What Do You Need to Get a House Ready to Rent?
Following a number of simple steps will enable every landlord – regardless of whether they are first-timers or even established pros – to get their flats ship-shape for new arrivals.
This guide covers minor repairs, simple refurbishments, and checking safety regulations. In other words, just about everything a good landlord needs to know before renting out his or her property. Adhering to it will make sure that the first/next tenant that comes to view their potential new abode, gives a resounding “yes.”
Make Sure Your Property Is Clean
Obviously check, before they leave, that the previous tenant has left the property in good order. They are expected to do their bit too before moving out, after all ie that they have given the flat or house a good clean That way you’ll be at least half way ready for a nice smooth transition to the next tenant/tenants.
Most tenancy contracts include a clause that states the landlord must provide a professional clean of the property before their new tenants move in. A one-bedroom flat will cost around £100 to be properly cleaned by a professional agency. That might sound a lot, but the good news is it can be written off against tax.
Replace Shabby Furniture
Once you’ve had your rental pad professionally cleaned, it’s time to look at the furniture and fittings. That’s because, even the best cleaners can’t compensate for wear and tear if the tenancy has been a long-term one.
So, get ready to replace some furniture if need be and, at the same time, carry out any minor repairs. Who wants to move into a new tenancy where there’s a dripping tap or the curtains look pretty shabby, after all?
The type of furniture that might need replacing could be the sofa, the odd chair, a table, cushions etc. But don’t panic at the thought of the cost. Provided that the replacement item is one of similar value (ie it’s not upgraded to a version that costs twice as much), then you can claim this against tax too.
Do Some Decorating
You may be pleasantly surprised at the difference a lick of paint around the skirting and cornice can make to a room. Freshen up the walls too and wash curtains, cushion covers etc so it all looks new and inviting for your new tenant. We’re really just talking about small issues here ie a little ‘cosmetic’ decorating as opposed to a big upgrade.
Be Safety Conscious
There are a number of safety considerations you have to take to make sure (a) your tenants aren’t in any danger in your property and (b) that you comply with the law.
For instance, you’ll have to arrange for a gas safety check to be carried out at the start of a new tenancy, as well as an Energy Performance Certificate test. The latter must be a minimum ‘E’ rating in order to rent out. Copies of both certificates must be handed to your new tenants. Since summer 2020 it’s also a legal requirement to get a electrical safety tested out for new tenants. All tests must be carried out by qualified engineers.
Also, check that the property’s smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are in working order (ie fitted with batteries).
And your reward for attending to all of the above? A happy tenant and, hopefully, a smooth ongoing tenant/landlord relationship.
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