Top 8 ways to add value to your rental property

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Extending a rental property to enhance its rental appeal.

As a landlord, if you want to attract higher-paying tenants, adding value to your property will help you do just that — it can also help you increase the resale value should you want to sell in the future.

In this guide, we look at eight ways you can add value to your property in the eyes of potential renters and buyers.

1. Make it more energy efficient

Something that is becoming increasingly important to tenants is the efficiency of their home; whether for financial or ethical reasons, it tops many lists.

So a few ways to make your property more energy efficient include adding a new boiler, better insulating the floors and walls, draught-proofing all existing windows and doors, or installing more energy-efficient lighting throughout the property.

To gauge how your property is currently performing and its potential performance, you can find your property’s Energy Efficiency Certificate (ERC) via the government’s EPC Register if you’re located in England, Wales or Northern Ireland. If in Scotland, you’ll need to visit the Scottish EPC Register.

2. Keep the gardens well maintained

A well-maintained and usable outdoor space, large or small, can be a plus for many renters. But on the flip side, a poorly maintained garden can be a turn-off.

Some landlords may keep the property’s outside space regularly maintained by a professional landscape gardener. On the other hand, some may decide to pay a one-off fee once the previous tenant leaves. Due to the Tenant Fees Act 2019, this is a prohibited fee, and the landlord cannot pass this charge on to the tenant.

Providing a somewhat involved garden can have drawbacks, as while the tenant may initially enjoy the space, they may not have the time or interest to keep the standards as high as on their move-in date. Therefore, we’d recommend keeping the garden maintained and relatively low-maintenance for a rental property.

3. Invest in smart home technology

Smart technology can make your tenants’ lives easier. So what tech can you install?

  • Smart central heating
  • Voice-activated entertainment systems
  • Remote-activated lighting

These are some of the most popular smart home technologies you can quickly implement in your rental property. All these technologies can be controlled by the tenant’s smartphone or tablet or run entirely through voice-activated AI device options, such as Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant.

Kitting out your property with the latest gadgets can be a huge plus for any potential tenant, giving you a massive advantage when increasing your rental fees.

4. Increase the living space

According to Nationwide, adding a loft conversion to a three-bedroom semi-detached property can increase its value by 20%. The same goes for an extension; increasing the property’s floor space is a great way to increase the value of your property, whether you’re planning on renting or selling.

Potential renters will almost always be willing to pay higher rent in exchange for additional space, especially if they anticipate a growing family. If this is the case, increased square footage may secure a suitable tenant for many years to come.

However, it’s important to note that usable storage space is also a deciding factor for many tenants. Therefore, be mindful not to compromise too much on storage space when converting your property.

5. Add extra parking

In 2020, the average number of cars registered to a UK household was 1.24. So a lot of UK households have more than one car. If you can offer good parking solutions at your property, this could be a big draw for potential tenants.

If your property has a driveway and a small front garden, you may consider expanding the driveway by paving over the front garden. Not only will this provide your property with an extra parking space, but it will make the maintenance of the front garden space significantly easier.

6. Think about a home office space

Whether remotely or self-employed, 38% of people now work from home following the impact of the pandemic. So having a designated space to work from is a new tick box on the modern-day tenant’s checklist.

Setting up one of the property’s spare bedrooms as a home office or building an outdoor structure in the back garden that they can use to separate work and family life could add much-wanted appeal to tenants.

Also, with the growing demand for this kind of facility, adding a home office to your property will increase the resale value of your property should you decide to sell up in the future.

7. Think about security

Tenants will inevitably be more security conscious in areas where crime rates are higher. However, you’ll find that most tenants are concerned about the safety of their families and possessions, regardless of their postcode.

You will undoubtedly increase your chances of obtaining tenants if you consider their security. For example, you could consider installing new burglar alarms and modern doorbell technology such as Ring or improve the robustness of entry points around the house by installing modern window and door fixings.

8. Consider whether to furnish or not

Deciding whether or not to furnish your rental property can be a big decision for many landlords — a decision that should come down to what kind of tenant you’re looking to attract.

For example, families looking to rent a property will most likely have a large amount of furniture and white goods of their own, making an unfurnished property much more appealing.

Whereas a young professional might be more likely to prefer a furnished property — they might not have the budget to furnish an entire living space from scratch. The same can be said if you’re looking to attract students to a house share; they will most likely have nothing to furnish a house with, making a fully-furnished property much more appealing.

Are you looking to make some improvements to your property and considering a bridging loan to help finance them?

Take a look at our bridging loan directory and find the right lender for your property finance needs.