In order to maximise the rental value of your property, and minimise potential problems at the end of tenancies, our advice is as follows -
Decoration & carpeting - if you are redecorating or re-carpeting, keep colours neutral and light, so tenants can co-ordinate their own furnishings, and touch-up paintwork if they need to before they leave;
Kitchens & bathrooms - if you are going to invest in a property long term, good quality modern fittings tend to be more robust and last longer. Showers in bathrooms are always preferable, but adequate water protection around showers is paramount.
Cleanliness - if your property is 'professionally clean' or 'clean to a professional standard' at the beginning of a tenancy, you can specify it is left that way when a tenant leaves;
Appliances - if you are letting your property unfurnished, you may leave appliances if they are in good working order, but would be expected to maintain them during the tenancy and have them PAT tested each year;
Gardens - though some tenants are keen gardeners, others have little gardening experience so, in most cases low-maintenance gardens are preferable.
New Tenant pack - prior to letting your property it is advisable to put together a folder containing user instructions for appliances and any other useful information specific to your property e.g. when refuse is collected, details of the local window cleaner, location of stop tap, who the neighbours are, etc. The folder should then be detailed within the inventory so it can remain in the property through each tenancy.