How to Make Your Property More Appealing to Families in the New Year

man in suit showing a key ring

After the foreclosure crisis, many families found themselves in the position of having to rent after losing their own home. According to MSN, some of these households eventually found that they preferred renting over the responsibilities of their own home. Renting conveys some benefits to families that homeownership cannot, and when listing a rental property you can emphasize these benefits to get more renters in the door.

1. Allow Responsible Pet Ownership

Many families aren’t just comprised of parents and children. Children in particular get very attached to their pets, and many parents want their child to experience the responsibility of owning one. Allowing your tenants to have pets responsibly is an excellent way to encourage family tenancy, and as mentioned by SF Gate, it can encourage other tenants as well. You can always request a pet deposit or even a pet fee if you are concerned about the costs.

2. Add Maintenance and Other Services

One of the major hassles of being a homeowner is maintenance. Lawn care, pool care and standard home repairs can be incredibly difficult to manage. Those that have owned a home in the past, a group which is now a significant portion of the renter pool, may be encouraged to rent a home that has these maintenance items already taken care of. Adding yard and pool service to all of your rentals may allow you to take advantage of significant discounts, which will be offset by your higher rate of tenancy. As Property Management Select notes, this also allows you to ensure that your property is taken care of.

3. Make Sure the Property is Well-Maintained

Parents look for the maintenance of a building or house more than any other prospective tenant. Renters with young children will want to see that the home is completely safe for their children, and this includes small things you may not have noticed. The American Apartment Owners Association can connect you to contractors that will help you child proof your apartment in preparation for renters that have young children.

4. Stage it Properly

Setting the scene is very important for selling a rental property. If you’re trying to stage it for a family, you should put extra effort into making it appear as though a family truly lives there. Your listing should also emphasize the fantastic family-friendly benefits: high owner occupancy rates, low crime rates, excellent schools and more. You may also want to go around the neighborhood and find resources that a family might enjoy, such as a playground, a dog park or a library. Real estate resources like Trulia can help you discover essential pieces of information and statistics.

Renting to a family over a single tenant or group of tenants is almost always ideal. Families tend to take better care of their properties and they crave stability, which means they will usually stay within your property for a long time. Targeting a family is an excellent decision if you can do so, but it isn’t always right for the market. You should also consider the demographics of your area. Some areas have more married couples, while others have more college students, and you may have to go where the money is.


Chris Rhodes

Chris is a wealth manager who is restoring a vintage Chris-Craft boat in his free time

Tips for Effectively Staging Your Home for Sale

The moment you put your house on the market, it becomes a “product.” A home properly staged for showing stands out from the crowd has a better chance of selling and at a higher price than a non-staged home, according to Zillow.

Staging is about letting people see the best your home has to offer while minimizing its less-attractive traits. For example, properly staged, a small room can look like a spacious office space. Staging a home allows buyers to see the potential your home has, without making them use their imagination, says Da Lusso Design. Staging your home for sale is as simple as following the five “Ds.”


Photo by Polygon Homes via Flickr

The most important thing you can do when it comes time to show your home is to get rid of clutter, Better Homes and Gardens says. Buyers will have a difficult time imagining their own belongings in the home if all they can see if your “stuff.” Take anything that doesn’t have a distinct purpose out of each room. Knick-knacks, souvenirs, books and children’s toys all look like clutter to someone walking through for the first time. In addition to making your home appear more tranquil, the absence of clutter will make the rooms feel well-kept.

If you must keep any items for your next home, box them up and put them in storage. Donate anything you really don’t need — meaning anything that is cluttering up your own life — to charity.

Deep Clean

Photo by Backdoor Survival via Flickr

If your sinks are a mess or there are toys scattered around the house, buyers naturally assume that you don’t take much pride in home ownership. Enlist aid from friends and family and deep clean each room as though you are preparing for special guests.If the walls are dirty, give them a fresh coat of paint, wipe dirt out of light fixtures, shake out area rugs, clean the oven and wipe down cabinets. When someone is serious about buying your home they are likely to open every door and cabinet to see what is behind it.


Photo by AndyRobertsPhotos via Flickr

While you’re getting rid of clutter and dust, look around each room and decide which pieces of furniture you can live without for a while. An old desk, extra chair in the living room or heavy china cabinet in the dining room can be put into short-term storage in order to better “show” the house. As much as you may like those items, prospective buyers are not interested in them and simply want to know how much space is available for their belongings.


The common belief that rooms feel larger and are easier to use when all the furniture is pushed against the wall is a myth, HGTV says. It recommends “floating” your furniture by positioning it away from the walls and into cozy conversational groups. By creating these conversational groupings you create a clear-cut traffic flow and make the rooms feel larger.

Photo by coco+kelley via Flickr

Replacing worn items with new stylish furnishings can make a world of difference. Replace tired throw pillows, hang a new piece of art over the fireplace, update tired drapes with window treatments, switch out a worn shower curtain with something stylish and add a beautiful candle to the coffee table.


Photo by Furniture from Spain via Flickr

You likely adore the children’s artwork hanging on the refrigerator and family photos scattered around the house. The problem is, seeing your personalized items everywhere makes it more difficult for people to imagine their things filling the same space. Packing away your personal items is one of the easiest, least expensive, things you can do to sell your home quickly, according to Bankrate.


Mandy Collier

Mandy is a stay-at-home mom who blogs about ways to keep your home green and sustainable.