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For landlords, understanding the needs of your tenants is key, as you want to maintain a good relationship with them over the course of a tenancy. Therefore, evaluating what renters want from a property can prove beneficial for both sides of the rental transaction.
A YouGov survey, conducted by housing charity Shelter and B&Q, asked almost 4,000 tenants about their attitudes to home improvement and what makes rented accommodation ‘feel like home’.
When it comes to DIY home improvement, a huge 61% (equivalent to 5.2 million) of renters in England revealed that they want to be able to personalise their home. Almost half of those surveyed said they would feel happier in their home if they could decorate or improve it themselves.
Some 40% of participants – an equivalent of around 2.2 million people – believe cushions are key to settling into a new home, compared to only 16% who say it’s speaking to their neighbours.
Others claimed important settling factors are: the property being clean (29%), settling their children in (19%), putting plants out (15%), and doing the garden themselves (14%).
Tenants wishing for the freedom to carry out DIY home improvements isn’t a new concept. As rentals are becoming much more than a stop gap for many, new attitudes are forming and tenants now want to take pride and joy in their rented property.
Because of this, more landlords recognise that lifting these limitations enables their renters to feel more satisfied and settled. This can, in turn, mean longer tenancies and fewer void periods.
The results also showed that renters are placing other factors high on their list of things that make their new place feel like home, such as: getting their TV and internet set up (55%), putting their own pictures up (42%), making the bed with their linen (39%), inviting friends round (31%) and having their first bath (18%).
As a landlord, you want to be as flexible as you can to meet your tenants’ needs, while at the same time making sure your rules and requirements are followed. Tenants that are aware of their landlord’s rules on permanent changes tend to opt for temporary alterations to their rented property instead.
These changes could include: using removable wallpaper, hanging up curtains for colour, using art or a montage of photos to add personality, adding standing lamps to create a relaxed mood, using bold accessories – such as cushions – to transform their living room, and brightening their bathroom with shower curtains.
With these results in mind, landlords can think about which requirements they want to keep and which rules they may potentially change.
If you would like further guidance on letting a property in North London, East London, Herefordshire or Essex, you can get in touch with us by contacting your local Kings Group branch.
To find out how much you could be earning in rent each month, you can request a free online lettings valuation.