If you’re looking to attract more tenants to your property, or increase your monthly income you have to be strategic about your upgrades. One of the additions you should be considering is including laundry facilities in your rental. Access to a private washer and dryer is undoubtedly a real estate marketing plus that tenants find desirable.
However, before incurring such costs, it’s essential to look at it from all angles. Thus, this article answers the question, can adding a laundry room increase your rental home’s value?
Pros and Cons of Adding a Laundry Room
Higher Rental Value
Adding an in-house laundry unit is a certain way to boost your rental value. Some landlords report earning as much as 50 – 75% return on installation. Property owners with condos could even earn more with multiple families using the same washer-dryer. The added convenience makes it a must-have for many renters, and some might even cross you off the list without it. Thus, it gives you an edge over your competition as an additional selling point to keep tenants satisfied. If you want to learn more, property managers in Fairfax can discuss whether these improvements may attract quality tenants.
Adding a laundry room to your apartment saves tenants a lot of stress. There’s no need to haul all their dirty clothes to the nearest laundromat, wash, and then -return home. For large families, your rental would be a blessing, as it would save them several trips out of the building. The added convenience is especially a plus if your property isn’t in an area with a high walkability score. At least with an in-house washer-dryer, you can ease one of your renters’ biggest chores.
Besides making life easier for your tenants, installing a laundry room can also increase your income. If you operate a coin-based machine, you can earn a few hundred dollars every month. Of course, that’s dependent on how many people per washer you run. For buildings with multiple apartments, you should consider more than one machine. Alternatively, if you don’t want to appear too commercial, you can opt for a regular washer-dryer. In that scenario, instead of asking renters to pay per use, you can add the bill to your rent. For instance, if you usually charge $1000 per month, you can add perhaps an extra $20 to $50. Most tenants would happily pay that for the added convenience.
Another benefit of an in-unit laundry room is that it improves your tenants safety. Using a public laundromat comes with the risk of encountering thieves or stalkers. However, a laundry room in the building drastically reduces the chances of renters dealing with such problems. As such, this upgrade provides both security and luxury.
One of the most significant drawbacks to adding a laundry room is the added maintenance needs. Like all other appliances, you’ll also have to service your washer and dryer. In other words, it increases your responsibility to your tenants, especially if each apartment has their own unit. With an in-unit machine the problem could be related to the wiring or plumbing, which means if there’s an issue it could be more complex.
Besides the extra work regarding maintenance, a laundry room also increases your risk for property. The more appliances you provide for tenants, the greater your risk for incurring damage. You might encounter such problems more with new renters who might not know how to operate the machine. Also, incorrect use of the washer-dryer could lead to other issues like broken water lines, clogged vents, and unbalanced load. Although you can increase your security deposit to cover any potential damage, it would still be a hassle to fix.
High Installation Cost
Installing a washer and dryer unit isn’t cheap, especially if you plan to place one in multiple units. Also, even if you plan to buy one for your building, you’ll need to invest in a heavy duty machine that can carry the load of multiple tenants.The upfront cost of these installations can be on the expensive side, and it can take a while for the machine to pay off itself.
Finally, adding a laundry room to your rental unit can be an avenue for dispute. A community washer-dryer might become a source of contention between tenants that want to use it. Even property owners of SFUs might have some trouble with their tenants if they don’t care for the machine properly.
Estimated Costs to Add a Washer/Dryer to Your Rental
The national average for installing a washer and dryer in your rental is $1,100. However, the range for such an installation is quite wide at around $750-$4000. The reason for such a wide gap is because washing machines vary according to several features. Some of the most common ways to distinguish these features include by capacity, configuration, finishing, and brand. Thus, you should consider all these characteristics before making your final choice.
At the beginning of the article, we asked the question, ‘can adding a laundry room increase your rental home’s value?’ Taking into consideration the average initial cost, and the potential ROI property owners stand to gain, we can definitively say yes. Additionally, an in-unit washer-dryer can also be a great source of extra income, provide more convenience for your tenants, and improve their safety. However, you have to weigh these benefits with drawbacks like extra maintenance needs and the risk of property damage. If you want help making and effecting tough landlord decisions, you should contact an expert property management company.