We’re sorry, we’re currently not taking on new customers due to limited availability.

Property maintenance involves a ton of work. But it’s crucial in order to keep the property looking attractive. One way to ensure the property is attractive to tenants is to paint the rental unit prior to them moving in.
Majority of landlords choose neutral colors, such as white or gray. The reason behind this is that neutral colors help balance the space. They bring a warm feeling combined with a modern touch.
However, some tenants may want something different. For instance, some may want an accent wall in a beautiful color, while others may want to add some color to their living space.
So, what should you do when a tenant wants to paint? What are their rights? Should you allow them to paint or should you not?
In this article, we share with you the pros of cons of allowing your tenants to paint.

Pros of Allowing Your Tenants to Paint

There are many reasons that may make your tenant want to paint their rental. For example, they may just want to put in an accent color wall in the main living room or just want to liven up a children’s bedroom.

  • You’ll have happy tenants.

A good landlord-tenant relationship is good for the business. Tenants are the ones who provide you with business and keeping them happy should be a top priority. When they are satisfied, they tend to stick around for much longer.
Giving your tenants the freedom to create a space of their own makes most tenants very happy.

  • You may attract quality tenants.

Not many landlords allow their tenants to paint their rentals. So, if you allow it, you may attract quality tenants who may find your property highly desirable. You may even provide paint brands as well as a palette of approved colors that a tenant can choose from.

  • It may serve as an incentive to good tenants.

Finding good tenants isn’t an easy walk in the park. Thus, if you have a few good tenants, consider giving them an incentive to stay longer. Such an incentive may include allowing them to paint their rental units.
In turn, this may not only mean low turnover costs for you but may also save you the hassle involved in screening new tenants.

  • Tenants may feel more at home.

By allowing tenants to paint, they may have a greater feeling of ownership about the place and treat the rental as more of a home.

  • You may be able to ask for a higher rent.

As a landlord, your aim is to generate the best ROI possible while minimizing vacancy periods. Allowing your tenants to personalize their space may enable you to achieve this. In the end, this will be a win-win for both you and your tenant.

Cons of Allowing Your Tenants to Paint

Sure, allowing your tenants to paint has its benefits. However, without due diligence, it may turn out to be a disadvantage to you.

  • It may mean more work for you when the lease term ends.

When the tenant moves out, you may be left with more work. This is basically because new color must be primed first, then painted over to match the original neutral paint once more.

  • Your tenants may not have the care and experience required.

Painting isn’t as easy as it seems. It requires some care and experience to do a professional-looking job.
Problems like paint on outlet covers and trim, roller bumps on the ceiling and accidental paint spills can worsen things in a rental.
Fortunately, these pitfalls are manageable. You just need to have a lot of rules in place to protect yourself and your property.

  • Insist that the work must be of top quality. A bad paint job will be time-consuming to rectify. Also, remember to ask for a deposit beforehand.
  • Only give this option to long-term tenants. It may not be worthwhile to offer it to tenants on month-to-month leases.
  • Make sure you do a move-in inspection before a new tenant moves in. This will help document any changes when the eventually move out.
  • Put everything in writing. This is critical, especially if you have agreed on a certain color or paint type.
  • Agree on the type of paint color. Also, ask them to paint back to the original color before they move out. And make it clear that they risk forfeiting their deposit should they fail to do this.
  • Specify the areas that they can paint. Renters can sometimes get ambitious with their painting. For example, you could state that they are only allowed to paint the drywall only.
  • Agree who is going to pay for it. Ask yourself these two questions. Does the approved color match your style? Would the property benefit from a paint job? If you answered ‘yes’ to both of these questions, consider splitting the cost with the tenant.

Of course, long-term, happy tenants are every landlord’s dream, so retaining yours should always be a top priority. If you allow your tenants to paint, just make sure that you have good rules in place.

Want more helpful tips? Check out this complete guide to painting your home.