Best Appliances for Rental Homes

Best Appliances for Rental Homes
  • Opening Intro -

    It probably doesn't surprise you to know that appliances can have a big impact on the value of a rental property.

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According to the 2017 American Renters Survey from Buildium, an in-unit washer and dryer set was the No. 1 amenity renters say they would pay a higher rent for, with nearly 60 percent of respondents saying they’d shell out extra for the convenience of in-rental laundry. What’s more, nearly half of respondents said they’d pay more rent to have a dishwasher in their rental.

What does this data tell us? The facts are clear: Appliances are worth the investment for savvy landlords and property investors. But not all home and kitchen appliances are created equal, as you know, and taking the time to select the right ones can take your unit from basic budget to luxuriously high-end.

Here are our best picks and tips for selecting rental home appliances.

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A Word of Advice on Choosing Options for Your Rental

  • Don’t Cheap Out –

    As tempting as it is, it’s not worth your while to go rock-bottom when choosing your rental’s appliances. For one thing, outdated, used, or plain-old cheap appliances will most likely cost you more in the long run when you account for repairs, replacement, and maintenance. What’s more, opting for higher-end appliances—or even ones that are a small step up from the baseline—can jazz up your kitchen and up your rent potential.

  • Don’t Skip the Warranty –

    One good rule of thumb when selecting things for your rental property is to assume that everything will get beaten up. Frankly, most renters just don’t care about their apartments or rental houses like they might if it was their own property, so double-down on the durability and the warranty. Only purchase appliances from trusted, authorized dealers and retailers that can provide you with comprehensive warranties.

  • Go ‘Scratch and Dent’ –

    Our best secret for maximizing rental value without maxing out your budget? Consider scratch and dent appliances. These units are the ones that have sustained minor damage—often, “damage” means just a hairline scratch or a tiny imperfection—and, therefore, need to be marked down from their full retail price. As far as buying top-tier appliances on the cheap goes, scratch and dent and overstock options rule. Just ensure that the seller and manufacturer warranties still apply.

  • Consider ‘Smart’ Options –

    According to the National Apartment Association, connected home features are a big priority among renters. In fact, 55 percent say they’d pay more for electronic locks, and 47 percent say they’d pay more for smartphone-enabled entertainment systems. The takeaway? It’s worthwhile to pay a bit extra for smart appliances to entice high-value renters. Large management companies may even want to consider selecting the same manufacturer and using connectivity to inventory and monitor appliances.

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Top 5 Rental-Friendly Appliances

Although there are literally thousands of appliance options out there that will tick all of your renter-friendly boxes, the following five are good examples of options to look for and tiers to focus on. We choose these five specifically because they are all quality-focused, feature-rich, and affordable.

  • Washer and Dryer:

    Whirlpool Cabrio Washer and Dryer – 

    Ringing up for around $1,300 for both units, this Whirlpool washer-dryer combo is priced right for landlords. Featuring a high-tech, top-load washer and an efficient, high-capacity dryer with intuitive touch controls, this combo offers a high-end, modern look and feel without the high-end price tag. If you prefer an all-in-one unit (great for smaller apartments, studios, and efficiencies), Whirlpool’s Stacked Laundry Center comes highly rated and rings up for under $1,000.

  • Refrigerator:

    GE Stainless Steel Top Freezer Refrigerator

    Fridges with the freezer-top configuration may be a bit less high-end than other options, but they’re still one of the best choices for landlords (especially those responsible for utilities) since they are currently the most efficient fridges available. But with this stylish and uber-functional GE model, you don’t trade in attractiveness for efficiency. It can be equipped with an optional ice maker, too, if you’d like to offer that luxury to your tenants.

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  • Dishwasher:

    Maytag Fingerprint-Resistant Stainless Steel Dishwasher

    Priced under $600, this good-looking Maytag dishwasher will pay for itself in just a few months, since you’ll be able to up the rent when you install it in your unit. This is a great option for rental houses and apartments because it brings that super-sleek, high-end feel at a great price point and offers many cool features, from a unique steam sanitize option to a high-tech, high-pressure spray wash.

  • Range

    GE Stainless Steel Gas Sealed Burner Range – 

    Our biggest piece of advice when selecting the range for your rental is this: go stainless steel. This simple, sleek finish gives kitchens a much higher-end feel than plain white appliances and will entice renters to pay more. A great option for any rental endeavor is this affordable burner range by GE. It’s ADA-compliant to serve a broader range of renters and features an attractive black and stainless look.

other valuable tips:
  • Microwave:

    Frigidaire Stainless Steel Over-the-Range Microwave – 

    A microwave is certainly nice to have in a rental unit, but it can also draw in more renters if you’re appealing to people who may not already have their own, such as recent college grads or renters who have come from out of the country. This attractive over-the-range microwave provides a stylish, built-in feel with an Effortless Clean interior, so it stays in good shape from one renter to the next.

When it comes to rental income, strategy is important at every level. As long as you spend a little bit of time comparing and contrasting appliances and focus on quality and longevity versus price, you’ll be well on your way to a self-sufficient, low-maintenance rental unit that earns you top dollar.

Image credit: Pixabay

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