Landlord tips: How to maximise your rental income
Before we go any further, have you read our article on calculating rental yield? If you have, you'll know how your property shapes up financially - but are you happy with the return you're getting? Here's a quick guide to maximising the rental potential of your property.
Consider furnishing the property
Maximise the pool of tenants you can attract to your property by making it ‘ready to go'. There are several benefits to furnishing your property - you can rid tenants of the burden and cost of purchasing furniture, increase your rental income by up to 10% and let your home more quickly. Letting a furnished property also allows you to claim a ‘wear and tear' allowance. Maximising your rental income
There are also cons. Furnishing your home is more labour intensive at both ends of the tenancy agreement - you will need to purchase, insure, assess and upgrade your furniture. Tenants in search of a fully furnished property could also be less likely to stick around in the long term. You could offer greater flexibility by letting your home as part-furnished.
Keep it neutral
Tenants like neutral decoration. Standard laminate flooring or carpets of a serviceable colour combined with gentle magnolias on the walls and dark work surfaces in the kitchen are the safest option. Don't narrow your target market by turning your property into a show home - tenants prefer to add their own personal touches (with your permission, of course).
Faced with parking restrictions or road parking only? The lack of allocated parking could impact against the rental value of your home. If you lack the scope to add private parking, consider purchasing a yearly parking permit and including it in the cost of the rent. Tenants may be put off by the prospect of paying £100 a year for parking, but will be attracted to a property where it is included.
Think about extras
Some guides will encourage you to include as few appliances as possible, but there is an argument for going a step beyond standard specifications. A dishwasher or tumble dryer may increase your rental income slightly and give you the edge with fussier tenants who have several options.
Be wary of void periods
Void periods between occupancies will leave you with a severe dent in your income. All landlords face a void period at some point, but it is important to keep these to a minimum.
If you are suffering from high tenant turnover, ask yourself whether the property is as attractive a proposition as it could be and make an effort to spruce it up. You should also think very carefully before increasing the rent - a tenant moving out because of a rent increase could lose you a significant sum of money.