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How to Make Your Rental’s Entryway More Accessible

Elderly Nampa Man Walking Up the Path to the Front DoorAs a Nampa rental property owner, the safety of your tenants is a top priority. From another point of view, you also need a property with extraordinary curb appeal. The most profitable investment properties combine the two by providing attractive, accessible entry areas. By ensuring that your tenants can come and go with ease, you can effectively reduce slips and falls on the property.

Yet, an accessible entryway isn’t just about safety. By having an accessible entry into your rental property, you can grow your potential renter demographic and attract seniors or renters with accessibility needs. In what follows, we’ll take a closer look at ways that you can make your property’s entryway both safer and more aesthetically pleasing.

Entry points to a house control access to the property. This is what makes them such an important aspect of preparing your home for tenants. Most single-family rental homes are not designed with easy accessibility in mind. This is especially true of older homes, which typically come with safety hazards like rail-less steps or slippery walkway materials. Newer homes may have the same difficulties, but improved building codes and a better understanding of universal design has greatly improved accessibility in certain ways.

No matter when your rental property was built, it is helpful to start by evaluating it from an accessibility standpoint. To get a detailed understanding of how accessible your rental home is, begin with a slow walk through entry areas, and look for potential issues. Walk from the edge of the property line up the driveway and front walkway. Test how smooth the walkway surfaces are and whether there are damaged areas that might trip someone or cause a wheelchair to get stuck. It’s a lot easier if you’ve got a friend to walk beside you.

You may be surprised at how narrow your front walkway is. Both damaged surfaces and narrow access points can make it difficult for some tenants to use them safely. The same is true for right-angle turns. Think about substituting sharp corners with curves instead. A gently curving pathway up to the front door will not only be more accessible, but it will add an attractive feature to the front of the house as well.

Another real trouble area for entryway accessibility is the front steps. Though typical, steps can make it very difficult for some tenants to come and go safely. This is particularly true if your rental property is in an area where ice and snow can be a problem. The best home designs have no steps into the house. But even though your property already has them, there are things you can do to make your entryway more accessible.

If your rental home doesn’t already have one, you can start by installing a sturdy handrail and good exterior lighting. Railings should extend at least one foot beyond the bottom of the stairs, and lights should be properly mounted for clear illumination of each step. Also, consider adding non-slip strips or material to the steps.

If your accessibility planning pushes you to invest some money into upgrading your front steps, think about using that same money to replace them entirely. Depending on how high the front doorstep is, it might be more cost-effective to build a ramp up to the main door. Some of the best entryway ramps don’t even look like ramps. To be more precise, they were designed so well that they look no different from a slightly raised cement walkway with a gentle upward slope. Like this, you can upgrade the curb appeal of your property while still adding a low-profile ramp that will effectively enhance the safety of the entry areas.

 

Are you looking for more ways to make your rental safer – and expand your renter demographic at the same time? Contact Real Property Management Nampa by reaching out online or give us a call at 208-859-1480.

We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.