Instead of imagining whether you would like to live in your investment property, put yourself in the shoes of your target tenant. You need to think, who your tenants are and what they will want? If your tenant type is students, you may need to consider other factors to what you would not normally if your tenants were a family with young children. Students will want easy to clean properties, close to the city centre or to their University campus. Whereas a family may want to make the property feel like a home, and will more than likely want the property to be close to local schools, shops and bus routes. If your tenant time is going to be a family, also remember that by allowing tenants to make their mark on a property, such as painting, adding pictures or taking out unwanted furniture, makes the property feel more like home. If a tenant has the chance to make the property feel more like a home they will potentially stay for longer, which is great news for a landlord, as it can keep void periods to a minimum.
It is important to remember that buying investment property is completely different to buying your own home. When you purchase an investment property, you should be focusing on profit and therefore any emotional attachment to a property should not come into consideration. That is not to say that you do not provide clean, fresh and modern accommodation, but there has to be a limit and you should renovate to your market.
I remember thinking at the start of my property career that the nicer the property looked the better investment it would make. I can certainly say now that this has not been the case. I have bought many properties over time for myself and my investors, and it has not been the prettiest ones that have made the most profit.
- Peter Iwaniszewski