Budgets and ways to cut expenses are on the minds of landlords now more than ever. Everyday upkeep alone can chip away at profits. As rent increase freezes are set to stick around for the foreseeable future, spending capital on large scale renovations may not be possible. That said, there are times when a modest investment can create amenities for renters and potentially increase rental value. So, join us as we break down a few cost-effective rental property improvements for various budgets.
Top 5 Budget-Friendly Improvements to Increase Rental Value
Keeping your rental property looking its best is a full-time job. The good news is there are plenty of budget-friendly rental property improvements that freshen up any tired investment home. Check out this list of the top 5 inspirational ideas to increase rental value below.
- Fresh Paint
- Pressure Washing
- Spruce Up the Landscaping
- Update the Fixtures and Hardware
- Create an Office
- Average Cost: $250 to $1,500
It does not take long for the walls in a rental home to show their age. Constant patches and touch up paint add to a worn look that can turn off prospective renters. That said, consider adding a fresh coat of paint in a warm neutral tone. Additionally, look for deals on bulk paint from your local hardware store. Not only does this save a little money, but it makes touch-ups much easier. After all, painting has the highest ROI among all rental property improvements.
- Average Cost: $200 to $500
Curb appeal is the first thing that renters see, and it is essential to make a good impression. Mildew, mold, and dirt build up on a home’s exterior along with decks, walkways, and even driveways. Therefore, a quick power wash can make a huge difference in your property’s appearance. As far as rental property improvements go, this is one of the simplest. Landlords can perform this task themselves with equipment available for rent from most hardware stores. However, if a DIY project is not your speed, turn to a reputable vendor locator site like Angie’s List to find a pressure washing company in your area.
Spruce Up the Landscaping
- Average Cost: $100 to $500
With a little elbow grease, landlords can add maximum impact on a low budget with some fresh landscaping. Flowers and shrubbery add warmth and color to an otherwise drab exterior. A well-cared-for yard gives prospective renters a sense that the property is taken care of and important to the owner. Thankfully for landlords, landscaping supplies are fairly inexpensive, and planned planting can keep the home looking beautiful year-round.
Update the Fixtures and Hardware
- Average Cost: $50 to $500
Faucets, cabinetry hardware, and even lighting fixtures can make a rental property seem dated. However, swapping them out for a modern or energy-efficient option can change the space’s whole look. Replacing the hardware instantly updates kitchen cabinetry for a fraction of the cost of cabinet refacing or replacement. Also, if you opt to replace any light fixtures, consider highly efficient LED bulbs to save on replacement frequency and utility cost.
Create an Office
- Average Cost: $100 to $1,500
For many American workers, working remotely has become and is likely to remain the new normal. Therefore, if your rental property has ample space, creating a home office could prove significantly valuable to tenants. However, if square footage is not on your side, maximizing flex space is the way to go. Investing in a fold-out desk or multipurpose shelving can help tenants stay organized on a budget.
Pricey Improvements that Increase Rental Value
If your investment property needs a bit more than a cosmetic facelift, there are still options. Although these rental property improvements cost more, they provide a huge impact and value to landlords and tenants. Check out our suggestions below.
- Reface Kitchen Cabinetry
- Install Upgraded Flooring
- Switch Out Appliances
- Add Home Security
Reface Kitchen Cabinetry
- Average Cost: $1,000 to $5,000
Rental properties experience more wear and tear than a typical household. Thus, kitchen cabinets can take a beating, especially with more individuals stuck at home during the pandemic. In many cases, the cabinetry itself remains in good shape, with only the surface showing its age. So, consider cabinet refacing or door replacement as a cheaper alternative to full replacement. These door options come in various styles, colors, and finishes, including real wood veneers to effortlessly brighten up any room.
Install Upgraded Flooring
- Average Cost: $2,000 to $15,000
Yes, carpet costs less, but is it really cheaper in the long run? No. In fact, the added cleaning and replacement frequency of carpeting offset the higher cost of more premium options. Therefore, consider upgrading your flooring throughout your rental property. To help mitigate costs, landlords could opt to convert only high traffic areas such as the living room and kitchen while leaving carpeting in the bedrooms. Additionally, if hardwood is out of your price range, there are tons of options in vinyl, tile, or laminate that offer exceptional durability. So, although the initial cost is higher, landlords will benefit from a measurable impact on property value.
Switch Out Appliances
- Average Cost: $1,000 to $16,000
Experts agree that kitchens can sell homes, but it also rents them. Tenants place value in functional and modern kitchen spaces with energy-efficient appliances. In particular, rental homes benefit from in-unit washer/dryers and conveniences such as microwaves and built-in dishwashers. If your property has bare-bones or dated appliances, an upgrade may be in order. Replacing the appliances appeals to renters and cuts down on the maintenance needs that older appliances may present.
Add Home Security
- Average Cost: $500 to $3,500
Safety is important to everyone; tenants want to secure their belongings, and landlords need to protect their property. Therefore, a home security system or smart home technology is a huge selling point for tenants while simultaneously adding value to your home. Installing a security system can include video doorbells, motion-sensing lights, exterior cameras, alarm systems, and live home monitoring services. Thankfully, landlords have a plethora of options on the market in a variety of price ranges. Additionally, many of these systems are easy to install and require no extensive equipment or expertise.
Rental property improvements on any budget can help landlords create a much-needed edge in the competitive rental market. Are you unsure how to effectively market your property to tenants? Do you need advice on which upgrades will pay off in your area? Bay Property Management Group has the expertise to help you increase rental value and get your property rented efficiently to a quality tenant. Contact us today for a free no-obligation rental evaluation!