Now the season has changed, it might be time to start to think about asking your tenant if they would like a new 6 month lease.
The advantage for you is that you have your tenant in place over the winter months. Historically, lower rents are achieved and properties remain vacant for longer in the colder months.
If your tenants are on an expired lease, they are free to leave your property after giving weeks notice.
Because of the recent flood of investors buying here there are a few properties available right now.
Tenants tend to look around if they are having issues at their rental (usually maintenance issues) or if they have outgrown the house. With so many other properties available we would not recommend increasing the rent right now, just offer a new 6 month lease.
If the tenant accepts and signs, you can reassess the rental market again in Spring and decide whether an increase is appropriate then.
If you decide that a rent increase is appropriate now, consider that the first thing your tenant might do is search the internet for what other rentals are available at that price.
If a bigger / better located / bigger bedrooms / 2 living areas property is available for similar rent, they may give notice and leave.
If your property is currently vacant, take steps right now to get it rented. If you rent through an agent, contact them now for their opinion.
There are few, good quality tenants around at the moment. Now might be the time get competitive & entice the good ones to your rental. Remember, some improvements are tax deductions. Spending some money now may secure you a dream tenant and a tax refund!
Tenants are looking for creature comforts and location. Although we wouldn’t recommend adding an air conditioner (they become “essential” repairs and are difficult and costly to maintain) we would recommend installing ceiling fans, dishwashers or built-in robes.
If your property has all the mod-cons, does it need a freshen up? Flooring or painting are a little expensive but need to be done more regularly in a rental home than they would in your own home. Even new curtains can brighten a home.
Street appeal is a key factor in a rental property, because the exterior of the house is usually the first photo viewed on the internet. Make sure the lawns and gardens look good for the photo!
Fenced yards are popular with tenants, as are garages and off street parking.
Work to your demographic. Families like fences, couples like garaging and off street parking.