When you’re shopping for an investment home, the words “location, location, location” doesn’t matter as much as “functionality, functionality, functionality.” This is the most important consideration when you’re selecting a rental property.
You need to buy a house that you wouldn’t mind living in. Take a look at the bathroom and make sure it’s the proper size. You want a master bedroom on the main floor, and it should be at least 135 square feet. If it’s any smaller, you won’t keep tenants as long. Have a full bathroom on the main floor as well. Lots of older houses in Grand Rapids were built in the 1800s. This means small bedrooms, and some only have bedrooms upstairs. That’s not functional. Updated kitchens and bathrooms are also critical.
If you purchase a house that isn’t functional, you need to be prepared to make it functional. The other bedrooms need to be at least 100 square feet, for example, so that could mean taking out a chimney and moving walls by a foot. That’s how seriously you need to take functionality.
It doesn’t matter if you buy a ranch or a two story house or even a duplex. Buy whatever you are comfortable with, as long as it’s functional. Look for new vinyl siding, new windows and a new roof. If the house you want to buy doesn’t have those three things, buy at a lower price so you can put the siding on or the windows in yourself.
When you’re buying your investment property, think five years down the road. The roof may be good today, but will it last five or 10 years? Buy a house with a yard. Houses that don’t have front, back or side yards are difficult to rent and then your turnover costs are expensive. Outdoor space is important. If you’re in the city and you have two houses side by side – one with porch one without a porch – buy the one with the porch. People like to sit outside, so this is important in attracting tenants.
If you have any questions about a rental home’s functionality, or you need help selecting the right investment property, please contact us at United Properties for more information.