What Alterations Can You Make To A Rental Property?

Tools and a model home on a laptop

Just because you live in a rental does not mean you shouldn't decorate it, fix it up and make it a home. Many people who can't afford to buy a house will opt for rentals instead, and if you are staying there long enough, there will be some changes you want to make to the place. However, there is a catch. In many cases, lease terms and rental contracts include stipulations that prohibit tenants from making changes or alterations to a rental property without the landlord's prior approval. Luckily, we have all the answers when you are asking yourself what alterations can you make to rental property. Let's see.

What alterations can you make to rental property - A guide

If the tenant just wants to make minor cosmetic or decorative changes to the property, they could be permitted to do so without previously obtaining clearance from the owner. Landlords frequently keep to a rigid scheme of neutral shades and basic home decor when exhibiting their rentals to have a wider appeal. This is not to say that the new tenants would not want adjustments. However, it is not a valid justification for tenants wishing to renovate their entire rental property. It is vital to remember that personal preferences are not universal, and any modifications may influence the choice of future tenants seeing the prospect.

While putting art on the walls is not a breach of contract, formal approval should be obtained if the renter intends to make changes to the floors, replace devices, change locks on the doors, or add security precautions. It's natural for a renter to feel that the improvements they're making would advantage the owner, but for the landlord, the property is an asset. To avoid unpleasantries next time your property manager conducts an inspection, there are some rules to follow.

Alterations clause

There are restrictions on the types of alterations tenants can make to a property. Those that want to take action will commonly require approval from the landlord. The rules vary according to the type of changes the tenant desires, as well as the type of rental and the duration of the lease.

A rental agreement.

The lease is the first thing to check when you want to make alterations to your rental property.

The lease's alterations clause will specify what the tenant has the right to change and under what conditions. A typical clause will outright restrict certain kinds of changes, such as restructuring or work that affects the exterior look of a building. It is also becoming more frequent for lease terms to preclude alterations that have a negative impact on the energy performance rating of the building.

Planning permits

In addition to getting your landlords' approval, there are additional steps to follow. Planning approval is not inherently mandated if you want to add features to the rental, such as alterations to the inside of the property or small adjustments to the outside. Also, no formal request is required if you wish to erect low walls or fences. However, you should carefully verify whether construction standards are in effect by calling your local authority's building inspection office.

When you intend to expand, alter, or modify the exterior aspect of the property, planning authorization is crucial. It is highly advisable to contact the local planning authorities at the concept phase to see if the project will require planning clearance. The majority of substantial construction projects must also adhere to building codes.

An illustration of four houses and a hand holding a magnifying glass.

Laws and regulations vary, so make sure to double-check everything.

If you want to build an enclosure for extra storage, it might be quicker and easier to rent storage space and save yourself the hassle. As long as you take care of your storage unit and keep it organized and clutter-free, it should be more than sufficient.

Alterations you can make to a rental property without pre-approval

You can make some changes right now without getting pre-approval. A landlord does not have to be consulted or authorized for every change made to a property. In addition, many new things are available to help make rentals seem more like home, and they include inexpensive upgrades. Some things to have in mind:

  • Temporary wallpaper and adhesive tiles allow you to be as creative as you like. You can also put temporary flooring on top of existing floors.

  • Improve ceramic areas with motifs that go over existing tiles.

  • Window coverings - for privacy or decor.

  • You can add flair to your walls with self-adhesive coat hooks and hangers.

  •  Replace your kitchen and bathroom fixtures - you can easily switch them back if required.

  • Changing lightbulbs may make a significant impact in a short amount of time.

  • Construct built-in bookshelves that you can bring with you when you move.

  • Replace your showerhead with a better one.

Almost everything that you can reverse at the conclusion of your tenancy should be fine. This includes things designed specifically for renters. It also includes elements such as knobs, lights, and curtains that may be replaced and later uninstalled, as well as decor items.

Negotiate with your landlord Once you leave your parents' home and move away for the first time, the real estate market and all the rules may seem very intimidating. But it is not as confusing as it looks if you follow some simple rules. As formerly mentioned, you must communicate with your landlord directly about the alterations you wish to complete. Typically, an agent cannot agree to renovations without first communicating with the owners.

A man and a woman shaking hands in an office.

You can successfully negotiate with your landlord if you have a developed plan and solid points.

When discussing alterations with your landlord, you can mention that you pay your rent on time and take care of your home to get some bonus points. Some landlords will consent to the alterations you wish to make if you commit to return everything to its original state when you depart.

If you have an excellent connection with your landlord, you might propose a rent decrease for a specified period, an extended fixed-term tenancy arrangement, or even the landlord covering a part of your expenses. Ensure to always have an agreement in writing before proceeding with the project.

Final thoughts

It is now high time to prep your property for winter, so the information here should come in handy! We hope this article has helped you with your 'what alterations can you make to rental property' dilemma. All you need is a good landlord and some patience and effort to make it feel like home. Good luck!






john Doe

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