MVTResident is a realtor in the Capitol Hill office of Long & Foster who lives in the Mount Vernon Triangle and is experienced with transacting downtown DC real estate.
Many condo owners struggle with whether to rent or sell their unit when it is time to leave the area or simply move to a larger or different type of place. For many owners who bought in the 2005 to 2007 time period, the condo has simply not appreciated enough to merit selling. When pricing a condo for rent, I’ve always advised my clients that allowing pets can increase the monthly rent around $50 to $100 per month and parking can be worth $100 to $150 more in monthly rent than a comparable condo without a spot. But does the data support that?
Looking only at the 2012 multiple listing service data, Penn Quarter one-bedrooms have been renting at an average of $2396 per month with an average of 46 days on the market. Two bedroom units rented this year for an average of $3234 per month with an average of 45 days on the market and studios rented for an average of $1725 per month with the shortest number of average days on the market – only 24.
A little under half of those units allowed pets but the average price for those condos jumped up to an average of $2456 per month for a one-bedroom unit. The two-bedroom units rented for close to the same amount with or without a pet as did the studios.
The bottom line? Renting your condo can be a terrific strategy for holding onto your asset—your home—while waiting on the market to catch up to your investment, or waiting for a better price altogether. The flexibility to allow pets can not only increase your income but also, from what I’ve observed, shorten the time on the market. Pet owners tend to be stable tenants due to the difficulty in finding housing that accepts Fido. Finally, a parking space can also an yield a return long past your time as a resident, and well into your time as landlord.