As an investment property owner, springtime can be a big money-making season as many leases turnover and you market your building to new prospective renters. While we all often think of the interior as the big sell—because it is—the exterior of your investment property is important, too. As a property management company in Chicago, Lofty is committed to giving the best advice to investors and landlords about how they can find the best tenants and make the most money on their properties, and finding the best ways to improve building interiors as well as exterior spaces is one of our specialties. Inexpensive landscape updates and maintenance tips that can increase the curb appeal of your property is something we’re very familiar with. In Chicago, people relish winter’s end and look forward to seeing green grass, blooming flowers, and lush shrubbery lining the streets. Here are some great ways you can increase the appeal of your properties without breaking the bank.
Clean Out Gutters, Wash Windows, and Power Wash the Exterior
Cleaning is the first step you can take toward making any space look better. First, clean out the gutters and remove built up leaves and other debris from the cold seasons.
Next, clean the windows—this can instantly give the facade a lift, making things look brighter and better in just minutes.
Finally, cleaning off the exterior of the building will make a huge improvement in the way the building looks. Renting a power washer is relatively inexpensive, and if you’ve got siding or sidewalks that look a bit worse for the wear, pressure washing is a quick job that can help remove built-up grime on the exteriors, which will make your property look sparkling new.
Aerate and Re-Seed the Lawns
The lawns (both front and backyards) should be tended to at the turn of the seasons, also. Aerate and re-seed them for optimal growth, and be sure to work with lawn maintenance companies or your Chicago property management company to set up a schedule to ensure they keep looking their best all year. This is especially important if you lay down any sod, as it will need regular maintenance to avoid withering away. Having a bright green lawn and a clean building exterior are a quick and easy project, and they make a huge impact toward how your property looks.
Clear Away Dead Plants
You don’t want your building to have dead, dried out old plants sitting out front. This is a another quick fix that helps project the concept that an attentive building owner is taking care of the place.
Clear away all of the plants that are dead from the winter, pluck the dead roots out of the planters if they’re not perennials (and possibly even if they are—creating a low maintenance landscaping plan that doesn’t require you to constantly replant might be a better option). Your property management company can give you a hand with this, too—maybe you live far away and don’t have the time to do it, or you simply have too many other projects on your plate at the moment. Whatever the case may be, your propert managers can take care of it, utilizing skilled landscapers that can transform even the deadest, most gnarled garden into a beautiful work of art.
Replace Grass with Mulch in Walkways
If you’re looking for a way to lower the amount of upkeep required at your properties, replacing plants and grass on walkways with mulch can be a good idea. You’ll need to first dig out the space for the pathway several inches. Then, install plastic edging as barriers so that the mulch stays within its intended space—leave the edging a half inch above the ground. Next, lay down three or four inches of crushed rock or stones, as this will encourage drainage when the mulch gets wet. Finally, lay down the mulch of your choosing, and to help compress it into place, spray it lightly with water and tamp it down. Voila—a mulch pathway that requires almost no maintenance like a grass one would.
Instead of Expensive Flowers and Trees, Plant Low-Maintenance Shrubs
While flowers look bright and lively, the hard truth is that they just die too quickly. In addition, they’re expensive to buy, plant, and maintain, and the end result is often starting over from scratch the following year. We know most people don’t have time for that. In a similar vein, planting trees may seem like a great idea, but trees are an expensive investment, particularly if you have several properties to upkeep. Additionally, there’s no guarantee that the trees will root and thrive where you plant them, and if they don’t, you’re back to square one. Instead of flowers or trees, we often suggest property owners in Chicago plant low-maintenance shrubbery outside their buildings. Not only does shrubbery look great, but it’s very low maintenance and is known to withstand a lot of harsh weather. Plants like arbor vitae are great for Chicago properties, and landscapers will have other great tips for which plants and shrubs will stand up to the unpredictable Midwest weather.
Need Help Getting Ready for Spring?
When you need help preparing your properties for the upcoming season, we can help. Here at Lofty, we strive to offer investment property owners the help and guidance they need to see the most return on their investments. You already know about what you need to do during wintertime at your property, but as far as springtime upkeep, we’re proud to be working with the best landscapers, gutter cleaners, and more, and we’ll take care of all the details so that you can get back to doing things you want to do. As a property management company in Chicago, our goal is to take the stress and busy-work off your plate from investment properties so that you can live the life you deserve. If you’re ready to learn more about how we can help you enjoy your investments more, call us today.
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