Please Note: This Article is 5 years old. This increases the likelihood that some or all of it's content is now outdated.

As a property owner and a landlord, the value of your property is of utmost importance. It determines the potential resale price of the home, and how much you’ll be able to fairly make on rental returns.

Understanding the difference between the value of your property in economic terms, and what constitutes value for your tenants, is also crucial. When making decisions about changes to your property, it’s important to know how to increase value both financially, and for current and future inhabitants.

Increasing Financial Value

If you have plans to eventually sell your property for profit, or wish to increase rental returns, you will need to justify any intended rises in price by ensuring your property is worth the extra cost.

Increasing the basic financial value of your property can be done in many ways, and will depend on a number of extraneous factors, such as the physical aspects of the property, and its location. Here are just a few suggestions for changes and improvements you can make that could potentially drive up value for resale or future rental:

1. Update basic amenities

One of the first things to address is ensuring all your basic amenities – plumbing, heating, and electrics (etc.) – are of good quality. Installing new boilers, updating outdated circuitry, and including central heating all add to the baseline value of a property.

While it might be tempting to start with aesthetic features like interior remodelling, if your basic amenities aren’t of good quality any other changes you make could prove futile in the long term. You could even incur extra costs maintaining outdated installations.

2. Take care of simple aesthetic issues

An easy and cost-effective way you can instantly add value to a property is to ensure that aesthetically, things are fresh and inviting.

Re-painting interiors and exteriors, replacing damaged or visually displeasing kitchen and bathroom installations, and getting rid of any dated and tired features (like unattractive cornicing) can make the home instantly more appealing to buyers and potential tenants.

3. Increase available living space

One of the most effective value-adding improvements to make is to increase the available living space in your property. Whether this means opening up interior areas to boost available floor space, or creating new additional areas, providing more room is a great way of increasing appeal – and value.

You could consider the addition of a conservatory, or the conversion of a garage, loft space, or basement – just make sure you’re aware of any necessary planning applications, or building regulations you’d need to address.

Other slightly cheaper options might include the addition of an external, pre-fabricated, office in a garden or outdoor space, or the implementation of some space-saving design solutions indoors, all of which can free up room.

4. Install quality windows

Many older properties still feature single glazing, but most modern tenants expect double-glazed, UPVC windows. Installing these can not only add instant value, but also help keep the property heated, and eliminate issues such as damp.

Replacing windows also provides an opportunity to add a luxury aesthetic quality to your property. If you’re looking to attract a more upmarket clientele, you could explore options like frameless glazing, or even more elaborate structural glass installations like roof or floor panels.

5. Add appeal with outdoor areas

Ensuring exterior spaces are well kept, look appealing, and are practically viable is also important an important consideration.

Make sure gardens are de-weeded and clean – and lawns are replaced with fresh turf if they look tired. The addition of a garden shed can add instant value and appeal, and things like patios and decking can increase usable outdoor floor space.

Consider outdoor lighting, such as solar lamps or fixtures – a garden with sufficient lighting will hold much more value than one that is unusable after sunset.

6. Provide off-street parking

Off-street parking is one of the most sought-after features of any home, particularly in busy urban environments. Ensuring your property has at least one off-street parking space is a fantastic way to instantly up its value, potentially significantly.

Removing obstacles like walls or stairs, and laying paving over any green areas in front of the property is sometimes all that’s required – but it may also be necessary to lower the kerb to allow vehicular access. If this is the case, be aware that you will need to apply to your local authority for permission.

Increasing the value of your property to tenants

It’s crucial to remember that as a landlord, your tenants won’t view your property as an asset – they’ll see it as a home.

What constitutes value for tenants will differ in many ways from what is valuable for a property owner. While there are naturally some areas of overlap, understanding what your tenants will see as valuable is essential.

A property that is clearly set up with this understanding in mind is more likely to appeal to potential prospects, and will demonstrate that you’re the kind of landlord who understands the needs of your tenants.

1. Will your tenants be able to make the property ‘their own’?

If your tenants are planning to rent from you in the long term, chances are that they’ll want to make it really feel like home.

Try to make sure that there is enough scope for tenants to put their own ‘stamp’ on the property. This doesn’t mean you need to allow any alterations on their part – but keeping the colour scheme neutral, the interior spaces bright, and ensuring there’s enough room for them to configure furnishings as they wish lets tenants opt for an interior design style of their own choosing.

If you offer a part or fully furnished property to your tenants, consider whether the current furnishings add a distinct character to the home, or clash. If this is the case, it might be pertinent to switch these out for more neutral installations.

2. How easy is your property to clean and maintain?

Once you’ve ensured the property is clean, well maintained, and provides your tenants with all the necessary amenities, it can be tempting to feel that you’ve done enough. While these things are certainly important, it’s also a good idea to think about how easy it will be for your tenants to look after the property.

Ensure surfaces and installations (like baths or showers) are simple to clean and maintain, and there aren’t any gaps for dust or damp to accumulate. Think about how easy it will be for tenants to change light bulbs, and to access things like loft spaces.

If you live in an area with hard water, for example, you could consider a water softener.

3. Is the property accessible?

When it comes to accessibility, there are several things to factor in – all of which are valuable to tenants.

Things like wheelchair access, how steep stairs are, and whether the interior environment of the home is suitable for elderly or fragile inhabitants are all things to be considered.

Is there parking included, or available locally? If your tenants order shopping online, will it be possible for delivery drivers to access the property?

Make any changes you can to make your tenants’ lives that little bit easier, and you’ll find it easier to attract new tenants, as well as improving relationships with your current clients.

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Please Note: This Article is 5 years old. This increases the likelihood that some or all of it's content is now outdated.


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