With Melbourne’s rental market continuing to deliver an improvement in vacancy rates, this could be a great time to consider beginning your property investment journey or expanding upon your current portfolio.
Knowing what features or inclusions renters are looking for in a home and what will contribute to resale growth in the long-term should be considered when choosing your investment property. Below are some points that can help you maximise your income now and in the future.
Does it have cooling? Whether it’s refrigerated or evaporative, it’s something tenants want. In February 2022, REA reported that searches for the term ‘air conditioned’ grew 113% over the 12 months prior; unsurprising considering that even out of lockdown, many are spending more time at home than in past years and, as such, want to be as comfortable as possible.
Does it have useable outdoor spaces? Whether it’s a balcony, a grassy backyard, or a dedicated alfresco living area, renters want a place they can relax and entertain outside. In a rental property, these spaces should be as low maintenance as possible. If your investment has a yard requiring more upkeep, consider including garden maintenance in the lease. This can be built into the rental price, ensuring it will be maintained.
Are the indoor spaces clean and neutral? The aim when buying a property is for it to have a far-reaching appeal, as this will provide you with a greater choice of tenants. A home with a fresh coat of neutral paint, a plain white roller blind, and easy-care timber or laminate flooring will have a much wider appeal than something with multi-coloured walls, floral curtains, and old shag pile carpet. If the property you’re looking to purchase sounds more like the latter, but the price point is under budget, consider making these cosmetic changes yourself; it won’t take long to recoup them in your rental income, and it’ll increase the resale value of the property if you decide to sell.
Does the home have size and flexibility? COVID-19 lockdowns forced people to work from home for extended periods, and many have continued to do so in some capacity. Having an extra bedroom or living area that can be used as a home office will allow you to command more rent in the short term, whilst seeing your property appreciate in value quicker than one with fewer rooms or flexibility.
Does the property have good access to amenities? Public transport, shopping precincts, schools, parklands, and cafes all rate highly with renters, although priorities will vary based on individual needs. If looking to purchase an apartment, complexes with onsite amenities will be seen as favourable, and you may be able to charge higher rent. If purchasing in a newer suburb or estate, do your due diligence and investigate the Precinct Structure Plan; this is a master plan for a local area.
For further information on investing or any questions you may have, contact your local Noel Jones office.