There are many reasons for turning your home, aka principal place of residence (PPOR) into a rental property. You may have purchased your home to do it up and then rent it out. Or while living in your home, you’ve realised its potential as a high yielding rental property.
Whatever the reason when you decide to put your home up for rent, it needs to be ‘fit for purpose’.
In this article, we don’t focus on the legalities of renting out your home we look at how you can prepare it. Tips from Pinpoint Homes suggest there are five core tasks to getting your home up to spec for tenants.
Health and Saftey
First and foremost, you have to ensure that your tenants will feel safe and secure in your home.
Seek information on health and safety rules and the tenancy laws, so you understand your requirements. T
Get A Building Inspection
You can never go wrong, getting a building report done. We often ignore the niggly maintenance stuff, but if it’s likely to turn into a show-stopper for tenants, it must be sorted. Building inspections usually present some curlers and surprises. It may shock you to learn your home is not as perfect as you thought and that it needs some urgent maintenance before it’s fit for purpose – i.e. renting out to tenants.
Plumbing and Wiring
Make sure the plumbing and wiring are up to standard. The best time to get it done is before you rent your property. A broken light switch or leaky pipe may be something you are happy to live with, but tenants can say it’s an issue that must be rectified.
Therefore get the professions in to check wiring and pipes as some building inspection exclude them from their assessment.
A building inspection will confirm if your property has an infestation that needs eradicating. You may have seen the odd wasp or two and not realised there’s a nest on the property. Don’t delay pest control ever, as it’s important to keep your home in top conditions for optimum rental income return.
Plus you won’t be getting off to a great start with your new money earning venture if your tenants are complaining about rodents, cockroaches, and other pests in your home when they settle in.
You may end up not just dealing with the infestation but also having to go into damage control with the tenants. They may see it as an opportunity to ask for lower monthly rent. You want the rent to go up not down!
While you have probably been very good with basic cleaning – before you rent your property, it needs a thorough deep clean.
Remove all unnecessary items that will be considered clutter by your new tenant. Remember, you can rent your home furnished or unfurnished. Unfurnished usually includes floor coverings like carpet, so have them professionally cleaned. Also, consider using hired help to do the domestic clean as they will save you a lot of time and deliver a better result.
While the property is vacant, if it is looking tired, consider renovating with new paint, and also new floorings too. The more you do now, the least you’ll need to do to keep your property in top condition between tenancies.
While insurance is off the topic of property preparation, you will need to change your property insurance to specific landlords insurance policy. Shop around for the cover you want for the price you want to pay.
Use A Property Management Service
Now your home is ready to secure tenants, you can either manage them directly or use a property manager. There is a lot involved in managing tenants so while outsourcing it incurs a fee, it’s usually worth it. For peace of mind and if anything goes wrong with the home or your tenants, the property manager will take charge and sort it.
Property managers also take care of all the paperwork and documentation for legal purposes and your accounting, so the process is as smooth as possible. You can also benefit from their network of contacts for maintenance and attracting new tenants.
Selling up is not always the smartest way to go. Renting your home for the income can be lucrative and a long term retirement savings plan.
While it pays to understand the basics of being a landlord, do so in conjunction with the professionals like your property manager, accountant etc. so your asset is safe and the tenants’ managed.
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