The increase in house prices has made the rental market more competitive than ever. As a landlord, how can you use storage solutions to encourage decent tenants to choose your property over someone else’s?
What are tenants looking for?
Tenants will have searched for properties within their price range. If you’ve done your market research and are offering a competitive price for the size and location of your rental property, it’s not the price that will make a tenant choose your property over another. So, what else are they looking for?
They may want a garden and somewhere off-road to park their car. Those are things your property either has or hasn’t - there’s not much you can do to change that!
Tenants want as much space as their money will buy. They may want a certain number of bedrooms - you could redesign your floorplan and room layout to maximise the number of bedrooms.
This could, though, make the rooms too small and leave inadequate room for storage. When tenants visit to view the property, they may feel there won’t be enough room to accommodate their furniture and store their belongings.
Tenants need space to live in and enough room to store their belongings. If your rental property doesn’t offer both, you may need to provide alternative storage solutions to be competitive and attract the best tenants.
What type of storage you offer may depend on whether your property is being marketed as furnished or unfurnished and what kind of tenants you’re marketing it to.
What sort of rental property do you have?
a. Renting furnished property
Landlords offer furnished property for various reasons. Perhaps you used to live in the property and moved in with a partner or inherited a home. You might be renting it out now because it’s proven difficult to sell or because you want to use it as a source of income rather than immediate capital.
If your rental property is furnished, you could attract more tenants by offering it as furnished, unfurnished, or part-furnished. Your tenants might have their own furniture and disregard furnished property because they don’t want to get rid of their furniture or have to find somewhere to store it.
You can attract more tenants by offering the choice and flexibility of whether your property is furnished and to what degree.
If your tenants want to use their own furniture or some of it, you could place your furniture in storage. You can rent a self storage unit and build the cost into the rent, so plan this in advance when considering how much to market the property for.
Alternatively, if they wished to store their belongings there, you could present them with details of a local self storage unit and the prices. This might be particularly attractive if they only rent for a few months and want to keep their house contents in one place until they buy a home.
If you’re furnishing a property to rent it out, and have the choice of what furniture to use, choose space-saving options like ottoman lift-up storage beds and multi-functional furniture (e.g. coffee tables with lift-up sections that can double as desks, or bedframes with in-built shelving).
b. Renting unfurnished property
If your property is marketed as unfurnished, consider the storage space available within the property. Your tenants might be bringing more furniture than will comfortably fit, and/or they are likely to have belongings that need to be stored neatly out of the way.
If your property needs more storage space (e.g. no built-in cupboards, no loft or cellar space), you could offer additional storage space to your tenants away from the property. Again, a self storage unit close to the property would be attractive to potential tenants and a more secure option than offering to store their belongings in your own house (if you have a spare room).
c. Renting multiple properties
If you’re a landlord managing multiple properties, it can be a good idea to have a storage unit central to those properties where you can store excess furniture. If you have tenants, for instance, who just want one bed and want to use their other bedroom as an office, you could store the extra bed in your storage unit. You could then reinstate it to that property when those tenants move out, or use it if another tenant in a different property needs an extra bed.
Your unit could store excess furniture and/or furnishings belonging to you or your tenants. You could be the sole key holder and have an arrangement in place that you will return items stored for your tenants within, say, 72 hours on request.
Who are you renting to?
a. Renting to students or multiple occupants
If you’re renting out individual rooms in a property with shared facilities like a kitchen and bathroom, each tenant will have very little storage space. As well as allocating individual cupboards in the shared areas that your tenants can add a lock to if they wish (for their food and crockery, for instance), you could offer separate storage space that can be included in their rent or as an optional extra.
Sports equipment, camping gear, winter clothing, Christmas decorations - those belongings take up space for so much of the year yet are only used for a few weeks. Offering somewhere for those items to be kept so they’re out of the way can be attractive for tenants.
Students, in particular might be away from the property for several weeks over the holidays. Offering a secure place for their belongings to be stowed could offer them reassurance and reduce the chances that your property might be targeted by burglars known to target empty student accommodation during holidays.
b. Renting to commercial tenants
Commercial tenants who run businesses from your rental property might need somewhere to store their excess stock, or equipment. They might also need document or archive storage.
If you can recommend or even arrange business storage at a location close to your rental property, this will be one less thing for your tenants to sort out and may make yours a more attractive rental prospect than your competitors.
Marketing your property with extra storage
As part of your property management, marketing your rental property with additional storage or flexible storage arrangements will maximise its appeal.
You need to show your prospective tenants that it would be cheaper for them to rent your property and pay an additional amount for storage than for them to rent a larger property.
This is usually the case, so having the facts and figures to illustrate how much money they could save by renting your living (or working) space and extra storage space rather than renting a larger (more expensive) property to accommodate more belongings.
Self storage for landlords and tenants
If you’re a landlord seeking self storage for your own excess furnishings or to offer more storage to your tenants, we provide secure self storage units
that can be accessed all year round. We have storage units ranging in size from 10 sq ft lockers to warehouse-sized rooms that can only be accessed by the keyholder.
Our stores are monitored by CCTV and have fire systems and pest control to ensure that belongings stored with us are kept safer and more secure. You will be required to hold contents insurance that can be arranged through us or your own providers, so please keep that in mind when setting out the costs for your tenants.
Our stores are located close to major cities and are easily reached via road or public transport networks. If you’d like a no-obligation quote or advice on how large your unit should be (or where your most conveniently-located store is), give us a call, chat with us online or send us a message and we’ll do our best to help.