As a rental property owner, you probably watch vacancy rates more closely than anyone else. Whether your rental units are frequently occupied, or whether neighborhood properties seem to have more renter demand than your properties, impacts the rate of return on your investment (ROI). By working with rental management companies in Maryland, landlords can determine whether their investment in rental units is paying off. Often, there’s a simple reason why renters avoid a property: Curb appeal (or lack of it!).
Watching the Signs
Over most of past 5-years, Maryland’s rental vacancy rates have been higher than the average vacancy rate in the USA. That meant there were more empty rental units in the State, than the national average. That trend, however, has changed over the past year or so.
For rental property owners, that’s a good sign. However, rental management companies in Maryland often help their clients evaluate the landscape in “actual” terms – not averages or relative numbers. For instance, though rental vacancy rates in neighborhood communities, where your units are located, continue to decline, why aren’t your units enjoying 100% (or close) vacancy?
Understanding and Fixing Curb Appeal
Perhaps, the reason that many prospective renters prefer to stay in a neighboring unit, rather than renting yours, might have something to do with their first impression? Most rental management companies from Maryland have real estate professionals experienced in evaluating the interior and exterior of rental properties. Upon doing an initial property inspection, they can quickly develop a maintenance plan that’ll include enhancing the curb appeal of your units.
Here are some of the finer points they might recommend:
- Tasteful landscaping all around your property
- Giving your front door, front porch, and front-facing windows an eye-popping face lift
- Brighten-up the night appeal with inviting lights, lanterns, and lamps
- Illuminate the pathway to the home with spotlights
- If you have outside-facing window sills, place box planters with seasonal flowering plants on them
- Make sure there is no damage to the tiles and cobble stone, on the pathways to your home, and that they straight, stable, and even
- If you have building or unit sign posts pointing to your property, then paint and polish those signs
These simple steps will quickly build curb appeal for your property, and help to ensure your rental units remain occupied – even when neighboring vacancy rates continue to climb.
Rental management companies across Maryland have long-term strategies to enhance property values of their clients, while boosting the income generating capacity of those units. They do this by following property maintenance industry best practices for both internal and external elements of the property.
As part of their curb appeal strategy, they may also recommend regular pruning and trimming and tree scaping, as well as frequent snow removal during snow events. The objective is to make your property the best-looking units on the block – both inside and out. However, unless there’s curbside appeal to your property, prospective renters may not take the time (or be tempted!) to venture inside.