Ensure Your Property Is “Rent Ready”

Being “Rent-Ready” is critical for landlords and property managers. Presenting a home that is not ready for a renter can cost you valuable time and money. Showings are extremely time-consuming for a landlord, and showing a home that is not “Rent-Ready” wastes time. The showing sets the tone for the entire relationship, and that first impression is critical! Make it count by presenting a well-maintained, clean home that a renter can imagine themselves in the moment they walk in. Rental homes should be clean, fresh, and bright! Here is a checklist created by Abilene Leasing & Property Management to make it easy:

  • Re-Key the Property Re-keying the property is required after each tenant. We work with one of our vendors to take care of it once a renter has vacated the property.
  • Make Sure Your Utilities Are On This may sound obvious, but many property owners try to keep costs down by not turning on the power and water or having it turned off the day a renter leaves. This is not recommended. First of all, you don’t want to show a dark home to a person you don’t know, and potential tenants feel the same way. Second, a dark home is not appealing to anyone, day or night. A dark home will stay on the market longer than a light and bright home. We also may need to make some repairs prior to the tenants moving in, and we need the utilities to be on for that. Make sure all your light bulbs are working and on during the showing.
  • Inspect Your Appliances Make sure your fridge, range, microwave, water heater, and any other included appliances are working properly. It’s much easier to fix things before tenants move in.
  • Repairs Walk the house and create a punch list of repairs. Look for light bulbs out, loose cabinet doors, leaky sink valves, check smoke detector batteries, etc. If anything needs to be done, let us know, and we can set up for a contractor to come out and take care of all of those issues for you.
  • Make Sure Your Air Conditioner and Heater are Working Well Check that it’s working and the coils and filters are clean so you don’t experience any surprises when you show the home. The temperature in the home should be kept to a comfortable setting during all showings. It's ok to turn it up (or down) when you leave but make sure it’s not turned off. We recommend setting it to 78 degrees. Air circulation is important to prevent mold growth and stagnant air. You want to get to the home 10 min early and turn the AC down so it’s cool for the showing. This is really something you should do two times per year when a tenant is not living in the home. Ask us, and we can get this set up for you.
  • Inspect Your Property for Safety and Security Issues Make sure that exterior motion lights are working, there are no broken windows or exposed electrical wiring, the doors lock properly, and there are no water leaks or mold. Safety should not ever be overlooked.
  • Clean Up Any Personal Belongings and Remove Leftovers This means “leftover” yard equipment, personal belongings, and cleaning supplies. The last thing a renter wants is someone else’s leftovers in their new home. Clean and empty is the key!
  • Paint any Non-Neutral Colored Walls a Neutral Color Do not touch them up! Touching up never looks the way you think it's going to look. Remember, “clean, fresh, and bright!” Color can be a deal-breaker for potential renters considering your property. Think neutral and “boring” when repainting walls to get a property rent-ready. You want any potential renter to walk into the house and be able to envision their own furniture and décor in the home.
  • Assess the “Curb Appeal” Curb appeal is often overlooked by property managers and landlords. It's part of that “fresh” look that draws people in. Mulch is an easy and inexpensive way to freshen up a yard. Many prospective tenants will see a home online, then drive the neighborhood before calling. You want the house to look good from the road. The first impression is often the difference between getting your home rented and getting your home rented today!
  • Finally, Clean the House Showing a home that is not clean is the best way to lose a prospective tenant. No one wants to live in a dirty home. If their first thought is, “Oh, I am going to have to clean the house before I move in,” your home will likely sit on the market until you clean it. We require tenants to have the property professionally cleaned and carpets professionally cleaned at move-out, so this is how it should be when they move in. We will set this up for you.

The Goal: Create a desirable home that appeals to as many people as possible. The prospective tenant MUST be able to happily imagine themselves in your home.