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Investing in beauty on a budget.

I have recently read an article in an industry magazine relating to the issue of Freehold versus Leasehold.

In a Leasehold arrangement both parties can work together but the lines blur when it comes to renovating. Who pays for what? The unfortunate reality is that there is often no line drawn in the sand. Typically the owner is responsible for anything structural but is not required to ‘update’ anything that is not ‘broken’ or outdated. The preferred option is to find a ‘win/win’situation where both parties receive a benefit from the renovation.

A proactive leaseholder wants to renovate their rooms inventory to increase revenue however the exterior of the building is still tired and dated, detracting from the valuable work that is being carried on inside the property. Technically the owner is not required to do anything to the exterior of the building unless it is in disrepair. So what strategy is there for the leaseholder to address the exterior of the building?

One option for this ‘win/win’situation would be the leaseholder undertaking the renovation of the exterior at their cost in return for a freeze on rent or reduction of rent over time to the value of the renovation. What this achieves is the owner’s asset is improved and the leaseholder is not out of pocket in the long term and then has a vested interest in the property as well as an increased value of the lease at the end of the term.

Here are three ways to enhance the exterior of a building with minimal capital outlay that have maximum effect on passing trade.

1. Dramatic lighting. Up light key architectural and garden features to highlight your property at night.

2. Landscaping. Planting out existing areas or creating new garden beds will bring life to your façade. Its kerbside window dressing.

3. Signage. Exterior branding is the face of your property and needs to be clean, inviting and professional. Repaint, illuminate or upgrading your signage.

These options are cost effective, immediate and can be the difference between a guest staying with you or driving by.

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