For those new to the world of buy-to-let, it can be easy to mistake renting a property as a walk in the park.
But far away from the glamorised image portrayed on daytime television shows, making a buy-to-let investment work requires an awful lot of hard effort.
It’s not as simple as buying a property, finding a tenant and waiting for the rent to fly in – and if you’re not aware of the potential pitfalls, a buy-to-let dream can quickly become a nightmare.
To help you along the way, we’ve identified five common mistakes made by landlords to help ease your path into property rental.
1-Failure to perform an adequate inventory
So what difference can an inventory really make to your property? The answer is a huge difference. And if you fail to perform an adequate inventory at the start of a tenancy, it could cost you hundreds of pounds come the end.
As a matter of urgency, ensure that you have performed a thorough and in-depth inventory before your new tenants move in. Here at my|deposits we’ve created a step-by-step guide to inventories that will help ensure you don’t foot the bill for unnecessary damage to your home – click here to download today.
2-Viewing buy-to-let as a hobby
Although the hands-on nature of buy-to-let make it an enjoyable investment for many, it’s important to remember that it is exactly that – an investment.
And as with any investment, if you fail to give it the care and attention it needs, the chances are it’s going to cost you a lot of money in the long run.
This isn’t to say that you can’t enjoy your time as a landlord. But the process of being a landlord doesn’t stop as soon as you’ve handed the keys over. If you’re unable to find the time to market, maintain and look after your property, it may be time to reconsider your priorities.
3-Impatience in filling properties
The rental market remains strong, but finding tenants to occupy your home can be a frustrating task.
But if you are having difficulty in finding tenants, it’s hugely important you don’t cut corners in an attempt to speed up the process.
Never forget to vet tenants and perform appropriate background checks before signing the paperwork. The short term gain of a quick occupancy will soon be overwhelmed by the long term pain of potential problem tenants
4-Forgetting deposit protection
As well as providing landlords and tenants with security and peace of mind, deposits must be protected with a government authorised scheme and proof passed on to your tenants.
Failure to do so can lead to a penalty, of up to three times the amount of the deposit. My|deposits are one of the three government authorised schemes. To find out more or to join my|deposits click here.
5-Reliance on letting agents
When it comes to marketing your property, it can be simple to assume that once the letting agent takes control all will be well.
In today’s rental market however, it’s vital that landlords are a lot more pro-active in the marketing process.
Although letting agents have an important part to play, utilising everything from web platforms to social media are now equally as proficient as more traditional avenues. So if you are using a letting agent, make sure you’re not solely reliant upon them as a means of filling your property.
Have you got questions about everything from inventories to deposit protection? Follow us on Twitter@mydeposits to get access to our tips and downloadable guides.