Furnishing Your Investment Property
May 13, 2010
I am often asked how an investment property should be furnished to attract tenants.
Should it be like a show home, w
ith the full works? Or just the minimum level of furnishing ? Or totally unfurnishe
The answer depends on the tenant market you are trying to attract. However, unless you are aiming at the really high end market, it is rare that you need to furnish it to show home standards. What I find is that many tenants have some of their own furniture, maybe because they are accumulating for when they buy their own place, or like a certain look or they rented previously unfurnished so had to buy.
The rental market we focus on – both in my personal portfolio and through my agency Young London – is in London, mostly travel zone 2, with rentals around £300 to £600 per week. In this market most tenants want the property furnished. The slightly odd situation is if a tenant wants a property unfurnished the rent is very similar. This may make you think you should not have to incur the cost of furnishing, however, you are then aiming at a reduced level of tenant interest and usually experience longer voids.
It is important not to furnish with the cheapest furniture you can find.
Firstly, most tenants will spot this approach and not be impressed and secondly it is a false economy as the furniture tends not to last as long. The flip side of this is you don’t want to install such high end furniture that you are paranoid the tenant will damage it.
We tend to pitch it at the John Lewis level.
We do this through our Young Furnishing business.
Below I have listed a standard package for a 1 bedroom:
1 x 2 Seater Sofa
1 x Tub Chair
1 x Coffee Table
1 x Lamp Table
1 x Dining Table
4 x Chairs
1 x Double Bed
1 x Orthopaedic Mattress
1 x Mattress Protector
1 x Headboard
2 x Bedside Tables
1 x Chest of Drawers
To see the other packs click here and look on the right.
You will notice the standard package does not includes the more dressy items, such as vases, pictures, etc. This is because you find most have their own and ones you leave are put at the back of the cupboard until they move out!
However, flexibility is important, a larger living room may require further seating, or a small bedroom may only accommodate one bedside – don’t put furniture in for the sake of it, make sure it looks right in respect of
the size of the room and that it is in keeping with the surroundings.