Many landlords will encounter the same problems and hurdles as they embark on the journey of letting out their first property. If you’ve ‘accidentally’ acquired a property which you want to let out, or have recently bought into the buy-to-let market, you’ll benefit from taking into consideration the following five tips.
Tip 1: Research and research
Researching the rental market is all-important. You should look at what’s happening in the local rental market and across the UK as a whole. You will need to understand the local market in order to set the rent price correctly. In fact, you’ll want to know the rental rates and property prices of the area before you even invest in a buy-to-let property, as you’ll need to know what sort of investment will be worthwhile financially. A lot of research is required before you even buy a property to let.
Tip 2: Put your business hat on
Letting out a property is effectively like running a business. As with running a business, you’ll need to make sure your finances are in order at all times, and you’ll need to make sure you’re adhering to the latest rules and regulations which concern you – or your property. You’ll want to avoid any legal problems or liability claims, so it’s important to make sure you’re fully protected (for example, make sure you have Landlords Insurance). Running the business effectively is also about making sure the property is safe to live in. For example, you’ll need to make sure the property is maintained properly, and if anything goes wrong (such as the boiler breaking down), you should act to remedy the situation straightaway.
Tip 3: Know your legal obligations
Make sure you understand your rights as a landlord and the rights of a tenant. From making sure the property is safe (gas safety, electrical checks etc) to making sure you have a valid EPC and paying the right amount of tax, you’ll need to make sure you know exactly what your obligations are.
Tip 4: Select tenants with care
From credit and background checks to drawing up a full rental application, you’ll need to be selective when it comes to choosing who will live in your property. What you want is tenants who will pay the rent on time, and tenants who will take good care of your property. This makes the screening process crucial. Make sure you also have a written rental agreement.
Tip 5: Join forces with a local letting agent
You may not be averse to the idea of being a landlord, but the role can consume a lot of your time. Unless you want to be on call 24/7 in the event of a something going wrong at the property, then you might want to consider taking on a local, reputable letting agent. A letting agent can help you manage and maintain the property, giving you the freedom to live your life without worrying about the property or your tenants. A letting agent is there to give you peace of mind.
Are you a new landlord? We offer a rent guarantee scheme, which will provide you with a steady rental income for up to five years. We’ll also help you to maximise your return on investment. If peace of mind is important to you, then get in touch with us today.