Should You Reveal Your Rental Property’s Hardwood Floors?

Restored Hardwood Flooring in the Kitchen and Living RoomWhen you purchase a rental home with carpet already installed, it may have a great surprise hidden inside. There are homes with carpets that have a beautiful hardwood floor underneath them. The decision you need to consider is whether you should remove the carpet or leave it in place. For some property owners, staying with carpeted floors would be smarter— it would be the economical and efficient choice for them— but for others, revealing those hardwood floors may just be the thing they need to unlock higher rental income and better tenants. In the end, you have to weigh the pros and cons of exposing your rental property’s hardwood floors.

When choosing between carpet and hardwood flooring in your Capitol Hill rental property, take these things into account. Hardwood floors can be an attractive feature in a rental home. They have beauty and durability that few carpets can match. But this doesn’t mean that the best choice will be hardwood all the time. Not all rental homes would benefit from it. You’ll need to look into the type of tenant you have, the resale value of the property, the neighborhood, and the cost of preparing and maintaining each flooring type. All of these things should be considered carefully before choosing to permanently remove your rental’s carpeting.

Not all tenants would respond to the upgrade of a hardwood floor the same way. There are many tenants who are conscientious and may appreciate the beauty of a hardwood floor, and willing to take on the responsibility to keep the floor clean and dry. However, there are also those who would only end up damaging the floor. For example, tenants with pets and heavy furniture can easily scratch or gouge a wood floor. Some tenants may prefer hardwood floors for reasons other than aesthetics. For allergy sufferers, a hard floor surface is easier to keep free of dust than carpet. But if the tenant uses harsh cleaning products or scrubs hard, they could damage it. They need to know how to properly care for hardwood.

Beyond appearance, rental property owners should make the property’s current and future value the starting point of their flooring choices. Because value is often influenced by a property’s location and nearby homes, it would be good to know if the other homes in the neighborhood feature hardwood or carpet floors. If most of the homes have carpet, then it may not be a good idea to remove yours. On the other hand, if the neighborhood is improving and undergoing a renewal, offering upgrades like a hardwood floor may be the key that would make your rental house better than the competition.

Finally, there are costs you need to think about when making the decision to permanently remove your rental home’s carpet. You may save on the cost of replacing the carpet every five years, but there are additional expenses when you remove the carpet and prepare the floor for your tenant. For one, newer hardwood finishes are very durable when compared to the old ones, but there’s a high likelihood that the floor under your rental’s carpet won’t be exactly new.

The years spent lurking beneath a layer of the carpet hasn’t helped the hardwood either. So, exposing a hardwood floor will likely require refinishing. And when it’s exposed and being used, it would then need regular maintenance to make sure that its condition is maintained. Now, all these steps would involve costs, and knowing how much you’d have to invest would be a tremendous help. It would help you make a well-informed decision.

After going through all the relevant details and after getting all the necessary information, you can confidently decide whether exposing your rental property’s hardwood floors is a smart move for your rental home.

Take the headache and hassle out of managing your rental properties. At Real Property Management DC Metro, we handle the lease paperwork, renter relations, professional vendors and everything else! Talk to a professional Capitol Hill manager; don’t hesitate to contact us or call us at 202-269-0303 today.

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