Many people think of their home as their castle. Similarly, I would like to view my rental units as fortresses, built to withstand the abuse that tenants can inflict upon them. I would like to focus my attention on a property only when I buy it, and get it in rentable condition.
We are all about keeping costs low. While this might mean using more “economical” building materials to some, I am inclined to believe that the better long term strategy is using more durable building/renovation materials. Things I have come across that can lead to saving money, time, and headaches:
-Smoke detectors with long-lasting battery
-Low-pile and stain resistant carpet
-Heavy-duty tile w/ lifetime guarantee
-Long-lasting light fixtures and bulbs
-High-gloss paint (easier to remove stains)
I am curious to hear others weigh in on these practices and provide others. What materials require less upkeep and prevent a landlord from replacing them? Any and all advice is welcome…
@James Brand Look at the BP forum posts about hardening your rentals. Use the search box to find them. The most popular one is this one (170 replies and counting!):
Also, this is a good thread about flooring:
Minimize the use of carpet. I use click lock vinyl plank flooring everywhere except the bedrooms. Its fairly inexpensive, tough, looks nice, its easy to install, replace and repair and its waterproof. We used to use tile but it ends up costing about the same plus its much more labor intensive to install and repair, plus its a huge PITA to bust it all up if you decide to replace it.
One time saver I always do is replace the front door knob with a passage knob, that way the tenants have to have their key with them in order to lock the deadbolt. No more tenants locking themselves out and calling me at all hours of the night... Its not a maintenance thing but it saves me time and energy.
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