Choosing the best flooring options for a rental property can be a difficult decision. Do you spend more on a premium carpet that promises longevity and easy maintenance or do you choose something cheaper, knowing you may have to replace it sooner?
There are pros and cons to each option. If you are installing new carpets between tenants, due to wear and tear or other damage that has occurred as a result of leasing, then you are undertaking repairs to the property. Expenditure for repairs you make to the property are tax deductible.
Installing new carpets in your rental property, regardless of cost, are classified as a depreciating asset for taxation purposes. However, considering your options when it comes to new carpet in your rental property extends beyond the tax implications. So, let’s get into it!
Firstly the expensive option
Investing in a premium carpet may be the best option if the resultant rental income will be higher due to the overall improvements to the property. If the other features of the property are in excellent condition and the flooring is the only thing holding your property back from reaching a higher rental return, then it makes sense to invest in a premium carpet.
With this option, you would anticipate the new carpets provide a slightly higher rental return and may result in tenants who will look after your property as if it were their own. Offering a rental property with new inclusions could also help lock in the right tenant.
If you intend to have long-term tenants in your property, and you have a trusted property manager who is diligent and undertakes regular site inspections, then investing in a premium carpet may be the right choice for you.
The investment, however, will only be a wise decision if the carpet provides longevity and stain-resistance. You will need to ensure your tenants look after the carpet with a professional cleaning schedule. Otherwise, you might find you are spending a lot of money upfront for something that just doesn’t stack up.
The Cheaper Alternative
If your rental property is in dire need of new flooring and your budget is tight, then a cheaper alternative may be the best solution. You still benefit from the tax-deductible depreciating asset schedule, regardless of the amount you choose to spend. The deductions will be lower, that’s all.
Should other areas of the property require maintenance, and your budget is stretched, making the tough choice to prioritise repairs and going with a cheaper carpet option would be a wise choice. Cheaper alternatives still need to tick the boxes when it comes to ease of maintenance, being hardwearing and, if possible, stain resistant.
Again, your property manager should be on the job, regularly performing site inspections to make sure your tenants are looking after your investment.
Particular Clauses in the Tenancy Agreement – Professional Carpet Cleaning
If you decide to install new carpets in your rental property, then protecting this investment is a must. While no specific laws address professional carpet cleaning requirements at the end of a tenancy, including a particular term on the lease can be a good safeguard.
If you are permitting your tenants to keep pets within the property, this clause makes even more sense.
So regardless of the decision, installing new carpet in your rental property will provide tax deductions for depreciating assets. The trick is to ensure your choice takes into account any resultant rental income improvements, the carpet’s care and maintenance requirements and your choice of both tenants and property management. Additional clauses in the tenancy agreement relating to professional cleaning – either at the conclusion of the lease or 12-month intervals will also safeguard your investment.