No more lost or copied keys: Digital locks protect your investment property

A digital smart lock protects your investment. Photo: Courtesy
A digital smart lock protects your investment. Photo: Courtesy

Thank you to everyone for all your emails this past week requesting our easy checklist for furnishing and decorating a rental home in Mexico. Based on the interest in this topic, I am going to continue along this theme. You can check out the first two articles here and here.

One of the new ways to secure your home is with a digital or smart lock on your main doors.

Instead of a physical key to open the lock, you punch in a numerical code to its keypad. These are fantastic devices for rental properties. Physical keys tend to get lost, and copies can easily be made.

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Digital locks allow you to change the code for each renter, making your property more secure. Once you have used a digital lock, you will find it hard to go back to one with a physical key. Renters love digital locks because they do not have to carry and worry about a key.

Digital locks are available at most hardware stores. Always do a little online research to ensure you buy the most secure available.

One easy way to get additional revenue from your rental property is to increase the number of guests you can accommodate.

Owning a studio size or one-bedroom rental property does not mean you are limited to only two guests.  Murphy beds and comfortable sofa beds can double your rental capacity from two to four people.

In some cases, this means you could increase your rental rate per night.  It will also expose your listing to a broader pool of people since more renters search for two-bedroom units than one. The cost of adding a Murphy bed or a comfortable sofa bed is negligent in comparison to the increased rental revenue it will drive.

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Murphy beds are making a huge comeback. For our humid, oceanfront climate, make sure you invest in the best Murphy bed mechanism available. Avoid the cheap models that are prone to rust, without good warranties.

Rental properties with three or more bedrooms may not be fully booked for the season. We hate to see our clients lose rental revenue. Most renters look for two-bedroom properties, so these tend to book first.

To increase your occupancy rate, we recommend that about two months before the open rental weeks, once the chance of renting out your three bedroom property rented is unlikely, offer your property as a two bedroom. Install locks on the bedroom doors and lock off the additional bedrooms. Better some money than letting it sit empty.

Buying a rental property in Mexico? Email sa.novak@solutionsmexico.com for a free and handy checklist!

Sheryl Novak is an expat Canadian who has owned a home in Mexico for over 10 years. She is the owner of SOLutions Mexico — the online furniture store for your home in Mexico. She is considered the expert on sourcing all styles of furniture, for all sizes of budgets, in Mexico. Email the author at sa.novak@solutionsmexico.com for a free newsletter on how to get good value on furniture in Mexico.

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