Historically the UK has been a country where homeownership has for many years outstripped the rental market but things are changing. The ever-increasing price of property in many parts of the UK, challenging working conditions and wage inflation which is often less than the increase in the cost of living are pushing more people towards renting property. As a consequence, we have seen a massive increase in the number of buy to let properties in the UK but many are not making full use of their potential. So, how can you maximise your rental income?
Know your market
In theory it is very easy to make money in the buy to let market, buy a property in a popular area, redecorate and advertise for tenants. There is nothing wrong with this type of approach but it does not always maximise your rental income. When you buy a property to rent out you should already have a target market in mind taking into account the local employment market, economy and affordability. If you get to know your target market then quite simply you can give them what they want.
Fancy gadgets don’t always appeal
Dimmer switches, under floor heating and other fancy gadgets all look very good on the estate agents flyer but do they appeal to potential tenants? A number of surveys in years gone by have shown that tenants want plenty of space, a blank canvas on which to stamp their own style and value for money. There is a section of the market that will be attracted by fancy new gadgets and new technology and there is nothing wrong with this. However, always remember that fancy gadgets are often expensive to buy and expensive to repair!
Over the years we have seen some extreme examples of decadence especially with the football fraternity where they seem to have money to burn. Very often these extravagantly decorated properties grab your attention but how easy are they to sell in the future? If you have a strong style in your rental property then you will only appeal to a specific section of potential tenants. This is why many of the DIY property programs strongly encourage you to decorate your property using neutral colours. The more people your property appeals to the greater the chances of maximising your income. It sounds easy because it is.
Keep it simple
There are standard tenancy agreements available today which cover all that needs to be covered while keeping things very simple. If you dig deep enough there is no doubt you can find small print to add to your contract, expand on standard sections and end up with a very long winded agreement which can be difficult to understand. All a tenant really needs to know is how much it costs them, what their running costs are, who is liable for repairs and what flexibility they have themselves with regards to decorating. There are obvious legal matters which need to be addressed but do not try to make your tenancy agreement more complicated than it needs to be.