How can I find an appropriate tenant as the mercury falls?

It's brilliant news that rental yields across Australia jumped in May across Australia. That said, the key to producing excellent investment returns is the maintenance of high occupancy rates for your investment property.

Moreover, owning a vacant residential investment property in the winter months can be a tricky proposition. However, it's not the end of the road either.

The truth is that there are always renters are on the lookout for new digs whether it’s June or January – so be sure not to rush into signing up a tenant for fear that there is only a shallow pool of contenders. This is where the advice of your Raine & Horne property manager will prove priceless.

The trick to hooking the right tenant is ensuring your property looks its best and comes with an accurate market price.

The starting point is to establish your pricing expectations early. With the help of your Raine & Horne property manager, determine a fair weekly rent – it doesn’t matter how many cosmetic touches you add to your investment property, it’ll sit empty if you don’t set a reasonable price.

Cosmetically, the property must be clean, repainted if necessary and in working order –advice that stands whether it’s summer or winter. Although winter does have some unique challenges, especially if your investment is a bit older.

If you own an older property, it may have single-pane windows with damaged, or missing ‘caulking’ (the window sealant). If the caulking is worn-out, then any efforts to keep out cold air will be frustrated – and good luck keeping hot air inside. Likely tenants will pay attention to damaged caulking, so replace the sealants quickly.

Many property managers will urge investors to spend some money on window shades. While creating some windowpane appeal, shades, blinds, and curtains also help keep any heat generated by the sun during the day inside the property, as well as retaining warmth caused by heaters, air conditioners or fireplaces. Also, a relatively inexpensive cost that is tax deductible, blinds and shades offer the advantage of helping control light levels throughout the year.

For more tips for warming tenants to your rental property this winter, talk to a Raine & Horne property manager.