Investing in rental property is a great way to generate passive income, but it also requires effort to keep your tenants happy and retain them. Making upgrades to your property though, can keep tenants satisfied and enhance their living experience. Fortunately, you don’t have to spend a fortune to make significant improvements. Here are some affordable upgrades that can make your tenants happier, and also increase your ROI.

Invest In Energy-Star Certified Appliances

Energy-Star certified appliances can benefit both you and your tenants, even if you’re not responsible for paying the rental’s electric bill. Designed to reduce energy consumption without sacrificing performance, these appliances can significantly lower your tenant’s energy bills, particularly in areas with high electricity costs. Not only does it contribute to a more sustainable living environment, it can also make it easier for tenants to pay their rent.

Energy-Star certified appliances include dishwashers, washing machines, dryers, and others that meet the energy efficiency standards set by the EPA and US Department of Energy. Typically, these appliances are identified by the blue Energy-Star logo, and their installation can result in significant savings of hundreds of dollars annually for tenants. Additionally, upgrading to these appliances can reduce maintenance issues compared to older, less efficient models. By using energy-star certified appliances, you may also be eligible to receive a tax break.

Upgrade The Lighting

Lighting is an essential part of any home, and it can have a significant impact on your tenants’ mood and well-being. If your rental property has outdated or inadequate lighting, consider upgrading to modern, energy-efficient options. LED lights, for example, are not only more environmentally friendly but also last longer than traditional bulbs. In fact, they use about 80% less energy than common incandescent bulbs.

You could also add some dimmer switches to allow tenants to adjust the brightness of their lights to suit their needs. Including dimmers can transform a tenants rental into a bright, beautiful, and happy space.

With lighting being pretty inexpensive compared to most other property upgrades, you may want to invest in outdoor lighting as well. For tenants who enjoy entertaining outside or spending time outdoors relaxing, this addition will be a welcomed one.

As a landlord, it’s up to you to decide which route you want to take, but choosing the right lighting can make all the difference.

  • Ambient lighting creates a comfortable, inviting atmosphere in the room. This type of lighting can be achieved through ceiling-mounted lights, wall sconces, and other fixtures that provide general illumination.
  • Accent lighting is used to highlight specific areas of the home, such as artwork or outdoor features. Adjustable track lighting or single spotlights can be used to achieve this effect, allowing you to focus light on a specific area or object.
  • Task lighting is used to illuminate areas where tasks are completed, such as kitchen countertops or bathroom vanities. In contrast to ambient and accent lighting, this type of lighting is typically brighter and more focused, providing the necessary light to complete tasks efficiently and safely.

Add A Fresh Coat of Paint

A fresh coat of paint can make a living space feel brand new. It can brighten up a room, cover up any stains or scuffs, and make your rental property look more inviting. Opt for neutral colors like beige, gray, or white, as they are universally appealing and make it easier for tenants to decorate and personalize their space.

Update The Kitchen

The kitchen is often considered the heart of a home, so it’s no surprise that upgrading it can have a significant impact on your tenants’ satisfaction. However, you don’t have to completely remodel the kitchen to make improvements. Simple upgrades like replacing outdated hardware, adding a backsplash, updating countertops, or refinishing or painting cabinets can go a long way. To make sure you get the best price for renovations, speak to as many contractors as you can.

Upgrade The Bathroom

Like the kitchen, the bathroom is another area where small upgrades can make a big impact. Replacing an old, dingy showerhead with a newer, more efficient model can improve water pressure and save on water bills. Adding some shelving or storage can also help tenants keep their toiletries organized and create a more functional space. Likewise, if the bathroom vanity is outdated, you can dramatically improve it by picking out a new one that will make it look like you gave the entire bathroom a makeover.

Install New Blinds Or Curtains

Window treatments are another easy and affordable upgrade to consider. Installing new blinds or curtains can help control light and privacy, and can also add some style and personality to the space. Choose curtains or blinds that are easy to clean and maintain, so your tenants don’t have to spend too much time and effort on upkeep.

Install a Ceiling Fan

Ceiling fans are an affordable and effective way to improve airflow and create a more comfortable living space. They can help circulate air, cool down rooms, and reduce energy bills. In addition, many ceiling fans come with integrated lighting, so you can kill two birds with one stone.

Spruce Up The Landscaping

Adding some plants or flowers to your rental property can make it feel more pleasant. Not only do plants improve air quality, but they can also help reduce stress and improve your tenants’ mental health. Low-maintenance landscaping plants like succulents, spider plants, or flowers like orchids, and peace lilies are easy to care for and maintain. Inexpensive exterior upgrades are a nice decorative touch that will make your tenants appreciate the charming place they live. If you want to ensure your outdoor space remains green and fresh, install a sprinkler system.

If your rental property has outdoor spaces like a patio, balcony, or garden, consider investing in some upgrades that can make it more enjoyable for tenants to use. Adding some comfortable outdoor furniture, a grill, or some potted plants can create a relaxing and inviting atmosphere that tenants will appreciate.

Learn more: Outdoor Amenity Ideas For Your Rental Property

Redo The Flooring

If your property has old, outdated carpeting, replacing it with hardwood or laminate flooring can give it a fresh look. Both options are more durable and easier to clean, but they also add a modern, upscale touch to any living space.

While plush carpeting can add comfort to a room, it can get stained easily and usually requires frequent cleaning. In homes with pets, accidents can penetrate the carpet and padding, and cats may scratch or tear at the carpet corners.

These factors, among others, typically result in the need to replace carpets between tenants, which can be both costly and time-consuming. As a result, many landlords are turning to alternative flooring options that are durable, easy to clean, and can withstand heavy foot traffic.

  • Hardwood Flooring Replacing carpet every few years can ultimately be more expensive than installing hardwood flooring. If the price tag of installation is making you hesitant, you may want to consider only redoing the flooring in high-traffic areas and keep carpeting for just the bedrooms instead.
  • Laminate Flooring For a less expensive alternative to real wood floors, laminate floors are a good option. They are less vulnerable to scratches and dents than wood flooring, can tolerate moisture, and are easy to repair.

If you really want to spoil your tenants, floor heating will do the trick. Especially for rentals located in cold places, a warm floor can make your tenants extra comfortable and cozy.

Install Smart Home Devices

Smart home devices like thermostats, security cameras, and voice assistants are becoming increasingly popular, and for good reason. They can improve the comfort, security, and convenience of your rental property. A smart thermostat, for example, can help tenants save money on energy bills by automatically adjusting the temperature based on their schedule and preferences, while a smart lock can make it easier for tenants to access the property without having to carry around a key.

Rental Upgrades To Ensure Your Tenants Are Happy

By investing in some simple improvements, you can create a more welcoming and comfortable living space that tenants will love. With the right research, you can ensure upgrades are affordable and achievable. Not only will your tenants be willing to pay more for modern amenities and improved functionality, but they will be more likely to renew their lease agreements, reducing the costs and hassle of searching for new tenants. Ultimately, investing in upgrades can lead to increased profitability, lower maintenance costs, and an improved reputation as a landlord.