If you want to receive competitive rental income for your rental property, you’ll need to present and deliver a quality property. We live in an era of constant improvement, and a top-notch tenant will want to rent a top-notch space.
You can take your rental property from average-looking to wow each time you re-rent it by making a number of simple changes and paying attention to detail.
While turning over a property between tenants might seem arduous, it’s your opportunity to tend to the details that will keep it in top shape over the long run. Keeping it maintained will enable you to keep it rented for years and ensure it stays resalable.
Here are a few strategies designed to help you tackle your rental property turnover that won’t dig into your return on investment.
Improve its Curb Appeal
Curb appeal is what a viewer sees when they approach your rental property. The worst thing you can do is pile up contents left behind by the previous tenant or leave mounds of garbage at the curb during your showing period. Empty the home and yard of any non-essentials, and haul the junk away immediately.
View your property from the outside with fresh eyes making note of anything in need of repair. Check gate hinges, outdoor light fixtures, deck boards, stair railings, cracked concrete, and so on, and arrange to have repairs made.
Trim overgrown bushes, pull obvious weeds and cut the grass prior to showing the rental property. A quick way to add a little pizazz is to overlay any garden bed with fresh mulch and to add a few flowers depending on the season. Yellow is a good choice of flower color due to its warm and inviting nature. If there is no garden bed, a pot of flowers or seasonal arrangement will do.
Freshen the Interior
You don’t need to make your rental property picture-perfect, but it should be clean and inviting–a place a tenant will want to sign a contract for and live in.
Giving the place a good cleaning is your top priority. A little vinegar and water will remove the nastiest grease from cupboard doors, countertops, and even kitchen floors. Vinegar is effective in helping to eliminate odors too.
Attention should be made to clean out dirt and cobwebs that might be hiding in room corners or on light fixtures. Clean washroom and kitchen fixtures. Vacuum carpets and mop floors. If possible, wash the windows, dust inside cupboards and make appliances sparkle.
Carpets don’t necessarily need to be replaced. Professional carpet cleaning is a quick and easy solution to brighten up carpets. If the carpet hasn’t been changed for seven years or more, it is most likely time to replace it or consider updating the floors with hardwood.
If you don’t want to clean your rental property yourself, contract a local cleaning service and window washer to do it for you. Doing so is a good one-time investment that won’t gobble up your personal time and energy.
To Paint or Not to Paint
You don’t necessarily need to repaint the walls of your rental unit, but you should clean off scuffs and fingerprints. A melamine foam sponge works well in most situations.
If you haven’t painted the interior walls for some time, repaint them with moderate colors such as Benjamin Moore’s Jute or Manchester Tan. Touch up the trim as needed. The goal here isn’t to make a statement, but to draw in a potential tenant.
If previous tenants were smokers, the ceilings may be dingy and smell of nicotine. Repainting the ceilings and walls is the only real solution to solving this problem.
Consider hiring a professional painter if your budget can handle it because painting is the most impactful way to revitalize a space.
Cast a Vision
When you’re ready to showcase your rental property, you’ll want to show it in its best light. Open blinds, turn on lights, add a bouquet of fresh flowers to the countertop and ensure the unit smells fresh.
Depending on your situation, you might even choose to stage your property with furniture. There are a number of furniture rental stores that will lease you what you need temporarily. Well-placed chairs, lamps, tables and a few colorful accessories will draw a potential tenant in. Seeing furnishings in the space will aid a would-be tenant in assessing the amount of space there and will allow them to envision the space as theirs.
Put Your Money Where it Matters
It is so important that you consider renovating the kitchen and the washroom from time to time.
Tenants usually look for a rental unit with a wow factor which includes an update of these two rooms, simply because they do not want to wash themselves in a dusty or musty washroom.
They also would not love to cook in a kitchen from the last century. If you are planning to upgrade your property, we would recommend that you start with these two.
It’s relatively easy today to purchase complete bathroom vanities with granite countertops from local hardware stores. A modern vanity will turn an outdated bathroom into a fresh and glistening space. Many of these vanities even come with mirrors.
If the toilet in your rental unit is in good working order, simply replacing the toilet seat might be a good inexpensive upgrade.
Lighting should be brought up-to-date in each room to give the rental property a modern look. Spotlights or a modern chandelier will help make any space sparkle.
A total cabinet replacement may not be needed to update the kitchen. You may be able to reface the cabinets or simply change the hardware or countertop.
Consider if it’s time for new appliances or not. Chances are tenants won’t care for their appliances as you would care for yours in your home. Just ensure appliances are clean and operational.
Don’t over-renovate your property
It is crucial that you don’t apply the strict standards that you implement in your own home, there is little point in over-renovating a rental property.
Your tenants will view it as a temporary home and may not give it the respect you might expect.
To maximize your investment, don’t just flip your rental property from tenant to tenant without investing a little time and energy into caring for it.
Your most important goal as a landlord is to keep your property updated and operational so it rents out competitively to the best tenant possible and in the shortest period.