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The rental market can be very competitive, especially in the growing Charleston area where new apartment buildings are popping up like weeds. That’s why it’s so important to make sure that your property is ready to rent. Showing off your property will be a key factor in getting it rented – if it doesn’t show well, it won’t get rented as easily.

People will typically look past the imperfections of a property to see the full potential. However, it will make it easier to see what they are getting when the property is already well taken care of.

Here are 5 ways to make sure your property is ready to be shown off to potential renters.


1. Make Sure your Rental Property is as Clean as Possible


It might not make sense since no one is currently living there but cleaning your rental property regularly is essential to getting it rented.


A clean rental property is a happy rental property. Having your property professionally cleaned before showings start will help leave a positive impression on any prospective tenants. It’s best to make sure the entire unit is clean but some areas require more attention than others.

Some areas that might need special attention include:

  • Bathrooms – It’s common knowledge to make sure your bathrooms are clean. However, you might want to look into deep cleaning them if you find any mildew or rust stains. 
  • Carpets – If the carpet isn’t worth saving then it would be best to replace it. However, if it still have some life left in it, getting it professionally cleaned and even shampooed can help. 
  • Windows and screens – This is especially important if you’re property has a view that you want to show off. Nobody wants to look in between dead bugs and dust to see the duck pond.
  • Mold prone areas – This is prevalent to any humid or moisture prone areas like cabinets, dark corners of the laundry room, bathroom tiles and fixtures, and closets.

Having trouble getting rid of mold? Check out this article from Angie to learn about what to do and not to do when cleaning mold. 

Don’t Forget About the Smell of your Rental Property

Welcoming your guests and potential tenants with a fresh, clean smell will help set you up for success. A stale smell or pet odor might turn potential renters away. Air fresheners and candles can help with this but make sure the scent isn’t too strong. Changing the air filters can also improve the smell and air quality of your property.

Spraying for bugs is another important cleaning tip. Having a bug problem might not have to do with the cleanliness of your property but it could come across that way to a prospective tenant. Nothing kills the renting vibe more than a Palmetto bug running across the kitchen floor.


2. Double Check Everything Before Renting


Even if you’re sure that everything in your rental property is perfect, it’s best to double check to make sure it’s ready to rent. Safety related issues are the most important things on the check list. You don’t want anyone getting hurt during showings or even when tenants move in. These things include making sure smoke detectors are functioning and have charged batteries. It’s also important to check on the railings a stair for any weak spots or wobbling.

Make sure the air conditioning works and is properly cooling the unit.  Showing a stuffy, humid property can hurt your chances of renting it. This goes for light bulbs, too. No one wants to view a potential rental home in the dark.

You’ll want to be extra thorough if your property has been sitting vacant for a while. People might be suspicious if a property looks vacant even if it’s for innocent reasons like the end of a leasing period.


3. Make any Repairs Before you Show the Rental Property


Making repairs

A little care here and there can add so much to your property.


If you are aware of any damages or scuffs that you’re planning to fix, it’s best to make sure it’s taken care of before showings start. Prospective tenants want to know that the home they are renting isn’t damaged and they might be skeptical if they find any damages.

Make sure that all appliances like the oven, refrigerator, washer, and dryer are all functioning properly. If a potential tenant finds multiple things that need to be repaired, they might think that it won’t be repaired in time for them to move in. You’ll also want to make any repairs to fences. If an interested renter has pets, they don’t want the possibility of them escaping through a damaged fence.

Additionally, it’s best to fill in any holes in the walls even if you haven’t painted yet. It leaves a better impression on interested renters to know that damages are in the process of being repaired rather than wondering if it’ll be fixed at all.

Property management companies, like, will typically coordinate any repairs for you. Learn more about what we offer here!


4. Pay Attention to the Curb Appeal of the Property


Curb appeal

Don’t forget to sweep off the front porch every now and then.


You’ve probably heard it before, first impressions mean everything. This saying goes for rental properties, too. There are easy things you can do that can boost the curb appeal of your rental property.

Making sure the lawn is taken care of is one of the easiest things to do when improving your exterior. This includes cutting the grass, weeding the flower beds, and giving everything plenty of water. This is especially important if you are including landscaping in the rent. You’ll also want to make sure that there aren’t any bushes covering windows. Don’t forget to sweep of the porch from time to time and evict any spiders hanging out in the doorway – the worst tenants of all.

If you’re willing to put some money into it, repainting the front door is a quick way to rejuvenate the look of your rental property. You might even want to look into replacing the front with something unique and interesting.

Visibility of the street number of the property is something that’s easy to forget about but is very important. Make sure the numbers are clearly visible so prospective tenants can easily locate your property. 

To top it all off, planting some plants and flowers and even putting a welcome mat down – looks nice and will help keep your floors clean – can make your rental property feel like a home.

5. Add a Few Things Here or There


Staging a rental property

Make sure the listing states that the property is unfurnished.


Putting some money into your rental property can greatly help you get money out of it. This could involve repainting brightly colored walls a neutral color. Chances are, a prospective tenant won’t have furniture that will match bright colors like pink and red. Having all of the walls be neutral colors will make it easier for tenants to coordinate their own belongings with the space. If the walls are looking rough, touch them up with a fresh coat of paint. This is a great highlight for marketing purposes, as well.

If your rental property is unfurnished, you might want to look into staging. This idea is where you set up furniture and knick knacks in the property but don’t plan on leaving it there once it’s rented. Doing this helps show prospective tenants what they can do with a space. This is especially beneficial if your property has small or unusually shaped rooms.  Another advantage of staging is that it will help show how large a space is in photos.

Learn more about staging your rental properties here!

If you’re willing to put in a larger amount of money, you might want to consider restoring old, hardwood flooring. This might not be necessary – especially if your property doesn’t have hardwood floors – but fixing up old flooring can help rejuvenate a room. This would be more expensive but it could greatly increase the value of the property. 



Accomplishing these goals might get tricky if you already have a current tenant whose lease is about to end living in your property. However, having all of these tips in mind can make the transition between tenants go smoothly and get your property ready to rent.