Rents are pretty high right now, and you’re likely earning more on your Charlotte rental property than you did a year or two ago.
That’s good news. The market is also competitive; with lower inventory and higher demand, most landlords and rental property owners are feeling pretty good about their chances of placing and retaining qualified tenants.
But even in a market like this one, well-qualified renters can afford to be highly selective.
How does your rental property stand out?
Hopefully, it’s attract and well-maintained. Are there other things you can do to make it irresistible to Charlotte’s best residents?
We have some ideas for immediate and cost-effective cosmetic upgrades that increase rental values and attract outstanding tenants. Remember that you want to strike a balance between investing enough money to attract and retain great tenants as well as higher rental values, but not so much that it takes years to see any return on that investment.
Smart rental property investments are cosmetic; designed to help your property really stand out in any type of rental market.
Here are some upgrades that will deliver all the attention you want without over-improving your property.
Start with Stunning Curb Appeal
First impressions count, and your curb appeal creates the first impression that your prospective Charlotte tenants will have about your property. Make sure the lawn has been mowed and any bushes, trees, or shrubs have been trimmed back. Don’t let any debris or trash settle around the property or blow up against the front door.
Landscaping is all about cosmetics. You want it to look pretty. Consider some pretty flowers, interesting foliage, and maybe a freshly painted front door or a new mailbox. You want to attract attention and create an image that’s welcoming and inviting. Don’t go overboard with the landscaping; you want it to look good, but you don’t want your tenants worrying about the maintenance that may be required to keep it looking so good.
Consider a wreath or some bright flowers around the entry. Tenants want to feel good about the property before they even go inside.
Power washing can also be used to give your front door and the entire entryway a clean, modern, and inviting look.
Provide a Fresh Coat of Paint and Interesting Trim
Freshly painted walls look fantastic. When a prospective tenant walks into your property for a showing, they’ll see and smell that the home is freshly painted. That makes a difference. Paint seems like such a simple thing, but fresh paint provides the highest return on investment of any upgrades made to rental properties.
There’s not a lot of thought that needs to go into the paint you choose, but don’t feel like you need to stick to flat white. You want to paint in neutral and uncomplicated colors, but think about beige or grey. Try an eggshell or off-white. You can also get creative with the trim or the baseboards if you want to add interest with a different shade of paint.
When we talk about paint, we’re talking about the inside of the home. But, check the exterior, too. If it’s time to paint outside, don’t delay. Sun and weather can impact the condition of house paint, and you don’t want your home looking dull or like it’s deteriorating.
Pull Out the Carpet in Charlotte Rental Homes
Steam cleaning and replacing carpet is likely part of your tenant turnover checklist.
But, what if you pulled up the carpet and didn’t replace it?
One excellent cosmetic improvement is to replace the old and worn carpet with hard surface flooring. Carpet has had its day, but it’s not terribly attractive to tenants. Most rental property grade carpeting stains easily and begins to look worn just months into a lease term.
Tenants prefer wood, laminate, or tile flooring. It’s easier to maintain, cleaner to look at, and comes with fewer allergens and health concerns. You won’t have to replace hard surface flooring as often as you replace carpet, so it saves you in the long term as well. Hardwood floors would be great, and so would ceramic tile. If those surfaces are out of your budget, consider a vinyl floor or some engineered wood products.
Kitchen Cosmetic Upgrades
If you can only provide cosmetic upgrades to one spot in your Charlotte rental home, let it be the kitchen.
Tenants are especially interested in a rental home’s kitchen. This is where a lot of time is spent, especially if you’re feeding a family or cooking at home more.
You’ll increase your rental value and attract better tenants when you make some cosmetic updates around the kitchen. Consider a backsplash and some new fixtures on the sinks, cabinets, and drawers. A shiny new faucet and better lighting overhead will also improve the way the room looks and feels.
Take an objective look at your appliances as well. If they’re aging or looking worn down, replace them with energy efficient models.
Improve Lighting in Charlotte Rental Homes
Lighting is another easy cosmetic fix that will immediately brighten your rental home and make it more attractive to tenants.
Upgrade your indoor and outdoor lighting when you want the property to show better and stand out in the current market. Security is more important than ever to tenants, and good outdoor lighting will get their attention. A motion light can be beneficial, and if there’s a walkway to where your tenants park, consider lighting it up with solar lights or lamps.
Inside, tenants will want light fixtures that match the hardware you have in each room. This type of attention to detail will help you earn more on your investment property and attract those tenants who are looking for a modern and bright home.
These are just a few of the updates you can make to your Charlotte rental property to achieve higher rents and better tenants. You don’t have to spend tens of thousands of dollars on renovations. Be smart and make some cosmetic improvements. We can help! Contact our team at AM Realty and we’ll make some recommendations that are unique to your investment property.