Picture this: you’re showing off one of your nicest units to some prospects—college students looking to finally live off campus. Before they leave, they share that they won’t be moving into your property. When you ask why, they say, “It just looks like the ‘90s.” But the ‘90s were only two decades ago!? This building was a hit in the ‘90s because of how in vogue it was... but now, it’s simply outdated. Maybe this is you, or maybe your units are starting to look too much like 2005. Updating and modernizing your property is essential to gaining new tenants, across all generations. So, if you’re looking for something to enhance your properties, look no further! Frontline Residential Property Management has provided you both big and small projects that will take your units up a notch and far away from “out of date.”
Where do we start?
At Frontline we recognize every property is unique—some are older, some have specific issues to address, and some just need a few touch-ups. The best place to begin is the inside the units, but that shouldn’t be where you end. Every time a tenant moves out, that creates a perfect opportunity for you to handle updates. That way you can show off refreshed units to prospects and immediately boost your property’s desirability. If you’re
looking for a quicker overhaul of your portfolio, here are a few things you can add to your to- do list:
Depending on how long your tenant has lived in the unit, the lighting fixtures may be outdated. Consider modernizing and improving these to show off a more vibrant home. This can also be said of the facility as a whole—make sure common-area lights shine bright, too! One thing Frontline Residential Property Management has been changing for our own investment properties are the can lights. Updating can lights to current daylight LED lights will not only save on energy bills but brighten the rooms and give it a new clean look!
New curtains and blinds can make a big change in any room. And if smoke, pets, dust, or time has left its mark on the windows, it might also be time to upgrade them as well. Frontline recommends a 2” faux wood blind for the windows; which looks nice and has the added benefit of holding up to wear and tear better.
Replacing or removing carpets within a unit is an expensive commitment. However, switching to wood, laminate, or luxury vinyl flooring can be more hygienic, easier to clean for tenants, and these options create a more modern look within a home. You are also less likely to have to replace non-carpet flooring over a long period. Look at the long-term when buying flooring—get a product that can handle wear and tear because you know that’s bound to happen. Frontline Residential Property Management has been using luxury vinyl flooring in our own homes as we find that it looks nice, is well received by tenants, and is very durable.
Mindy Abramson, owner at Distinguishing Style, LLC, stated that “Replacements for hardware and fixtures that are dated or in poor repair are inexpensive and can immediately upgrade the look of your rental property.” Consider changing brass fixtures to stainless steel, satin nickel, or oil-rubbed bronze for a contemporary look.
Although various landscape concerns need to be addressed throughout the changing seasons, it doesn’t hurt to upgrade your landscape to attract more prospects from the
outside. Keep your property attractive throughout the year—even in the winter seasons— with decorations or weather-appropriate flowers out front.
Updating the paint in your units and around your property can bring new life and make your prospects and current residents feel refreshed. As recommended by Frontline property management be sure to pick colors that fit the area and that are neutral and soothing to the tenants. Fresh neutral colors will go a long way towards attracting a broader audience of qualified tenants.
If you choose to upgrade outdated appliances, you will not only win over prospects, but you may keep your current tenants longer. Upgraded appliances are a crowd pleaser and can help you increase rents in vacant units without raising any eyebrows from surrounding residents. These days it seems everything is stainless steel; even the lower end stuff gives you the impression of quality. Frontline wants you to keep in mind that stainless steel is not a very tenant friendly item and does not hold up to tenant use very well. Newer products that are smudge and scratch resistant will give you the same look and hold up better to tenant wear.
Upgrading the technology in your property immediately creates the feeling of a modern place to live. How long has it been since your property’s heating and cooling systems were installed/improved? What about a keyless entry system? These small but mighty changes can make a huge difference.
Although renovating individual units is important to attracting and keeping tenants, modernizing the outside and common areas of your property can be just as critical. You can make a huge impact by undertaking small improvements. Enhancing the curb appeal of your property will take you above and beyond for many prospects. Frontline Residential Property Management notes a few changes you can make:
Change a dated courtyard by adding a pergola
Supplement the old landscaping with new modern plants and color
Change out the playground equipment for newer equipment
Add new planters or flower beds
What are the benefits?
Updates to your facilities benefit your prospects, your current residents, and you—it’s a win/win for everyone! Resident satisfaction will increase as the place your tenants call home transforms in front of their eyes. Modernization also creates an immediate and obvious attraction for prospects... and you’ll benefit from the repairs as well! With updated units and properties, you can adjust rents, improve energy efficiency, and extend repair timetables— saving you money in the long run. With a new decade ahead of you, now may be the perfect time to consider stepping out of the past and into the future at your properties!