Becoming a landlord has risen in popularity immensely in the UK over the past two decades, and this trend is expected to continue.
According to some estimates, more than half of those aged between 20-39 years old will be renting privately by 2025. If you too want to become a landlord, there are some valuable pieces of landlord advice that can be of help as you get started…
The process of registering as a landlord will vary depending on where you are in the UK. While there is no official scheme in England, many local authorities will require you to register as a landlord, and this is mandatory in Scotland. In Wales, all landlords must register through the national programme Rent Smart Wales, and in Northern Ireland, landlords must apply through the Landlord Registration Scheme.
Obtain landlord house insurance
This is crucial to make sure you are covered financially as you begin to let property. Landlord insurance differs from standard home insurance and often covers things that the latter does not, so it’s important to have this dedicated insurance in place. You may consider working with a broker or using an online comparison site to view the different options before making a decision on a policy.
Determine if you’ll use a letting agent
Some landlords will manage their own properties, while others will instruct a letting agency to do this on their behalf. Whether or not you wish to hire an agent will depend on a number of factors, such as whether you have the time and willingness to deal with issues as they arise, if you have the budget for a letting agent, how close you live to the property, how many properties you currently lease and more.
Ensure you are compliant
There are certain legal obligations you must fulfil as a landlord to ensure the property is habitable before tenants move in. For example, you must obtain an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) and a Gas Safety certificate, as well as ensuring the smoke and carbon monoxide alarm are working, the property is fire-safe, electrical appliances are safe and the property is generally clean and safe for habitation.
Begin the letting process
Once you have an insured, compliant property that’s ready to be let, you can begin the process of looking for tenants. You may choose to leave filling the property to a letting agency, or you may wish to advertise and show the property yourself. You’ll need to ensure all the necessary tenancy screening checks are taken care of, and that all paperwork such as an assured shorthold tenancy agreement and a property inventory are drafted and signed as well.
With Generation Rent showing no signs of subsiding, being a landlord does provide the potential for many lucrative returns. With the right research, insurance and assistance from a professional letting agent, you can maximise the chances of a successful foray into the world of property letting.