If you are renting out a property that you've purchased then one of the next steps you could be contemplating is how to best go about decorating it. It is essential to decide on styles and colours that'll appeal to as many potential tenants as possible, instead of just decorating the property based solely on your own tastes.

The who, the what, the where

The first thing to consider is the location and type of property, in addition to the type of tenants most likely to be living in the property. Is it an apartment or a house? Is it in a city centre or in the suburbs? Are the occupants going to be a professional couple, a large family or students? A landlord needs to consider decorating their property based on these issues.

Decorating an apartment might be hugely different to decorating a house, mainly for the fact the former is likely to be a lot littler and therefore present a number of restraints in what you will be able to do.

The size of the property could also fluctuate based on its location, with a house in the suburbs more likely to be bigger than a property closer to a town or city centre - it might also affect the style, as houses in the suburbs are likely to be more old-fashioned and traditional compared potentially contemporary and modern city centre flats, and its decor should really complement this.

When it comes to people, think about the intentions of the rooms. Students might only need one room to be living areas - i.e. as a living room and dining room all in one - which offers the possibility to have more bedrooms, meaning more tenants and in turn more rent money. Alternatively, when considering a professional couple, one bedroom might be enough, with maybe a second bedroom intended for guests.

Simple and neutral is the way to go

Make sure you keep everything as neutral and simple as possible when decorating the rented property. There will be less clashes with furniture (if you are letting unfurnished) and it's more likely to be in line with a lot more people's tastes.

Off-white and cream are good colours for the walls, e.g. magnolia. For ceilings, opt for white. When contemplating the floors, a medium pile carpet (not too shaggy yet not too thin) is best, in addition to a colour that's not too light - a beige or mink colour is much less likely to show dirt and stains when compared to a cream or white carpet.

Should you furnish the property or not?

An unfurnished property allows tenants to import their own furniture. However, for some kinds of tenants, it could be more sensible to furnish the property for them, e.g. for students who might only be renting out the place for one year.

When furnishing a property, it's very important to ensure that all the furniture is compliant with legislation such as fire regulations. It is also rather essential to have an inventory, just in case pieces get broken or go missing. While we're on the issue of breakages, when furnishing a property, brace yourself for potential maintenance and repair work on a regular basis.

The kind of tenant may influence the type of furniture that you order too. In order for students to cram as much into a bedroom as humanly possible, they'll probably welcome fitted bedroom furniture more than other kinds of bedroom furniture. Such a storage solution might not be required by a family or a professional couple, but could still be appreciated, particularly if the property is not very spacious.

Happy tenants = more income

Most crucially for landlords, a well-decorated property will result in more content tenants. Tenants will be much more likely to stay in the property for an a longer duration of time if they are happy with the living arrangements. Alternatively, if tenants do decide to leave and have to be replaced, a nicely decorated property should also be more alluring to other potential tenants, reducing the probability that the property will go vacant for more time than it has to and therefore lowering the amount of rental income lost during this time.