As the gap between the number of renters vs. homeowners widens, the number of long-term tenants is increasing. Despite being fantastic news for most professional landlords, tenants hoping to stay at one fixed abode for the long term are searching for more than just clean, accessible properties. So, what exactly are today’s renters looking for? Take a look through our five most frequent requests:
It’s all about the location
This may seem an obvious starting point, but with many tenants wanting to stay put for a minimum of two years, your property needs to offer more than convenience – it needs to sell a lifestyle. Properties located close by to amenities like gyms, shops and restaurants are in high demand, whilst commuter-belts are always attracting professional tenants. Renters are often put off if they need to travel for hours throughout their week just to go to work, keep fit and stock up on groceries, so if you’re looking to start (or add to) your portfolio, ask yourself whether you’d be happy to live in your rental property, based on this criteria.
Present your property in great repair
Any repair or maintenance works need to be resolved prior to a new tenancy. In an ideal world, you should have a week or two between tenancy agreements to establish and address any outstanding issues, so that the new tenants don’t have to get involved. It is understandably frustrating for new tenants if workmen are constantly required at their home to fix up problems left by previous residents. If you can, take the void period between renters to give your property a good once over and ensure all main appliances are in good working order.
Low maintenance garden
This is especially attractive for professional tenants, who are often more preoccupied with work and commuting. Young couples and busy families often do not have time to dedicate to gardening so the less to do, the better. Whilst 82% of people report that spending time in their garden increases their happiness, it’s widely reported that Brits manage to spend just 30 minutes outdoors per day, so a simple landscaped garden should do the trick to boost your property’s appeal whilst saving your future tenants time they don’t have.
A blank canvas they can call ‘home’
The percentage of long-term tenants is on the rise, so it’s more common than ever for renters to want to feel emotionally connected to their homes. Garish walls and tired carpets won’t make the cut in many instances, so help prospective tenants see your property as ‘home’ by freshening it up with neutral colours and a lick of paint. This will also help to increase your chances of scoring higher monthly rent.
Ample storage space
This is a particularly important point if you’re hoping to rent to students or a family, or if you’re considering letting your property furnished. Newer-build homes tend to feature built-in storage, but older properties can be less generous when it comes to storage space. Why not consider providing access to the loft space and garden shed? Or supply your student home with freestanding wardrobes and drawers? If prospective tenants are able to see a home for all their belongings, your property stands a higher chance of beating the competition.
For more advice on the best investment opportunities and how to get the most returns from them, contact your local branch.
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