Three DIY Projects to Make Your Rental Property More Attractive

By on July 24, 2016

How can landlords set their properties apart in a competitive market? Look to the backyard to improve your home’s rental appeal without too much investment. Think of the backyard as another room of the house. Create a unique space for tenants by increasing its usability.  Complete any of the following projects between renters to make your property more attractive.

fire pit

Fire Pit

Time invested: Afternoon

A fire pit is one of the easiest projects. Fire pits can be built on a patio or out in a grassy area. You can buy the fire pit materials at most local hardware stores or big box home improvement centers. A simple circular fire pit will consist of paver stones or concrete blocks stacked in a circle just wide enough to accommodate the metal fire pit bowl. Stagger each layer of blocks with the layer below for stability. A metal fire pit insert and cover will rest on top. You can also build a square fire pit.

Before beginning your project, spend some time browsing galleries of fire pits online to get ideas about material, color and shape.

arbor swing

Adult Swing or Arbor Swing

Time Invested: Weekend

Perfect for reading, enjoying a drink on a nice evening or holding a conversation during a party, backyard swings aren’t just for kids. This project is slightly more complicated and requires a few specialty tools that can be rented from local equipment rental houses or home improvement centers.

An arbor swing is usually constructed of square beams anchored in the ground with concrete. To dig the appropriate hole for these beams you will need to rent an auger unless you already own one. Build a trellis along the top of the structure for shade and decoration after the beams are steadied and straight and the concrete has set. A swing is then built and hung from the trellis. Several plans and videos on how to build an arbor swing are available online. Your local home improvement center may also have plans.

pub shed

Pub Shed

Time Invested: Weekend to Week

The time and cost involved in creating your pub shed depends on whether you buy a pre-assembled shed or build your shed from scratch, and how intricate your interior décor. From the outside the pub shed looks like an everyday garden shed, but open it up to enhance entertaining. What you do with your pub shed will partially depend on the structure’s size. A small shed might have a window that opens to a counter attached to the outside so guests can enjoy their favorite drink while the host plays bartender inside.

Looking for a more elaborate project? A larger shed might offer a bar in the back with chairs and couches around a low table for conversation. Decorate the interior as a traditional English pub, beach shanty or something with a theme around cars or your favorite era. Let your imagination run wild!

You can build all of these projects permanently or purchase them for temporary placement. A permanent installation shows an investment in the property that may appeal to the renter.

Check with local fire codes, city ordinances and your homeowners’ association before starting your project. There may be regulations unique to your area.

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