Would you upgrade this rental property kitchen? (With Pictures)

27 Replies

I'm working on my first BRRRR property, and I'm stumped with what to do with the kitchen. It's small and boring but functional. The appliances, cabinets and laminate counter tops are in fine condition - working with no major scratches.
What would you all do to this kitchen?  Upgrade it, or save some money and leave it as is?  I'd love to hear your thoughts

Note: The counter tops are brownish/orange and blue

Hi Stefan,

For a SFH if it were mine I'd just paint it and box that vent thing next to fridge in with drywall, unless the local competition was forcing more than that, or doing more would bring more rent.

Good Luck!

I would not upgrade something that looks like that... other than adding a dishwasher.  Keep in mind that EVERYTHING will rent at the correct price, and as long as the appliances work, there is fresh paint on the wall and it is clean, someone will rent it. 

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Thanks everybody - that's pretty unanimous, don't do much besides paint, hardware and the vent (that I hadn't even thought to do anything about, good eye @Scott Mac )  

Originally posted by @Stefan D. :

Thanks everybody - that's pretty unanimous, don't do much besides paint, hardware and the vent (that I hadn't even thought to do anything about, good eye @Scott Mac )  

Even on the vent - how much will that cost you (probably not much, maybe more in lost rent while waiting to finish job) and how much money are you going to make because you covered it up (probably very close to zero).  The kitchen looks fine.  Don’t waste a penny on it and get it rented.  

I would... but not much & only Bc u are trying a BRRRR.

Definitely that vent, Paint, Backsplash, granite counter top, black hardware, & add a dishwasher (if needed in the area).

Kitchens drive a lot of value when getting your appraisal for your cashout unfortunately. If you keep it literally the same, a bad appraisal is much more likely IMO.

Check out your competition.
I find myself having to upgrade older but functional units just to stay competitive.
That is in a very hip neighborhood where there is a lo of development going on. So demand is strong but they have a lot of options.
It really depends on your market.

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@Stefan D. yes if I was going to fix it up on a budget for the appraisal or because of your market, I would paint the cabinets white or grey, add hardware, and do a simple backsplash (like a subway or something similar.) Also I can't see the light fixtures, but those are easy to update on a budget with something current. 

@Stefan D.

Kitchens are what sell it, both to renters and driving the appraisal value!   It looks decent, but I would add dark hardware to the cabinet, line the inside, and also do a peal and stick back splash, it's maybe $100-$200 and will really make it look better! 

@Stefan D.

Depends what the Local competition are doing. If they are modernizing everything and that is what makes them stand out and have great cash flow I would say do the same.

However, if all of the other houses kitchens look like yours I would leave it or maybe paint the doors and walls to give a bit of contrast and pop.

@Stefan D. I did a peel and stick backsplash along with a peel and stick vinyl accent wall in a recent purchase and it drove the demand for the property. Maybe cost me $200 at most. Something like that could work for you.

@Stefan D.

I agree with the main consensus which is do nothing and rent it.

However, if by upgrading you can increase the rent substantially do it.

Additionally, better units attract better tenants and possibly less turnover, maybe more lease renewals.

Best to know your demographic and what they expect and or really want.

Finally, everything in the photos appears intact and functional- don’t fix it, if it’s not broke!

@Keith A. , @Syed H.

How would you determine if a dishwasher is needed?  My first rental doesn't have them so I am curious. I assume it would help keep existing renters and help rent it faster.  Is it something that would help justify a rent increase?


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