Owners: How Far Do You Need To Go When Renovating To Rent?
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Baxton.me
13 January 2018

Owners: How Far Do You Need To Go When Renovating To Rent?

Perhaps the New Year has inspired you to seek an extra income by making your house work for you. Or maybe you’re set to take on a project that will take you away from Hobart for a while. Baxton Property Management looks at prioritizing the renovations you should consider when getting your property ready to rent it out.

There’s a big difference between renovating your property to sell it at the best possible price, and getting it ready for renting. Primarily that difference lies in attraction versus functionality. To persuade someone to sign a sale agreement means triggering an emotional response in a potential buyer that convinces them they have found their perfect home. Tenants, on the other hand, are looking for accommodation that will enable them to live comfortably for the next couple of years or so.

Points To Consider When Renovating Your Rental

External impact: Tenants want a house (or apartment) that’s clean and comfortable, meets their basic needs, and is in a good state of repair. It should be easy to maintain (for them, as well as you) and the appliances and services must be available, and function well. The rest is a cherry on the top – and not everyone likes cherries. Or if they do, they prefer their own.

Taste in décor: Tenant will have their own furniture, and it can reflect a different taste in terms of décor and lifestyle that may well not be the same as yours. That’s why it is best to keep items and finishes durable and fairly neutral when it comes to paint colour choice, selection of floor coverings, and which appliances you choose to install. Tenants will use their own furnishings and trimmings to make your house feel like their home. And if they feel comfortable enough there, they will look after it and stay longer.

Wear and Tear: When deciding what to do in terms of renovation, the watchword is durability. Tenants are required by Tasmanian residential tenancy regulations to keep the property clean and tidy, and to return it at the end of the lease in the same condition it was in when they first moved in. But there is a small added clause which subjects that ruling to normal wear and tear.

Different tenants will take occupation and then vacate your property on a fairly regular basis, as leases in Tasmania are often no longer than a year. Not all tenants will deliberately cause damage, or neglect to keep their rental home clean and tidy. However, every tenant will differ in how they handle appliances and treat fittings. And when one moves out and another moves in, flooring, paintwork and other finishes will take a knock.

Keep up with the Joneses: Take a look at what’s around you to establish an idea of the norm in your neighbourhood regarding what rentals offer and what rents are charged. Don’t fall too far short of what others are offering, but don’t push too far ahead either. If fancy extras don’t justify a higher rental rate, they are just an unnecessary waste of money.

How Do You Know When Enough Is Enough?

Baxton Property Management advises you to think with your wallet and consider it in financial terms. Renovations are justified if they bring your property up to the local standard; if you can enter a different rent bracket; if you’re thinking about flipping the property fairly soon, or if doing the renovations now is likely to save you money in the long term.

After a century of collective experience in property management, Baxton in Hobart has seen many owners try to spruce up their rental properties in the hopes of attracting better tenants and earning a larger rental income. It has also seen many of them fail through being overzealous. For more information on topics relevant to investment and rental property owners, contact Baxton on-line.


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The information contained in this article is based on the authors opinion only and is of a general nature which is not indicative of future results or events and does not consider your personal situation or particular needs. Professional advice should always be sought relevant to your circumstances.

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