Prepping your property for rent

Private Property South Africa
Press

Putting effort into making your sure your rental property is in great condition before you put it on the market has major benefits.

Whether you are tidying up a buy-to-let or putting your own home (or part thereof) on the rental market, a properly prepared property will not only fetch a better rental and attract a better tenant, but help you in a number of ways too. Soukop Rentals expert Michela Soukop shares some tips:

If it’s broken, fix it

From the squeaky gate to the mouldy bathroom grout or dripping tap, small repairs and maintenance save you money and problems in the long run. Plus those little glitches you may have got used to living with may put off a discerning tenant. And wouldn’t you rather have that kind of tenant than one who doesn’t care or notice? Similarly if there any pests or insects you need to deal with, do so.

Appliances

You may not want to leave your brand new dishwasher behind, but do consider leaving behind appliances that fit neatly into your kitchen and/or scullery space. You can often charge a better rental with appliances included, it saves extra wear and tear on your property as removal companies carry in and out cumbersome appliances – and you’ll be surprised at what you can find relatively cheaply on gumtree and other buy/sell/swap sites.

Spring clean

Set the initial benchmark high if you want your property handed back in good condition. Give it a thorough spring clean including cupboards, carpets, curtains and blinds, windows, garbage bins and the rest. A lick of paint where necessary will freshen things up too and add value.

Garden

The outside of a property is just as important as the inside, so make sure the garden or outdoor area is neat, clean, well maintained and attractive. This is an area that tenants often neglect, so consider building a gardener or garden service into the rental contract. Similarly a pool service in the contract will probably save you endless expenses in the long run.

Heating and cooling

Adding heating and cooling devices such as aircon, fans, underfloor heating and heated towel rails where necessary can add huge value to upper end rentals.

Security and phone/internet connection

Having security features and a functioning alarm system will protect both your property and the tenant, and add huge value at the same time. Similarly a phone connection and internet facilities will attract a better tenant. Always have spare sets of keys for yourself and the managing agent.

Safety and insurance

Check whether your property meets safety standards for example pool fences, stairs, railings, balconies, electrical and make sure your property is correctly insured for being let.

Privacy

If you’re renting out a room or area within your own home, make sure both parts have privacy and that you can secure that area from the rest of your home.

Select an agent

You can do it yourself, but a good property manager or real estate agent will handle the advertising, negotiations, the repairs and requests, and draw upon their expertise.

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