Finding and retaining great tenants is the first step to ensuring you are maximising your rental returns and protecting the value of your property. If a tenant loves where they live, they will take pride in their home and look after it as if it were their own. And a well-maintained property can save you thousands in maintenance costs. Additionally, happy tenants are more likely to pay their rent on time and are more likely to re-sign a lease therefore minimising vacancy times and re-letting fees.
But where do you start, and what changes could you make to your investment?
Here is a look at some easy and cost-effective ways that can enhance a rental property’s appeal and potentially its long-term value. Keep in mind if you are making bigger changes, talk to your local Ray White Agent and find out what buyers are willing to pay more for in the area. Whilst you may not be looking to sell at the moment, planning ahead and having a property that will appeal to buyers down the track without over capitalising, makes good investment sense.
12 changes that can impact our investment property’s rental appeal and its value
1. Paint the walls
A fresh coat of paint is a cost-effective way to totally rejuvenate the overall appearance of the property, and it will make the property more appealing to tenants. It is best to stick to a neutral palette, because tenants or future owners can put their own stamp on the property with their individual furniture, style and taste.
2. Tidy up the garden
A well-presented garden helps make a good first impression. Consider spending money tidying up the garden, fix the fence if it needs attention, mow the lawns and plant easy to maintain plants.
3. Fix the flooring
Dirty and frayed carpets are not appealing to renters or buyers and heavily scuffed floorboards make the property look tired. Clean the carpets or replace them if they are in bad condition and consider sanding and re-coating the floorboards if they are very worn.
4. Update the kitchen
You do not need to spend a lot of money here, consider painting old cupboards, or replace the doors, add new door handles, replace the benchtop and splashback if they are heavily stained or chipped and replace any old, leaky or rusty looking taps.
5. Transform the bathroom
Try and make the bathroom look as inviting as possible, consider adding new fixtures or a vanity, perhaps a large mirror to make the space look bigger. If you cannot clean grime from tiles, consider resurfacing or replacing them and if the paint is old and dated consider repainting it.
6. Add some extra features
We all love a nice property and renters are no different, so consider adding some extras like air conditioning / heating, good brand dishwasher and quality blinds, shutters or curtains.
7. Add built in’s and storage
Practical storage spaces are popular with many renters. Consider adding built in wardrobes as well as backyard sheds.
8. Add a parking space
Not all properties have the option to do this, but if possible, creating a car port or off-street parking is popular with many tenants.
9. Outdoor living space
Adding a BBQ and outdoor seating is extremely popular as it gives tenants a whole new space to live in. Most of us love the option of being outside!
10. Adding security
Security can be a big issue for tenants, and this could be addressed easily with the installation of deadlocks, and an alarm/security system or fly screens and/or bars on the doors and windows.
11. Keep it well maintained
Little things can quickly turn into bigger issues, so it is important you address any maintenance problems promptly as leaving them undone may lead to larger issues that can impact the overall value of your property.
In addition, renters value landlords who address maintenance problems quickly and are often more inclined to look after the property well as a result. Having tenants who take care of your investment is an important way to maintain its value.
12. Improvements to the apartment building
Can you work with the body corporate to make some bigger picture improvements to the whole building? For example, tenants are often prepared to pay more for a property that has good building security or communal areas such as a BBQ or gardens that they can use.
A final word
Before you start planning to make any changes, it’s a good idea to talk to our Property Management Team to understand your target market and what appeals to them. Having this insight can help guide you on what improvements could have the biggest impact on the quality of tenants you attract, the rent you can charge and the long-term value of your investment property. We’d love to talk to you about your property and share our local knowledge.