Letting out your property for the first time can be an exciting yet daunting task.
There are many important factors to consider before putting your property on the market- from practical advice to legal responsibilities. As a landlord you need to ensure you understand your obligations and responsibilities, know how to protect your property and most importantly keep your tenants happy and deal appropriately with any issues that may arise.
We’ve gathered a few top tips to get you started!
Prepare your property;
You want your property to be in its best condition before letting it out to a tenant. Therefore, you should undertake any maintenance which needs to be done. Add a fresh lick of paint, make sure all repairs are done and if necessary make changes to anything that you feel needs updating for example new flooring- these will all make your property more attractive to prospective tenants. You should also decide whether you are going to let the property furnished or unfurnished, ideally offer both options so that the agent can market it to a wider audience.
As a landlord you need to be aware of your responsibilities and what is expected of you. You should be prepared to receive calls from your tenant at any point during the day or night, as some issues will need immediate attention such as if there is a gas leak or broken boilers. Unless you agree for your letting agent to manage the property, you will be accountable for all repairs and maintenance of the property when required.
Chose the right agent;
If you would like to make the process pain-free, select an agent that will manage your property and guide you on everything you need to know. A good agent will help you find suitable tenants and also ensure your property complies with any regulatory changes.
It is important that you get to know your market and your surrounding area. Research similar properties in your area and find out how much they are being let for per month- if your rent is set too high, prospective tenants will steer clear. Consider who your property would be suitable for; for example, young families, students or single professionals- your agent will be able to advise you on this.
When becoming a landlord, there are many regulations that you have to comply with. Your agent will be able to advise you on this, however here a few to mention- safety checks, right to rent checks, tenancy agreements and EPC’s (energy performance certificate).
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