Preparing your home for rental is not as easy as you may think. One of the best ways to improve your return on investment is to see your property through the eyes of a tenant. If your home is attractive, comfortable and appealing to tenants, you are likely to attract more qualified ones who will keep it in good condition.
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Deal with any maintenance issues
Go through the house with a fine tooth comb and take care of any minor maintenance issues.
- Make sure all lights and outlets function properly.
- Change HVAC air filters, smoke detector batteries etc.
- Fix or replace any damaged or missing hardware, like handles or door knobs.
- Take care of any cracked tiles or mold in the kitchen and bathroom.
- Repair any dripping faucets.
You may want to hire professionals to handle any major repairs. If they are not done properly, it could result in expensive repairs at a later date. For example, a small leak in the roof could become a major one and cause substantial damage. All appliances should also be working well, or this could cause problems for tenants.
As an example, if you are looking for the residential property management in Denver,, Fort Collins, Boulder, or any other area in Colorado, you can hire an expert property manager there to handle your property. Property managers will do a walkthrough inspection of your home and give you an initial inspection report with items that must be completed before showing the home. You will also receive advice on what could be done to rent your home faster or for more money.
Deep clean the property
If you want tenants to look after your property, you should hand it over to them in pristine condition. This sets the benchmark high for them. If they move into a home that’s dirty, they won’t feel the same motivation to keep it clean. You will need to clean
- Curtains and blinds
- Carpets, and more.
Don’t forget about places like window sills and behind the oven. These places are often overlooked. It will help to start in one room and work your way through the whole house.
The outside of the property is just as important. Make sure the gutters are clean. Clean up the yard by mowing the grass, raking leaves, pulling weeds, trimming bushes etc.
Upgrade the kitchen
Tenants place weight on the look and function of a kitchen when making a decision to rent. Updating the kitchen, especially the appliances, will often give you the most return on your investment.
- Matching the finishes of the refrigerator, dishwasher, oven, and microwave creates a cohesive, modern look.
- A simple upgrade is to stand and paint existing cabinets and give them new modern handles.
- If you can afford it, granite countertops are appreciated by tenants and instantly change the appearance of the kitchen.
- A relatively inexpensive touch, like adding an eye-catching backsplash, can make the kitchen more appealing.
Make sure all locks are functioning
As a landlord, you have the responsibility to ensure your tenants will feel safe and secure. If your locks are showing signs of wear and tear, you need to change them. All the locks, especially on exterior doors, should function properly. You don’t want your tenants to suffer break-ins and subsequent damage. You will also need to give a tenant keys for other locking items like mailboxes, sheds or gates.
Tenants will appreciate it if they know all the locks in the house have been replaced. They may even request to have locks changed before signing a rental agreement. It is not a legal requirement to change locks between tenants, but it is a responsible thing to do for the safety of tenants and the security of your property. It is important not to change the locks before the previous tenant has legally moved out.
Repaint and remodel
Repainting is often the cheapest way to make a property look fresh. Before painting, fill in any holes in the walls. If you have all kinds of different colored walls, you can “neutralize” the look by using light, earth color paint throughout the house. This can make the house look lighter and more open.
When considering remodeling, you don’t want to put more cash into the house than it’s worth. At the same time, you don’t want to miss out on income because of something you can easily change, like knocking down a wall to create a more open-plan effect.
Once you have done all of the above, the property will look much better in photos and be ready for viewing. Good photos can make a difference to the caliber of tenants your property will attract. A clean, attractive and functional house will attract better tenants who are motivated to take good care of it.