Am I Throwing Away Money by Renovating an Investment Property?

I guess the answer is, it depends on what you are doing with the property, and what sort of renovations you are talking about. If you are doing it up to sell, then you need to know what sort of returns you are likely to get before starting the renovations. If you are trying to attract tenants, then you need to find out what comparable properties are offering.

But there are some simple ‘cheap tricks’ to make a property more attractive either way. You don’t need to fully renovate the property – you don’t need to spend $10,000 on the kitchen –  when all your property needs is a bit of ‘cheering up’.  You can’t go wrong when you try to make the house feel more like a “home” so consider trying these:


Outside:

We will look into this a bit more in an upcoming post, but a basic suggestion is –

  • Remember the first impression is vital. If the front looks enticing then people viewing will be excited to see inside.


Inside:
  • Change out old light fittings to modern ones.
  • Remove unnecessary doors in hallways etc This makes the space more open by creating open shelving.
  • Change out door handles on internal doors and cupboard doors (kitchen, bedrooms, bathrooms etc). Brushed stainless steel is a popular option
  • Paint base boards, window sills and door frames a white/off white
  • Paint walls off white or similar neutral color
  • Replace carpet if old, worn or dated. If in good condition get the carpet professionally cleaned.
  • Wooden blinds look more luxurious then plastic.  You can usually buy off the shelf and get them cut down if necessary.  
  • In the bathroom install a new vanity, possibly a new tub and upgrade tiles if you can’t get grout sparkling clean.
  • Replace taps to modern variety in all sinks throughout the house
  • Clean windows (a lot of people forget this, but it goes a long way and costs you nothing.)


Staging the Inside:
  • These tips are more important for selling a property, but can be useful for when you are renting out the property if it is tenanted.
  • Clear all clutter away from bench tops (all appliances etc) 
  • Leave only things out  that add a bit of colour/design
  • Make the space neutral, by clearing our any personal items – like family photos.
  • Get rid of as much furniture as possible – this makes the space look larger. Leave only the basics.
  • Fresh flowers are a nice touch in the entry way, dining room or kitchen 
  • Spice up the bathroom by adding new colored towels and bathmat. 
  • If your furniture is a very specific style you may want to consider using a professional stager who will bring in neutral furniture – it is easier for people to visualize their own belongings this way. 
  • Get professional photo’s taken – if you have bad looking ones, no one will want to see the place. Who wants to go to an open home when all they imagine is messy bedrooms?
  • At night turn on the outside/driveway lighting so people can see the property day and night.
There are plenty of easy to upgrade your property without spending a fortune. What would you suggest?
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