If you own a rental property, it is not only your aim to keep your investment successful but also to make it easy to maintain. Whether you recently purchased a rental unit or just concluded that your property is too expensive to maintain, you’re probably planning on making the most of your resources.
It may cost a little to make your property durable, but your monthly savings from hefty repairs and maintenance alongside a rental income should promise handsome returns in no time. Converting your property into a low maintenance unit ideally involves renovations with the help of a few simple tricks and quality materials. This includes:
1. Installing Durable Flooring
Carpeting or other plush flooring options aren’t as durable as other flooring options. Carpets can easily be damaged, worn, or stained. Therefore, it helps to avoid using carpets in high-traffic areas such as dining rooms, living rooms, and entryways.
Instead, we recommend looking into flooring options such as engineered hardwood, vinyl, or laminate. Laminate flooring is quite like hardwood but is plasticized. It can be installed easily and is also pretty simple to replace. Vinyl flooring is soft, durable, and even resistant to stains and water. You’ll also be surprised to find that vinyl flooring also absorbs sound, hence reducing neighbor conflicts.
2. Using Practical Lighting
Each room in a rental property should have a dedicated light that can be switched on and off with a switch. To keep utility costs low, a dome-shaped fixture in the middle of the ceiling should work perfectly with a lighted ceiling fan. In the other areas of the unit, you can choose to add track lights and switch outlets.
Track lights are pretty easy to install and can be added/removed according to the tenants’ preferences. Switched outlets, on the other hand, come in handy for tenants who prefer floor or table lamps over overhead lighting.
3. Making Your Kitchen Easy to Clean
Since a kitchen is the most-used room in a rental unit, you may want to consider options that make your space functional and prevent wear and tear—our recommendation: plastic countertops, undermount sinks, and wooden cabinets.
Wood countertops may be common, but plastic laminates are the best. You see, plastic is comparatively easier to clear, and its finish doesn’t wear off unless it is abused. In contrast, undermount sinks have no ledge and, therefore, tenants can wipe spills and crumbs easily into the sink without catching contaminants at the edge.
Lastly, wood cabinets don’t easily delaminate in the moist and hot kitchen environment. Also, they are pretty easy to clean when they are finished with clear and durable paint. If these cabinets start to show signs of aging, you can save a lot by simply refinishing or sanding over them instead of replacing them entirely.
4. Replacing Your Doors and Windows
Even though upgrading your rental property doesn’t necessarily mean replacing your doors and windows, if any of them are damaged and should be replaced, here’s what you can do. Fiberglass or steel doors not only look very attractive but also provide great security and insulation. For your interior doors, we recommend that you keep things simple by installing hollow-core, plain doors. For your door hardware, try to choose cost-effective products that have at least 2-locks and include a deadbolt that can be locked from inside. Doing so will save you from the hassle of changing locks between tenancies.
If you have any further questions on how to keep your property low maintenance, you can save some time by delegating this responsibility to your property manager. They’ll make the best decision for your rental unit based on your budget and help coordinate changes with other tenants.