When preparing your rental property for tenants, it’s handy to have a pragmatic approach to home design and decorating. Of equal importance is having knowledge of the practical and legal requirements of being a landlord. This includes understanding about a tenancy agreement and the residential tenancies act.
If you’re converting your own home to a rental property, remember your tenants may not have the same taste as you. You may love your brown carpet and cream floral wallpaper, but others may not!
If you have bought a property specifically to rent it out, then its best to decorate it with neutral colours. Creating a bright blank canvas is preferable. This will appeal to a wide range of tenants. It also lets them personalise the rental property without clashing with the decor.
A rental property should be both a practical home for tenants to live in, and a saleable entity. A rental property that appears bright, clean and spacious in the photographs is likely to garner significant interest from web-browsing potential tenants.
Think about whether you are happy for tenants to put hooks or nails on the walls. If you aren’t, then let them know which methods you are happy for them to hang pictures.
Stores sell sticky-backed hooks and hanging strips for damage free decorating which are a good alternative to nails. These have a variety of general purpose uses including organising and decorating your kitchen, bathroom or bedrooms.
When a tenant vacates, take some time to bring your rental property back up to an appealing, neutral space before letting it again. Post a job on Builderscrack for cleaners who offer a specific ‘end of tenancy’ cleaning services and skilled carpet cleaners. Professional cleaners can get every area of your property clean – from scrubbing the baseboards to cleaning the oven.
Repair or replace any carpet that shows signs of damage (or doesn’t come clean after a professional carpet cleaning). Fix or replace any damaged tiles. Hire painters and handymen to repair and fix any holes in the walls before applying a brand new coat of paint. This will help to attract new tenants and prevent the property looking worn out.
Hire a professional landscape gardener to provide you with low maintenance garden ideas. Rock gardens often contain drought-tolerant, low-maintenance plants, while the rocks offer a decor that never needs to be watered or tended to! Tidy up the outdoor areas. Mow the lawns and trim the bushes and trees.
Also pull weeds and replace any dead or dying shrubbery if this is not already done on a regular basis. Consider hiring a rubbish removal company to clear the section and remove any rubbish left behind.
Think about security by testing fire and burglar alarms. Ensure tenants are shown how to use them when they move in. Ensure lockable windows have keys that you can provide to the tenants. Re-keying and recoding locks is also a good idea.
Once your rental property is looking great it’s time to look at the legal and insurance things that need sorting out before handing over the keys. Visit the Department of Building and Housing website and familiarise yourself with the Residential Tenancies Amendment Act 2010.
As a landlord you are responsible for maintaining the property. Use Builderscrack to hire trusted tradespeople who can complete pre-tenant work such as wiring, fitting and plumbing. If you don’t live in the same area as your rental property, you can choose a tradesperson after reading their online reviews and feedback left by other home owners.
Builderscrack has information on renovating for profit here!