Friday, January 25, 2013

Home stage your property for maximum rental return

These low cost tips will help you, the Landlord, present your property in its best light. This is critical because if you want to get the most rental return for the property, you need potential tenants to feel that it’s a “not to be missed property”.

Consider the street appeal
Landscaping is nice, but not in everyone's budget. At minimum, lawns should be freshly mowed, and leaves raked. Consider a hanging or potted plant for the entrance. Sweep the porch, deck and all walk ways and ensure that garbage and recycling are tucked neatly away from the front of the house.
Make sure gutters have been cleaned.

Scrub your front door, porch, outside railings and steps. This is cheaper than repainting and makes a world of difference! Once the outside entrance is clean, decide if the paint really needs a touch up.

Get rid of clutter!
If the property is furnished get rid of the clutter.

Office with LOTS of clutter...
...the same office after being de-cluttered - what an improvement!
Turn excess inventory into cash.
If you have a collection of items for projects you never got around to, return them. This also applies to the two-year supply of light bulbs, canned goods or paper products sitting in your basement. You can also put any larger items on Gumtree or eBay.

Watch where the eye goes
There are speedy and low cost solutions to many of the little problems that together make a home seem shabbier than it needs to. Walk along each corridor and into every room and check where your eye is drawn (better yet, ask a critical friend or family member). If the eye is drawn to the chipped white paint on the door frame, take some "white out" and fill it in. If it's those old nail holes in the wall, see if you can hang a picture to cover them.

Find a fix-it person
Ensure cupboards open and shut and that no taps are dripping. Look in all rooms for things you never got around to fixing and decide which ones might be distracting to potential tenants. No, it's not OK for door handles to fall off, even if you have learned to ignore it!

Clean, clean and clean again!
Most mortals can't live in a spotless environment all the time — but it's worth the effort to rent your home for top dollar in this competitive market. You can hire a professional service to come in and deep clean everything.

Untidy hallway...

...the same hallway after being cleaned! See the difference?!

Appliances should sparkle even if you're not including them with the house. After all, you might throw them in later as a negotiating tool. Counter tops, taps, sinks and bathtubs should be shiny and free of water spots.

Dust shelves and vacuum or "Swiffer" the floors. Remember clean windows let in more light and look newer. Hire a service if you have to— it's worth the investment.

If all this attention to detail seems over the top, remember that a very clean home leaves the impression that the house is well cared for. This helps put renters at ease.

Let in some air
Open some windows to air the property. There is nothing worse than walking into a stuffy house or one that smells of smoke and pet odors!

Let in some light
Dimly lit rooms tend to look small and dingy— especially during the day. If you have a particularly dark room, consider investing in better lighting.

With the flood of beautifully staged properties from the sales side flooding the rental market, your property needs to be able to stand out amongst them. Put these tips in place and you should see your property rented quickly let at the rent you want.

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