As a landlord with private houses to rent there can be many complications. One of the hardest aspects of owning a buy-to-let investment is finding the right tenants and quickly.
Owning private houses for rent involves putting a lot of time and effort into maintaining the property, ensuring that you’re letting your home out to the right people and doing all that you can so that you’re guaranteed a successful return on your investment.
So as a landlord what can you do to make sure that you’re getting the most out of your private houses to rent?
Use a letting agent to help find tenants
Some private landlords prefer finding their own tenants for their property. These tend to be landlords who are emotionally attached to a particular house or flat or those who already know people who want to move into their home. If not, finding the right people can be tricky when you have private flats or houses to rent.
Using an online letting agent to help you find tenants will save you a lot of time and money. Online letting agents can also draw up a suitable tenancy agreement for you, meaning that you have to do less of the hard work. If you want to draw up your own agreement, the government also have a free model shorthold tenancy agreement at gov.uk.
There are certain criteria which you should specify when looking for tenants which can help to make your private house for rent be a better return on investment. For example, not letting to smokers, people with pets or students generally means your private property to rent will tend to be kept in a much better condition.
Managing the letting
Managing the letting of a private property can be more time consuming than you first thought. From things like arranging receipt of the rent, to getting all the correct legal documentation in place, to fixing maintenance issues and carrying out regular inspections of the property, there’s a lot to do.
If you have more than one private house to rent it can become a full time job. If you want to manage it all yourself, things like having a personal solicitor and connections with a trusted maintenance company or builder can be really helpful to ensure everything is fixed to a high standard.
Although, many private landlords tend to use an estate agent to manage their let to ensure that all the legal aspects of managing a private rental are covered and to be sure there is always someone at hand to deal with any ad-hoc tenant queries.
Join a Landlord’s Association
If you think you could do with a little more advice or support from other people who have private houses to rent, why not join a landlord’s association. With several different associations available, they are resourceful hubs where you can get valuable advice from other landlords.
These associations are really useful for finding out about new legislation that’s being announced, changing laws and finding the best versions of documents you might need. There are plenty of different national landlord’s associations available to join, the Residential Landlord’s Association is particularly useful.
Follow the Private Rented Sector Code of Practice
For a complete guide to your legal requirements, a great resource is the private rented sector code of practice. Although not a compulsory code of practice, it helps as a definitive guide for people who have private houses to rent to ensure they’re complying with all the essential aspects of owing a buy-to-let home and not breaking any of the expected terms and conditions.
Looking in to and using these useful resources should help you as a private landlord to make sure that your private property to rent is a successful and profitable return on investment for years to come.
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