What are tenants looking for in the perfect rental?

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If you are a landlord, it is very helpful to get into the mind of your potential tenants and understand what they are looking for in a rental property. What are their priorities and what kind of features are most important to them?
According to surveys, such as those conducted by rental company Finders Keepers and Savills UK, there are a number of very important factors that are a high priority for tenants. Here are some of the crucial details that tenants are looking for when they are renting a property:

A Location Close to Public Transport

Many people don’t have a car, either for budget reasons or lifestyle choice, relying on public transport to get around. This means that they look for a rental property that is very close to a public transport link. According to the survey by Savills 52% of tenants live within five minutes from a public transport link and 73% live within 10 minutes. If your rental property is close to a bus stop, it has a better chance of appealing to the vast majority of renters.

Childcare Facilities and Safety

The trend for families with children renting homes is on the increase, which means that access to childcare is becoming a major priority. Many tenants rate access to childcare or quality nurseries as a significant factor when choosing a rental property. Also, having a safe play area outside is important.
A safe neighbourhood was also a very important priority for renters, especially families. Many tenants have reported that they moved because they felt unsafe in the neighbourhood or they had previous neighbours who were causing a problem.

Cleanliness and Comfort

According to the survey by Finders Keepers, a clean and comfortable interior is the top priority that renters look for. They want to live in a welcoming, attractive home – rather than a dingy and unhygienic apartment. In fact, there has been a trend over the past 15 years of increasing aesthetic expectations coming from tenants, which means that landlords need to ensure that they are offering stylish living environments.

Short Term Rentals a Growing Trend

The general idea in the past has been that many renters are seeking a tenancy for five or more years. However, according to the Finders Keepers survey, only 6% of respondents wanted a tenancy that was longer than three years. The majority of applicants – 80% – wanted an agreement between six months and eighteen months. It’s not exactly clear why this is the case. Perhaps many people are aspiring homeowners and they plan to buy a property in the short term, or many young people are not committing to living in one place and keeping their future plans flexible.
If you are a landlord, consider allowing short term tenancy option as well as long term ones, so that you can offer more flexibility to your tenants.

Important Design Features

An important trend in rental properties is having more space, especially for families with children. In fact, most mid to high income renters with children were willing to pay more for a larger property or to have an en-suite with every bedroom. Also, storage space is a very important concern, with a common need for bike storage as well as space for bulky items such as vacuum cleaners, luggage, sports equipment and other large possessions. 12% of respondents even said that they would pay more rent for increased storage space.
Open plan kitchens are very trendy at the moment, especially with young renters under the age of 25. However, older renters don’t prefer this style as much as other demographics.

Old or New Houses?

It is interesting to note that, according to the Finders Keepers Survey, young people are interested in young property. Renters under the age of 35 were more likely to seek out a newer property and even pay a premium for it, while renters older than 45 were less likely to prefer a new home.

These are just a few of the important features and priorities that tenants consider when they are choosing a home. How can you adapt your rental property to make it more appealing to the average tenant?
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