Monday, 13 August 2012 11:16 AM
Owning a rental property can be a lucrative investment that sees you enjoying a regular income. However, to attract tenants you need to get the balance right by decorating the abode in a way that is attractive but also economical.
This means considering more than just what colour you paint the walls, but also the sizes of the rooms, the bathroom and kitchen suite you install and whether you provide any additional furniture. Read on for our guide.
If you have yet to purchase a property to rent out and are in the process of searching for one, there are a few basic pointers to keep in mind. The first is to consider the area in relation to the type of tenant you wish to attract.
Many landlords prefer to purchase a place to rent out to students as this provides them with a regular turnover of customers and if this is you, be sure to check that the campus is within easy travelling distance of the address you have your eye on.
Should you wish to rent out a home to a family, find out where the closest schools are, along with amenities like shops, parks and public transport connections as these will all be things tenants are looking for.
If you plan to invest in a house in multiple occupation - meaning it will be divided up into separate lodgings with some shared spaces - or a student property, try to buy somewhere with bedrooms that are equally-sized where possible, or that have scope for you to renovate them. If this is not possible, you may have to stagger the rent you charge according to the size of the room you are letting.
Again, the furniture you choose will be dictated by the type of venture you are interested in, but there are some basics that apply to all. The first is the kitchen and the second is the bathroom.
At an absolute minimum, you should install a sink, oven and grill, fridge-freezer and good selection of cupboards and drawers in the kitchen. The amount you spend on it will depend on whether you plan to market the property as luxurious or something simpler, but it's worth paying a little more for quality so you don't have to worry about replacements any time soon.
The same can be said of the bathroom. Stick to a plain white suite consisting of a sink, shower and toilet, while a tub is a nice addition if you have room. If you have more than three or four bedrooms you plan to let out it's worth considering installing an extra bathroom. Should space be at a premium, you could just have a small washroom created featuring a toilet, sink and shower. Items like Aqata showers are a good idea as you can choose a model with bi-folding doors, which take up less space when getting in and out.
In terms of the decor, you have three options. The most popular is to keep things neutral and simple, which is an economical method. Alternatively, you can splash out a bit more, but if you want to recoup your costs you will also have to charge your tenants more and they might not be fans of your interior design scheme. Finally, you can give your tenants the option of decorating themselves, which allows them to put their own stamp on the property - although it's wise to issue some guidelines.