The private rental sector is like any other business sector, in that it is dictated by supply and demand. Some areas are more popular than others, with current stats suggesting Manchester is the number one city for landlords, closely followed by Cambridge and London.

At first glance, new landlords probably assume it all comes down to the type of property you are marketing, but whilst this is a big factor, along with location, there are many other things tenants will factor in before signing a tenancy agreement.

Neutral Décor

The majority of tenants are looking for a home rather than a temporary place to stay. As such, they will want a property where they can invite their friends and family, Covid restrictions notwithstanding.

Neutral décor appeals to the maximum number of people. Take the time to decorate your property before listing it for rent. A property that needs no work is always more attractive than one with tired or alarming décor.

Inclusive Appliances

Many tenants are managing on a tight budget, and finding the cash for a deposit and the first month’s rent will max them out. If they also need to purchase a washing machine, a fridge, and a freezer, it could be enough to persuade them to look for a different property.

Consider including appliances in the rental. It makes sense to do this if you have a larger portfolio, as you can properly secure a discount for bulk purchases. Make sure you invest in a repair and maintenance contract, too, for peace of mind.

Attractive Outdoor Space

Gardens are a premium feature right now, especially in cities. Investing in buy to let properties with an outdoor space makes sense, as most tenants want somewhere they can relax and entertain after a year of Covid restrictions.

Be prepared to spend a bit of money ensuring the garden is attractive. Install a patio so tenants have an area where they can dine and have a few drinks.

It’s also sensible to provide basic gardening tools or hire a gardening service if you can’t bear the thought of the garden being neglected.

Be a Responsive Landlord

Being nice and helpful costs nothing. The more responsive you are in the early stages, when tenants are still making up their mind about whether to proceed, the easier it will be to get them to sign on the dotted line.

Tenants want an easy life and anything you can do to help them will go a long way in strengthening the landlord-tenant relationship. For example, have a handy list of removal companies you can recommend in the area, such as G W Twilley and Son Removals. They serve customers in Enfield, London, and offers storage as well as removal services. If you can provide your tenants with access to services like this, they will be extremely grateful for the added assistance.

In addition, prepare an area guide for when tenants first move in that includes a list of local services, top takeaways, and other local amenities.

It makes sound business sense to do your utmost to attract tenants in a competitive market. That way you can minimise voids and maximise income.

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Daniel Peacock.

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