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9 Top Tips on Renovating on a Budget

Empty room with a window
25 September 2014

By UKinsuranceNET In Unoccupied Property Advice

There a fine balance to be had when it comes to renovating or decorating your investment property.

You’ll certainly want it to be nicely done but here at UKInsuranceNET we know only too well that tenants may not take as much care of your property and belongings as you would. Things may get damaged or dirty, so here are some tips on how to renovate your property without spending too much:

  1. when decorating, opt for a wallpaper that can be painted. This means that at tenant changeovers all that may need doing to freshen the place up is a quick onceover with a coat of pain. This may be a lot quicker and cheaper than stripping walls and rehanging wallpaper;
  2. think neutral – not everyone has the same taste when it comes to bright colours or bizarre prints and patterns. Over-busy designs and loud colours may put prospective tenants off, so keep things neutral and let them add their own touches to brighten things up;
  3. auctions and house clearances may be an invaluable source of inexpensive furnishings, which may be more cost-effective and better quality than modern equivalents or flat packs;
  4. if you are buying soft furnishings second hand, remember to check that they meet current day fireproofing regulations;
  5. bear in mind that sometimes the cheapest options may be false economies in terms of durability or appropriateness(this incidentally may be sound advice for unoccupied property insurance too). Be prepared to spend a little more for something that is fit for purpose;
  6. don’t be over-optimistic about how much of the work you can do yourself to save spending money on tradespeople etc. Know your own strengths and weaknesses when it comes to DIY and you’ll hopefully avoid what could be costly mistakes Doing something yourself, having it go wrong and ending up paying for someone else to do it again property, is a waste of time and money;
  7. the faster you can get your renovations completed, the quicker you can get tenants in and paying rent;
  8. keep your target tenant segment in mind when renovating and don’t spend more than you need to. Young professionals may expect things to be clean and modern looking. Families with young children may look more closely than most at safety aspects and will view objects in terms of their strength and durability. Students, on the other hand, may be happy with a fairly basic approach;
  9. aim to keep any garden areas simple and easy to maintain. Spending considerable sums of money on plants and flowers may be fine if your tenants have green fingers but if they don’t then it could just be wasted money. Opt for paving and brighten things up with a few pot plants if required.

Ease of maintenance and cleaning should be your top considerations when renovating on a budget. The end result may not entirely be to your taste but you won’t be living there!

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