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The Best Rental Property Upgrades in Washington DC

EJF Real Estate Services - Thursday, March 11, 2021

Even the most competitive homes in the DC market need updates from time to time. Staying competitive (and meeting your financial goals) is only possible when your DC rowhomes for rent deliver what millennials want and what other renters look for in a local rental home. An out-of-date property won't attract renters or support a market-driven rental price if it needs repairs and renovations.

However, not every update is a good idea. Real estate investors must understand the market and what renters want before incurring the expense of renovations that never pay off. The amenities you want in your private residence might not match what renters want in their future home. When investors choose personal preference over smart upgrades that pay off, they lose money.

What are the best rental property upgrades for DC? Here are a few expert recommendations from the EJF Real Estate team. 

Plenty of Connectivity

More people work from home these days, and that trend isn't likely to change any time soon. Renters need space and access to plenty of electrical outlets and quality internet services to set up a work-from-home space when living and conducting business at home. 

Hand Holding Mobile PhoneConnectivity updates are inexpensive amenities that can make your DC rowhomes for rent more attractive to renters in 2021. Consider adding:

  • Wall outlets with USB charging ports
  • High-speed internet access
  • Tips to boost cell service strength
  • Dedicated space that can easily convert into a home office

Making your DC rental work-from-home friendly is something you can advertise in a rental property listing. Wiring a property for high-speed internet, removing trees or other obstructions that can interfere with cellphone reception, and highlighting a study or bedroom's use as an office space can also justify a rent increase to offset the cost of these upgrades. 

Energy Efficiency

Renters love finding new ways to save money! When your DC rental properties help them reduce energy costs, they become more competitive in the market. 

Consider conducting an energy audit for your property. This process can highlight areas where you can improve the energy efficiency of a rental, including:

  • Checking for air leaks around doors and windows
  • Reviewing wall and attic insulation 
  • Inspecting heating and cooling systems
  • Considering the existing appliances and their Energy Star ratings
  • Reviewing lighting options for energy-efficient choices

Swapping lightbulbs for LED-options, updating the sealing around doors and windows, improving the insulation, and replacing outdated appliances help renters reduce utility costs. Investors can note these details in a rental listing to attract eco-conscious renters!

Happy family in bedroomAdditional Security

Safety and security are always a priority for DC renters. With people spending more time at home (and working out of their homes), security improvements can boost your rentals' demand. 

Small security updates can make a big difference in the safety of your rentals. While real estate investors have a legal obligation to provide safe homes for residents, taking security features a step further can win over more potential renters. 

Review your properties and make improvements like:

  • Additional exterior lighting (including motion lights)
  • Video camera doorbells to view activity 
  • Secure package delivery options
  • Smart home features to control lighting and electronic locks when away from home
  • Security cameras for multi-family properties

Your renters should feel safe while in your DC rowhomes for rent. They should also feel confident about the safety of their belongings when away from the home. The right security features can impress potential renters when searching for the best place to live and work in the area.

Professional Management

Today's DC renters look for rentals with professional management and maintenance. An experienced property manager can elevate the demand for your rentals because renters know they have 24/7 access to a professional who can help with maintenance issues or other problems. Renters also know that professional property management means their home will say in excellent condition with routine upkeep and prompt, quality repairs. 

Hiring a property manager for your DC rowhomes for rent means investors also have a resource to recommend the best property upgrades—and make them happen, according to your budget. With our expert property management:

  • Renters can pay the rent online or submit a maintenance request at any time
  • Your properties benefit from prompt repairs using only the best contractors in the area
  • Investors know which property upgrades can improve their income (and which updates can be a waste of time and money)
  • Vacancy rates improve with professional marketing that highlights your property's most in-demand amenities

When it's time for smart updates, DC investors and renters benefit from the best local property management. 

A Property Manager is the Best Upgrade for DC Rentals

Hiring a property manager is the best way to maximize upgrades and attract better renters for your DC rowhomes for rent. EJF Real Estate understands the local market and knows what renters look for in a safe, comfortable rental home. With our experience, investors make more money with smart property updates that keep their rentals competitive and occupied. 

Learn more about preparing your property for new renters with our free Makeready Checklist.