Turnovers are a lot of work. They are time-consuming and can be expensive, but in many cases, they are also an opportunity. The average tenancy for a single-family home lasts roughly three years. Even if your tenants were the kind that literally followed you with a dust mop when it was time to inspect (we have been swept out the door before), there is going to be some wear and tear.
Now you have a choice; perform any necessary repairs, and then immediately put it back on the market? Perhaps. That might be all that is needed. But if it has been a while, you may want to consider updating the home, improving the appeal and, hopefully, raising the value. This is your chance; once you have tenants in the home, you won’t be able to perform any major or minor changes without coordinating with the tenants and contractors.
Where to start?
When most landlords think of updating the home, they envision remodeling the kitchen and bathrooms, and extreme changes of that nature. That can be intimidating. Not only is it timeconsuming, but it is expensive. Luckily, most homes don’t need anything so drastic. There are simple changes you can implement that will alter the entire look of your rental. Here are three changes you can make:
No. 1 – White Paint
White reflects light, making a space feel bigger and brighter. It also makes a room feel and look clean. When possible, keep all counters, shelves, and any other furnishing a similar light color. Keep all colors within a similar color scheme to build an illusion of infinite space.
No. 2 – Lighting
Nothing makes a home looks as dingy as poor lighting. It makes a room feel gloomy and cramped. When improving the lighting, natural lighting is best, but if it isn’t already built into the rental, there probably isn’t much you can do. Pendant lights are beautiful and can be used as a focal point for the room. However, if you are working with a very small space, try to keep the lights flat against the ceiling. In the kitchen, try for lights beneath the cabinets or even inside. Eliminate shadows as much as possible. It will make the room feel cleaner and more spacious.
No. 3 – Shiny Appliances
It is amazing how changing out the fridge or dishwasher can do so much to change the entire look of the kitchen. With stainless steel appliances, the light reflects off, further adding to the look of infinite space. Also, brighter appliances make the kitchen feel “up-to-date”, even if that is the only thing you end up changing.
Even if your tenant stayed for two months or two years, if they were good tenants, it’s never nice to see them go. But it is important to keep in mind that this is an opportunity. Update the home, reset the rent, and start over.