8 Reasons why you cannot find a tenant Back

  • 10 Sep 2017

    8 Reasons why

    When it comes to properties, appearance can make or break a deal. Sadly, houses are most likely to be judged by their looks. If your property has been on the market for a while, chances are it may need a little uplift to shift.

    Ultimately, the decision to spruce up your property depends on whether you can financially sustain it. There are various things to consider before you go full steam ahead – how much will the renovations or upgrades cost, how long will it take before you make a return on your investment, the amount of time you will be out of rental income (for rental), the market condition amongst others. 

    Before you rush into a kamikaze quest to redecorate or renovate, investigate whether there are other possible reasons for the lack of interest. A little bit of homework can save you lots of unnecessary pain and financial damage in the long run.

    1. Ask for advice

    A good estate agent will advise you on simple adjustments to make your house stand out. If not provided, chances are your estate agent may not want to offend you. Don’t hesitate to ask them for their opinion. Marketing properties is what they do everyday which makes their judgement and opinion all the more valuable.

    2. Get Feedback

    If your property is priced on par and has a similar feel to marketed properties in the area, yet yours is not gaining as much interest, ask for feedback. This will give you insight on what changes may be necessary. It is unlikely that you will buy a house with only a shower when you need a bath for your newborn baby. Likewise, a tenant may not want to rent your beautifully decorated 1 bed property if furnished with a single bed when he/she has a significant other.

    Understand and adapt to the need of the prospective individual. Some simple upgrades may be all that is required. Request viewing feedback from your estate agents. It should be part and parcel of their service offerings.

    3. Sense of smell

    The sense of smell triggers an immediate psychological influence on feelings and perceptions. A beautifully scented home is inviting and has an instant positive impact. The opposite is also true. A pungent smell, mouldy odour or stale air is unlikely to appeal to your prospective buyers or tenants.

    You will most likely not be aware of these smells, especially if you are currently living in your property. Invest in scented candles, room sprays or diffusers to transform your home into a fragrant sanctuary. And to take it one step further, bake some fresh scones or cookies ahead of the viewings. Nothing says “Welcome Home!” quite like mouth-watering aromas that lingers in a kitchen.

    4. Neutral colours

    A fresh coat of orange painted wall combined with green curtains or furnitures can bring that amazing earthy feeling to your home. But it doesn’t help if the colour orange has a completely opposite effect on your prospective buyers or tenants. Whilst some buyers might look past the colour and repaint, this may not be an option for your tenants.

    Keep your walls as neutral as possible. White and off-white coloured walls gives an assumed sense of openness to otherwise compact spaces. Likewise your furniture and beddings should also remain neutral especially for your rental potential. Accessorise couches, beds and walls with brighter coloured cushions, throws and more vivid wall decorations. Not only will these small add on touches bring some brightness to your gentle decor but tenants can easily substitute these with their own personal flair.

    5. “Here lives a happy family”

    Many property expert and stagers would suggest that you de-personalise your property before you put it on the market. That includes removing your personal family photographs. The reason for this is because you want buyers or tenants to imagine themselves in your home and not feel like they are moving into someone else’s life.

    However the pictures on your wall tell a thousand stories. Personal touches are what makes a house a home, and nothing does that quite as well as family photos, wall sayings and artworks.

    Moving into a new property is as much an emotional journey as it is a well-researched one. Just like the sense of smell, the power of images and how they influence our decision should not be ignored. Beautiful family photographs and/or sayings give us a brief snapshot into the life story and memories built within these walls.

    5. Get rid of clutter

    There is nothing worse than walking into a house that looks like a tornado has just gone through it. If you or your current tenants are in the middle of moving, hold off any viewings. Make sure the house is clear of clutter and boxes. A person should be able to visualise their life in your home. Unfortunately a messy home does not give them that opportunity.

    6. The Curb Appeal

    For your property to stand out from others, it needs to look appealing from the outside. While potential buyers or tenants are having a walk around your area, the “For Sale” or “To Let” sign will attract their attention. Just like a faded dining room table would not generate interest next to pristine looking furnitures, neither will your house if the facade is derelict.

    Make sure everything stands out in a positive way. Lawns should be mowed, the windows and walls must be cleaned and well maintained and your half drab garage door should be fixed and given a fresh coat of paint. You never get a second chance to make a good first impression so make sure your property has the right curb appeal.

    7. Ideas from another property

    Book a viewing of similar properties as a buyer or tenant. This will allow you to get some ideas on what makes other properties stand out compared to yours. Take note of everything that would make you want to buy or rent this home and compare it to your own - from the colours of the walls, the size and layout of the furniture, wall paintings and pictures, beddings, cushions, accessories, beautifully mowed lawn, patio with outdoors furniture, a barbecue, a shed or lounger. Even the smallest herb garden on the windowsill can have the biggest impact.

    On the structural side, check whether there are any walls between rooms that have been knocked down to make the space more airy and free flowing. There could be many attributes that is different to yours like a downstairs cloakroom, a utility room or a separate garage. If the structural differences are quite big, ensure that your property is priced accordingly. 

    8. Visualisation as an alternative to structural changes

    Structural changes are likely to put you slightly out of pocket. Unless a structural change would drastically increase your rental income, it is not necessarily a cost effective option for the rental market. If you are selling your property on the other than, renovations can go a long way in helping you find a buyer quicker and get a higher profit in return. If you cannot afford it, consider getting an interior designer to draw up some mock designs of how your property will look when transformed. Get some quotes and timelines from builders to go with it. Buyers sometimes need a little help to visualise the after effect.