When moving into a rental house in Birmingham, AL, we all want to customize our homes as much as possible. For many people, that means doing something with the appliances that may be there. This brings us to a common question: Should I put appliances in my rental home? Or is it too much trouble to bother with? To answer the question, we took a look at two key appliances that most consider: refrigerators and ovens. With the possible exception of washers and dryers, these are the most expensive appliances a tenant will consider placing in a property. In general, we suggest providing a stove/oven combination without a refrigerator for properties that rent for less than $800 a month. “Why not a fridge?” you ask. There are many reasons, including:
Refrigerators go out or go on the fritz, which costs money to fix and/or replace;
When refrigerators fail, you typically have to pay for the tenants’ food as well;
Units without a refrigerator rent out just as quickly as those with.
We haven’t noticed a decrease in the number of tenants who are willing to rent a home in the sub-$800 range that has a stove/oven combo but doesn’t have a refrigerator. At that price level, it is mostly an extra cost that could cost even more later. Besides, people rent homes, not the furnishings. For homes that cost more than $1,000 to rent, however, things are different. You should definitely include a refrigerator and a stove/oven combo, because that is what is expected at that price point. The advantages far outweigh the drawbacks. Another potential problem appliance is a dishwasher. We’ve found that they are very susceptible to becoming clogged and broken, which only drives up maintenance costs. For that reason, we recommend not placing dishwashers in units that rent for below $800 a month – and even going as far to remove them if they are already present. You can convert that space into a number of useful applications. In short, really take a look at the price point of a home and base your decisions on appliances on that fact. At a certain price point, it just doesn’t make sense to include certain high-dollar appliances, whereas it absolutely makes sense for higher rents. Contact us if you have any questions about appliances or any other aspect of outfitting a rental home.
Matthew is the CEO of Evernest. He is a student of the book Good to Great and is passionate about building the best property management company on the planet (and maybe even the universe if Elon Musk will hurry up). You can usually find Matthew at the baseball field with his son, at a dance recital with his daughter, or at his favorite restaurant with his wife, when he’s not in the office. And if you can’t find him in any of those places, it probably means he’s traveling.