How to Make Extra Money by Selling Ad Space

Written on December 3, 2014 by , updated on April 23, 2015

Make Money with Ad SpaceIf you’ve ever hung a “For Rent” sign, then you’ve already dabbled in the $6.9 billion outdoor advertising industry.

But why stop at promoting your own vacancies?

If your rental has “location, location, location” then you likely have an opportunity to sell ad space to other businesses and make extra money every month.

Breaking Down the Idea

Take a look at the following idea breakdown table:

Paid Ad Space
What: Use a section of your fences and/or building as a billboard.
Time Commitment:●○○○○
Why:Hanging a piece of outdoor advertisement (banner, balloon, wallscape) on your rental property may allow you to create a tenant-independent profit center.
Increase Net Income By:Creating reoccurring advertisement revenue
What You Need:

  • High traffic count (walking or vehicle) for target audience visibility

  • A fence, face of building, or roof top

  • A basic marketing plan

The Extreme Version:A single family home rental sits on corner lot that backs up to busy intersection. The landlord hangs banners above the fence line every other month promoting a nonprofit’s annual events/fundraiser.

Based on text message responses, the landlord is able to measure response rate and demonstrate effectiveness. This helps increase placement rates and grow the landlord's customer base.

The tenants don't mind at all; they receive a small royalty.
Possible New Income Streams:

  • Commission from banner printing companies

  • Reservation fees for annual bookings

  • Big time political ad revenue

  • Night projections onto your building
Nontangible Benefits:
  • Another way to get people to notice your rental and reduce your own vacancies.

  • List of clientele could be sold along with real estate.
Steps to Implement/Test:

  1. Check with your City’s zoning codes.

  2. Hang an “Advertise Here” banner.

  3. See who calls.

  4. Give free advertisement to a nonprofit and get their testimony.

Examples & Ideas


Example of Event Sponsorship

If you have a corner lot near a church, school, or any nonprofit, then you should consider the potential for additional revenue.

Consider the foot and vehicle traffic that sees any part of your rental during rush hour.

If there is a local event that brings in tourism, consider partnering with the event’s sponsors.

Potential advertising places include:

  • Fencing
  • Siding
  • Roof (especially if near an airport)
  • Tree line
  • Grassy front yard
  • Porch railings

Try to think about the types of people or companies who would want to advertise in your location. If your unit is next to a parking lot, the owners of the lot might pay to hang their sign on the side of your building

The possibilities are plenty, but you might have to get creative. Whether you have a single-family home rental or a commercial complex, your unit may have outdoor advertisement potential.

My Scenario

In Sacramento, California, our Code Section 15.152.040 says permits aren’t required for temporary political campaign or nonprofit, philanthropic, educational or religious signs promotion events.

However there are restrictions on the size of sign and on how soon the sign can be erected before and how long it can remain after the event.

If I had a suitable space on my fence, I would approach some nonprofits and pitch the idea of marketing for their annual events. I would also walk into the campaign office of the next election and pitch my space as well.

The Downside

  • You could get complaints if banner blows loose or looks tacky.
  • You might be limited on how long you can hang banner. Make the time count.
  • Your neighbors might copy your idea. Keep your success to yourself.

Cost/Projected Revenue

Some websites are renting banner space for $35 per week with a four-week maximum exposure time.

If you sold the ad business with the property that had two profitable signs, it could add an additional $33,600 to the price.

To learn about new technologies for marketing ad space, and to gather inspiration, connect with:

  1. The Out-of-home advertising (OOH) industry
  2. The Outdoor Advertising Association of America (OAAA)
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