In Australia’s private rental market, the number of renters aged above the age of 60 has seen a dramatic increase from 235,000 in 2006 to 336,000 in 2011 and will continue to rise. As more senior tenants search the rental market, often their search can be limited by accessibility and the lack of necessary plumbing modifications offered in the typical rental property.
Mature renters possess many desirable characteristics that make them the ideal tenants. This group are often well established financially, quiet and often take pride in maintaing your property.
To make your rental property attractive to this growing demographic, a small reward reaps requires a small investment for a large reward. Properties with modifications for seniors are proven to have higher demand and value. Futhermore, a lot of these modifications are a simple way to add a lot of benefit for both you and your tennants.
Cost-effective customisations that upgrade a property’s accessibility and safety can be integrated into many existing rooms. Therefore, by adapting bathrooms, restrooms and kitchens, you can gain a competitive edge whilst impacting your properties style minimalistically.
Small modifications that can be easily integrated into your rental property include:
Thermostatic Mixing Valves (TMV)
TMV’s are installed in both bathrooms and kitchens to regulate the temperature of water in the home. Mixing valves are what provide you with both hot and cold water, and a TMV allows you to have a pre-set temperature. This modification allows you to prevent injury from scalding or burning. Whilst it is a good way to prevent injury, it is also a great selling point for tenants – both seniors and families.
Simple and inexpensive to install, hand rails are a simple method to future proof your residential property. Thus, hand rails in showers, and around bathtubs are highly sought after to provide safety and accessibility. However, you need to have these installed by a professional.
Handheld Shower Heads with Long Hoses
To tap into the senior rental market, a handheld shower head with a long hose is a must. These can be installed extremely easily and usually attach to an existing shower holder. This subtle modification will not put off the younger renter and are a huge benefit and selling feature for older people.
The convenience of a smooth transition between the entry and exit of a shower is a valuable modification to your rental property. While a large proportion of properties are equipped with walk-in-showers, if yours does not have one, there are alternatives! If you implement alternative means, seniors can still have full and safe accessibility. These alternate modifications include:
- removing intrusive shower screens,
- adding a shower seat or,
- supplying adhesive grip mats or an anti-slip tile surface for tenants.
If you are building a walk-in shower from scratch, you need to choose your tiles carefully! Using non-slip tiles are a good choice no matter what age your tenant plus and the mat look is currently very much on trend.
Modify the Toilet
If you are installing a brand-new bathroom suite you should consider installing a taller model of toilet. Whilst you may not have considered them, they are a cost effective modification. Many seniors appreciate the improved functionality such a fixture provides them. Additionally, it is hard to tell the difference between them, so most people won’t even notice the difference!
Another great option are hand rails for the shower and toilet. Gone are the days of ugly bulky handrails; there are many different styles you can use to suite your space. In addition, many of them have dual purpose like towel rails and toilet roll holders. Therefore, it is important to be open to small adaptions like these to open up possibiltiies for your tenant!
With our ageing population and the rise of senior and elderly renters in Australia, adaptable accessibility within rental properties are going to become standard. So it is important you consider making these adaptations now, whilst you can still gain competitive advantage from them. This can be achieved by implementing minimal bathroom and kitchen modifications in your property. These modifications allow you to create safe and stylish dwellings that allow you to capture this growing demographic.
When it comes to installing showers, mixer taps, toilets and for all plumbing related issues, RTL Plumbing are the experts. So call us on 1300 000 RTL (785) or fill in our contact form HERE and one of our friendly and experienced team will call you back at a time that suits you.