Bricks and mortar have always been a bolthole for people looking to invest their money in a safe place and, despite recent changes to the lettings market, buy-to-let remains a popular investment avenue. If you are looking to become a buy-to-let landlord, then the results can be fruitful – follow our five tips below to start your journey!
The first port of call if you are considering becoming a buy-to-let landlord is the mortgage market; either with your current mortgage provider if you are looking to convert a current mortgage into buy-to-let, or to the general marketplace if you are looking to buy a new property for lettings purposes. Ensure that you shop around for your buy-to-let mortgage as the marketplace is currently extremely competitive in terms of lending, which should help you to obtain favourable rates. If you are converting your mortgage, ensure that your lender has granted you “Consent To Let” before you move any tenants into the property.
Managed or Unmanaged?
With the recent surge in tenant and landlord legislation, managing your own property may seem like a daunting prospect. If this is the case, then look for a reputable estate agent who will manage the lettings process for you – this will take a lot of the stress out of letting a property for you. If you are more confident, then you may want to work with an agent to list your property and find tenants, but then manage those tenants independently – if this is the case then seek as much advice as possible and keep legislation at the top of your list as a landlord.
When it comes to buy-to-let properties, you will need to make sure that you are covered for every eventuality. Specialist landlord insurance is a must, as well as buildings insurance, and if you have furnished a property then contents insurance may also be required. Speak to your chosen estate agent about their recommendations in terms of insurers and remember that spending a little on comprehensive cover may save you a lot in the long run.
Once you have your buy-to-let mortgage in place, you have your tenants in a fully-insured property and you are reaping the rewards, one of the key steps will be filing your taxes correctly. With buy-to-let being an investment source, you will have to pay specific taxes regarding the property and the profit which you are making from that; speaking to an accountant will help you to get your finances in order. Further to this, you will be able to offset some of your expenses and costs against tax – don’t miss out on these opportunities.
It would be easy once you have your investment property in place to then sit back and relax. One of our recommendations would be to keep your finger on the pulse of the lettings market and adapt your property accordingly. Currently, the student lettings market is extremely popular and the potential rental yield extremely high, therefore it could be a good market to position your property within currently. As the economy changes, families may be the driving market in lettings, or indeed young professionals, therefore stay flexible with your offering and you may well be able to increase your portfolio.
For more helpful advice we highly recommend speaking to the team in our specialist lettings division, whose contact details can be found here: https://thelettingagency.co.uk/