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November 3, 2016

Renovating Your Rental Property Perth for Maximum Tenant Attraction & Retention

In today’s rental market with Perth vacancies at a 30-year high, meeting the rental market in terms of rent will certainly assist the leasing process, however attracting & retaining long-term tenants is key to maximising rental returns over time.

We’ve put together our HERE Property “TOP TEN TIPS” for renovating your rental property for maximum tenant attraction & retention.

Focus on tenant attraction and ease of maintenance of the property.

  1. Air-conditioning & Ceiling fans – Without a doubt the most commonly requested item(s) by both sitting and prospective tenants. Providing tenants with sufficient, energy efficient heating & cooling for your home is very important. No one wants to sweat through one of Perth’s long hot summers without it.
  2. Dishwasher – For some tenants this can be a real deal breaker. Whilst some kitchen layouts may not accommodate in present state, if you’re considering a kitchen reno in the future, put this must have item at the top!
  3. Lighting – LED lighting can last 10,000 hour and cost over 80% less to run. Not only that, hard to reach lighting is the responsibility of the owner (as it is considered hazardous to change) and can require the services of a tradesperson.
  4. Carpets –Our biggest issue for tenants and final inspections. It’s a fine line between general wear & tear and malicious damage and it could be time to consider a more durable hard wearing flooring such as vinyl planking or tiles.
  5. Remote garaging vs manual garage door – Modest creature comforts that make tenants lives easier will ensure they remain more comfortable in your home for longer.
  6. Tiling/Grout, – Nothing can be more off putting to a prospective tenant than dirty, scum filled grout to remind them of the previous occupancy. Re-grouting or professional cleaning of grout can make the world of difference and improve appearance of your bathroom ten-fold.
  7. Consider Solar – The lower the cost to run a property for a tenant will ensure maximum possible rents and lengthy tenant tenure. Pair this with great temperature control this can be a real winner for tenant attraction/retention.
  8. Window Furnishings – Verticals, venetians, curtains, Romans, timber slats or roller blinds? There’s a HUGE selection to choose from and we would suggest keeping it simple, uniform and compliant.  Anything with multiple cords to open/lift/drop has the potential to be costly and very messy if not maintained regularly.  Slat style blinds that are too long will sag from the weight & are fiddley to clean.  There are some great “modern” roller blinds on the market that have a simple chain mechanism to open & are easy to wipe clean.
  9. Low maintenance gardens & Reticulation – Whilst low maintenance reticulated gardens are very popular amongst renters offering a regular garden maintenance service for those time poor tenants can be super attractive. When considering paving for outdoor areas, consider a low-maintenance aggregate as opposed to paving which tend to require removal of weeds. Regular sealing will also prolong the life of paving and reduce the frequency for cleaning.
  10. Storage, storage and more storage – Built in wardrobes, kitchen cupboard space, garden shed storage are all highly desired and a must for tenants with a family. For older style homes that typically have minimal in-built storage, adding attic storage could be a cost-effective option. Also, consider free standing cupboards and robes which can be very inexpensive and reduce wear when moving in and out of the property.

Do some of the items above seem expensive? Let’s put the expense in perspective. If your tenant vacates, estimate the costs of fees, lost rent through vacancy and then the requirements of an ingoing tenant and improvements quickly start to make sense.

Remember, if you invest in capital items for your investment property, you should be updating your depreciation schedule and ensuring that you claim the maximum possible depreciation.

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