Buying a property to rent out; a checklist

OK so here’s the scenario…

You have found the property that you want to buy; you contact either the vendor or the agents to arrange a viewing. After looking over the property for approximately 5-25 minutes you say yes and leave.

Your offer is accepted and you are on your way to purchasing the property which may range from £100k to £200k

But how many of us view the property again before completion.?

Why not?

It’s because of the way we somewhat naively expect thing to be done I suppose. In an ideal world, if there have been any maintenance issue, arising whilst the property is under offer, they would have been sorted.

When the property is finally purchased and you get the keys the property is cleaned and ready to move in.

Unfortunately this ideal world is becoming less and less the reality.

Check yourself or arrange for your Letting agent to check the following whilst viewing the property:

Whilst there use this checklist:

  • Stains to ceiling below wet areas
  • Stains to ceilings below water tanks and hot water cylinders
  • Cleanliness of property throughout
  • Rug on carpets take look underneath they sometimes hide a multitude of sins
  • Confirm with vendor what is included in the sale price
  • Do the vendors have pets, this can have pest implications and you may like to include before the complication goes through that the carpets are wet cleaned and pest treated
  • Have a gas safety carried out on the property before exchange to highlight any issues with the boiler or heating system
  • Visual check on electrics and fuse board
  • Appliance check on those which are being purchased with the sale

And finally, when making an offer ask the vendor or selling agent if they will allow a visit from your letting agent to prepare the marketing details, this will usually involve a floor plan, photos and a mini movie. You will also have to make a condition of sale viewings (at least one a week) through your Letting agent, so that you can hopefully get the property let before completion with a move in date that will be agreed to be slightly flexible to allow for possible delays.

It is becoming a growing problem when the sale has completed and the monies have exchanged, you visit the property for the first time as the new owner, and find it in a mess.

  • The vendor didn’t want his old fridge or freezer therefore he has left it in the kitchen, you don’t want it and you then have to arrange to get rid of it. You may think, well that’s not an issue as the local council will collect large items well they won’t if the previous owner has had his full entitlement for that year.
  • You check through the property further and find that the carpets are soiled and overall the property is not in a condition where you can just move in.
  • The roof space is full of rubbish – very rarely will you find an antique worth a million
  • The garage has the remains of an engine or spare tyre in it
  • You find a supply of student road signs that they have decided they don’t want at they new property anymore
  • The garden is full of the vendors dogs toiletries
  • The wheelie bins (if relevant) are full to the brim with the wrong waste which the local authorities now fine for, anything from £60.00
  • There has been a leak from the bathroom and the ceiling is bowed or the artex is starting to lift

What can you do?

Unfortunately as the monies have already exchanged then nothing.

If you are an investment buyer and the vendor is aware of this, they sometimes are less careful when leaving the property.

I would therefore recomm