How to find and keep a tenant for longer.

Quite apart from the headache and the potential lost rent, when you consider your agent will charge you a reletting fee often equal to a week’s rent it makes sense to have happy sticky tenants in your investment property, but how do you make them want to stay?

Is your investment property pet friendly? Aussie families love their pets and if your investment property does not accept pets you could be turning away a large number of potential tenants who can’t live without their beloved dog or moggies. You can also be assured that with a smaller pool of properties that do accept pets to draw upon, your tenants would likely pay a small premium on their rent and stay for longer.

In a lot of cases you can add clauses into the lease for pet owners that the property must be fumigated on exit in case of any nasty pests, or stipulate the size and type of pet you would accept.

Of course this doesn’t apply in strata properties where pets are prohibited based on the strata bi-laws.

What else can you do to attract and keep a longer term tenant? Well an investment group I know somewhat cynically suggested that building a garden shed, and garage storage is a simple and effective strategy to happier tenants, who also might just accumulate more junk than they care to move in a short time frame.

Outdoor areas are a must in Sydney these days and in smaller homes I’ve seen the 3 bed home with al-fresco rent well before the 4 bed home without. A covered and paved outdoor area is high on most tenants tick lists.

Air conditioners, ceiling fans, screen doors and windows, built in wardrobes, Foxtel connections also feature high for tenants, and if your home has extensive gardens or a pool you can consider including a pool or lawn service in your rental to make your home more tenantable and stand out.

On the subject of strata properties, in large unit complexes you often find more than one property available at a time, traditional rules of supply and demand means more competition for your property, keep that in mind if buying a unit.

Western Weekender article

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