When furnishing your single-family rental property, you’re faced with so many decisions. Should you paint the walls white? What if the tenant doesn’t want white walls? Should you go for a specific interior style or play it safe? What if they’re pet-owning tenants – should you stay away from sofas that are “magnets” to fur?
We get your struggle. There is an endless list of considerations when it comes to how to furnish a single-family rental home. Since you aren’t renting it out to a single type of tenant, its interior needs to be adaptable. In short, it needs to attract all types of tenants, and all types of tastes. (The pickiest tenants need to like it, too!).
In this post, our property management agents have outlined the things to consider when furnishing a single-family home that you want to rent out.
Why Should You Furnish Your Rental Property?
But wait! Before we take a look at how to furnish your rental property, let’s break down why you need to furnish it in the first place.
As the owner, you can choose if you want to furnish your property. It costs more to furnish it, but you’ll be able to attract more tenants, expedite the move-in and move-out process, and more.
- Help your tenants with their move. Long-distance moving can be overwhelming, but you can help your tenants with the process by providing them with a home that’s “move-in-ready”. That way, they won’t have to figure out how to transport a single-family home’s worth of furniture.
- Appeal to short-term tenants. These types of tenants don’t want to worry about furnishing their units – they don’t intend to stay for a long time, anyway. If you’re renting to students that need a place to stay for a couple of months, consider furnishing it with basic things, such as a bed, sofa, and so on.
- Expedite the move-in and move-out process. Vacancies are a landlord’s worst nightmare. When your tenant moves out, your goal should be to find a replacement tenant as soon as possible. With a furnished unit, you’ll be able to “refill” that unit faster, as your new tenants don’t need to worry about the logistics of the move.
- Protect your property from your tenant’s furniture. If your rental property is unfurnished, tenants will have to fill it with their own furniture. The problem is that their furniture may be infested with termites, pests, and more.
If you do decide to furnish your single-family home, make sure that the lease agreement states that your tenants should treat the furniture with care. It should also clearly state the repercussions if the tenant fails to do so. For example, if the tenant breaks the bed, will they have to replace it or will you? You may benefit from partnering with a property management firm that can draft a fool-proof contract for your rental property.
How to Furnish Your Single-Family Rental Home
When furnishing your single-family rental, remember that it’s not going to be for you. You’re furnishing your rental for your future tenants. With that said, let’s dive into the ways you can spruce up your real estate investment:
#1 Choose Low-Maintenance Materials
Your tenants likely won’t want to spend their weekends scrubbing the kitchen. They want a low-maintenance rental home that they can live in – where they won’t have to put in the extra work to keep it in tip-top shape. That’s why you should opt for low-maintenance materials for all of the rooms. As an example, the best bet for your kitchen would be laminate slabs. They’re low-priced and low-maintenance, so you and your tenants won’t have to worry about any scratches.
#2 Do Not Over-Furnish
Even if you’ve furnished your rental, your tenants will still want to furnish it with their own sofas, tables, beds, and more. With that said, it’s vital not to over-furnish it. Don’t go overboard as your tenants will want to make the unit their own. This is particularly true for tenants that intend to alter the space to meet their family’s needs. Tenants with young children may want to create a separate play area, and pet-owning tenants may want a space to crate-train their dogs.
#3 Do Not Over-Decorate
If your rental looks like a vintage store, your tenants won’t be able to walk around comfortably. Every day, they’ll be worried that they’ll break one of the extremely expensive vases you’ve decided to display by the bookcase.
Besides, what you consider to be “art” may not be what your tenant considers to be art, but instead, clutter. It’s subjective, so just store it away for now. A couple of frames is fine, but don’t go overboard by decorating it with an outrageous number of things.
#4 Provide Lots of Storage Space
One of the things that will attract tenants to your property is storage space. Tenants, including students, young professionals, and families will always want a place to put their things. It doesn’t matter if they’re minimalists – they’ll still need some space for their items.
When choosing cupboards, wardrobes, etc., go for the one with the most storage. If possible, look for floor-to-ceiling furniture that makes use of all of the space. If your rental’s interior is awkwardly shaped, ask your townhouse management company to create custom cabinets. For tiny homes, you can optimize the space by customizing beds, counters, etc. to double as storage spaces.
#5 Live in the Property
Want to make sure that your furniture makes sense? Try to live in the rental unit. It’s the best way to check if your furniture works and fits your future tenants’ day-to-day needs. Will they be able to cook, work, sleep, and even walk properly around the property? If there are things in their way, get rid of them, or move them over to where they won’t be able to obstruct your tenant’s path.
Need Help Furnishing Your South Florida Property?
The experts at Luxury Property Care have been in the real estate business for years. We’ve established a wide network of vendors that can help us and our clients make their residential rental properties as attractive as possible. If you need help sprucing up your property prior to renting it out, ring us today.