Winter is definitely here and most people love this time of year. Cooler days, the chance to bundle up in front of a warm fire and for investors, less time and money spent on rental property garden maintenance.
This month we have tips on how to keep on top of garden maintenance throughout the year so that it doesn’t get out of hand.
We have to admit it – the world of real estate can sometimes be crazy! In Sydney and Melbourne, prices have again been escalating at an incredible rate and the Sunshine Coast is poised to follow, albeit at a more restrained and sustainable rate.
With interest rates at record lows many investors are now planning to purchase a well-priced property as a long term investment. If you’re a first time investor, you’ll be keen to learn the ins and outs of finding a new quality tenant. Even if you already own property, we give you some great suggestions in this month’s newsletter on how to secure the best tenants and some strategies for finding tenants who are willing to pay more.
And don’t forget if you have questions about any property investment issues you’d like to discuss with us directly, we’d love to hear from you.
Byron and Kath Miller
Keeping gardens under control
When preparing an initial lease for your tenants, it’s important to clarify who is responsible for garden maintenance. Many investors prefer to include the cost of garden care in the rent and arrange for a garden service to maintain the property on a regular basis. This avoids issues arising over unmown grass or overgrown garden beds. Many tenants also prefer this arrangement as it allows them to enjoy their weekends rather than worrying about the garden.
However if you decide that the care of the garden should be the responsibility of the tenant, there are several ways to ensure that they stay on top of the job:
- Make it easy for them – It helps to set up the garden initially as easy-care, by planting hardy native trees and shrubs, replacing garden beds with pebbles or pavers and providing a small rainwater tank to help with any water restrictions in the area.
- Practice early intervention – Request regular drive-by inspections by your property manager to check if ongoing outdoor maintenance is being performed. It’s better to be aware of any potential concerns at an early stage! That way you can do something about them before they become too big a problem. A good property manager will be happy to include this as part of their service.
- Include the garden in your regular property management inspections – As part of the quarterly report, request that your property manager review the state of the garden including fences and garden walls so that you can arrange for any repairs.
- Provide a schedule – Recommend a schedule of garden requirements as part of the lease agreement so that tenants know exactly what is expected of them (e.g. mow at least once a month in summer)
The garden of your property is just as important as the home itself. It’s part of your investment and should be treated as such. By taking a few simple precautions, your garden won’t get out of hand.
How do I find a quality tenant?
So now that you’re a property investor, you want to secure the very best tenant who will provide you with a worry free investment for years to come.
Your first step is to select the right property manager – one who will really look after your property. We’ve said it before, but it really does pay to select your property manager with care. You need someone you can trust, with clearly outlined fees and inclusions who will source the highest calibre of tenant for your investment. Although there are many agents out there who will promise you short-term gains, at Asset Agents we believe in planning for the long-term.
So how do we at Asset Agents find you the best tenant?
As part of our Five Star Service we provide:
Professional photos – When you sign up with our property management service, we arrange for a professional photographer to take a selection of images of your home which we then post online. This attracts tenants who are suited to your particular property and eliminates those who aren’t, shortening the time it takes to find a suitable tenant.
A detailed floor plan – This provides tenants with an easy way to judge if their family and belongings will fit into your home before the need for a physical inspection.
A highlighted online listing – When looking for a rental property, tenants believe that a featured listing indicates a better quality property and a higher standard of inclusions. By having a highlighted online listing, you attract tenants looking for a quality property and therefore also able to afford it.
Open house viewings – This is the most convenient way to allow prospective tenants to view your property. It saves time and encourages applications, especially if there is a high demand for rental property and low vacancy rates. You can then pick and choose from the tenants you think are the most desirable.
Access to our existing database – In our opinion, the best tenants have a good previous long-term rental history and a secure income and we have many such tenants already listed in our files. If we know they are looking for new accommodation and think they would suit your home, we contact them ahead of time to gauge interest. If we can match you up with one of our approved clients, we’ve already saved you time and money! *
*We also provide an Express Tenant Service for when your current tenant gives notice. This service takes care of finding a new tenant ahead of time rather than waiting for your property to become vacant, which ensures that your income continues without disruption.
And it’s all FREE of charge when you exclusively use Asset Agents Property Management Service.
If your property is not already managed by us and you’re considering switching, you may be interested to know our competitive fees:
Management fee – 8% of rental income
(ask about our honeymoon offer of only 4% for the first six months)
Monthly admin fee $5
Letting fee – 1 week’s rent
Lease renewal – ½ week’s rent
*All prices are plus GST
If you’d like Assent Agents to manage your investment property, call Byron or Kath
on 5315 5411 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
You’ll experience a world of difference that you’ll remember long after the short-term promises have been forgotten.