Ready to renovate?
You should be. With some wisely chosen upgrades and updates, your Las Vegas rental property can earn higher rents. You’ll also attract better tenants who are committed to staying in your home for the long term.
You don’t have to be an expert real estate investor to know that well-maintained homes rent for more.
If you’re willing to go beyond general maintenance and make the types of improvements that modernize your property, you’ll find that your investment stands out in a crowded rental market. Tenants will gravitate towards your attractive, welcoming property even if the price is a little higher than some of the others on the market.
Good tenants are looking for value. They’re looking for quality.
Here’s what you should think about when you’re putting together a plan for renovations.
Planning Las Vegas Rental Property Renovations
Before you jump into remodeling, you need to put together a plan. Here’s what you need to consider:
- When should you complete these upgrades?
- How much are you willing to spend on the projects?
- What kind of impact will these renovations have to your ROI?
In terms of timing, it’s always easier to work with an empty property. You might want to make the chosen renovations during a turnover period, when you’re preparing to re-rent the home to new tenants. If you have some great residents in place and you’re negotiating a lease renewal, you could also offer some of these renovations in exchange for a higher rental amount or a longer lease term.
Make sure you have your team of vendors and contractors in place and ready to work. The idea is to get the work completed quickly so you aren’t losing money on a longer vacancy or turnover period.
You’ll need a budget. How much are you willing to spend on improving your rental property?
Deciding how much to spend can be tricky and there isn’t always an easy number to use when you’re budgeting. You don’t want to overspend. You’re not renovating your own home, so the indoor hot tub and the chic wine cellar probably won’t be necessary. You’re thinking about the return you earn on the investment you make.
This is a rental property. Tenants will appreciate that you’ve made improvements but they don’t need high-end granite and bamboo floors.
Budgeting depends on the renovations you decide to make. Think about repairs versus replacements. What are tenants in your market really looking for? What has your home seemed to lack the last few times you listed it on the rental market?
Keep renovations simple and choose good starting points. If your refrigerator was already acting up and in need of repairs, you might want to replace all of the appliances in your kitchen. If the carpet in the living room would have needed to be replaced anyway, maybe it’s time to upgrade to hard surface flooring.
Work with what you already have, and then look for those opportunities that are affordable and easy to complete in a short amount of time.
Upgrade Paint Color and Quality
When one tenant moves out and you begin preparing the property for a new tenant, you’re likely going to paint. There will be some wear and tear to the walls, including small nail holes where pictures were hung and scuff marks from furniture.
Since you’re likely to paint anyway, why not make this one of your renovations?
You don’t have to keep choosing the same cheap, off-white paint for your rental property walls. You want to stick to neutral colors, but start thinking about your paint and your walls in different ways when you want to upgrade your property and earn more ROI.
Generally, your paint finishes will range from flat to matte to high-gloss. The gloss of a paint can change the way the entire room looks. It also impacts durability and the ease with which it’s kept clean.
Consider those medium or high-gloss paints that are durable, easy to clean and instantly brighten up a room. You can even find washable paint, which tenants will appreciate. Choose semi-gloss paint for trim, molding, and even ceilings.
When it comes to color, think about ivory or beige or even gray. Tenants can still decorate around those shades and they aren’t stuck staring at bright white walls.
Paint the entire interior of your home. This will give everything a cleaner, more uniform look that’s far more appealing than those patches of touch-up paint that are used on various walls. When tenants walk into a freshly painted home, they will know it.
Hard Surface Floors in Las Vegas Rental Homes
If you’re looking for a quick renovation that’s sure to deliver higher rents and more value, take a look at your floors.
This is where you say goodbye to the carpet.
There is still an argument to be made for carpet in the bedroom. Some people will prefer it, but this is Las Vegas. It’s not like we have freezing cold winters where carpet is used as insulation against cold floors.
Consider replacing your carpet with hard surface flooring. There are several good reasons for this:
- Hard floors look better. Tenants find them more attractive.
- Your property value increases with high quality floors that are not carpeted.
- Tenants find them easier to clean and maintain.
- There’s less maintenance for you during turnover periods. They won’t have to be cleaned or replaced every time a new tenant is moving in.
- They’re healthier. Carpet traps dust, allergens, and odors. This is especially problematic for tenants with allergies, asthma, respiratory issues, and other health problems.
So what type of floors should you put in?
It depends on your budget, really. For most owners, we recommend vinyl plank flooring. When you’re considering cost, durability, and appearance, it’s most often your best option. Hardwood floors would be fantastic. So would ceramic tile. But, those will require a larger investment than you might be willing to make on your Las Vegas rental.
You need flooring that’s low-maintenance, long-lasting, appealing, and affordable.
Which is why we like vinyl plank flooring. It’s extremely reliable, it will stand up to heavy tenant foot traffic, and it’s also waterproof, which means it’s easy to clean and difficult to ruin. You can put down vinyl planks that resemble wood or stone and it’s far more cost-effective than those surfaces.
Las Vegas Rental Property Appliances
Take a good look at your appliances. Have you had them for 10 years or more? Are they mismatched, with your kitchen stove black and your refrigerator white? Are they energy vampires, driving up electric and water bills?
These are all good reasons to replace them with sleek, attractive, energy-efficient models.
Stainless is great, but you don’t have to make that big of an investment. Look for reasonably priced appliances and negotiate pricing discounts if you decide to buy more than one. Tenants will appreciate a kitchen that looks pulled together, and they’ll be especially interested in conserving energy.
If you don’t already offer a washer and dryer in your property, this is a great time to put those in. Tenants are always willing to pay more for a rental home, condo, or a unit in a multi-family building that allows them to do their own laundry in their own home.
Move Onto Cosmetic Renovations
With the walls, floors, and appliances looking good and receiving upgrades, you can begin to think about cosmetic renovations. These will likely be your most cost-effective and affordable improvements. They’re also easy to notice. Something as simple as new drawer pulls can increase the value and earning potential of your rental home.
Start with the kitchen, where you can upgrade without a total rehab.
Put in a backsplash and maybe a new faucet in the kitchen sink. You can install track lighting that’s bright and also easier on energy bills. Try new knobs and pulls on cabinets and drawers. It’s about aesthetics. With these types of updates, the kitchen in your rental property will stand out in the market.
Spruce things up this way in the bathroom, too. Consider a fresh new faucet, lighting that can be adjusted, and a vanity or sink that comes with extra storage.
Think about the first impression that tenants have when they walk up to your property. Is the home welcoming? Is it attractive?
The outside of the home is immediately noticeable, so you want to pay attention to landscaping. Tenants will be attracted to a pretty, low-maintenance outdoor space that won’t require a lot of work from them.
Make some simple upgrades, like fresh paint on the front door. Power-wash the exterior and install some planters for succulents. All of these small details will increase your value by making your property stand out and by attracting the best tenants who are looking for a Las Vegas rental home.
Please contact us at New West Property Management to talk about some of the renovations that might work especially well for your property. We’re passionate about the services and value we provide to the owners and investors who trust us with their properties. Our team expertly manages residential rental homes in Las Vegas and throughout Clark County, including Henderson and North Las Vegas.