Renting: 5 Ways to Add Value to Your Property
Whether you’re just starting out in the rental market or whether you’re ready to give a property you’ve had for a while a much-needed refresh, it’s a good idea to keep your property as well maintained as possible and make it stand out against the competition and attract new tenants.
However, it’s easy to go overboard when undergoing renovations and without sufficient planning, you might find that not all your pennies spent will lead to a return on investment. Before taking on an overhaul or property refresh mission – big or small – do the maths. What’s the budget? How much value will it add?
Here’s five simple ways to add value to your rental property that won’t break the bank…
Focus on the kitchen
Along with bathrooms, the kitchen is the main room in a house that can really bring the ‘wow’ factor. It’s easy to make a lounge or bedroom feel personal to you, but it’s not as easy to change a kitchen so tenants will be looking for something that already looks great. This is where it’s worth investing the majority of your money.
Fitting a beautiful kitchen is likely to be worth those extra pennies; be it ultra-modern for a newer home, or rustic and homely for a house in the country. If your budget allows for a whole new refit and the kitchen is looking a little tired, go for it. If not, there’s plenty of easy wins to focus on.
And speaking of easy wins, for a kitchen with wooden units, give the cupboard doors a lick of paint to keep it looking on trend. Dark colours such as navy blue and dark grey look great at the moment – especially contrasting with white or light coloured work surfaces. Contrasting light and dark looks super sophisticated and adds depth and dimension to a room that can make it look bigger and more open.
Another easy win is to change out cupboard door handles to something with a metallic finish – we recommend gold or brushed brass. It’s also important to focus on lighting to make a space feel welcoming. If you wanted to really add something special, you could install a big, contemporary light fitting to set the room off. You might be dubious about installing something so nice that could easily get broken when it’s not you that’ll be looking after the property, so just be sure to have all the right contents insurance in place. You can compare landlord insurance policies over on CIA Landlord Insurance.
Create a unique selling point
Whilst all of the other houses on your street may be three to four bedroom semi-detached homes with a driveway, why not make your rental property a three or four bedroom semi-detached home with a driveway and something unique that sets it apart from the market competition. If you can’t think of an obvious selling point in your property, create one!
Perhaps you could introduce a wood panel feature wall in the living room or dining room. It’s a super cheap and easy DIY project that turns an otherwise plain room, into a room with a luxury feel. People will always be willing to pay a little extra for somewhere with character and cosiness. A wood panel wall can be painted to suit your chosen decor and dressed up with wall lights, mirrors and artwork to maximise the feature.
If your property has a cellar, then you may already have an advantage over other properties – but can you improve this even more? Perhaps you could turn it into a wine cellar by fitting some wine racks to the walls and adding in plenty of storage. It’s the kind of feature that will have people interested and will give the property an edge over one very similar. Give potential tenants something that they can’t say no to – and will pay an extra £10-20 a month for!
Target specialised rental markets
Another good way to add value is to make your house particularly attractive to certain rental markets. For instance, do you have a room that you could market as a family room or playroom? Could you install features for the elderly in a bungalow such as easy access and handrails? You could even turn a garden shed into a social area such as a bar, or create some decking that’d be perfect for a hot tub for younger renters.
With this in mind, it’s important not to go too far with these changes as you don’t want a home to come across as only suitable for the elderly, or only suitable for families. It depends on your local area and the market. It might be worth seeking advice from a local property expert to see what kind of properties are in the most demand in your area.
Front of house
Make your tenants fall in love with your property before they even open the front door. Spending some time and money on the front of your property will elevate it against its neighbours, instantly giving it appeal.
If your contract allows for painting the front door, give it a makeover with a nice grey, sage green or pastel colour and install a nice door knocker to match. Adding in hanging baskets or fake topiary balls either side of the door will add a bit of class, which will ultimately lend itself to upping those rental premiums. Head to Pinterest for all of the front door inspiration.
Convert the loft
Does your property have a loft that you could convert into an extra bedroom, or that aforementioned family room? Maybe even a cinema room? Converting a loft isn’t the cheapest of the tips we’ve mentioned but it will definitely make a big difference. People don’t always utilise that extra space in a loft with masses of storage these days – particularly not when they’re just renting. So if your property’s loft space is just accumulating dust then maximise this area by making use of it!
Rental renovations ultimately boil down to a healthy balance of aesthetic vs budget. You want to draw people in with the latest trends and making your property look like a palace, but as many landlords are well aware of, this doesn’t mean that it will be treated like a palace…
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Keep your aesthetic simple, fresh and clean with a few standout features to make people think twice about how much they’ll pay to live in a property and you’ll nail those renovations.