Loans officers deal with property owners regularly. If you have a contact at the bank who deals with or knows someone who deals with mortgages, they’re worth asking.
Nearby villages are now realizing the hardship for many workers in Town who are looking for rental units. While there are issues of safety and hygiene to consider, some workers in Town are renting units in the villages or on the fringes and these are usually at low rentals. Ask anyone you know from a village nearby and they will help you.
Know someone working in the insurance industry? They deal with property owners quite frequently so they could help you too.