Becoming a landlord comes with a lot of responsibility. You’ll need to make sure you’re organised and on top of all the required documentation, but you’ll also have to make sure you’re a good judge of character so you get the best quality tenants. If you’re considering becoming a landlord, or you’re already a landlord and want a bit of advice, then we’ve pulled together some tips on how to be successful in this field.
The most successful landlords are the ones who communicate effectively with their tenants and don’t cut corners when it comes to getting repairs done.
This shouldn’t be taken literally. Noone wants their landlord popping round every 5 minutes, without notice. However, it’s really important for a landlord to be contactable. Give your tenants your phone number and email address so they can contact you when they need to. Advise them to call you if it’s an emergency and to send an email for anything else. Respond to them in a timely fashion and reassure them that you’ll deal with anything urgent asap, giving them updates when appropriate.
This point follows on nicely from the above. As a landlord, you’re legally obliged to make sure your property is safe and secure. This means having annual gas safety checks, servicing the boiler and testing smoke and carbon monoxide alarms every 6 months or so. If your tenant reports any damage or an issue, it’s important that you act quickly in order to resolve things and don’t opt for the cheapest options possible. Buy cheap and you’ll buy twice, as the saying goes, so do things properly and you won’t have to keep repairing or replacing things over time. In turn, you’ll be considered a trusted landlord.
As with any business, it’s important to be respectful towards your tenants and expect the same in return. Maintain a good working relationship with your tenants by not letting personal feelings get in the way. It’s impossible to like everyone, however that should never affect a business-level relationship and being respectful and professional will lead to your success.
It’s better to be thorough at the beginning of the process rather than having regrets later down the line. Screen your tenants properly and you’ll get off to a good start, without the messy business of having to go through eviction processes. Make sure you check any prospective tenant’s credit history, get several references and find out where they work and what they do for a living. You should ask them to highlight if they have any previous convictions or debts. As long as you’re satisfied with the information they provide and you trust that it is legitimate then you should have found yourself a good tenant and they’re worth their weight in gold. A good landlord will retain good tenants and that will be lucrative in the long run.
Have A Well-Worded Tenancy Agreement
Be as transparent as possible when drawing up a tenancy agreement. Let there be no room for misinterpretation or uncertainty. Be clear about who is responsible for what and the things you expect from your tenant. Provide an inventory along with your tenancy agreement document so the tenant can see exactly what comes with the property and what you’re prepared to repair or replace should anything happen to it. A letting agent or solicitor can help you to draw up a tenancy agreement if you’re unsure, but if you’ve managed properties before you’ll know exactly what you’ll need to include in an Assured Tenancy Agreement (AST).
These are the key things to consider if you want to build a successful career out of being a landlord. However, if you’ve decided that you want to sell your house quickly then a quick cash buyer could be a good option. All legal fees are included and you can dictate the timescale for completion.