One of the major challenges for any property owner is attracting tenants who actually want to live in your house or apartment. It's vital to have a positive first impression if you want to lease your property at the top rental dollar, as well as attract the ideal tenants.
The problem with most rental properties is that they look and smell like rental properties. Real estate expert George Astudillo told The Huffington Post Australia it was worth putting an effort in to attract the best tenant.
"The ideal tenant, the one that will make your life easier by paying on time and taking care of your property, is actually looking for a home," Astudillo said.
"It takes some work but you will reap the benefits if you put some love into your rental and turn it into a home."
Property owner Kerry McPherson told HuffPost Australia a clean property set the standard you expect from the tenant.
She said she learnt the hard way some years ago when she only put a minimal effort into making her Perth property look like a home.
"Looking back, I realise that it wasn't the home I would want to live in myself," McPherson said.
"If you can't see yourself living there, then how can you expect other people will want to live there?
"So I spent time and money changing it up to my own standards. That meant a fresh paint job, new carpets and a new bathroom. I paid extra attention to the garden because, I figured, if the yard looks great then a family will be more likely to want to live there. Once the house looked as good as it could be, I was able to lease it for a good price and, because it looks very 'homely' my tenants have stayed put for five years now."
Astudillo's Tips To Turn Your Rental Into A Home:
- Clean carpet in good condition with no odour.
Don't expect carpets to last forever; they should be replaced when wear and tear is obvious. They need to be clean and deodorised. When you steam clean your carpet the steam reactivates odours lying dormant in the carpet and underlay so eEnsure the property is aired out until the carpet is completely dry before showing the property to prospective tenants.
- Fresh paintwork
This is where it pays to ask for help. An interior designer or colour expert can help you choose colours that will showcase the property and make it look amazing. Colour is known to affect mood so use it to create warmth and serenity wherever possible.
Wear and tear is to be expected, so allow for repainting every few years. If it is done regularly and the colours have been well chosen, it shouldn't be expensive to keep the paint looking fresh.
- Super clean kitchen and bathrooms
The kitchen is one of the first rooms where tenants judge the suitability of a property. It's usually the heart of the home and needs to feel comfortable to work in.
Choose appliances that are easy to maintain and are straightforward and functional.
To say that bathrooms need to be clean is an understatement. They should absolutely sparkle. Shower screens need to be spotless, grout needs to be completely free of mould and look fresh. Otherwise consider re-grouting.
Make sure all the plumbing is functioning as it should.
- Up the lighting level
Good lighting helps to create mood and style. People love natural light and if your property enjoys lots of it, rejoice. However, if your property doesn't, ensure the lighting level is more than adequate especially in kitchens and bathrooms.
- General repairs and maintenance
This is where tenants make subconscious judgement. A lack of maintenance shows carelessness of ownership, and if the owner doesn't care, you can't expect tenants to care.
Attend to lawns and gardens, so they are neat and clear of overgrowth at the front, sides and rear of the property.
Maintain roof, gutters, pools, garden features and exterior paintwork.
All windows and doors should open and close with ease, it's such a pleasure when everything works effortlessly.