Having a good relationship with your tenant is extremely important as a landlord. Rather than leaving your tenants thinking “new year, new landlord”, why not take a look at how you can improve the experience?
Keep on reading to find out all the things you should be prepared for, to be a successful landlord in 2021.
Prepare for Periodic Inspections
At Boxall Brown & Jones, we always emphasise the importance of regular inspections at a for let property. We do not mean stopping by every week but scheduling them in with your tenants so that they know when to expect your arrival. If you can start the tenancy by agreeing on specific dates for periodic inspections, you will be off to a great and organised start with your tenant.
If you have a large portfolio, you can also look into a property management service. This will mean that the estate agent can handle this activity on your behalf. Contact Boxall Brown & Jones today to enquire about our full property management service – https://www.bbjlettings.co.uk/landlords/.
Take Notes for Reference
Take a pen and notepad or use an app that takes notes during your inspections. Make sure nothing is missed or forgotten, so that it does not end up causing disputes further down the line with your tenant. You will then not only have a clear idea of any issues with the property, but also have a record for how well the tenant has looked after your property.
As part of our full property management service, our property team can conduct inventory checks for you. Find out more by clicking here – https://www.bbjlettings.co.uk/landlords/.
Send Requests Via Email
Writing out any correspondences as an email is the best way to keep track of conversations. Leaving a note or sending a letter leaves you with no record unless you photocopy or scan it of course, but there is still no proof that the tenant has ever received it. With an email, not only do you have a record that it was sent from your account, but it will also make it much easier when trying to find a specific conversation by using the search function.
At Boxall Brown & Jones, you have the choice in how involved you would like to be with the letting of your property. If you would like us to communicate on your behalf, we can!
Respond to Tenants ASAP
If you receive an email or text message from a tenant, there is no need to leave them waiting too long. Be courteous enough to let them know that you have received their message and are looking into the requests. Reassuring your tenant that you are aware of the situation will put their minds at ease.
Finding a Letting Agent
If you are struggling to manage all your properties, you may want to find a letting agent who can help manage the properties for you. At Boxall Brown & Jones, we have experienced property experts who can help you from the moment your tenants move in, to the day they move out and beyond! We follow strict rules and regulation, meaning your property will be in safe hands.
Stay on Top of Property Maintenance
As soon as you are made aware of anything that needs amending in your property, make plans as soon as possible for a professional to take a look. Whether it is a broken boiler or a loose floorboard if it is included in the tenancy agreement that you are responsible, you must sort it. The likelihood of the problem getting worse will increase the longer you leave an issue, which could in turn increase the cost of fixing it.
Equally, when your tenant reports a problem, make sure that you are using a trusted professional to help you. Having a good relationship with a local tradesperson can help you get better rates as a returning customer.
As part of our property management service, we have contractors on speed dial for whenever you have a problem. We also ensure that they are fully qualified, ensuring the quality and safety is to the best standard.
Research Energy Bill Suppliers
If you are including energy bills within the rent, you will want to check what other suppliers are offering. Once your contract is up with your current supplier, it may save you/ your tenant money by switching. You never know, you may even get an offer that will convince you to stay put!
Make Note of Important Dates
Have everything written down! Make sure that you even have reminders when important dates are approaching, to save having to track down the information in old emails or letters. This will help you be more organised when you are preparing for renewals for energy suppliers or tenancy agreements, appliance maintenance checks and more.
Review Your Tenancy Agreements
The law can change at any time, and you will need to make changes to your tenancy agreements to reflect this, in order to remain compliant.
Update Contact Details
Have you recently checked that you have the right phone numbers and email addresses for your tenants and letting agent? If you have not been in touch in a while, it is a good idea to confirm everything is still correct. The same applies if you have changed any of your details, be sure to let your tenant or estate agent know.
Do a Thorough Clean Between Tenancies
We know that void periods mean no rent is coming in. However, you should take advantage of any gaps between tenancies and give the property a good clean. A vacant property will allow you to get in every corner in every room and make sure that it is ready for your next tenants.
Refresh Properties Lacking in Interest
If you are struggling to find tenants for your property, is it time to give it a revamp? A fresh coat of paint and new carpet can make a massive difference to the appearance of a property. This does not have to be expensive. You can search on recycling websites such as Gum Tree for unwanted decorating materials and second-hand (but good condition) furniture. Equally, Facebook Marketplace or local selling groups are handy for finding cheap or unwanted items that can save you money.
Take Time to Find Out What’s Going on in the Industry
The are many news sites that are dedicated to keeping you up to date with the latest lettings and property industry news. Look out for useful guides, newsletters, and social media pages to help keep you in the loop.
Organise Your Receipts
Whether you submit your Self-Assessment tax return yourself or use an accountant, you will make the process a lot easier if you keep a clear record of money spent and received throughout the year. Once you have a filing system in place it is simple to stay in the habit of keeping it up to date.
Review Your Buy-to-Let Mortgage
Make sure that you stay on top of interest rates and figure out what is best for your investment. You might be able to save money by switching to a better deal. If you have a mortgage adviser, now would be a good time to talk and prepare for the future. The better rate you can get on your buy-to-let mortgage, the more rewarding being a property investor and landlord will be in the long-run.
Reassess Rental Yields
Do not get into a rut with your property, or even worse, in debt. If your let is not producing the same rental yields you had hoped for then you may want to reassess is it worth it. Are your rent prices in line with the going rate in the area? Would it be worth selling up and investing elsewhere? Have a think about whether you are happy with the income it is providing or if now is the time to change.
Plan Some Time Off!
We cannot stress this enough! Do not forget to take a break. Knowing that you have some down time to look forward to can keep you focussed and motivated in work. Be sure to let you letting agent and tenants know in advance that you will be unavailable during certain dates.
At Boxall Brown & Jones, we are dedicated to matching the right tenant with the right landlord and ensuring the stress is taken out of properties.
If you are a landlord looking to find an estate agent who can manage your property portfolio, contact us today on:
Tel: 01332 384438
Email: [email protected]