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Improve your but-to-let buildings

Building and improvements:
 - Architecture and planning
 - Plumbing
 - Kitchens
 - Bathrooms
 - Electrics
 - Joinery
 - Furnishing
 - Rubbish and junk clearance
 - Cleaning
 - Miscellaneous tasks


Kitchen design has been discussed in more detail on the Interior design section. We have included kitchens again here in the interior design section as so often the kitchen falls somewhere between being new and ready for replacement. There are many ways to make vast improvements to slightly dated kitchens to extend the life of the kitchen and the time point at which that kitchen starts to detract from the property and stop maximum potential rent being achieved. It is usually only at this point that complete replacement is necessary. A few pointers to improve a kitchen might be:

Start with the practicalities. There must be an adequate sized fridge and freezer for the property. Washing machines are essential and dishwashers and microwaves are often sought after. Always look to differentiate from the competition. Combination oven/microwaves are becoming a real alternative to a main over where space is tight. However, incorporating more machines will need some plumbing and electrics so consider this when locating appliances. Adding machines may mean lost storage space and finding matching new kitchen cupboards may be impossible but a contrast may be fine (for example on an opposite wall). Buy2Let Expert can advise on individual situations as there are so many possibilities that keep the costs to a minimum while maintaining or increasing rental returns.

Sinks. Should be 'as new'. Commonly a badly worn or cheap tap needs replacement.

Silicon seals. All should be clean and undamaged. Replacement is not expensive but a neat job is best left to the professionals. There is nothing worse than a rough silicon join in a kitchen or bathroom.

Worktops. Should be undamaged. If a laminate, and badly damaged, an economical option may be to change the worktop for new while maintaining the rest of the kitchen. This is not a huge job and really gives a lift if existing worktops are demanded.

Splash backs. These are often tiled on an older kitchen. If the tiles are very dated consider replacing with new tiles and grout. This is a cheap option and is probably a must if the worktop is changed. Replacement of splashback tiles also allow for sockets to be added if required.

Cupboards. Badly worn cupboards can have their 'fronts only' replaced. This also allows for changing of handles. Buy2LetExpert has even had some success painting the doors of dark old kitchens but clearly there comes the point where the best option is to change the kitchen depending on costs versus returns, tax considerations and much more.

Extending the life of a kitchen so that it continues to contribute towards the maximum rental potential being achieved at that property makes good financial sense provided the investment yields returns of within three years. Once the payback is too long and/or the investment sum is too large then the only alternative is to replace the kitchen. See our kitchen design section for ideas regarding kitchen replacement.


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