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Preparing to rent out your home? Tips to keep in mind
There could be any of a number of reasons why you might be considering renting out your home. But what is involved in getting yourself and your home ready for renting? Baxton Property Management in Hobart outlines some of the factors you will need to address to prepare yourself and your home before you start advertising for tenants.
Why do you want to rent out your house?
It’s not always easy to open up your home to strangers, so it is important to determine exactly what your goals are in doing so. Perhaps you are leaving the area but want to retain ownership to return later in life. Or you are renting out your current home to help fund buying a second one, and so start building an investment property portfolio.
When the property market is down, many people turn to renting to hold out for a better price on their property when the market changes. Yet in boom periods like Hobart is currently experiencing, is selling the best answer? Replacing the property would involve paying an equally steep price. And as the rental market often experiences low vacancy levels and therefore high rents during a boom period, renting could be a good choice.
Do your homework first
You might think renovations are the top priority when preparing your home for renting. However, it’s easier to decide what renovations are really necessary if you do some homework first.
- Learn the rules: Before starting on the house itself, you are going to have to get to know the do’s and don’ts of being a landlord, and the legal and tax requirements that go with running a rental property. Fortunately the Tasmanian government is able to supply information on the legal obligations and rights of both tenants and landlords with its downloadable Rental Guide, and the Rental Properties 2017 booklet provides information regarding rental income tax and claims.
- Minimum requirements for rentals by law: Does your house meet the minimum requirements for rental accommodation? The Rental Guide also provides information regarding the minimum standards the state requires for rental accommodation in terms of its condition, ventilation, heating, sewerage connections, ablutions and window coverings.
- Life stage requirements: There will be other factors involved when it comes to attracting tenants. This includes ease of access to the property itself, and to amenities. Tenants needs differ according to their life stage and the lifestyle it evokes. Older tenants will need access to hospitals, while young families will need proximity to schools and work.
- Change may be on its way: If you have lived in the neighbourhood for some time, you will have a good idea of who lives there and why they do. But it’s wise to take a look at the official demographics and to investigate whether any changes or developments are on the horizon which could alter the area’s rental profile.
Make relevant renovations
Armed with this knowledge, you will be better able to make decisions regarding renovations you need to make to find the best calibre of tenant. Obviously, you will have to check your house for structural damage and get to grips with repairs you have been putting off while living in the house. And make sure that the electrical and plumbing systems are working well.
Over and above that, tenants want a house that’s clean and fresh, light, airy and easy to maintain. They also like a fair amount of storage space. You have lived in your house – if it fulfilled those or similar requirements for you, it may need little more than a thorough cleaning and new paintwork.
If you want to give it an extra edge in the rental market, don’t overspend. Keep any renovations simple, practical and economical. For instance, if you do repaint, stick to neutral colours, so tenants’ furnishing won’t look out of place. Also look at areas that make a particular impact on prospective tenants, like the front entrance, kitchen and bathroom, to see if any can be made more appealing with new counters, tiling, doorknobs, and better lighting. New appliances might also be a worthwhile investment.
Baxton Property Management in Hobart knows what tenants are looking for, and with 100 years of collective experience in their team, they also knows what is needed regarding property management. For more information on the services offered, visit the Baxton website.
We hope you enjoyed this article
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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