As the owner of a buy to let property, you probably already know how important the right décor is when trying to attract the right kind of tenants and a higher rental price for your property. In order to maximize profit and minimize your risks, your new rental property should be decorated both to look good and to last.
Kitchen and Floors
Unless you are renting your flat as a luxury flat, cheap countertops and kitchen surfaces in laminate or other synthetic materials are often a better choice than expensive natural stone. Expensive wood floors that need to be waxed and sanded or scuff easily are usually often a bad idea. Even if you could recover part of the costs of fixing it from the deposit, you lose money every day the flat is empty being redecorated.
Unless you know your tenants will be willing to pay extra, spending a lot of money renovating an apartment to luxury standards is generally not a good idea. Generally speaking, you should opt for durable materials over those that require lots of maintenance and care, because you cannot guarantee that your tenant will be careful about it as you would. Nobody wants to lose their deposit because the carpet stains too easily, or the walls in the bathroom need special products for cleaning.
Renting a flat is always easier if it’s decorated tastefully in neutral, low maintenance colours. Statement pieces, such as a bright red wall, may look great but not be to everybody’s tastes. If you are using carpet flooring, choose a carpet that is durable and doesn’t stain easily: A creamy white carpet will need lots of care, and most tenants look at practicality as much as design. This often means leaving your personal design preferences at the door, and aiming for something that looks neutral, attractive and high quality without investing too much money.
You can hardly expect your tenants to return your flat in exactly the same pristine status as they got it. This is what is known as wear and tear, and while you can recover excessive damages from the deposit, you will end up having to redecorate every few years, or at least do a few touch ups. If you are making money as a landlord you can claim this sort of expenses against your letting revenue in order to minimize your tax liability.
Choosing between offering a furnished, part furnished or unfurnished apartment is one of the most important decisions you’ll make as a landlord, and can affect greatly both the price and the time it takes you to find tenants. Your risk is higher if you opt to offer the flat furnished and the tenant returns it in bad condition, so make sure you don’t put in place furniture that wouldn’t be covered by a reasonable deposit.