Buy-to-let landlords need to invest a significant amount up front if they’re to make their business viable. Every step that can be taken to optimise the income stream should be considered. The more money being brought in every month, the more can be invested back into property.
After a given tenant clears out, it’s worth sending in cleaners to clean the entire place from top to bottom. This will allow you to stand out in a crowded market. To ensure that the property is kept in good condition, you might use the deposit as an incentive. This cleaning should come in addition to the other maintenance tasks you’ll be performing throughout the tenancy, like boiler servicing.
Demand a Lower Deposit
Your deposit is a barrier to tenants. It should cover the cost of any potential damages, but it shouldn’t be viewed as an income stream – as it should ultimately be far outweighed the income provided by happy, long-term tenants.
Insure against non-paying tenants
If you’re worried that your tenants may be unable to pay, then you can use rent guarantee insurance from a provider like Homelet, which will cover you. It’s especially useful for landlords who lack the security that comes with a huge portfolio.
Properties which are in excellent condition can extract higher rents. Additional features can often be easily installed, and the cost of installation recovered over a period of months and years through higher rents. This might include extra appliances, or it might include entirely new rooms. En-suite bathrooms are a popular, especially among former students who’ve gotten used to the privacy that comes with halls of residence.
Be more Liberal about Pets
If you allow dogs and cats to stay in your property, then you’ll be able to attract a group of would-be tenants which might be turned away elsewhere. This will allow you to charge a premium, which many animal-lovers will be happy to pay. This may justify the additional wear and tear costs which animals bring about.
Check your Competitors
Optimising the price of your rent often means doing the right research. Look at the price of properties of the same type as yours. If they’re in the same area, and have the same features, then you should keep tabs on them. As demand for properties in a given area rises, so too will prices – and you’ll be able to follow the trend and extract more rent from your tenants. There are online tools which make this process easier – but they’re not a substitute for your own research.
Ask for Feedback
Buy to let landlords often find themselves overseeing many properties, and thus it can be easy to lose sight of the details on the ground. Where problems are undiscovered, they can fester. They might result in high levels of tenant turnover. Put in place a robust complaints procedure, and you’ll be able to track any problems before they have a chance to cost you money. Similarly, you’ll want to present your departing tenants with a questionnaire. The answers may prove invaluable in the long-term!