Whether it’s your fifth investment or your very first property, selecting an apartment that will increase in value is crucial. Always get a second opinion of the rental market value from an independent source, even if the property is rented. Sometimes figures are inflated to make the property seem more attractive. Current tenants may have moved in during a period of high demand so they are now paying over the current value. Ray White West End’s Business Development Manager, Erin Demmery, shares her tips for choosing a profitable apartment.
Erin says that natural lighting is one of the first things potential tenants notice when inspecting an apartment. “It’s a big selling point,” she says. “If the apartment or home is dark then choose to update it with neutral colours. A neutral palate which will appeal to more people adding to the brightness of the property.” If you are buying an off-the-plan apartment, understanding how the natural light will appear in the morning, at midday and in the afternoon is essential.
It’s not uncommon to see apartments for sale with no car parks. Although that may work for you, this is something to consider. “With more friends choosing to share apartments, they’re more likely looking for multiple car spaces. Driving around and around to try and find a park near your home in a busy area becomes tiresome and a cause to move,” says Erin.
When considering inclusions, there’s a fine line to walk between providing tenants with modern comforts and going over the top (thus pricing your apartment out of the market). It’s best to stick to simple and keep ongoing costs lower. “Having a dishwasher and air conditioning are two of the main inclusions people want,” she says. “A second bathroom in a two-bedroom apartment and an internal laundry are also highly valued.”
“A big reason why a lot of tenants move is lack of space. To be able to enjoy a home, you need to consider how many people are going to be living there,” says Erin. This is especially true when looking to attract the downsizer market, who are used to the space that comes with a traditional Queenslander home. Adding in extra cupboards and storage can go a long way in keeping tenants, and securing new ones.
“Being closer to the city is important to renters. I know of a lot of rentvesters (investors that choose to rent) in the South Brisbane/West End area that have invested in the outer suburbs but choose to rent closer to the CBD as this is where they want to be,” says Erin. If your apartment is close to the CBD, transport, restaurants and amenities, it’s likely this prime real estate will be worth more in the future as the city and infrastructure of Brisbane expands. This is also true for riverfront or oceanfront properties, where there is limited availability. Over a ten-to-fifteen-year time frame, there will likely be a clear increase in profitability that can be attributed to location. As well as the city, riverfront and beachfront, a location close to universities is also a great option.