Maybe you’re going on an extended sabbatical, moving to another region, relocating abroad or wanting to take the first steps in becoming a successful landlord. Renting out a property is an increasing popular trend in the UK and a good earner if the right steps are taken. There are numerous factors especially for new landlords to consider before renting out a property. When it comes to renting out property, if you’re not sure where to begin, here are a number of top tips to get you started in your new venture:-
- Check your mortgage – if you’re planning to move out of your property and let it, you’ll need permission from your lender. If you don’t, you may be in breach of your mortgage conditions. Talk to a mortgage lender about a consent for lease and maybe releasing equity from your home by re-mortgaging it as a buy-to-let. Likewise, if you own a leasehold apartment there may be certain restrictions within your leasehold agreement that prevents you renting it out, so check your lease.
- Inform your insurer – let your insurer know of your intention to rent out your property. Landlords must have additional cover for their property when it is rented out, such as landlord insurance. You can also insure yourself against void periods when there is no-one renting the property for long periods, as well as against the costs of evicting a tenant.
- Let utility companies know – remember to tell the relevant utility companies. This usually includes gas, electric, telephone, broadband, water and the council tax people. Speak to utility advisers about when you are moving out so you can pay the final bills before transferring them to your tenants.
- Safety – landlords must make sure all of the right safety appliances as well as certificates are in order before renting out their property. Make sure you buy smoke and gas alarms, have gas appliances tested by a gas safety engineer and arrange an Energy Performance Certificate for your tenants. You are also required to service the pipework and other gas equipment such as heaters for safety maintenance.
- Get your property ready – before making your property available for rent are you going to let it out furnished or unfurnished? Make sure any repairs on fixtures and fittings have been carried out and remove anything from the property which is precious or fragile. Give the property a mini-makeover so everything is well presented and up-to-date. Remember the finer details like having keys cut. Each tenant will need their own set including a spare set for yourself and if using the services of a letting agent, one for them too.