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Finding the right tenants image

As a landlord, you will no doubt be looking for good tenants for your property. You want somebody who is going to respect your property inside and out and obviously pay rent on time. Whether you manage the rental as a private landlord or employ an agent to deal with it, it’s a good idea to understand both yours and your tenant’s obligations; what you can do to help make your tenant’s experience a positive one and vice versa.

Firstly you need to establish your target market – what kind of tenant you would like to rent your property, but more so what type of tenant is more suited to your property and the area. If it is a predominantly student orientated area then advertising to families for example may not be a good idea. Whatever your type of tenant would be, you need to tailor your property to suite them, which will also affect your rental income too.

Students for example will benefit from internet access within the property, whereas a family would no doubt arrange this themselves. Research has also suggested that access to broadband is much more appealing to students than the location of the property.

If you are looking to rent your property out to students or single professionals you may also benefit from renting out individual rooms rather than the entire property. This could also provide an increased rental income, so depending on the location of your property it may be well worth considering. You will then need to decide whether you will be responsible for the utility bills however or whether this will lie with the tenants. Multi-let options will also reduce the risk of periods where the property is empty. However it is important to bear in mind any changes you make to the property could affect getting a quick property sale in the future.

Depending on whether you rent your property out to families or students will also affect the interior of your property. For example, you may wish to provide cheap furniture to furnish rooms for multi-lets but families may wish to rent the property unfurnished or may be attracted by quality furniture and appliances.

Remember that you will need to ensure the property is in a good state of repair, and students may actually be more high maintenance than families, so don’t think that students would be an easy option by any means. You will also need to be prepared for damage and maintenance of the property. Also remember that any tenant is entitled to quiet enjoyment and privacy within their property, and therefore you are required to give notice if you need to access your property at any point.

When taking on a new tenant, it is also a good idea to perform relevant checks which could include employment or previous landlord references, credit checks or perhaps considering a guarantor if the tenant is a young student. Ultimately by meeting the needs of your tenants – whoever they may be – you can alleviate any potential problems, have a more positive experience letting your property and if your tenants are happy then you are more likely to be happy.

by Cormac Henderson

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