Being a landlord can be a difficult world to navigate—whether you inherit a property or want to rent out your present house while you move elsewhere.
Rental agents Winchester highlights the top five concerns new landlords should be aware of before renting out a home.
1. Verify if the rental property is suitable for tenants
It goes without saying that as a landlord, you have certain obligations towards your tenants in regard to accommodation. Is your home ready to move into right away, or does it require some work to make it liveable? In the latter case, you must finish all required work before your renters’ move-in.
Remember that for your property to qualify as a legal residence for your new renter, it must also meet several conditions. These might range from smoke alarms to wheelchair ramps.
2. Monitor the existing property market
Renting out to young professionals or renting out to students are two entirely different things. Both renters are significantly different from one another. Depending on their preferences for space and expectations for decor, you may need to renovate or expand the living space. Place your property on the market appropriately by concentrating on its advantages.
To be a successful landlord, one should know to keep an eye on what other properties are currently on the market and identify where theirs will sit. To get an idea of the rental prices being requested at comparable homes, browse property websites and read local publications.
Identify the property’s potential. The property could be more suitable for student tenants if it’s close to a university. You might want to think about selling your house to families if it’s situated in a semi-rural area close to a good school. For example, should you convert that 4-bedroom family home that’s near a good primary school into four single-occupancy flats? Probably not. Focus on your property’s strengths and position it correctly.
3. Sign up with HMRC
Before you start collecting rent, you need to sign up with HMRC so that you are taxed appropriately. The initial £1,000 of rental income is tax-free, but you’ll likely earn far more than that over a year.
Before choosing how to promote your rental property, it’s necessary to check into the various tax regulations for residential homes, furnished vacation rentals, and commercial properties. If you typically don’t file a tax return, you should register by the fifth of October of the year after the tax year in which you received rental income.
Being a landlord entails certain risks. There might be many issues, ranging from an unanticipated loss of rental revenue to damage to your home or belongings. By obtaining the appropriate financial protection, you can be sure that, even in the worst-case scenario, you won’t be responsible for paying for it. In addition to covering buildings and contents, landlord insurance may also provide coverage for emergency assistance and defence costs.
4. Be considerate of your new tenant
Even though you are the owner of the property, don’t plan on dropping by uninvited. The law mandates that you must notify your tenant at least 24 hours before visiting the property. But at this point, you’ve been well-prepared, so until anything goes wrong or one of you has a question, neither you nor your renter should hear from the other.
Maintain a respectful and professional connection. Be prompt in your responses to your tenant’s messages and proactive with any maintenance or repairs that fall under your purview. Additionally, it pays to be understanding when it comes to pets or decorating tastefully.
5. Take precautionary measures
Rental contracts outline the duties and rights of both renters and landlords. You may make sure that everyone involved knows what they can and cannot do by having them both sign one of these documents. Any further misunderstandings may be avoided by doing this.
Setting up routine property inspections and making sure your tenants are given sufficient notice should help you catch any issues early on. For instance, you may remind your renters to briefly open the window each day to prevent mould growth if you observe excessive dampness in the bathroom.