Roanoke is a flourishing mountain city with a population of over 100,000 residents. It is a sought-after location for its friendly neighborhoods, outdoor amenities, historical attractions, unique shops, long trails, museums, the Mill Mountain Star, and microbreweries.
As the city offers a mixture of classic attractions and progressive neighborhoods, there is an increasing demand for rental homes in Roanoke. If you have invested in a Roanoke rental property and are looking for what you can do to make your home stand out, here are the top 5 things that tenants look for in a property.
1. A Desirable Location in Roanoke
The location is one of the first aspects that renters like to consider while choosing a home. A property situated in a locality that offers ample perks to its residents will encourage tenants to choose that place over others. While the list of desired amenities differs from person to person, there are some common factors that tenants consider while deciding if the location of the property is good. These include,
The presence of good schools
Good schools in the area are one of the biggest plus points for your rental property. Renters, especially those with families, prefer areas with good school districts.
There are 26 schools in Roanoke, out of which the Grandin Court Elementary School, Crystal Spring Elementary School, Hidden Valley High School, and William Fleming High School are the most renowned. Good school districts are also comparatively safer than those without schools.
Make sure that you mention the availability of schools in the area when you advertise your house.
Plenty of local amenities
Renters like to settle in locations that offer plenty of amenities so that they have the option to pursue a recreational activity after school or work. Roanoke offers several, like community playgrounds, tennis courts, theaters, swimming pools, restaurants, clubs, parks, and malls for fun and entertainment. Proximity to such places can be a major selling point for tenants.
Availability of easy commute options
If your rental home is situated in the Roanoke valley, the availability of good public transportation can become your unique selling point. Bikeshare and Valley Metro have made daily commutes easy and convenient in the city. Plus, other services like the Amtrak Rail Services, Smart Way Commuter Buses, and Valley Metro Buses are good for public transport around the town. Let potential occupants know the available transportation options around your rental so that they are inclined to choose your home as their residence.
2. A Property in A Good Condition
The condition of the property plays a crucial role in persuading the potential renters to choose your home. A property that is not well maintained or is falling to pieces is never going to be the first choice for tenants. Ensure that you examine the house before allowing applicants to take a look and ensure that the property is in a good, habitable condition.
Tenants also consider factors such as,
Age of the property and the maintenance required
The age of the property determines its rentability. If the construction is old, there could be severe damages such as worn-out paint, pest infestations, overgrown bushes, mold, and more. The house might need major renovation before it becomes livable for renters. Even then, it may require constant maintenance.
Most tenants do not prefer rentals that need a lot of upkeep and maintenance. It involves a lot of work on their part in coordinating the repairs. Hence, if your property is very old, you may need to consider doing some extensive modifications to make it rent-ready by today’s rental market standards.
Availability to move-in
Tenants prefer a house where they can move in immediately. Therefore, ensure that the house is clean, the toilets and bathrooms are fit for use, the house is pest-free, the yard is mowed, and the appliances are ready to use. If your property is not rent-ready at the time of a showing, it can create a bad first impression and, what’s more, set an expectation that you do not care how the property is treated.
3. Spacious Rooms and Living Spaces
Spacious and comfortable interiors are a basic need of all tenants. If your rental unit has large rooms and adequate open space, good. If not, you can make some changes to make the interior inviting.
Here are some aspects that tenants consider.
Roomy and decluttered spaces
Decluttered spaces add to tenants’ convenience and make the house easy to maintain. Open floor plans also give renters the freedom to design the space according to their taste. Make sure that you upgrade the property and fix it up with desirable elements like hardwood flooring, stainless steel appliances, or updated kitchen cabinets, but avoid cluttering it up with unnecessary furniture. Maintain a consistent style throughout so that your rental has a nice, harmonious ambience.
Décor and aesthetic appeal of the rental
A house is just walls and doors. A home is so much more. Tenants are trying to visualize the rental as a home when they come to a showing and so it is necessary that you add a certain décor to give it a homey and elegant look. Make use of vases, paintings, or art at different spots. Ensure that these match the style of the home, whether classic or contemporary, and are easy to maintain. Don’t over-customize the whole place. Choose simple, elegant touches that will add to the appeal.
Ample storage space
Most tenants move in with their furniture and personal stuff like clothes, appliances, and other space-consuming items. Therefore, your rental unit must have enough space for them to store their belongings. Depending upon how big your home is, keep as much storage space free for their use as possible.
Appliances are an essential item that renters look for, which increase the value and appeal of your property. Some of the basic appliances that potential renters look for include a working electric stove or a gas range, a refrigerator, an oven and a microwave, a washer and dryer, and additional utility hookups. Tenants also prefer rental homes that have relatively newer appliances, as there is a lesser likelihood of the appliance breaking down and requiring repairs.
Additional amenities in your Roanoke property that can sway potential renters are the 24×7 availability of water, electricity, sanitation, fully functioning HVAC systems, and ample parking space.
4. High Curb Appeal and Exterior Spaces
When potential renters visit your Roanoke rental, the exterior is the first thing that they notice. Tenants are incredibly attracted to homes with balconies, private backyards, and spaces where they can enjoy open air and sunshine. If your rental property has an exterior space, it can be a highlight of the house and give you an opportunity to charge higher rent.
You can also work on increasing the curb appeal of the home by,
- Adding a new coat of paint
- Setting up a nice-looking mailbox
- Having a clean, dust-free, and a well-painted gate, windows, and doors, even decorated with floral climbers
- A low-maintenance, pest-free, and mowed yard decorated with seasonal plants, shrubs, or hanging plant pots
- A parking space reserved for the use of the occupants
- Reserved space to place garbage bags/bins beside the compound
- A well-maintained porch
- Bright and energy-saving lights hung over the gate, in the driveway, or illuminating the yard
5. Ability of the Roanoke Rental to Sustain Extreme Weather Conditions
In Roanoke, the summers are warm and humid while the winters can get extremely chilly. We also have occasionally stormy weather. As a result, renters in Roanoke look for properties that are durable enough to withstand these extreme temperature conditions.
Here is what tenants normally look for, when it comes to the durability of houses.
- Insulated pipes to prevent them from freezing or bursting in extreme cold weather
- Fiber cement siding, which is thick and impervious to water and fire damage and holds out against mold and moisture. It works exceptionally well to protect the walls from storms.
- Sealing of exterior cracks so that there is no way that the water enters through the walls, and the interior temperature is maintained
These are some of the major aspects that potential renters consider while evaluating your Roanoke rental. In addition, they also take into account the responsiveness and cooperation of the landlord.
Depending on where you are in your rental investment journey, any or all of these factors might apply to you. Instead of dealing with all of them on your own, you can consider consulting Roanoke’s most trusted property management company – Lawson Realty Group – to find and rent your property. With over two decades of experience in the local real estate market, we can help you make your Roanoke property rent-ready and find the best tenants. To know more about what tenants look for in your rental property, connect with us at Lawson Realty Group.