By Jacquie Edward, Property Expert, Coach and Mentor of Jade Success
Do you have a property to rent but not getting a lot of interest? Has there been increasing competition for tenants in your area so you’re not getting as many viewings? Or maybe you’re considering getting into the buy-to-let market but aren’t sure what makes a good property. If you follow these three tips, you’ll have no problems finding great tenants for your next buy-to-let investment.
Make sure your house has kerb appeal
When you approach from the outside what does the potential new tenants see? Is there peeling paint and an unkempt garden? Are the windows dirty and the door hanging ajar?
The front of your house is the first thing potential new tenants will see. It may not be the most important thing they will be looking at as part of their checklist, but it’s what gives them their first impression of your house and of you as a landlord. A house that looks dirty with an overgrown garden tells the tenant they will have a landlord that doesn’t care about the property, and probably won’t respond quickly to any requests or problems in the future.
In today’s booming property market, tenants have many choices so don’t let the exterior of your house let you down. Have the garden trimmed back and looking presentable. Make sure it is easy to maintain by putting down stone or gravel where possible, or turning it into convenient off-street parking in those tight city areas. This will be a big attraction for tenants.
Also, take a bit of time to make sure the windows are clean and shiny – it doesn’t have to cost much to have a window cleaner come around for a few hours and make sure the house is looking its best. And if there’s any peeling paint, have that tidied up too. A rental property is your investment and in order to get the most from your investment, you need to take care of it. This includes regular maintenance on the exterior from time to time. I also recommend, while you have someone up on a ladder doing the windows, asking them to clean out the gutters as well. This can save many damp headaches down the road!
Don’t forget the main attraction
Once the outside is looking presentable, let’s focus on the main attraction – the indoor living space. If you don’t currently have tenants in the house, you should bring some nice furniture around to stage the property. Rooms always look a lot smaller when they don’t have any furniture. It’s also a lot harder for potential tenants to imagine living in the house if they can’t see where the furniture would go. There are many furniture rental companies that you can rent furniture from for a few days / weeks until your house is let, including white goods, TVs, beds, living rooms, dining rooms etc. Everything you need to make the house look like a home for those potential tenants.
And don’t skimp on the curtains and cushions either. It’s the little touches that make a house feel inviting. So even if you have magnolia walls (which we will touch on next) with the right curtains and throw pillows, duvets and prints on the walls can make the house appear more colourful than your competition.
Ditch the magnolia!Feature coloured wall
Every landlord has his property painted in magnolia. Every decorator, upon hearing the house is a buy-to-let knows to go straight for the tins of magnolia. Make your house stand out from the crowd and add some colour! You don’t have to paint each room a different colour, or even have colour on all of the walls. If you don’t want to repaint the whole house, just choose a few feature walls and paint them in a complementary colour. Generally, a nice beige or brown will go well with magnolia. If your walls are white, add a yellow feature wall in the kitchen to brighten it up, a neutral taupe in the living room and blues for the bedroom. Keep it fresh and interesting to stand out from the magnolia crowd.
With these top tips, you’re ready to beat out the competition and get the best tenants for your house. They will remember you and choose you over the other houses that are drowning in magnolia and hidden by overgrown gardens!
Image credit: http://www.ingimage.com