Letting Your Home
Whether you’re one of the so-called ‘accidental landlords’ who has fallen into letting by chance, or whether you’ve just decided to take a break and rent out your property for a few months, more and more people are exploring the option of renting out their home. While of course this is a big decision that requires plenty of planning, it is a move that can give big returns.
Make sure you’ve worked out all the costs vs the income! Like any financial decision it’s key that you make sure that it’ll work for your situation. Factor in any agency fees or work that you’ll have to have done to make sure your house is all legal, (remember all soft furnishing have to be fireproof!) and once you are clear on what it will involve then it’s time to move forward.
Check your mortgage
You’ll have to get permission from your mortgage supplier before you let! Sometimes they can charge a fee for this or will change your mortgage type from homeowner to buy-to-let, so if it’s a short term arrangement make it clear when you ask so that they know exactly what you have in mind.
Ask about insurance
Your home insurance could become invalid when letting! Make sure you check this, on the off chance that anything goes wrong you really don’t want to be left in the lurch. You can check what your insurance covers fairly easily just by contacting your provider. Many insurance companies will offer landlord building and contents cover and while this can be more expensive it’s often a mortgage requirement.
Choosing an agent
Choosing to let your property with a rental agency can save you a huge amount of work. Being a landlord can be a full time job, with maintenance, safety and legal compliance, marketing, tenant referencing, creating a tenancy agreement etc. A good lettings agency should work with you to get the most out of your property.
Compare agents for your area online and look for reviews to make sure that there are no hidden charges or a history of bad practice. Don’t necessarily go for the cheapest, find an agency that you can trust - and avoid those that give you unrealistic rental valuations as often this will end up in properties lying vacant for long periods while you’re still paying for the mortgage.
While you can become a DIY landlord, for those first stepping into the industry we really don’t recommend it. Keeping abreast of all the regulation can be extremely daunting for first-timers.
The most important thing to remember is that as soon as you start letting, it is no longer your home it’s an investment. As long as you treat it as such and are prepared for any problems that come up you should be just fine. But if you think you’ll have problems letting go, then renting may not be for you.
That said as long as you do everything properly letting out your home can bring in excellent yields which may be the perfect financial solution for you.