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refresh your outdoors to increase property value
30th June 2020

Some areas in Dubai have been seeing a decline in rental and sales prices of properties over the past few months. As a real estate investor, this can be troubling news, especially if you’ve only just bought an investment property. Fortunately, there is one effective way you can boost both the resale and rental value of your property: home improvements.

It has been proven time and again that people put a high value on outdoor living, especially after they spent weeks and months during the lockdown and self-isolation at home. Any wise property investor would use this to their advantage. From an attractive yard to an extended and functional outdoor living space, here are five outdoor updates you can try to help increase your property’s value for resale and rental:

Build or upgrade your deck

Believe it or not, outdoor living spaces tend to make a home more desirable for both renters and home buyers. In fact, it is quite appealing to people who tend to stay home on their days off work as well as those who seek vacation rentals. You see, adding a deck has been found to guarantee a recoup of the remodeling expenses by as much as 90 percent. Plus, installing a deck on the upper floors of the house means there is a beautiful view of the neighbourhood, which leads to a whopping 77% ROI once the property has been sold.

This is enough reason for you to consider adding a deck to the property. Not only does it extend the living space, but it also allows full enjoyment of the great outdoors for the inhabitants of the house. If you already have an existing patio or deck that is small, consider extending it to accommodate guest entertainment. If it is near the living room or kitchen, match the outdoor design with materials that complement the interior wall colours and flooring. You can also choose to blend the outdoor space with the indoor area with double sliding doors made of glass to create a more extensive and airier space.

Have the yard professionally landscaped

Curb appeal is crucial in both property sale and rental promotion. Although the interior definitely has a significant impact on this, how it looks outside is what piques interest in the first place. After all, the first impression you leave on a potential home buyer or tenant significantly affects the result of the transaction.

To ensure excellent curb appeal for your investment property, consider a landscape upgrade. According to a study, those planning to resell their real estate can expect a whopping 100% ROI once the deal is closed for the landscaped property. If your yard is nothing more than a lawn, think about planting trees and shrubs to add some interest to it. You can also improve property marketability and value with paved stone walkways and other hardscapes that complement the landscape.

If renters or homebuyers are able to imagine themselves entertaining guests in an elegant outdoor area in the property, they are more likely to close the deal at a sooner. It is also easier to increase the rental rate when the outdoor space is beautifully landscaped

While you can try to DIY this entire project, it is smarter to hire professionals for the job. Aside from saving time and effort, it can also help you avoid unnecessary expenses and added costs. After all, pool and landscape design is a project that untrained hands are not meant to take on.

Select low-maintenance landscaping

Another important thing you must know about landscaping is the right choice of foliage. When working with a landscape designer, ensure that all your concerns are known, including the fact that other people will be taking care of the place on your behalf.

Beyond making sure that the place looks great, you should also think about how it will look in the long run. Pick out plants and features that are easy to maintain. Even better, select those that require minimal to zero maintenance.

Although most renters appreciate attractive and mature landscaping, many are still put off by the idea of having to take care of an elaborately designed yard filled with high-maintenance plants. Hence, your best option is to choose low-maintenance landscaping options. If you’re the one paying for the water bill, it would also be wise to select low-water and drought-tolerant plants. The same goes for hardscapes and other features.

For a start, you can look at plants that are native to the area as they are more likely to survive the conditions in the place. Minimize the inclusion of tropical plants as well as water-wasting features like artificial ponds and fountains. Finally, keep in mind that the landscape must be both attractive and low maintenance to appeal to the majority of renters and home buyers.

Improve outdoor safety with maintenance and repairs

Aside from aesthetics, functionality, and convenience, safety is another major factor that affects the decisions of potential renters and home buyers. To make sure your property is ready for the market, you must ensure that all maintenance and repairs have been dealt with.

While this isn’t exactly an update, maintenance and repairs that answer safety concerns can save money and help boost the rental property income. Among the things you need to look out for include:

● Broken fence boards
● Nails that are sticking out
● Jagged rafters on the patio
● Broken concrete on the walkways
● Damaged eaves
● Worn-out door frames

If your prospects spot one or more of these issues, you can bet that they would either negotiate for a lower rate or forgo your property altogether. Good renters look for good landlords, and better home buyers seek properties that won’t require too much effort to live in. This means that safety concerns must be addressed before you advertise the place for rent or sale.

Utilise a beautiful and unhindered view

Besides the condition and appearance of the house itself, people would also pay more to live in a place where they can enjoy a beautiful and unhindered view. If you have a property with high potential for this, optimize it for maximum profit.

To do so, make sure that you strategically place patios and decks facing the most picturesque parts of the neighbourhood. If there are trees or unruly shrubs blocking the view, have them trimmed.

Impressive views help set your property apart, making it more marketable and, therefore, profitable.

While improving the interiors does boost home value, investment properties can also benefit from outdoor space upgrades. Make sure that you get the most from your investment by taking care of the landscape as well.

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