Should I Allow My Tenants To Paint My Rental Property?

Pros and Cons of Letting a Tenant Paint your Property

July 29, 2020

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It’s natural to decorate the area you inhabit. In your office, there are certain items that will let others know you occupy a certain desk/ cubicle or room. In your home, you add personal touches that express your personality. This can be represented by the books on your bookshelf, framed pictures on your walls and other specific furnishings.

It only makes sense that the longer a tenant stays in a unit, the more they will want to create a sense of home by personalizing the paint colours.

Allowing a tenant to paint a rental property has its pros and cons. This article by Innovative Property Solutions will outline some of the advantages and disadvantages of both options. The decision ultimately rests on you as the landlord if you want to maximize the benefits or if you'd rather avoid the hassle.

Pros of letting a tenant paint your rental

tenant painting rental

1. Reason to stay longer

Imagine yourself as your tenant. If your landlord gave you the freedom to paint the walls whatever color you like most, it would make you more satisfied with the home and more likely to stick around and rent for longer.

Not all property owners are permissive, and finding one with fewer and fairer restrictions motivates tenants to rent longer. This is also beneficial to you as the landlord, as it helps you maintain a regular monthly income. Loyal renters equate to predictable and reliable returns.

2. Sense of home

For a tenant, being permitted to use their favorite shades on the walls has a great impact on their wellbeing. It establishes a sense of home and makes them look forward to staying in the space. People are diverse; tenants who are are highly sensitive, expressive and individualistic prefer to have the option of painting their own colors in a unit.

3. Satisfied tenants

One easy way to make a tenant happy is by giving them control over their home's decor. This can mean being permitted to paint the space in whatever colors they want.

As a landlord, you should know that your tenant will appreciate something even as small as allowing them to paint. It's a sign that you care about their comfort in your unit and it's an extension of freedom.

colors for painting rental property


Cons of letting a tenant paint your rental

1. Risk of expenses

A painting project means someone is going to shoulder the labor and material charges. If a rental property has a neutral paint, it could mean wasting money since a portion of financial resources has already been allotted to the painting portion.

The money that will be appropriated to painting could also be better used to fund future repairs and property maintenance.

2. Can be labor-intensive

If a tenant will only be spending a short period in a rental space, such as less than a year, then it’s not worth the effort for you as a property owner to paint and repaint the property.

When a tenant leaves, you'll want to return the paint to a neutral hue for the next tenant, which is time-consuming. There are plenty of property maintenance tasks and inspections you already must do, and adding this task can be a hassle.

3. The paint job can be sub-par

If a tenant opts to do the painting project on their own, then the result might not be to your liking. In fact, it could downgrade the attractiveness of the property.

Worse, the DIY job can prove to be so sloppy that you'll need to hire a professional to clean up the mess. This will translate into more expenses and effort on your part.

allowing tenant to paint

Conditional Agreement

Another alternative to choosing absolute permission or absolute denial in terms of repainting the rental property is a conditional agreement. You can accept your tenant’s request with certain provisions. You can decide on the following:

  1. Who pays for the labor and paint materials.
  2. When a painting session must be completed.
  3. Which areas are allowed for repainting and which rooms are off-limits.
  4. What colors are permitted to be used, and what paint brand to maintain the quality.
  5. Whether or not the property needs to be reverted back to its original paint when the tenant leaves.

All these conditions must be properly stated in the written lease to avoid any confusion and arising conflict. Any alterations on the property must be outlined.

Why an Inventory is Useful

Documentation is essential so when a tenant leaves your property, you have a comparative basis for the condition of the rental property prior to the move-in. This helps you in calculating the security deposit deductions and will be a solid proof to present to the tenant.

Conflicts can be minimized with an inventory. You’ll also have a documented state of the property, making it easier for you to revert the space back to its original condition when the renter ends the tenancy.

Why a Clear Written Lease is Practical

As a solid court document, a lease is a powerful agreement that will protect you from legal action by a tenant. It’s therefore essential to create one that is specific and clearly outlines the clauses. If you permit a tenant to repaint the property, the conditions must be thoroughly stated in the lease.

Bottom Line

Simply giving permission to repaint a rental unit carries several consequences. It’s best to think and weigh the pros and cons of this request. If you choose to give a conditional agreement, it’s best to communicate specific freedoms and restrictions.

Being transparent, adaptable and practical will go a long way to succeeding in the rental property business.

Innovative Property Solutions

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(904) 321-9020

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