Finding a good letting agent
When you decide to rent your home, finding a good letting agent
is crucial. While it may seem tricky because the letting industry is unregulated (unlike estate agents who buy and sell, letting agents don’t fall under the 1979 Estate Agent act), there are thankfully a few basic things things
that can typically let you know you’re in good hands. Finding a letting agent
that belongs to a professional body such as the National Approved Lettings Scheme (NALS) or the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA) is a good start: these organisations ask their members to keep up to dates with legislations and best practices so you can expect a good level of expertise in the area. Beware though as many rogue agents claim they are members
while they aren’t: make sure to check it up on the organization’s website.
Come up with some tenancy terms
One of the first questions you should ask yourself is whether you would like to rent short or long-term, or even go the seasonal letting route. You’ll have to decide what option is best for you. Short-term rentals are more flexible and financially more interesting: you might get away with charging a little extra, especially during peak holiday seasons or during popular events happening nearby. Renting short-term can be a little more time consuming though: consider advertising, and cleaning up time after each rentals. It’s also less consistent than long-term rental and you won’t be able to charge utility bills directly to the tenants for shorter periods.
If you choose to rent short-term, it might be a good idea to include furniture: you will let it more quickly as tenants tend to prefer furnished rentals. For long-term renting, unfurnished property may be the better option so tenants are able to choose their own furniture so they feel more comfortable, and thus most likely to stay even longer.
Finally, coming up with a rent price that will both attract potential tenants and earn you money isn’t as hard as it sounds. You’ll have to take into account: location, square footage, view, floor levels, extra cupboards or rooms. If you’re price is too high, it will detract tenants. However the same goes if your price is too low as people will tend to think there is something wrong with the property. Finding the right price is a bit of a balancing act but it’s evidently crucial in your quest for the perfect tenant.
As a future landlord, you will be responsible for a number of things, most of which can be found on the UK government website
: gas safety, electrical safety, fire safety all need to be up to scratch with regular checkups and certificates.