Buying Appliances for Your Rental Property
Sooner or later, you’ll have to replace an appliance in your rental property. But what’s the best way to do it cost effectively? You’ll need to balance quality, longevity and price to provide your current and future residents the equipment they need to keep their lives running smoothly.
Match the renters’ expectations
When it comes to buying appliances for your rental property, consider your residents’ expectations. Will they expect ones with all the bells and whistles, or will they be satisfied with simpler high-quality, well-running appliances that get the job done? Keep in mind that the more features an appliance offers can translate into more things that can go wrong. You might decide to install high-level appliances but have a higher rental price to cover possible issues. Whatever you decide should ultimately influence how you market the property to prospective renters.
Keep in mind the type of rental you're looking to fill. Someone renting an apartment is most likely going to expect larger appliances and probably doesn’t have many of their own, while someone renting a house will likely have more they can bring with them. No matter what type of property you have, make it clear in the lease which appliances you supply and which need to be supplied by the tenant.
Save on energy
You’re going to want to focus on energy efficiency since it benefits everyone. If you pay for the electricity, the savings are obvious and can pay off quickly, even allowing you to spend a bit more on higher-end models. Even if you don’t pay for the electricity, you’re saving the tenant money on their bill, making their overall cost of living lower and giving them more things about your property to be positive about.
Consider your space
Your appliances have to fit inside your property. It seems like an obvious statement, but you need to take it into consideration. If you’re dealing with a small apartment, which model you choose can be decided for you by the space you have.
Get the best price
Once you’ve found a model you like, start with a search for the base price. Pricegrabber.com and Google’s product search are two smart places to check. Once you have a sense of the going price range for a certain appliance, you can begin shopping in earnest. Don’t forget about reduced-price floor models or scratch and dent savings. You can also consult Craigslist for gently-used appliances that might fit the bill, though like any time you’re buying used, be cautious about what you’re getting and budget for some repair or refurbishing.
It might also make sense to buy brand new. If there’s not a large difference between new and used prices, or it’s difficult to find used appliances in good condition, buying new can be the overall cheaper option. Don’t forget to factor the warranty into the cost, since it can save you from needing to pay for some repairs yourself, which you’re unlikely to get when buying used.
If possible, find someone you can work with long term for appliances. If you find a store that sells used appliances, they often also run a delivery and repair business alongside reselling. This will let you work with the same people over time, along with only needing to go one place for handling all of your appliance issues.
Replacing appliances is a necessary part of being a landlord or property manager. You might start shopping around even before the need arises to replace any. This will give you a handy head start when your resident calls to tell you that their fridge or washer has given out!