The Biggest Threats To Your Real Estate Investment Property And What You Can Do To Stop Them
All sorts of strange things can affect the value of your property.
Want more articles like this?
Create an account today to get BiggerPocket's best blog articles delivered to your inboxSign up for free
Most, however, are not so outlandish. Some you can control, and some — well, you really can’t. Knowing what can affect the value of your property will help you make the right adjustments and keep you from making an unfortunate mistake that you can’t do anything to fix.
If you find yourself watching your property value dip, there may be a reason for it that can’t be chalked up to the state of the market. If you want to work on increasing property value, a good place to start is by looking at what’s bringing it down and seeing what you can do to turn it around.
You know the saying, so we’re not going to repeat it again.
But location is everything when it comes to your property. Bad location? Your value is going to tank. Proximity to garbage dumps and power plants, for instance, can drag value down, particularly in highly populated, expensive residential areas. Surroundings are always, always important to your real estate value.
Neighbors, unless they’re also your tenants, can be problematic.
Sometimes you can’t tell when neighbors are going to be trouble from a quick glance. Sometimes they might not be trouble but because of a criminal record, your property value can suffer.
This can be caused by people or by pets.
Party animals, constantly bickering couples, loud pets or otherwise disruptive neighbors can hurt your property value. Prospective tenants will probably visit at different hours of the day to see what the noise situation is like.
It’s important that you know what it is, too. It’s not always as obvious a problem, especially when you yourself aren’t living on the property. Noisy neighbors aren’t only the bane of apartment complexes — they can hurt houses, too.
Granted, not all hoarders have junk on their lawns.
In some cases, you can have a hoarding neighbor and never know it. But sometimes…you definitely know it from the exterior. Untended, overgrown lawns with rusting, old or paint-peeled things in the neighbor’s yard will affect your real estate value. All the curb appeal in the world won’t save your property when the view is the awful state of a neighbor’s yard.
They may never pose a threat to your tenants, but having an identified sex offender in your complex or neighborhood can negatively impact property value.
A study by the American Economic Review showed that properties neighboring a sex offender’s home drop in value by as much as 12%. Before you buy, check the National Sex Offender Registry to avoid that kind of hit to your value.
Hey, good news!
Here is something you can do something about. Renters are picky. They might not want to fool with the potential of a space. If kitchens and bathrooms are outdated in both style and appliances, they’re likely to move on instead of moving in.
Updating goes a long way to increasing property value along with your chances of actually getting someone to rent it. Pick a few important projects to invest in that will give you the most bang for your buck. Get those updated (and matching) appliances, get granite (or granite-looking) countertops. Your real estate value will thank you.
Bad Floor Plan
While a bad or quirky floor plan might not have mattered so much in the past, it’s the buyer’s market now.
Remember how I said renters are picky? Still true. Open floor plans are trending and awkward layouts, particularly those that are cumbersome or confusing, are just going to hurt your value. Sometimes, you can remedy this by taking out walls, but be sure that’s an investment you’re willing to make.
Lacking Curb Appeal
You know this one!
When a house doesn’t look homey and attractive on the outside, few people are going to want to come home to it — and that will make your value suffer.
Take care of peeling paint, make sure plants and flowers are healthy (but well groomed) and that the lawn is cut. On the inside of the home, make sure there aren’t holes in wall or stains on appliances, floors or ceilings. You want your property to look and be nice for your tenants.
There are many factors that can affect your real estate value. Control what you can, think ahead before signing on for something you can’t, and work on increasing property value at every turn. You won’t regret it.
What do you do when there’s a threat to your property’s value?
Let us know in the comments!