There are all sorts of ways people come to let out properties. Most landlords decide to make an investment in property, but there are a lot of accidental landlords out there as well, who have found themselves with an empty home as they move up the property ladder, live with a partner or change city for work.
However you’ve ended up renting out your property, there are steps you’ll have to take before you can have a tenant in place. To help you get ready, here’s our guide to the steps you’ll need to take.Check with your mortgage lender.
If you’re planning on renting out a property that you’ve previously lived in, you won’t have a buy to let mortgage, so you’ll need to speak to your lender to get their permission before you let the property. If you don’t get their permission, you could be breaking the conditions of your mortgage. If you do get permission, remember that your lender may increase the interest rate on your loan, so make sure this is affordable before you proceed.
Check your lease.
If the property you’re planning on letting is a leasehold apartment, then there might be restrictions in your leasehold agreement that prevent you from renting out the apartment. Check to make sure the leasehold doesn’t bar you from letting the apartment.Get enough keys cut.
Each tenant you rent to will need to have their own set of keys, so you’ll need to get enough cut. Make sure you get extra sets made so you have a copy for yourself and, if you’re using a letting agent, they’ll need a copy as well. Make sure the property is safe.
If you’re renting out a property, you have a legal responsibility to make sure that tenants can live their safely. Get a qualified electrician to inspect the electrics and have a gas safety engineer check any gas appliances. Smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms are a legal requirement for rental properties. You will have a public liability responsibility to your tenants, so to make sure you’re not vulnerable to claims if someone is injured in the property, it’s a good idea to make sure any other maintenance is down, for example ensuring that carpets are properly fitted and not loose.
Inform the utilities.
You don’t want to be left paying for the utilities in a house you’re not living in, so don’t forget to tell the gas, electric, broadband and telephone providers that you’re moving out so you can get your final bills paid and transfer them to your tenants. Speak to your insurer.
It’s important to make sure that you have all the necessary insurance arranged before you let out your property. As we said above, this can include public liability insurance, in case one of your tenants, a guest, or a maintenance worker is injured inside your property. Additionally, some landlords take out insurance to cover their costs in case there is a void period when no one is renting the home, or to cover the cost of eviction, should that be necessary.Contact us.
At Aria Residential, we’re property management experts, so if you’re ready to make your first buy to let investment, get in touch and make the most 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.