Paint your rental unitDo you have an apartment or home listed for rent, but the phone never rings? Perhaps it’s time to pull out some old renting tricks; in this case, making your property visually appealing. This isn’t a matter of cutting corners or extensive remodeling! Rather, it’s like baiting a hook: put the right features on your listings and you’ll get a bite in no time.

One of the first things you should do is investigate your property from the outside. How does it look from the curb? If the grass is turning into a jungle, the fence has loose boards, or the siding is falling off the walls, it’s probably time to pull out the power tools and start a make-over. Though the saying goes that one should never judge a book by its cover, the exterior and yard areas are the first thing people will see in a photograph or during a drive-by. An unpleasant first look will increase the odds of people moving on, and your rental property remaining empty.
So, what happens if the yard looks great, and you get some interested people, but there’s still no bite on your line? It may be time to look at the interior of your property. Perhaps it looks good to you, and you can’t understand why no one is making an offer. Here’s a hint: it involves a paintbrush. Yes! Painting the rooms in the house or apartment makes each room look like new. There will be no holes in the walls, no scratches or dents, and no faded colors. New paint makes spaces inviting and nice to look at. One caveat: be careful with wild or odd colors. Neutral is a good way to go, as it’s easily matched, can make small spaces seem larger, and is more welcoming than an out-of-the-norm shade.
Last but not least, pay close attention to the bathrooms and kitchen in your rental space. These can make or break a lease agreement. Make sure that light fixtures are working, counters and appliances are clean, cabinets are securely fastened, and that the rooms are clean—clean as in spotless! This is a rule for every room in the space (including the garage, if there is one), but especially the bathrooms and kitchens. A little effort may be required in these spaces to make them look like new, but isn’t it worth it when the lease is signed and your new tenants are set to move in next week?
Take a hard look at your property. Picture it as you would a stranger: what would an outsider see at first glance that you don’t? Then, fix it up according to your critique! After your renovations, make sure to highlight the best things about your property in your advertisements. Any special features or particularly appealing elements (which you can spot through your stranger’s eye view) should be listed first, as those will be your selling points. Then sit back and watch as your line starts ringing off the hook—sounds like you’ve caught yourself a tenant!