With the high demand for property in the UK right now, the rental market is booming. However, competition is rife, which means you need to ensure your property stands out ahead of others.
As the old saying goes; ‘fail to prepare, prepare to fail!’ It’s essential that you prepare your property well whilst you are trying to find a tenant. If you’re looking for advice on how best to prepare, we’ve got you covered! In this article, we’ll cover some of the most important aspects regarding how to ensure your property appeals to potential tenants.
Present your property well
If you were having guests round, you’d be sure to make the place look nice right? It’s amazing how much of a lasting impression a well-presented property can leave on potential tenants. If people turn up for a viewing and have to look around a dark and dingy property, it’s not exactly going to get them itching to move in.
You don’t have to completely redecorate the house, but it’s worth doing a thorough clean and maybe giving certain rooms a fresh coat of paint if needs be. If any areas in particular need attention, it’s worth giving them a freshen up, as it will make it much more likely that the property is well received by potential tenants.
Don’t forget to pay attention to the garden as well (if your property has one), as this could be the first area people will see, so it’s important that it sets a good first impression and enhances the property’s kerb appeal.
Decide on whether you will let it furnished or unfurnished
This is a choice that all landlords must make. Do you want to furnish the property or leave it unfurnished? There are pros and cons to both options, so you need to decide what suits you the most.
Most renters will likely be looking for furnished properties, however, longer term renters may already have their own furniture which they want to bring with them, and an unfurnished property may appeal more to those types of tenants.
You can also part-furnish the property, by including some of the major furnishings but not others. You’ll need to consider what is going to work best for you as a landlord, and then list your property as such.
Insurance and income protection
It’s always better to have precautions in place if difficult situations arise. You’ll more than likely have buildings and contents insurance as a precondition to your mortgage, but these insurance policies may need altering once you start having tenants in your property.
Getting income protection or a rent guarantee policy will help give you peace of mind, as you’ll be covered should your tenants be unable to pay their rent. The rent guarantee policy is optional; however, circumstances can change quickly, and if your tenant finds themselves struggling to be able to pay rent, having this policy in place can be reassuring that you will still receive your monthly income.
Protect what you have
It’s important for you to try and protect all your assets and belongings in the property as best as possible. Taking out insurance that covers damage to possessions is essential, but you’ll also want to give clear instructions in the tenancy agreement about damages and penalties that will apply.
You should conduct a thorough inventory check which lists all objects, furniture, possessions, and fixtures within the property. You should also state that tenants may be charged the full amount for replacing anything damaged or broken. Sharing this with tenants before they move in will ensure they are aware of the consequences should they damage anything listed in the inventory.
Adhere to safety regulations
As a landlord, there are certain safety regulations you must follow to remain compliant. These regulations include the following:
- Ensure all electricals meet the Electrical Equipment Regulations
- Have carbon monoxide monitors and smoke alarms fitted and tested
- You must supply your tenant with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)
- Ensure all furniture and furnishing meet current regulation standards.
- Have an official annual gas safety check.
Choose the right letting agent
You’ll want to consider everything carefully before deciding which letting agent to go with. Location, cost, the services offered, and how they handle repairs and maintenance will all likely be big factors in the decision.
You’ll also want to be sure you pick a reputable company that have a good reputation. Here are Pat Robson & Co. we have been successfully managing properties for landlords in the North East for decades, so get in touch today if you are looking to a letting agent that you can trust.