8 Tips for Making Your Rental Property Stand Out From the Pack

Kristi Pahr
Written by Kristi Pahr
Updated February 2, 2022
A bright living room with neutral tones and white walls
Photo: Cavan Images / Cavan / Getty Images

Don’t let your rental property go to seed—a few simple steps and your property will be off the market in no time

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If you’ve got a rental property on the market, you want to do everything you can to ensure it doesn’t sit empty for long. With all the rentals available, it’s essential to make yours stand out to ensure you have a tenant quickly. Of course, renovating the property is a great idea, but there are other, smaller projects you can tackle to make sure your rental gets snapped up.

1. Make Sure Your Space Is Sparkling

Your rental might be sitting empty, but that doesn’t mean you can ignore the maintenance. No one wants to walk into a potential new home and see cobwebs, toilet rings, or dusty surfaces, and that goes double for the musty smells empty houses seem to create. Make sure you give your rental property a thorough cleaning or call a professional local cleaning service to make sure your rental property is ready for viewers.

2. Brighten Up the Living Space

A new coat of paint can do wonders for the look of your rental property, but don’t go crazy with this season's latest bold colors. Soft neutrals won't detract from the space and will give potential tenants a better idea of the size of the room. 

Think beyond paint, too. Giving flooring a good going-over is another way to brighten up the space. Deep clean carpets and scrub tile and linoleum floors until they shine, and look for ways to bring in natural light.

3. Boost Curb Appeal

Making sure the lawn is tidy is just the beginning when it comes to the curb appeal of your rental property. Trim shrubbery and prune back trees to open up your yard and give your home a beautiful natural frame. Adding flowering perennials and bulbs is another excellent way to beautify your rental property’s yard. 

Don’t go overboard, though—tons of landscaping can be intimidating for potential tenants. If you plan for the tenants to maintain the yard themselves, take it easy on the artistry and go for something more simple. You can also hire a local professional landscaping company for scheduled yard maintenance.

4. Add a Security System

Installing a security system can be a boon to your tenant and your insurance policy. Many insurance companies give discounts for homes with monitored security systems, and many potential tenants will appreciate the extra sense of safety in a home with a monitored system. And with smart home integration features, many modern security systems are more straightforward than ever to manage.

5. Stage Your Home

A sunny bedroom with eco bed linen
Photo: KatarzynaBialasiewicz / iStock / Getty Images Plus / Getty Images

If you’re hesitant to show an empty home, contact a local home staging company to give your rental property a more lived-in feel. They’ll fill your rental property with furniture and decor to make it feel comfortable and homey to potential tenants. These services don’t come cheap, but a quickly rented home offsets home staging costs by saving you money on your mortgage and utilities.

6. Make Small Updates

You don’t need a full renovation to make your rental property feel fresh and new. Minor updates can have a significant impact. 

Consider replacing outlet covers and switchplates, updating faucets and sink hardware, or replacing out-of-style ceiling fans or miniblinds with more modern options. These small touches can modernize a space without breaking your back or your wallet.

7. Renovate Where Needed

If you’re game to dive into some more in-depth updates, renovating your rental property, particularly the kitchen or bathrooms, is a sure-fire way to get it rented more quickly. Upgrading outdated appliances, countertops, and cabinets will give your rental kitchen a more modern appearance, while switching out toilets, tubs, and other bathroom hardware can give an outdated bathroom a comfortable new look.

8. Add Storage

Whether it’s adding floor decking to the attic, enlarging the master closet, or putting up shelving in the garage, you can’t go wrong with storage. Especially in older homes where closets are noticeably smaller than in newer construction, storage upgrades will not only boost property value, but they’ll appeal to people who need to upgrade from an apartment to accommodate a growing family.

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