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Property Management Hacks For Landlords In North Central WA

Money-Saving/Earning Landlord Hacks

Top property management hacks for landlords to protect their investment and increase their rents. Hey everyone, it’s Nick McLean with Nick McLean Real Estate Group and owner of M Property Management, a full-service property management company serving all of north-central Washington. And I’m about to give you some property management hacks to prevent some damage, protect your asset, and also be able to increase or command more rents.

And the first thing I want to talk about is appliances and flooring. A new set of appliances is a great idea. I know being a landlord, you’re a little frugal here, but tenants will actually pay you more money for a nice set of appliances. A new flat top stove, a nice refrigerator, a nice microwave, built-in microwave, they’ll pay you extra. Plus as an added bonus, you won’t have to waste time and energy on costly repairs.

If you look at new apartment complexes, they’re commanding much higher rents than older places, because they have newer appliances and clean new floors. When it comes to flooring we recommend LVP (luxury vinyl planks) flooring or some wear-resistant material.

When it comes to appliances on the refrigerator, a nice hack that I learned from our investors and being in proper management myself is don’t have an ice maker or a water machine in your refrigerator. Get rid of that copper line. That little line can cause major damage if it fails. They have a tendency to get kinked and develop a slow leak that can cause a lot of damage. So get rid of that refrigerator water line!

The second thing I recommend is getting rid of that shed on your property. If you allow access to the shed to a tenant, they’re going to fill it up. Just like if you give them access to the garage, they’re going to fill up the garage. We don’t see a huge premium when it comes to sheds and chances are that when tenants move out they’re probably going to leave stuff behind, which is an added expense for you because you are going to need to get their trash out before the next tenant moves in.

The next recommendation is to freshen up the paint and fixtures, this will make your rental more attractive and allow you to charge more money. The rental marketplace is hot right now so you’re going to get new tenants when one moves out but we want to command the most money. A fresh set of paint and updated light fixtures will make a rental stand out.

The fourth recommendation is to make sure you have good blinds on the windows. They don’t have to be super high-end blinds, but nice blinds because it’s going to get really hot in the summer in our area and these blinds are going to make it more comfortable for the tenant. And if they’re comfortable they’re more likely to stay. An added bonus is that a home with good blinds won’t strain your HVAC and your AC Systems. This results in fewer repair bills and more longevity for these expensive systems. I know this. When it gets to 120 and you don’t have proper blinds, the tenant’s not going to go out and spend money on nice blinds or curtains. So that rental unit is going to be like a greenhouse. Your HVAC or Air Conditioner will be in overdrive and it will not be able to keep up. Running these systems on overdrive for long periods of time will definitely end in failure.

Speaking of HVAC systems, one mistake that we see people make that manage their own properties is the tenant’s responsibility to maintain the filters in the HVACs, but they don’t do it. They forget and they get really dirty, and these HVACs fail and they’re going to fail when it’s super cold or they’re going to fail when it’s super hot and you’re going to get that dreaded phone call. So at our company, we’re really proactive in making sure when we do an inspection that includes checking and changing those filters. It is a super easy fix, $10, $20 for a filter, and it is going to save you a lot of time and money. Plus, if your tenants are changing out filters, their bills are going to be lower and if their bills are lower, they’re going to stay there longer. So let’s keep them really comfortable.

If you are confused or overwhelmed with all of the changes that we’ve seen since COVID when it comes to tenant rights, landlord rights, or If you have any questions when it comes to property management, reach out to us. We’re always here to help. We want to be your resource.

Hope you enjoyed my tips and tricks for landlords that are doing their own property management.

Nick McLean
Nick McLean Real Estate Group

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