Not everyone becomes a landlord out of a deep-seated passion. For many, a change of circumstances means it is a necessity rather than a choice.
Becoming a landlord is a steep learning curve; with a growing number of legislative requirements and regulations that change often, it can be easy to get confused or even miss an important step, which is why many turn to the support of a letting agency such as ourselves.
We want you to be able to succeed in the lettings market.
Can you let?
Before you jump into preparing your property for the rental market you need to check if you are legally allowed to let it out. If your property is mortgaged, does your mortgage allow you to let? Some will have caveats preventing a property from changing from home owned to rented. We would always advise that you have a conversation with your mortgage lender so you are clear on the way forward.
Getting let ready
Just as if you were planning to sell your property, you need to be on top of any maintenance issues. It is also worth taking the time to complete any little jobs that may arise in the future; this could prevent a void period whilst the works are completed. Refreshing the décor of your property will also ensure that it is presented in a way that will attract potential tenants, and also demonstrates that you care about your property.
Furnished or unfurnished
There is no right or wrong decision here, just what feels right for you and will suit the potential tenants you are looking to attract. It is worth having a chat with a letting agent as they will be able to suggest the type of tenants your property might appeal to, and whether furnished or unfurnished is the best solution for you.
Do your homework
Don’t assume that your property will achieve a certain rental figure without having undertaken the research and sought expert advice. If you price your property too high you may struggle to get viewings, never mind secure a tenancy. Price it too low and you may find it difficult to get your finances to balance. Start by getting to know the rental figures for similar properties to let in the area. A word of caution: this is just a guide, a rough idea that will enable you to calculate your potential yield.
Don’t ignore the details
With so much to learn and get your head around, many first-time landlords can overlook some of the details. There is no doubt that the number of regulations and legislations you have to follow is overwhelming, and sometimes issues can arise due to misinterpretation or confusion. This is why having a skilled letting agent by your side can help guide you through a smooth transition from being a homeowner to becoming a landlord.
At Oakfield Estate Agents, we are best-placed to support you to ensure that your first tenancy is successful.
Neil Newstead, FARLA MNAEA MIRPM
Chief Executive Officer, Oakfield Estate Agents