With the rental market being in such a strong position, it is only natural that more people are considering becoming landlords, particularly those with second homes that they rarely use or people who are looking for investment opportunities that can pay long-term dividends, if executed correctly.
However, being a landlord is no easy task and there are a number of things that you will need to keep in mind to ensure that you stand the best possible chance of making good returns and keeping your tenants happy.
The area where your property will be located is often going to be crucial to its success. This means that you need to put in some prior research, ideally with the help of a good real estate agent, to find out what the demand looks like and what you can consider charging for rent in the area where you are looking to purchase your property. Naturally, making mistakes in these early stages could lead to you struggling to find tenants for the home.
Know The Law
Property law is fairly fluid in that changes are made quite regularly. This means that you need to consult with professionals before purchasing your property, so that you can find out what needs to be done to bring it up to code, and afterwards, such as when drafting tenancy agreements or just to stay current on the latest legal events. Hire a property solicitor with experience in the area, as this will also allow you to make use of their connections.
Screen Tenants Well
While it can be tempting to allow the first tenants that come along rent the property, it is always a good idea to have a screening procedure put in place that offers you the chance to find out more about the potential tenant’s work history, credit rating and any dealings that they have had with other landlords. Ideally, you will want to bring in tenants that are there for the long haul, as this will mean you get a steady flow of income, so make sure that you ask the right questions and take time to ether meet the tenant or have a letting agency do so with an understanding of your requirements.
Work On The Maintenance
As a landlord you will have a duty to your tenants to keep your properties in the best possible condition, so you should not neglect any maintenance issues that the property has. This is especially crucial as, in some cases, poor maintenance may actually result in you dealing with legal issues. Inspect the property fully and invest into it before you put it on the market. You should also inspect it after tenants leave, so that you can create an inventory of the property ready for your next tenants. Of course, it should also go without saying that you need to stay on top of maintenance issues raised by your tenants while they are in the property.
If you are considering becoming a landlord and don’t know where to start, the team at Hills Estate is more than happy to help. We are a letting agency offering property management services in London that should prove useful to all potential landlords.