Owning rental properties is arguably one of the best investments you can make. It’s easier to get loans for, it’s a commodity that’s always needed, and it’s a fairly predictable source of income. But what if you’re not earning as much as you could on your properties? What if you constantly have vacancies or can’t seem to get top dollar? If this is the case for you, there are a few things you can do to change it.
Be a good landlord
Your reputation as a landlord will precede you. So, if you want the best quality renters who will stick around, make sure you’re a good landlord. And you don’t have to be a pushover to get this done. Good renters understand their responsibilities and won’t often overstep their bounds. Half the battle of earning top dollar for your property is finding those quality tenants. And the other half is respecting them. To make sure you get renters who will take care of your property, pay the rent, and stick around, make sure you thoroughly screen all your applicants. You can install free landlord software to make your job easier. And don’t fail to check their references and set certain income and credit requirements.
Secondly, educate yourself on tenant rights in your state. For example, you can’t enter a renter’s property without permission in any state unless it’s an emergency. And every renter is entitled to a safe place to live. Certain repairs, such as plumbing, heating, and leaks should be addressed immediately.
Consider offering some amenities
Depending on the quality and location of your property, you may be able to offer some amenities to entice higher-paying renters. For example, if it’s located near the golf course in Basking Ridge, NJ, offer your tenants a membership with their lease agreement. Or you may be able to offer weekly or monthly cleaning services. The amenities you offer will depend on how much rent you are able to charge and if they don’t cut into your profits. But keep in mind that offering such amenities may also mean you can charge more rent.
Make some simple upgrades
It’s a popular saying among rentals that the kitchen sells the house; it goes without saying that the kitchen also rents the house. And while you probably shouldn’t invest too much money in your rental spaces, there are some simple upgrades that won’t cost a fortune. One change that makes a big difference is to swap out the cabinet hardware. This is one of the things that dates a kitchen. If it’s dated, look for more modern options. Look for simple, streamlined options in something like brushed nickel.
You might also consider having the cabinets painted, especially if they’re outdated. For example, if they are stained in an 80s honey oak, consider hiring someone to repaint them in a fresh new color. Do try to stay somewhat neutral, however, so that they don’t go out of style quickly. Grays and whites are a good neutral choice that probably won’t go away any time soon.
Other changes you can make to give the kitchen a more modern look include replacing the countertops, changing the backsplash, and upgrading the faucet. Depending on the size of the kitchen, you might be able to add high-quality counter material, such as granite. But if the kitchen is too big for this to be affordable, you can still use a nicer laminate to change the look of the room. There are also tons of affordable options for backsplashes, which can really give the kitchen a quick facelift.