Buy to Let Property Advice

Purchasing a property as a buy-to-let investment is not about making a quick buck, and there are a few things you should bear in mind before making the leap.

  • Before purchasing any property, check with local letting agents about local demand – buying something that there is constant demand for will increase your rent yield and reduce void periods.
  • Try not to let your own tastes affect your purchase.  Consider instead local demand and the rent yield.
  • Your mortgage provider will require your rent to cover the cost of your repayments, but make sure you have enough left in the pot to cover unforeseen costs and void periods.
  • Don’t fall in to the cheap and cheerful trap.  In order to attract the best tenants, and reduce void periods, make your property desirable and finished to a good standard.
  • Don’t purchase a property which will require too much maintenance.  Thatched roofs, character cottages and open fires are nice if you live there, but will increase potential maintenance problems.
  • Consider the garden of the property.   As they don’t own the property, tenants aren’t usually interested in keeping up a large or beautifully planted garden.  Once the old tenant moves out, you may have a lot of work to get the garden back in to shape for the next tenants.
  • Make sure that your tenancy agreement (and associated inventory) covers everything you want it to cover.  This may include not wearing high heels on wooden floors, having the chimney swept every 12 months regardless of use, not allowing dogs to foul the garden, cutting the grass every 10 days in summer etc etc.
  • Don’t scrimp on old furnishings.  They may contravene the Furniture and Furnishing Regulations.
  • Don’t underestimate the amount of work it can be having tenants.  If you are not using a managed service, prepare yourself for calls about minor problems at unsociable hours, chasing rent and serving notices.
  • Consider your buy-to-let purchase as a medium to long term investment.  As a retirement fund, property investment can be a great nest egg.

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