Make Your Residential Rental Property More Attractive to Renters
Residential rental properties of 1-4 units are most often located in neighborhoods with like properties or homes that are owned by their occupants. Renters who are looking at units in residential areas, as opposed to those in apartment complexes, are looking for a neighborhood feel, more space/value for their money, and a living space that feels more like home.
So how do you attract renters to your 1-4 unit property so that they sign your lease and remain happy enough to stay for a good while? The most obvious way is to play up those qualities that differentiate a residential rental property from a commercial rental property. Compete with the apartment complexes by offering what they offer in a way that is appropriate for a small property. Doing so will not only help to acquire long-term renters, but it can also boost the asking price for the unit or units you have available for rent.
Make It Convenient to Live There
Many residential properties have been converted from owner-occupant single-family residences into rental properties. In properties of 2 or 3 units, this conversion has usually been done to the absolute minimum to make it rentable. In many cases, the utilities have not been separated completely and the "units" look just like what they are - parts of a single-family house that have been separated from each other but do not really feel like a complete living space.
In cases such as these, it's important to look at the property through the eyes of the renter. If you were living there, wouldn't you want a convenient place to do your laundry? A kitchen that is truly meant for the preparation and eating of food? A bathroom that has all of the modern conveniences of a modern bathroom? By making each individual unit a complete and self-contained living space, your units will be much more attractive to possible renters.
Laundry and Parking
If it seems impossible to give each of your units their own washer and dryer hookups, it's often possible to install hookups in a basement or other common area. These washers and dryers can be free-of-charge, or they can be coin operated so that they pay for themselves. At any rate, having on-site laundry facilities will be a welcome amenity to any renter.
Make sure you have enough parking for your renters. Street parking may be fine, but off-street parking is often seen as a definite plus. You may want to offer the garage on your property as an added expense, or expand the driveway and build carports.
Make It Look Good
The outside appearance of your rental property also attracts buyers. A clean, landscaped front yard will tell renters that you are a conscientious property owner and landlord. You don't have to get fancy, but a mowed lawn and a few neat bushes will work wonders over weeds and bare patches in the grass. A maintained exterior will also give future occupants a good impression.
The inside of the property should be clean. Even if previous renters left a mess, it's your responsibility to clean it, make repairs, and make sure that it is in livable condition for the next renter. If carpets smell, replace them or invest in another floor covering that will be less prone to damage. If appliances are old or not in working order, find better, used or new appliances or hire a technician to make repairs. Change locks and make safety updates to your units. A fresh coat of paint can work wonders on drab or dirty walls.
Making renters comfortable is an easy task if you dedicate yourself to making sure your units provide those things that make a comfortable abode. After all, if your property doesn't have it, another one will. Renters aren't bound to a mortgage can move until they find one that suits their needs and budget. With a bit of care a forethought, your rental property can be the one in which renters find everything they are looking for.