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Hot Tips to Maximise Your Rental Property

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  • Hot Tips to Maximise Your Rental Property

    Hot Tips to Maximise Your Rental Property

    Obtaining the best possible market rental from a reliable tenant is key to maximising the highest return for your property. Although we usually cannot influence the market conditions at the time, there are many items which we can control in making your property appealing to tenants:

    1. Smart Presentation—First Impressions Count
    2. Fenced is Better
    3. Add Value with Alarms, Smoke Detectors and Good Security
    4. Parking and Garaging
    5. Offer a Fixed Tenancy

    1. Smart Presentation—First Impressions Count
    A well-presented property is more attractive to tenants, and more likely to achieve a higher rental than one which has much deferred maintenance.

    It also makes a statement that says "I am well cared for, and my owner expects you to take good care of me too". It engenders more pride in many tenants and encourages tenants to stay long term.

    Ensure the driveway approach and gardens are tidy and as easy care as possible, trees trimmed, any gates easily operated, fences maintained, and steps and paths safe. The goal is to make the property look low maintenance so tenants perception is that they don’t need to spend a lot of their time looking after gardens etc.

    Have the front door attractively painted with good secure locks.

    If there's flaking paint around the windows, cracked window panes, loose locks, the exterior needs washing, the steps need painting and so on, the best time to take care of these is prior to the tenancy, in the first instance.

    If not, work out a maintenance management plan and attend to these items regularly over time, to help your budget (planned maintenance). If your property has large lawns or gardens, it can be beneficial to arrange for this to be done as part of the tenancy, that way you have control over the property's presentation at all times.

    This is important as it affects the value of your property and helps improve the general presentation of the street and area.

    2. Fenced is Better
    Fenced properties appeal to a wider group of tenants-those who want privacy, are security conscious (most tenants these days), and those who have children.

    A fenced property versus an unfenced one, will secure a higher rental from tenants in these groups. Since fencing is an "improvement" it also adds to the capital value.

    When adding fencing, think carefully about the position, to enhance possible outdoor living and not encroach on parking, and consider type, height and style to allow sun, privacy and security, together with long term maintenance.

    3. Add Value with Good Security, Alarms, and Smoke Detectors and reliable locks on doors, sliders and windows
    We all want to feel safe in our homes. The first line of defence is that all Entrance doors should have strong locks or deadbolts, which are well maintained.

    Ranch sliders, especially aged ones, may need top security locks. Windows with security stays are a great feature for many tenants (eg. with children, the elderly).

    These also can mean that bathrooms which may have no other ventilation, can be saved the expense of constant repainting to remove mould and mildew.

    Note: Fans are still the best source to avoid this particular problem, as many tenants come from cooler climates and don't like opening the window!

    An alarm is an excellent addition, where the tenants are happy to use it! It is best to install a good quality alarm that is easy to use. Consider carefully the position of sensors with curtain movement, outside activity and pets.

    Security Sensor lighting is also attractive to tenants. This might be simply a sensor light over the front door or parking area.

    Smoke Detectors provide a certain peace of mind, providing they are carefully positioned throughout the property (generally not in the kitchen near the toaster) and the batteries checked periodically and not removed by the tenant. Alerting tenants to a potential fire as they lie sleeping is much less hassle than waiting for the insurance claim, then organising all the rebuilding, landscaping etc.

    Be sure your Property Manager is aware of all the special fixtures and chattels your property offers before they present it For Rent. These should be listed clearly on the Property Management Agreement you authorise.

    4. Parking and Garaging
    Off street parking, carports and garaging are highly desirable features. These benefits make properties much more sought after and more easily rented than others without such amenities, and generally they will command a higher weekly rental.

    Additional storage for bikes, lawn mowers and general household goods, should be considered if you are able to add value to your property with the addition of a garage.

    5. Fixed Tenancy versus a Periodic Tenancy
    Our research shows that in Australia most residential tenancies especially in the big cities, are for a Fixed Term. This appears to be becoming more popular in NZ now, as landlords understand why. The benefits:

    * less turnover of tenants, thus more continuity of rent, fewer vacancies means a higher income
    * less wear and tear due to fewer tenancy changes. Also the tenants may take better care of the property, and they are less likely to "do a runner" as they are responsible for the rent over the entire period, or until you find another tenant on similar terms.

    We recommend tenancies be offered for a one year period, and that inspections are carried out quarterly.
    "There's one way to find out if a man is honest-ask him. If he says 'yes,' you know he is a crook." Groucho Marx

  • #2
    Does security locks add good $ value to properties?
    "You’re neither right nor wrong because other people agree with you. You’re right because your facts are right and your reasoning is right"