If you’re like most real estate investors, you’re always looking for ways to increase the value of your LA County rental property. With the market still in recovery mode from the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s important to focus on what you can control. You don’t have any control over the market, but you do have control over the condition and presentation of your rental property. There are some immediate and cost-effective things you can do to increase rent and ROI. Remember that you want to strike a balance between investing enough money to attract and retain great tenants as well as higher rental values, but not so much that it takes years to see any return on that investment. Smart rental property investments are cosmetic; designed to help your property shine in a competitive rental market. These upgrades will increase the property value without over-improving it.
Provide a Fresh Coat of Paint
Depending on the size of your rental property, you could spend as little as $200 to repaint the entire home. It seems like such a simple thing, but fresh paint provides the highest return on investment of any upgrades made to rental properties. If you have more than one rental property, buy the paint in bulk and give each home a fresh coat. Buying in bulk also gives you plenty to keep in reserve, in case you need to touch up a wall and want to match the paint color.
Consider Upgraded Flooring
Steam cleaning and replacing carpet seems like a no-brainer during a tenant turnover. However, one great way to make a cost-effective improvement is to tear up that carpet and replace it with hard surface flooring. Carpet has had its day, but it’s not terribly attractive to tenants. Most rental property grade carpeting stains easily and begins to look worn just months into a lease term. Tenants prefer wood, laminate, or tile flooring. It’s easier to maintain, cleaner to look at, and comes with fewer allergens and health concerns. You won’t have to replace hard surface flooring as often as you replace carpet, so it saves you in the long term as well. Hardwood floors would be great, and so would ceramic tile. If those surfaces are out of your budget, consider a vinyl floor or some engineered wood products.
Focus on Kitchen Features
Tenants are going to be especially picky when it comes to the kitchen. This is where a lot of time is spent, especially if you’re feeding a family or cooking at home more. You’ll increase your rental value with some cosmetic updates around the kitchen. Consider a backsplash and some new fixtures on the sinks, cabinets, and drawers. A shiny new faucet and better lighting overhead will also improve the way the room looks and feels. Take an objective look at your appliances as well. If they’re aging or looking worn down, replace them with energy efficient models. Counters count, too. No one wants to move into a home with plastic laminate counters or old surfaces that are stained, chipped, and scratched. Over time, laminate countertops don’t look great. Install a solid surface material. The counters don’t have to be granite or quartz, but there are some acrylic composites and even concrete that will look better and be easier to maintain.
These are just a few of the updates you can make to your LA County rental property to achieve higher rents and better tenants. If you have any questions about how to earn more on your property or you’d like to talk about professional Los Angeles property management, please contact us at Bell Properties.