When making a buy to let investment, especially if it is your first, it’s important to have a plan to maximise your return. Here, we share five tips for getting the most from your property investment.
Location, location, location.
Choosing the right location to purchase a property is important for attracting the kind of tenant you are looking for. If you are hoping to let your property to students it’s important to have a house near a university. If your target tenants are families then being close to highly regarded schools will help you attract them. Young professionals may favour homes with easy access to transport.
Researching regional variations in local letting markets and any seasonal changes in demand will help you make sure your investment performs all year round. Make sure you know how much similar properties are renting for in the area in order to avoid pricing yourself out of the market or selling yourself short.
It’s also worth researching the local rental market to find any gaps you can fill. Are there plenty of unfurnished homes available for rent, but very few furnished ones? Is there unmet demand for a particular type of property, such as one bedroom apartments? It’s worth considering using an agent as they will have a lot of this knowledge.Let the property quickly.
Depending on the area you have invested in, you might have to work hard to let your property and you shouldn’t assume you’ll find tenants immediately.
To make sure you get tenants in place as quickly as you can, it’s important to be as flexible and accommodating as you can be when arranging viewings. Many prospective tenants, especially professionals and parents, will find it difficult to attend viewings during weekdays, so be open to showing your property at weekends and evenings. This can also help to get your relationship with potential tenants off to a good start, which will help the relationship once they move in.
An agent could be helpful again at this point if you have other commitments that might make it difficult for you to be available for viewings at these times. An agent can also take care of deposits and tenant referencing.
Hold on to good tenants.
An empty property isn’t going to make any money for you and the best way to avoid this is to hold on to tenants once they’re in. If you get tenants who take care of the property and pay their rent on time then they are valuable to you and should be encouraged to renew their tenancy and stay in the property.
Keeping the rent on hold at its current level in order to keep good tenants in place could be worth a lot more to you than remarketing the same property at a slightly higher value. This avoids the risk that your property might sit empty while you look for new tenants, during which time you still have to cover the mortgage and other costs, and you won’t be taking the risk that new tenants might be less reliable.Make sure fixtures and white goods are working.
Before allowing prospective tenants to view the property, it’s important to conduct a detailed analysis of the house to make sure that everything is in good working order.
Check all of the kitchen appliances and white goods to make sure that they are working. It’s worth going into fine detail when conducting these checks. Make sure all the door handles turn easily and don’t catch or jam. Check that the toilet flushes properly. Simple things like having working lightbulbs will help to reassure potential tenants that the property is well looked after.
If you do discover any problems and you can’t get them fixed before you show the property, make it clear to prospective renters that you are aware of the issue and let them know that it will be taken care of quickly.Do some decorating.
If you’ve bought an older property or you’ve just had some existing tenants move out it will help your property might be in need of some freshening.
Rental homes are usually repainted every three years or so, depending on wear and tear and tenant turnover. This helps to keep the property looking well maintained and modern. It’s generally best to choose neutral colours as they are less likely to put anyone off based on their taste.
If you have existing tenants who would like to do some decorating it’s worth considering, as long as they consult with you and you’re happy with what their planning. This can help to keep them in the property, especially if their current tenancy is up soon and you would like them to renew it.Contact us.
At Aria Residential, we’re property management experts, so if you’re a buy to let investor looking to make the most of their investment, get in touch and take advantage of our expertise. Take a look at our website
or visit us in one of our branches on Belfast’s Lisburn Road or in Templepatrick.