First Time Landlord Guide

Demand for rental property in Belfast has never been so high making it the perfect time to become a first-time landlord with Belvoir Belfast. Whether you’re looking to rent rather than sell your property, or just looking for a property to invest in, in this guide we break down the key considerations for anyone considering becoming a soon-to-be-first-time landlord in Belfast.

Costs Vs Return

There are two potential income streams when letting a property. Firstly, there’s rental price and then following that comes from investment capital growth when the property value increases. However, there are also several fees associated with buying a property such as valuations, property surveys, legislation costs, estate agent advice and services as well as mortgage arrangement fees. As the property market has its ups and down you must be careful that your outgoings don’t exceed the anticipated rental yield otherwise you won’t make a profit.

landlord guide

Calculating Rental Yield

Rental yield is how much profit you make from your property in a year, as a percentage of its value.

To calculate rental yield, you’ll need to take your annual rental income from tenants and divide it by the value of the property.

For example: if you receive £12,000 a year in rent on a property worth £200,000, divide 12,000 by 200,000 and multiply the result by 100 to get the percentage. In this example, your yield will be 6%.

Tax On Buy-To-Let Properties

Be aware you may need to pay income tax on the profit you earn from letting out your property in Belfast. The profit is classed as what you have left from your rental income after deducting ‘allowable expenses’. These allowable expenses include letting agent fees, landlord insurance, maintenance, and repair costs.

Preparing Your Rental

There are several different ways you can furnish your property to bring in additional benefits. For example, if you are looking to achieve a quick rental then supplying white goods is always a great incentive. If you’re hoping to attract working professionals then consider furnishing the property to a high standard as this is always seen as a bonus. And finally, if you’re targeting towards students then investing in desk and chairs will help meet their studying needs.

The ground rules that apply to all of these properties is that decorating in a neutral colour is the best way to go as it has the highest appeal and will match most furnishings aesthetics. With this in mind satin paints are most practical for cleaning and a mid-tone carpet is best for not showing dirt or stains

student room

Rules For Houses In Multiple Occupation (HMO)

HMO is a house occupied by five or more people, forming two or more households. These people then share facilities such as the kitchen or bathroom. Current landlords of this type of tenancy then there are a few things to abide to:

  • Check smoke detectors are installed to a good quality
  • Electrics are to be checked every five years
  • Adequate cooking and washing facilities are provided
  • Ensure the property is not overcrowded with separate rooms for each couple, each single person over 21, and for every two young people aged over 10 years.
  • Communal areas are to be kept in clean and working condition

Rights To Take Back Possession Of Your Property

There are a few reasons in which landlords are able to take back possession of their property before the end of the tenancy. For example:

  • Late or non-payment of rent
  • Anti-social behaviour which may result in damage and reasons for tenants to lose their deposits
  • Any breach to the terms of tenancy agreement
  • Property has become unfit to live in under the standards of service
  • Repossession by the landlord’s mortgage lender

Protecting Your Money

At Belvoir Belfast, we pride ourselves on being trustworthy and reliable, making us Belfast’s Best Estate agent. An estate agency who works tirelessly to find you the right tenant, the right sale, or the right property.

We are members of the following schemes and accreditations, so that you can be sure that throughout this process your money is being handled legally, safely and with respect.

Arrange a free  market appraisal

If you’re a landlord, looking to let or you’re just interested in how much your property might be worth, the best way to get an accurate and detailed understanding is through a free one-to-one appraisal with one of our experienced local agents. Request an appraisal with us using the form below.

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