When it comes to renovating, there’s a simple rule of thumb that can almost guarantee you extra rent and lower vacancies, particularly if you’re holding on to a unit or other small space.
Prospective tenants are far more likely to look more kindly on your property if there’s lots of storage.
Cherie Barber from Renovating for Profit explains that “A lot of properties just don’t have enough storage! The appearance of storage, especially when you don’t have the time or money to build more, is essential.”
A lack of storage space can be the ultimate turn off for desirable long-term renters who, typically, are looking for somewhere that will fit their furniture and belongings. This is especially the case where properties do not have built-in wardrobes.
“Being creative with your storage, especially when you have limited space, is crucial,” says Ms Barber.
“One low-budget cosmetic reno I did involved buying a cupboard-style towel rack for $9 from Target, and I hung it on the wall and put towels inside it and it doubled as a towel rack and a shelf.
“Look for cheap home décor accessories that don’t cost much money.”
Many fail to consider how the storage capacity appears to viewers, particularly if there’s no associated garage, or if there’s only a linen cupboard.
“A lot of people don’t put enough storage in their bathrooms or they don’t think creatively about how they can put in extra storage.
“If there are bathrooms I can’t reconfigure then I’ll use the wall cavity to recess a mirrored shaving cabinet, to free up some space.”
For investors with properties where space is restricted, they should consider the following:
- Looking for multi-functional items: Things that add storage and save space (e.g. shallow shelves that can slip in above an existing unit, vanities with cupboards attached, medicine cabinets).
- Using the space as innovatively as possible: Look to shelves that fit in with the contour of the property, or that can slot into difficult wall areas such as corners
- If there is a linen cupboard, consider putting in shelves
- Place hooks on doors and in cupboard units strategically