Home Décor Tips: Upgrade Your Home @ Reward Me

Home decor what upgrades to make in house before renting

Follow these 8 guidelines to prepare your home for new tenants

Whether renting your house or apartment permanently or for a holiday arrangement, some of the same preparations are necessary for you and your tenant. This big decision requires addressing a few questions.

Is your home rental-ready? You may have grown accustomed to a noisy refrigerator, a leaky window and scuffmarks on the walls. Now is the perfect opportunity to fix things you postponed to another day. Earning an income from a home is an appealing idea but it comes with a price tag. Things to consider changing: Should the tub be replaced with a shower? Do you need new appliances? Updating and upgrading will give your place the advantage in a competitive market.

If renting your home furnished or not, long-term or short, follow this checklist of important steps to make your home attractive, safe and comfortable for new inhabitants. At all costs, you want to avoid emergency calls at 3 am to fix a broken faucet.

1. Prioritize

When fixing up a home, it is smart to do the big messy stuff first and always finish with deep cleaning. The overriding rule is to ensure all is clean and wellfunctioning. Here’s the order of things to do:

  1. Construction, plumbing, replacing appliances, etc
  2. Paint—fresh paint makes your home sparkle
  3. Floors—refinish or polish, deep clean carpet or replace rugs
  4. Clean after all the dust settles

2. Lower overhead

Make time - and money-saving choices for water and electricity, such as replacing bulbs with low-wattage LEDs. Remove any favorite light fixtures and change with handsome contemporary pendants, sconces and overhead lights.

3. Kitchen

  • If upgrading appliances chose energy-savers. The life expectancy of most big appliances (refrigerator, washer-dryer) averages about 14 years. Dishwashers 12 years and gas stoves about 19 years. If it’s close to that time, go ahead and replace it.
  • Change countertops if the tile is broken or damaged, grout stained, color dated or just generally worn-out.
  • Upgrade kitchen sink faucet (shiny little things go a long way).
  • Switch cupboard knobs and drawer handles to freshen up the look and tighten any loose screws.

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4. Bath

  • Install aerators in faucets and low-flow toilets to reduce water bills.
  • Bathtub vs. shower? It’s personal preference. If you have two bathrooms, a walk-in shower in one might be a good investment.
  • Upgrade shower spigot with a large rain-shower head and handheld hose with massage head.
  • Install a glass enclosure to replace a shower curtain and install slip-resistant strips on the tub’s surface.

5. Bedrooms

  • Create covers for any unsightly radiators that can double as a shelf.
  • Replace blinds with blackout shades.
  • Improve closets with shelving and double hanger space with two levels of bars.

6. Living spaces

  • Provide enough new electrical outlets and overall improve system to avoid overloading the fuse box.
  • Create an electronic-friendly house with satellite dish, cable and phone plugs (available for activation).
  • Clean the fireplace chimney, update fire-safety items (smoke detectors and fire extinguishers).

7. Outdoors

  • Spruce up landscaping with flowering bushes and low-maintenance shrubs and grasses.
  • Install solar-powered garden-path lights.
  • Clean and paint the porch and fence with a fresh coat.

8. Legal considerations

  • Should you change your home insurance policy to accommodate renters and protect against damage?
  • Consider an inspection to see if your home needs an upgrade for utilities such as electricity and plumbing.
  • Will you manage the property or hire a company or individual to do the work and maintenance?

Now that your house is ready, are you ready to be a landlord?

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