When it comes to investments, other than gold, you simply cannot go wrong with the property, which is one of the main reasons why more and more people are choosing to part with their money and take on new properties all over the country. Upon purchasing these properties, however, rather than moving in themselves, these individuals are instead choosing to become landlords and to rent them out. Being a landlord is an exciting career path to choose as it gives you the flexibility to be your own boss, to run your own business, and, perhaps most importantly of all, to earn a very impressive living in the process. Some people even choose to rent out just one or two properties and become a landlord on the side, keeping a full, or part-time job at the same time. If you yourself have considered becoming a landlord; however, you must first be aware that it is not the easiest of jobs and that things won’t always run smoothly. You can’t suddenly wake up one morning and decide to become a landlord, you need to do your research, know the business, know the industry, and learn as much about the entire process as possible, which is where we come in. Here we’ll be sharing six incredibly useful tips on how to become a landlord, so without any further hesitation, let’s talk property.
Surround yourself with experts – A lot of people tend to think that becoming a landlord is simply a case of buying a property, renting it out, and then receiving X amount of rent each month from your tenants. In reality, however, there is so, so much more to consider, which is why it’s important to surround yourself with experts. Take the time to join forums and social media pages aimed at landlords, get in contact with lettings agents, and perhaps even consider networking on various courses, which will be available up and down the country on certain dates. It would help if you also considered joining organizations such as national landlords associations, as well as getting in contact with other landlords.
Know your goals and targets – Before you even consider purchasing a property, you must first know which specific goals and targets you have in mind. For example, which demographic will you be targeting as tenants? Will you be looking for families or workers? Do you plan on renting the property to just one tenant or one family, or will you instead be renting each room out and turning the property into a multi-let? When you know who you plan on targeting, you can then begin looking for specific properties relevant to your goals. For example, if you do plan on turning the property into a multi-let and renting out each room, you will obviously want something much bigger than a two-bedroom house.
Be prepared to travel – Once you do have a property, you will obviously need to travel to and from that property in question as you get it ready for renting. Even if you do have tenants, you will still have to travel to and from the property as you may need to collect rent and deal with any issues in the property itself, i.e. a broken boiler, which is a landlord’s worst nightmare.
Don’t scrimp on the boiler – As mentioned, a boiler is a landlord’s worst nightmare, so when it comes to installing or maintaining it, make sure you don’t cut corners and simply look for the cheapest option you can find. As the saying goes “you have to spend money to make money” and if you choose to rent out a property which has been equipped with a cheap and temperamental boiler, you should prepare yourself for some pretty angry phone calls from cold tenants who have no heating or hot water. By installing a good-quality boiler before you rent the property out, you will save yourself a whole heap of hassle in the future.
Plan for the worst-case scenario – If you’re serious about being a landlord, you need to plan for the worst-case scenario and decide whether or not you could cope or manage if that situation was to arise. For example, say you found a long-term tenant who had lived in your property for several years, always paying their rent on time and keeping the property well-maintained. Now, say they got a new job and decided to buy a house of their own, how soon do you think you could find a new tenant, and do you think you could manage without their rent each month until you did fill the property? If the dreaded boiler did indeed break, could you afford to have it repaired or to have a new one installed?
Find out as much about possible tenants as you can – Although generally speaking, you will almost certainly fill your property(s) with respectable, hardworking, and sensible tenants who always pay you on time, sadly, there will be tenants out there who may not be so ideal. There are tenants who have caused damage to properties, and who rarely ever pay their rent on time and constantly mess their landlords around and make their lives pretty miserable if truth be told. It is best to do credit and background checks on potential tenants before you let them move in, as this may give you an insight into what they’re really like. The last thing you want is a nightmare tenant on your hands, so try to find out as much information about them as you possibly can beforehand.