Thursday, April 16, 2015

Outdoor living... adding to your bottom line.

In residential property there are always new trends that come out or 'must have' features that we read about in the home and style magazines – things like a breakfast bar in the kitchen or open plan living.

Having somewhere to entertain friends and family has always been a strong feature of a home, but over the past six to twelve months our team are finding that it is often becoming THE key feature. In the past, buyers or tenants have wandered through the home looking at the bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchen etc. and then briefly glanced out the window to see the backyard. Nowadays, our team are finding buyers and tenants are wandering through the home, eagerly waiting to reach the back of the house to see what the outdoor area is like. It's quickly becoming as critical as the kitchen or master bedroom!

With home renovation shows on TV, new (and very clever!) ways of using this space are showcased 
to the public. It is becoming increasingly popular to transform this space to a prominent feature of the home.

For the townhouses and inner city living we are seeing outdoor spaces being completely converted into an extension of the main living quarters. With new features being installed such as bi-fold doors, decking and bar stools, we are seeing outdoor living being taken to a whole new level. Some home owners are going all out equipping outdoor living areas with fireplaces, inbuilt kitchens (with range hoods) and surround sound systems... just to name a few.

One thing is certain – home owners are embracing the outdoor living environment like never before.

So what about tenants?

Our Leasing Team are finding that properties with an outdoor entertaining or 'funky' outdoor space are attracting 200 percent more enquiry that the homes which don't offer this feature. We are not talking about anything lavish – just a few small touches that allow tenants to utilise the space when friends visit. Tenants love having the option of creating their own outdoor space – a veggie/herb patch or vertical garden is all the rage! And they will pay for it.

Our team are finding rental properties attract anecdotally five to ten percent higher rents, lease easily and create a distinct competitive edge for our investors. For example, typically an additional $20 to $40 per week is achieved in the $400 to $600 range if a property has an interesting outdoor living feature! This is a staggering trend! Given our job as a property management business is to optimise our Landlord's returns, these trends need to be considered. 

We provide professional assessments to improve returns for existing clients and are happy to extend this service to potential new clients. It has been very rewarding for our investors.

Having an additional usable space is key. This is one of many trends Team Toop are seeing out in the field, so if you want to find out more, we're here to help make your home stand out to potential buyers or tenants when they wander through your property. We are here to increase your bottom line.

Suzannah Toop

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