Owner and Qualifying Broker at Rhino Realty Property Management and Rhino Realty B&B, entrepreneur, investor, advisor, author and speaker.
As a property manager, it’s crucial that the curb appeal of your properties is at its best. For a prospective tenant, there is almost nothing worse than arriving at a property that is overrun with weeds and trash, or that lacks a reasonable degree of landscaping. First impressions are critical when marketing and leasing rental property and should not be an afterthought. Implementing a game plan and steady upkeep of the grounds will not only increase the facade’s appeal, but will also justify higher rents and, many times, a higher quality tenant base.
When a community looks good, tenants tend to take more pride of ownership and want to maintain that. They also tend to be more proactive about holding other tenants accountable for respecting the property. Here are some suggestions if you are in need of a new approach to maintaining your property’s grounds.
1. Install Visually Appealing Plantings
Just the right amount of vegetation goes a long way, not only from an esthetic perspective. The shade from a well-placed tree or the fragrance from a certain flower can truly bring a community a sense of well-being. When picking out the plants, make sure that they are as low maintenance and durable as possible, and when planting larger things like trees or shrubs, make sure you avoid underground water lines or getting too close to the property itself.
2. Automate And Substitute
If you have the ability to start from scratch with your landscaping, then adding sprinklers and an automated drip system is a must. This will ensure that your plants and grass are continuously watered with or without you physically being there. If you have existing landscaping without this feature and spend a great deal of time having the plants manually watered, it may be a good idea to consider investing in an automated system. It will save you money in the long run, and the plants will also benefit and begin to thrive. If drip systems are not feasible, then xeriscaping and synthetic grass are also greats option to help reduced labor time.
3. Dog Stations And Trash Cans
If you have pets in your community, then dog stations are an essential amenity for helping keep the grounds clean. Also adding a couple of trash cans and ashtrays (yes, people still smoke!) will help deter tenants from just throwing garbage and cigarette butts on the property.
4. Regular Grounds Maintenance
Having the property cleaned, trimmed and kept up regularly is a crucial step in bringing everything together. Depending on the size of the community, anywhere from weekly visits to, at minimum, monthly visits are suggested. Make sure that the grounds crew is paying attention to detail, inspecting for and minding trash and graffiti removal, pulling and spraying for weeds, disposing of dog waste and cigarette butts, cleaning signage, removing snow, and laying down ice melt in areas that apply.
Implementing these suggestions and having these routine processes in place can help elevate your property to the next level and make leasing the property that much easier. Tenants truly appreciate when their dwelling is clean and orderly and has its own unique appeal. Making a positive first impression with a property is essential, and the lack of curb appeal or landscaping should be the last thing a potential renter notices during their community tour.
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