Rents are on the rise in San Diego, which is good news for rental property owners, but how can you really maximize what you earn and ensure your property stays competitive? There’s not much you can control about the strength of the local rental market. But, you can make some renovations to maximize your rental income.
Providing a well-maintained property is expected and required of every landlord. But, if you can make your rental home really stand out from the competition, you’ll find that you attract better tenants who are willing to pay a bit more to live in your property.
Renovations don’t have to be complex and expensive. You can make some important upgrades during your next turnover period to really make an impact on your rental value.
Take a look at these ideas.
Fresh Paint is a Valuable Investment
A fresh coat of paint on all the interior walls is required before you have tenants move into your property. This will make a dramatic difference in your ability to rent the home for a higher price tag.
When you’re preparing it for the rental market, don’t make tiny touch-ups here and there. It’s noticeable, and it doesn’t look as new and fresh as a completely painted wall. Remember to stick to neutral colors, and don’t be afraid to paint the trim and the baseboards. Even the ceiling deserves a fresh coat, especially if there are stains or areas of discoloration.
Invest in Better Lighting for San Diego Rental Homes
Lighting is important in the kitchen and the bathrooms. Look for overhead lights that are bright and energy-efficient. New fixtures will make the room look new, especially in the bathroom where your tenants are likely getting ready for school, work, or other activities.
Exterior lighting is especially important for security and safety purposes. Consider installing a motion-activated flood light on the outside of the property, near the front door and windows. You should also make sure there’s good lighting in any parking lots or near garages and outbuildings.
San Diego Landscaping and Rental Value
Tenants want landscaping that’s attractive but also low-maintenance.
Evaluate your landscaping. You don’t have to invest thousands of dollars in fountains and koi ponds, but you do want to make sure the exterior of the property is appealing. Have the lawn mowed. Trim the bushes and any overgrown trees. Make sure your driveway and walkways are free of any debris, trash, or belongings.
Curb appeal counts when it comes to rental value. It also helps tenants decide if they’ll bother seeing the inside of the property.
Hard Surface Floors for San Diego Rentals
Carpet is pretty standard in rental homes, but it doesn’t have to be the cheapest and ugliest carpet that’s available. Put in a nice, medium-grade carpet that will last for a few years and not scare away your tenants.
Even better - tear out the carpet entirely. While it might be good for bedrooms, hard surface flooring is growing more and more popular among rental property owners. It’s not terribly expensive, especially if you work with a faux hardwood finish or a high quality laminate. It’s easier to maintain and your tenants will appreciate fewer allergens and stains.
You don’t have to spend a lot of money, but what you do spend will more than pay for itself when you attract good tenants quickly, thereby reducing your vacancy rate. You’ll also be able to charge more rent, which is the goal of every San Diego real estate investor.