Some guidelines for Landlords
There are two different ways to conduct viewings, the first is on an individual basis, and the second is to do an “open house”. Meeting the tenant yourself is a really great way to get an initial feel of what you think of them. Instant likes or dislikes can be powerful and should not be underestimated.
Referencing is the best way to protect yourself against bad tenants, ensuring that they are who they say they are, giving an insight into their ability to pay the agreed rent and their history of paying rent in the past. First and foremost, ensuring that the tenant is who they say they are is very important. A tenant giving false details is obviously indicative of potential bad intentions. It is also important to establish identity in order to ensure that the contract is enforceable.
The quick and easy way to work out how much rent you can realistically charge for your property is to take a look at what everyone else is asking. Simply visit one of the major property portals, such as rightmove and prime location, and search for properties similar to your own. Be as wide in your search as possible. For example, if you have a 3 bedroom house, search in your postcode and up to ½ mile away, for 3 bedroom houses, with no minimum or maximum price. This will allow you to gauge not only the prices, but also the quality of house at each price. Try not to search too far from your postcode, as rental prices will be effected by proximity to, for example, schools, train stations, the town centre, although obviously if you can’t find any comparative properties in the near proximity, you may have to extend your search.
To take a great picture of your property doesn’t require an expensive camera. Taking a bit of time to set up a good shot can make the difference between an adequate picture and a great one. A good photograph of the outside of the property is a great start.
A property description is made up of 2 parts, key features and property details. The key features section is your opportunity to tell potential tenants about the key selling points of your property. The property details section allows you to go in to more depth about your property and describe it in more detail.
Insurance Tenants are typically viewed to be of higher risk than owner-occupiers, and for this reason regular homeowner insurance policies are often invalid for tenanted homes. Most mortgage lenders will require that you have buildings insurance in place. Landlords building insurance will cover you against a number of eventualities, and is specifically tailored to offer a policy which covers damage that more frequently occurs in tenanted properties. Each insurance policy differs, and you should ensure that you are aware of exactly what is covered by your own policy.