Spice up your investment for better resale value

Posted on 18 April 2016

Do you have an investment property? If you do, you’ll probably know of the annoyance and heartache that can come from unhappy tenants and ongoing maintenance fees. Little ongoing changes can help you maintain a happy relationship with your tenants and help the bottom line of the value of your home when it comes to resale time!

Outside (and inside) the box

This may be stating the obvious, but first impressions count. Take a look at your property’s façade and see what needs a refresh. Is the paint looking a bit world weary? Do the awnings need repairing? Perhaps the old red brick could do with a render? If your garden is looking a little sparse, go to your local nursery and get some advice on plants that will thrive in the space (and breathe new life into it!). Choose plants that will be easy for your tenants to maintain or go for grass and shrubs that will need pruning only periodically. Make sure everything looks tidy and well maintained.

A lick of paint wouldn’t go astray on the interior of your property either, especially if the walls are looking somewhat ‘lived in’. One vital thing to remember is that this is not the time to channel your inner artist – keep it neutral.

The devil is in the details

That water bill may be coming out of your pocket, so get your eco-warrior on and invest in some water-saving fixtures and appliances. Say goodbye to exorbitant water bills and hello to greener pastures. (On houses where the water is individually metered, the owner pays the water bill service charge but passes on the rest to the tenant.) Your local water board may also periodically come out to do checks and put in such items as more eco-friendly showerheads. Ring them up to ask whether they offer this service.

Also have a look at your lighting situation. If the fittings look outdated, focus on the main living zones and invest in some quality, timeless light fittings. They’ll make a good first impression for renters and won’t break the bank.

Show me the money

Having a decent kitchen and bathroom is a siren song for many renters. In fact, renters will pay more per week for a good kitchen or bathroom, so look at ways of improving yours. Kitchens are at the heart of every home, so make yours as functional as possible. These changes can be as extensive as changing the floor plan, updating the appliances and lighting or replacing benchtops and cabinets. Consider what will bring about the best returns without breaking your budget.